Moon's approval rating plunges on minimum wage hike woes

By Yonhap
  • Published : Jul 19, 2018 - 10:32
  • Updated : Jul 19, 2018 - 10:32

President Moon Jae-in's approval rating dropped sharply this week, a poll showed Thursday, amid concerns over a planned minimum wage hike that critics say is likely to further slow the local economy.

In a survey conducted by Realmeter on Monday through Wednesday, Moon's approval rating came to 61.7 percent, down 6.4 percentage points from a week earlier.


The rate of decline was the steepest since Moon took office in May 2017, according to the local pollster. The latest reading also was the second lowest since Moon's inauguration.

The sharp drop follows a controversial decision by the minimum wage commission to hike the country's hourly minimum wage to 8,350 won ($7.39) from the start of next year, up 10.9 percent from the current 7,530 won.

The president apologized for what he called his government's inevitable failure to raise the minimum wage to 10,000 won per hour by 2020. However, many, especially small and medium-sized businesses, argue the increases have already been too sharp and too frequent.

Of 1,504 adults surveyed in the latest poll, 42 percent of all respondents said the planned wage increase is too steep while another 40 percent answered the rise seemed adequate.

The ruling Democratic Party's approval rating slipped 3.8 percentage points to 41.8 percent, marking five consecutive weeks of decline, while that of the main opposition Liberty Korea Party advanced 2.5 percentage points to 19.5 percent.

The rating of the progressive Justice Party dropped 1.4 percentage points to 10.2 percent, with those of the minor opposition Bareunmirae Party and the Party for Democracy and Peace coming to 7.0 percent and 3.5 percent, respectively. (Yonhap)