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Towards Better Social and Employment Security in Korea

image of Towards Better Social and Employment Security in Korea

This report on Korea is the fourth country study published in a series of reports looking into how policies connect people with jobs, following reports on Australia, Slovenia and the United Kingdom. It has a special focus on low-income groups, jobseekers and workers, and policies geared towards closing the considerable gaps these groups are facing around income and employment support. In the past forty years, Korea has gone through a remarkable economic transformation and in the past two decades, the country has also put in place a comprehensive social protection system and a strong activation framework. Nevertheless, features of Korea’s labour market, which include very low job tenure, a high degree of duality and a high level of informality, make it difficult for some measures to reach workers and jobseekers. This report concludes that significant additional action will be needed to make income and employment supports more effective and inclusive.

 

 

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Korea's economic and labour market situation

This chapter provides a concise overview of labour market trends and challenges in Korea. It describes how Korea’s vast economic and social development has shaped its labour market over the past five decades. The analysis highlights Korea’s predominance of micro‑enterprises with low productivity; widespread culture of subcontracting practices; high incidence of non‑regular work; and the impact of these phenomena on labour market dualities and ongoing weaknesses around job quality and labour market inclusiveness. The chapter also discusses the challenges vulnerable groups – particularly women, youth and older workers – face within the labour market.

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