South Korea Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022

Basic information about the territory

South Korea Basic Information

Subchapters:

  • System of governance and political tendencies in the country
  • Foreign policy of the country
  • Population

The system of governance and political tendencies in the country

Composition of the Government (2022)

Government composition (2022)
• President: Yoon Suk-yeol
• Prime Minister: Han Duck-soo
• Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Finance: CHOO Kyung-ho
• Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education: Yoo Eun-hye
• Minister of Science and ICT: Lee Jong-ho
• Minister of Foreign Affairs: Park Jin
• Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy: Lee Chang-yang
• Minister of Unification: Kwon Young-se
• Minister of Justice: Han Dong-hoon
• Minister of National Defense: LEE Jong-sup
• Minister Interior and Security: Jeon Hae-cheol
• Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism: Park Yang-woo
• Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs: Chung Hwang-keun
• Minister of the Environment: Han Hwa-jin
• Minister of Labor: Lee Jung-sik
• Minister of Gender and Family: Kim Hyun-sook
• Minister of Lands, Infrastructure and Transport: WON Hee-ryong
• Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries: Moon Seong-hyeok
• Minister of Small, Medium and Startup Enterprises: Kwon Chil-seung
• Minister of Health and Social Affairs: Kwon Deok -cool

The Republic of Korea (ROK) is a presidential democratic republic headed by a directly elected president who appoints the prime minister. The executive power is exercised by the government, and the legislative power is shared by the government and the national assembly (300 seats).

The current president, Yoon Suk-yeol (People Power Party), was elected on March 9, 2022 and took office on May 10, 2022.

The victory of the conservative Yoon Seok-youl in the presidential election is expected given the public’s dissatisfaction with the performance of the previous President Moon’s government. And this is especially so when it comes to growing economic inequality, the inability of the government to limit the rise in real estate prices and insufficient progress in the fight against official corruption and abuse of power. Yoon Seok-youl, as a former attorney general who resigned in March 2021 in protest against the government’s criminal prosecution reforms, has a political agenda that favors closer defense cooperation with the US, deregulation of the economy, reducing the tax burden on businesses, increasing the supply of housing in private sector and more targeted fiscal support for industrial sectors affected by the pandemic. Check equzhou to learn more about South Korea political system.

In addition to the above, the authorities will increase the supply of affordable housing through public planning and policy incentives for private developers and reduce regulatory restrictions on private sector housing development to address the lack of supply, especially in densely populated urban areas.

As for the business environment, a Yoon Seok-youl victory will result in slower policy-making and possible gridlock in areas such as labor market reforms and fiscal policy. It is also expected to reduce spending and use tax incentives to support growth and consolidate public finances.

Regardless of political leanings, the South Korean government will use policy and tax incentives to encourage investment in advanced technology and digital infrastructure to promote competitiveness and independence in manufacturing. South Korea will remain attractive to foreign investors in high-tech manufacturing thanks to its skilled workforce and investment-friendly policies, but its potential for expansion will be limited by high labor costs and strong unions. A Conservative-led government is likely to continue to prioritize digital integration and the development of renewable energy sources, particularly offshore wind farms, electric cars and charging infrastructure, in order to achieve the goal of carbon neutrality by 2050.

In early 2022, the Korean government announced the launch of the 4th Population Policy, which intends to measure the following four areas:
– Expand and strengthen the working-age population
– Strengthen adaptability to a shrinking society
– Prepare for an old society
– Respond to low fertility
Depending on the time realization of the population shock, the government will respond in time through three phases: short-term (urgent response within five years), medium-term (requires results within 10 years) and long-term (population shock is likely to hit after 10 years), and devise response strategies accordingly.

Foreign policy of the country

After the presidential elections, KR’s activity on the international scene will have real consequences not only for the entire Indo-Pacific region, but also for US politics.

These areas are: Alliances, Energy, Climate Change, Negotiations with China and the question of whether South Korea should seek a seat in the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (known as the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue), which consists of the United States, Japan, India and Australia. Check recipesinthebox for South Korea defense and foreign policy.

In South Korea, the terms progressive and conservative are largely defined by the attitude towards North Korea. Thus, the approach to North Korea, in contrast to the previous promotion of a peace declaration and inter-Korean economic and humanitarian projects, is likely to be replaced by a more skeptical view of North Korea’s intentions and a tougher stance towards it.

Energy and climate. The previous government pushed for a phase-out of civilian nuclear power in South Korea after the 2011 Fukushima disaster, while the opposition is already opposing the plan. Nuclear power will be essential for countries like South Korea to meet their zero carbon goals by 2050. Before the Moon government’s policies, South Korea was becoming one of the major players in the nuclear energy field, with the sale of a large reactor to the United Arab Emirates. With the new president in place, the country could once again become a major player. It is far better for the United States to have allies like South Korea shape the safety and security standards for nuclear reactors and nuclear fuel in the world’s civilian nuclear power market, without which Russia and China would dominate the market.

In relations with China, the new conservative government is already calling for “strategic clarity” and policies based on democratic values. , the United States in 2016 announced plans to install the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system in Seongju, South Korea.

Population

With a population of 5million, the Republic of Korea ranks among the most densely populated countries (population density 527 per km2), the vast majority of the population lives in urban agglomerations (81.8%), more than 1/5 of the total population in the capital.

The Republic of Korea is ethnically very homogeneous with the absolute majority of the population being of Korean ethnicity. National minorities (in total approximately 4.8%) consist mainly of Chinese, Thais, Americans, and Japanese. In 2020, the Republic of Korea had the lowest birth rate in the world (0.84), which of course affects the aging population. This accelerating adverse development will mean the need for swift adoption of the necessary government measures and policies.