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S. Koreans Outraged by Prospective National Pension Changes

Write: 2018-08-13 10:47:14Update: 2018-08-13 14:54:45

S. Koreans Outraged by Prospective National Pension Changes

Photo : YONHAP News

Anchor: The government is reportedly mulling a set of reform measures to ensure the sustainable operation of the National Pension Fund, which is expected to run out of money around three years earlier than predicted. The reported measures are, however, drawing strong public criticism as they're likely to increase the burden for subscribers. 
Our Lee Bo-kyung has more.

Report: The Moon Jae-in administration is floating the idea of pension reform as the pension fund for salaried workers and the self-employed is expected to bottom out in 2057, about three years earlier than previously estimated.

An advisory panel on the national pension is set to release its reform proposals on Friday. The proposals reportedly include a move to extend the subscription period to the age of 65 from the current 60. 

The committee also recommends the government increase premiums gradually from the current nine percent of a subscriber's monthly income. Another step could be pushing back the payout age to 68. 

After the plans were leaked in media reports last Friday, people began voicing outrage about the possible changes, posting over one thousand online petitions on the Web site of the presidential office.

In the face of the public outcry, Health and Welfare Minister Park Neung-hoo said Sunday that the reported plans are part of the review committee’s recommendations, not the government’s proposals. 

The minister said that the government will produce its own proposals in September after collecting public opinions and present a related bill to the National Assembly in October. 

Analysts say it will be inevitable for the government to collect more premiums for a longer period of time to prevent the depletion of the fund, but any changes in the subscription period and pension premiums will likely trigger strong public resistance. 
Lee Bo-kyung, KBS World Radio News.

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