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Yoon calls for bipartisan cooperation to pass 2023 budget planBy Yonhap
Published : Dec. 12, 2022 - 21:06
President Yoon Suk-yeol on Monday called for bipartisan cooperation to pass the 2023 budget plan, saying there can be no partisanship in handling people's livelihood matters.
Yoon issued the call during a weekly meeting with Prime Minister Han Duck-soo at his office, days after the National Assembly missed the legal deadline to pass the national budget amid a standoff between the ruling and opposition parties.
"President Yoon Suk-yeol expressed regret over the delay in the passage of the new government's first budget proposal, and earnestly asked for bipartisan cooperation and its swift passage in consideration of the fact that there can be no division between the ruling and opposition parties before people's livelihood issues," deputy presidential spokesperson Lee Jae-myoung said during a press briefing.
Yoon especially emphasized the importance of passing two amendment bills during this month's extraordinary parliamentary session -- one on lowering the corporate tax rate and the other on raising the ceiling of bond issuance by the money-losing state-run Korea Electric Power Corp.
The first amendment bill will not only lower taxes for large businesses but also increase investment and jobs for all firms, while the second will help ease the burden of electricity bills for the public, he said, according to Lee.
Meanwhile, Han reported back to the president on his recent trip to Africa and suggested the need for an improved official development assistance (ODA) strategy amid growing requests for increased ODA from South Korea.
Yoon instructed the prime minister to draw up an ODA strategy that includes plans to increase assistance and makes the most of South Korea's strengths, such as in the digital, climate change and health sectors.
Later in the day, Han met with the leader of the main opposition Democratic Party (DP), Lee Jae-myung, to discuss the budget plan and other pending issues. However, their meeting revealed the differences of view on corporate tax cuts.
The DP leader told Han the proposed cut in corporate tax is "a policy that is difficult for us to understand in terms of easing polarization or economic recovery."
Han told Lee big companies would increase investment and hiring if corporate tax is reduced. (Yonhap)
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