President Moon Jae-in spent about 50 billion won ($44.1 million) for Tuesday’s election victory, while two runner-ups – Hong Joon-pyo and Ahn Cheol-soo --spent 42 billion won and 46 billion won each in campaign expenses, their respective parties said Wednesday.
The legal limit set by the National Election Commission was 50.9 billion won.
All three parties -- Moon’s Democratic Party of Korea, Hong’s Liberty Korea Party and Ahn’s People’s Party -- are likely to get much of the money recovered.
The election authority is obliged to make up for the entire campaign costs, spent within law, of a candidate who receives more than 15 percent of the votes.
Other candidates, including Yoo Seong-min of the Bareun Party and Sim Sang-jeung of the Justice Party, won’t get any money from national coffers, as they failed to reach the minimum 10 percent turnout required for a state refund.