The government's dividend income from its stakes in public companies rose sharply this year on improved earnings of state-funded companies, the finance ministry said Friday.
Public companies' dividend payments to the government totaled 1.56 trillion won ($1.38 billion) in 2017, up 27.4 percent from 1.2 trillion won a year earlier, according to the Ministry of Strategy and Finance.
The ministry said that the spike comes as the average dividend payout ratio, or the percentage of earnings paid to shareholders in dividends, rose 1.64 percentage points to 31.89 percent in 2017 thanks to improved earnings.
Of the 36 companies in which the government holds stakes in, 23 institutions paid dividends this year, including the Korea Electric Power Corp., the Korea Land & Housing Corp. and the Industrial Bank of Korea.
The remaining 13, including the Korea National Oil Corp., the Korea National Tourism Organization and the Korea Gas Corp. did not pay out dividends. (Yonhap)