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Korea takes steps to ease property boom

[THE INVESTOR] The South Korean government will present a set of measures on Nov. 3 to relieve the country’s real estate boom as concerns grow against mounting household credits, the government said on Oct. 27.

At a ministerial-level meeting in Seoul chaired by Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho, the country’s economic policymakers discussed pending issues, including an overheating in the local property market and the ongoing corporate restructuring of the shipbuilding and shipping industries.

The move came as housing prices in some uptown areas in Seoul have risen sharply, driven up by speculative moves, while other areas have remained cold amid a protracted economic slump.

The government has been reviewing preemptive measures to keep such an overheating trend in Seoul from spreading to other areas, with the country’s household debts standing at a record level of 1,300 trillion won (US$1.14 trillion).