› Korea › By Topic › Social and welfare issues
The OECD/Korea Policy Centre fosters the exchange of technical information and policy experiences relating to the Asia Pacific region in areas such as health statistics, pension reforms and social policy and expenditure.
Labour market reform to improve growth prospects and reduce inequality is a top priority in the face of rapid population ageing and a dualistic labour market. Sustaining output growth requires policies to mitigate the impact of rapid population ageing by increasing labour inputs from under-employed segments of the population.
Korea should build on its strong economy and well-educated workforce to meet the challenges of a fast-ageing population and to tackle rising income inequality, according to a new OECD report.
Korea is well known for its successful transition from hardship to prosperity and technological prowess. This amazing transformation and strong economic performance have allowed the country to make important progress also in the social sphere. However, like most of the members of the OECD, Korea still faces significant challenges to building an equitable and inclusive society.
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Gains in female education attainment have contributed to a worldwide increase in women’s participation in the labour force, but considerable gaps remain in working hours, conditions of employment and earnings. More specific data for Korea are available in this country note.
Society at a Glance – Asia/Pacific Edition 2011 offers a concise quantitative overview of social trends and policies across Asia/Pacific countries and economies.
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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.
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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OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría has warned that unless a new generation of statistics is developed to measure social progress and well-being, people may lose confidence in institutions and in the capacity of governments to address their problems.