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OECD Economic Surveys: Korea 2012

image of OECD Economic Surveys: Korea 2012

OECD's 2012 Economic Survey of Korea examines recent economic developments, policies and prospects. In addition, it includes special chapters covering sustaining convergence to the highest-income countries and promoting social cohesion.

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Achieving the “low carbon, green growth” vision in Korea

Korea, which has had the highest growth rate of greenhouse gas emissions in the OECD area since 1990, adopted an ambitious Green Growth Strategy in 2009. It aims at reducing emissions by 30% by 2020 relative to a “business as usual” scenario, implying a 4% cut from the 2005 level. The Strategy also includes a Five- Year Plan with public spending of 2% of GDP per year to promote green growth. Korea is planning to establish a carbon price through a cap-and-trade emissions trading scheme. Such an approach, combined with a carbon tax in sectors not covered by the scheme, is necessary to reduce emissions in a cost-effective manner and foster innovation in green technology. In addition, each sector should face the same electricity price based on production costs to promote efficient energy use. Given market failures, the government has a role to play in green R&D, particularly for basic research, in fostering green finance and in developing renewable energy resources.

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