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Report

The Labor Market Policy and Social Safety Net in Korea: After the 1997 Crisis – Appendix

Table 1-1. Korea’s Labor Market Profile (Thousands of persons unless otherwise specified)

  1997 yearly average 1998 yearly average
Population over 15 years of age 34,736 35,243
Economically active population 21,604 21,390
Labor force Participation rate (percent) 62.2 60.7
Employment 21,048 19,926
Unemployment 556 1,463
Unemployment rate
(percent)
2.6 6.8

Source: National Statistical Office, Monthly Review on Employment Trend (various issues, 1998). [Back]

Table 1-2. Loss of Employment by Occupation (1997 versus 1998)

Total -1,122 (thousands of persons) -5.3 (percent)
Professional/managerial workers 50 1.3
Clerical workers -156 -6.1
Service/sales workers -135 -2.8
Operatives/labors -974 -12.7
Farmers/fishermen 94 4.2

Source: Author’s calculation based on the data of the National Statistical Office. [Back]

Table 1-3. Changes in the Composition of the Unemployed [Thousands of persons (percent)]

  1997 1998/Sept.
Total 556 (100) 1,572 (100)
Household-head 192 (34.5) 719 (47.0)
Non-head 365 (65.5) 853 (53.0)
Male 352 (63.3) 1,069 (68.0)
Female 204 (36.7) 503 (32.0)

Source: See Table 1-2. [Back]

Table 1-4. Changes in the Composition of the Unemployed by Previous Job Status [Thousands of persons (percent)]

  1997 1998
Total 319 1,196
Self-employed and un-paid family workers 56 (17.5) 193 (16.1)
Regular workers 79 (24.8) 258 (21.6)
Temporary workers 128 (40.1) 399 (33.4)
Day laborers 56 (17.6) 346 (28.9)

Source: See Table 1-2. Figures are only for those who responded to the survey. [Back]

Table 1-5. Unemployment by Company Size in 1998

  Number of the unemployed (thousands of persons) The unemployed
(percent)
1-9 employees 731 61.0
10-19 158 13.2
20-49 120 10.0
50-299 121 10.1
300 and more 69 5.7
Total 1,196 100

Source: See Table 1-2. Figures are only for those who responded to the survey. [Back]

Table 1-6. Wage Changes in 1997 and 1998

  Total monthly wages (thousands of won) Nominal Wages
(percent)
CPI
(1995=100)
Real Wages
(percent)
1997 1,463 7.0 4.5 2.4
1998 1/4 1,431 0.1 8.9 -8.1
2/4 1,385 -1.2 8.2 -8.6
3/4 1,417 -8.1 7.0 -14.2
4/4 1,475 -0.4 6.0 -6.0
1998 1,427 -2.5 7.5 -9.3

Source: Ministry of Labor, Monthly Report on Labor Statistics Survey (Various issues, 1998). The figures cover only the wage levels of workers in the firms employing more than 10 people in the non-agricultural private sector. [Back]

Table 1-7. Reduction in Household Income by Income Group in 1998 (Percent)

  Nominal Income Real Income
1st income group
(lowest 20)
-17.2 -23.7
2nd income group -11.8 -18.3
3rd income group -9.9 -16.4
4th income group -8.8 -15.3
5th income group
(highest 20)
-0.3 -6.5
Highest 10 +4.0 -2.5
Average -6.7 -13.2

Source: National Statistical Office, Quarterly Review on Urban Employees’ Household Trend (various issues, 1997 and 1998). [Back]

Table 1-8. The Means of Livelihood of Unemployed Household Heads: As of September 1998

  Unemployed (number of persons) Unemployed (percent)
Total 719,000 100
Income from other family members 194,000 27.0
Support from relatives and friends 70,000 9.7
Savings, retirement allowance, selling real estate 362,000 50.3
Income from property (interest, rent etc) 18,000 2.5
Public pension 2,000 0.3
Private loan 50,000 7.0
Unemployment insurance 10,000 1.4
Public assistance 5,000 0.7
Other 7,000 1.0

Author

Source: National Statistical Office, Monthly Review on Employment Trend (October 1998). [Back]

Table 1-9. Reasons for Not Finding Jobs: As of September 1998

  Total
unemployed (thousands of persons)
Total
unemployed (percent)
New graduates unemployed (thousands of persons) New
graduates unemployed (percent)
Total 1,572 100 108 100
Inappropriate education, skills, experience 272 17.3 30 27.8
Inappropriate wages 46 2.9 4 3.7
Inappropriate working hours 42 2.7 2 1.8
Inappropriate working conditions 98 6.2 7 6.5
Lack of education, skills, experience 43 2.7 8 7.4
Old age and illness 67 4.3 0 0
No job 858 54.6 55 50.9
Not ready for self-employment 123 7.8 0 0
Other reason 23 1.4 2 1.0

Source: See Table 1-8. [Back]

Table 1-10. Changes in the Labor Market Budget: 1998 and 1999

  Total budget
(billions of won)
Indirect active labor market policy (percent) Direct active labor market policy (percent) Passive labor market policy (percent)
1998 1/2 3,177.0 24.3 30.3 45.4
1998 2/2 5,326.6 10.5 21.9 67.6
1999 7,262.8 8.3 28.8 62.9

Source: Author’s calculation based on the data of the Ministry of Labor. 1998 ½ figures were based on the government’s first comprehensive policy package released on March 26, 1998.

Indirect active labor market policy = vocational training + job placement activities.

Direct active labor market policy = public work program + various employment subsidies.

Passive labor market policy = unemployment insurance + livelihood subsidies for the unemployed. [Back]

Table 3-1. Major Indicators of Industrial Relations

Years Union membership (Thousands of persons) Penetration rate (Percent) Number
of labor disputes
Number
of participants (Thousands of persons)
Loss of days
(Thousands of days)
1980 948 14.7 206 49 61
1985 1,004 12.4 265 29 64
1986 1,036 12.3 276 47 72
1987 1,267 13.8 3,749 1,262 6,947
1988 1,707 17.8 1,873 293 5,401
1989 1,932 18.6 1,616 409 6,351
1990 1,887 16.2 322 134 4,487
1991 1,803 15.9 234 175 3,271
1992 1,735 15.0 235 105 1,528
1993 1,667 14.2 144 109 1,308
1994 1,659 13.5 121 104 1,484
1995 1,615 12.7 88 50 393
1996 1,598 12.2 85 79 893
1997 1,484 11.2 78 44 445
1998 1,405*
(Sept. 98)
12.5 129 146 1,452

Source: Ministry of Labor, Yearbook of Labor Statistics (various issues).
*Union membership of 1998 is not an official date, but a self-claimed one by two rival unions. [Back]

Table 4-1. The Unemployment Outlook: 1998-2002

  GNP growth rate
(percent)
Unemployment
(Thousands of persons)
Unemployment rate (percent)
1998 1/2 -5.4 1,334 6.3
1998 2/2 -6.4 1,593 7.4
1998 average -5.9 1,463 6.8
1999 1/2 0.8 1,698 7.9
1999 2/2 3.3 1,566 7.1
1999 average 2.0 1,632 7.5
2000 4.7 1,514 6.8
2001 5.1 1,401 6.2
2002 5.3 1,281 5.5

Source: Ministry of Labor, 99 Jonghap Silup Daecheck (January 1999).

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