Korea saw more than 1,000 social enterprises established in the six years since the related act was enforced in July 2007.The Labor Ministry said Wednesday that it has certified 1,012 social companies so far.
Social enterprise certification aims at creating jobs for the underprivileged and returning part of profits to society. The government offers them management consulting, covers personnel expenses for experts and cuts corporate and income taxes by 50 percent.
The number of social enterprises increased 30.7 percent from 774 late last year to 1,012 this year.
Their employment grew from 18,689 workers in late 2012 to 22,533. Of them, the underprivileged makes up 60.6 percent or 13,661 workers. Among them are 6,121 seniors and 3,662 disabled persons.
Minister of Employment and Labor Phang Ha-nam visited Nanumstore, the 1,000th social enterprise, in Seoul on Wednesday. The store sells rice wreaths and helps poor children, the disabled and the homeless. Buyers may donate rice, noodles, coal briquettes or 30 percent of purchase price of rice wreaths.
This year, 9 tons of rice, 200 boxes of noodles and 1,000 briquettes were given through Nanumstore to 31 institutions and organizations including the Korean Red Cross, Unicef, and the Korea Senior Citizens Association.
By Chun Sung-woo (email@example.com)