In Korea's dynamic labour market, job displacement (involuntary job loss due to firm closure or downsizing) affects many workers over the course of their working lives. Some workers are more vulnerable than others to this risk and may face long periods of unemployment/inactivity after displacement, particularly if their skills are not well-matched to emerging job opportunities. Even when they find new jobs, displaced workers tend to be paid less, have fewer benefits and are more likely to be overskilled than in the jobs they held prior to displacement. Helping displaced workers get back into good jobs quickly should be a key goal of labour market policy. To achieve this goal, Korea needs to increase resources devoted to re-employment programmes, such as job-search training and job matching, to improve their performance and better target those who need the most help. Existing training programmes need to be revised to ensure that people are obtaining skills that will help them find work. The social safety net also needs to be strengthened to lower the personal and societal costs of displacement, notably by improving the coverage of unemployment benefits.
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The Korean labour market continues to perform well after a quick recovery from the global economic crisis. Korea’s unemployment rate was 3.2% in May 2012, 0.2% point lower than a year earlier, and nearly down to its pre-crisis level of 3.1%.
Korea faces the challenge of reversing rising inequality while sustaining robust economic growth.
Country Notes from OECD Economic Policy Reforms: Going for growth 2011 presenting OECD recommendations for structural reform priorities for individual countries.
This report examines the relationship between SMEs' management of intellectual assets, innovation and competitiveness.
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Sustaining economic growth is certainly important to promote social cohesion but growth alone cannot solve all problems. Instead, well-targeted social policies are essential to promote social cohesion and reverse the upward trend in income inequality. This is the “go social” challenge facing Korea, said OECD Secretary-General in Seoul.
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This report was prepared to help Korea identify and address main social policy challenges. It suggests specific policy options and a strategy to “go social”, based on the practices and reforms that have worked well in other countries.
A one-day capacity building event was held at the Trento Centre on Monday, 8th of November, 2010. A delegation from the Korean Ministry of Employment and Labour and Korean provincial governments visited the Trento Centre to examine strategies for stimulating local employment
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This note is taken from Chapter 3 of Economic Policy Reforms: Going for Growth 2010.