Back To Top

Over 2,000 Koreans move abroad without paying W400b in combined debt: data

Over 2,000 people have emigrated from South Korea without paying back debt to financial organizations in the past 10 years, leaving some 438 billion won ($387 million) of unsettled debt here, data showed Friday.

The total number of such indebted emigrants stood at 2,345 as of end-August this year, according to data submitted by the Korea Asset Management Corporation to Rep. Lee Tae-kyu, a lawmaker of the Bareunmirae Party and member of the parliamentary National Policy Committee. Of the 438 billion won, only 4 percent -- 16.4 billion won -- has been collected ex post facto.

By age group, those in their 50s and 60s were the majority, accounting for a combined 74 percent, data showed.

Also, some 90 percent of the subject group were under corporate joint surety, while 60 percent held chief director positions, reflecting that most of such exoduses had been triggered by business failures.

“Under the current law, it is basically impossible to make a credit inquiry on emigrants, due to personal information protection reasons,” the lawmaker said.

“In order to prevent heavy debtors from dodging their responsibilities, it is crucial to revise the related regulations.”

By Bae Hyun-jung (