President Moon Jae-in unveiled plans Wednesday for another economic relief package aimed at stimulating exports and domestic demand stifled by the coronavirus pandemic.
The government will provide South Korea's exporting companies with at least 36 trillion won ($29.5 billion) of trade finance for their credit and capital liquidity, he said during the fourth emergency economic council session at Cheong Wa Dae.
It's meant to support exporters suffering a heavy blow due to the collapse of global supply chains and a shrinkage in trade volume, Moon added.
"The government will also respond preemptively to the restructuring of global supply chains" on the basis of know-how from handling Japan's export control against South Korea, the president said.
He called for efforts to turn the crisis into an opportunity, citing the enhanced global image of South Korea for its effective quarantine.
In a bid to boost domestic consumption, the other pillar of the country's economic growth, the government has decided to spend 17.7 trillion won. He expects 3.3 trillion won of demand to be created through public institutions' advance purchase of necessary goods and prepayment program.
In addition, Moon made public a "special measure" to ease 12 trillion won of tax burdens on close to 7 million small shop owners and freelancers across the nation, in the meeting attended by the National Tax Service chief.
He also announced the expansion of loan guarantees and low borrowing cost programs for startups in line with his administration's innovative growth campaign.
"The global economy is falling into an extreme slump," Moon pointed out, adding South Korea's export-reliant economy is suffering a "tsunami-like impact."
"(We) are in a dark tunnel with no end in sight," he added, stressing the need for urgent measures to save South Korean firms and protect jobs.
Presiding over previous sessions of the ad-hoc council against the economic fallout of COVID-19, Moon revealed a series of massive aid programs, which include 100 trillion won of emergency financial support for conglomerates and smaller firms. (Yonhap)