South Korea is considering a supplementary budget in addition to other measures to support the economy as domestic and global downside risks grow, the country’s vice finance minister said.
“We are mulling over fiscal measures to reinforce the economy and a supplementary budget is among those,” said Vice Finance Minister Choi Sang-mok in an interview with Reuters on Thursday.
The government is most concerned about a further slowdown in exports and investment prolonging low growth and low employment, Choi said when asked about the biggest problems facing the economy.
“The strength of the improvement we saw past the first quarter was a bit weak and it has been difficult to say that the recovery in the job market is strong,” he said.
In light of these challenges, Choi said the government plans to train its focus on job growth when it announces its policy plans for the second half of the year and makes its mid-year forecast revision.
The government’s GDP forecast for this year currently stands at 3.1 percent, projected last December. The Bank of Korea’s forecast for 2016 GDP growth is currently 2.8 percent.
As for trade, the vice finance minister said the government hopes the decline in exports will continue to slow, but did not say whether shipments would post growth by year-end. South Korea’s exports have been falling since January last year as global trade weakened on cheap commodity prices.