South Korea's per capita national debt exceeded 14 million won ($11,864) and is expected to double by 2028, data showed Sunday, amid concerns that such ballooning debt could weigh on the nation's fiscal health.
According to the National Assembly Budget Office, per capita national debt stood at 14.18 million won as of Saturday. In comparison, per capita national debt was 7.23 million won in 2009.
The office predicted that South Korea's national debt may rise to 1,490 trillion won in 2028, compared with 735 trillion won as of Saturday.
Given that the nation's projected population of 51.94 million in 2028, per capita national debt could rise to 28.7 million won over the next nine years, according to the office.
The country's national debt increased by 20.1 trillion won in 1998, affected by the Asian financial crisis.
The debt also grew by 37.9 trillion won in 2004, right after the credit card debacle and expanded by 50.6 trillion won in 2008, when the country was still struggling to recover from the global financial crisis.
As the government has sharply increased fiscal spending to navigate through economic turmoil, national debt has also been on a steep rise.
South Korea's national debt surpassed 111 trillion won in 2000 and exceeded 300 trillion won in 2008.
In 2014, national debt grew to 500 trillion won and surpassed 600 trillion won in 2016.
The debt-to-GDP ratio is also expected to grow sharply from 38 percent this year to 56.7 percent in 2028, according to the office.
The government has proposed a record 513.5 trillion-won budget for 2020 to boost its slowing economy beset by a deepening US-China trade row.
Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki has said the national debt could rise to the upper end of 39 percent of its GDP next year if the National Assembly approves the budget proposal. (Yonhap)