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News Briefing
Measures to support the public’s livelihoods ahead of the Lunar New Year
Feb 2024
The Korean government announced measures to support the public’s livelihoods ahead of the Lunar New 
Year, which take care of price of popular goods, traditional markets, owners of small businesses, vulnerable groups, support for the holidays, domestic tourism.

1. Price of popular goods
• Keep the average prices of 16 major popular items for the holiday below they were the year  before. Specifically, price rise of apples and pears will be limited to single digits annually.
• Supply 16 major commodities in the biggest quantity ever for the Lunar New Year (208,000 tons in 2023 to 257,000 tons in 2024), and ship more apples and pears than the average supply of 120,000 tons.
• Extend discount support from 30 billion won in 2023 to 84 billion won in 2024 and increase the government’s discount support rate from 20% to 30% in order to offer a maximum 60% discount.
• Introduce an instant credit card discount for purchases in traditional markets and strive to further increase markets’ participation.

2. Traditional markets
• Permanently raise the monthly individual purchase limit for Onnuri Gift Cards by 500,000 won, and increase the monthly exchange limit for affiliated stores from 6 million won in 2023 to 10 million won in 2024.

3. Owners of small businesses
• Promtply implement policies to lessen the financial strain on small businesses including lower electricity bills, interest refunds, and low-interest loans for refinancing. Additionally, offer the largest?ever holiday subsidy, estimated to be worth 39 trillion won. 
 - Provide 200,000 won toward the electricity bills to 1.26 million small businesses with yearly sales of 30 million won or less. 
 - Refund interest to 400 thousand small business owners who borrowed money from non-banking financial institutions, up to a maximum of 1.5 million won.
 - Launch refinancing loans for small businesses by lowering interest rates from 7% to 4.5%.
• Extend the due date of VAT payment from January 25 to March 25 and the due date of corporate income tax payment from March 31 to June 30 for SMEs and the self-employed.
• Disburse VAT refunds early: from February 9 to January 30 for exporting companies; from February 9 to  February 2 for SMEs and the self-employed.

4. Vulnerable groups
• Reduce the burden of energy costs for 3.65 million households in disadvantaged categories by postponing the power rate rises for an additional year, at an expenditure of 260 billion won.
• Start the job development process early in order to hire 700 thousand elderly and marginalized 
individuals.

5. Support for the holidays
• Eliminate highway tolls and improve the medical response system by enabling the general public to 
receive non-face-to-face medical consultations throughout the holidays.
• Ensure that subcontractors are paid on schedule and lower interest rates on past-due loans by 0.5%p 
to 1.0%p.

6. Domestic tourism
• As part of the ‘Traveling Month campaign’, distribute 200 thousand coupons for lodging that is available 
in non-metropolitan areas in February. Additionally, offer vacation support to up to 150,000 employees
in February.