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S. Korea lags behind OECD peers in disabled pension payment

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

South Korea's disabled pension payment compared to its economic size was one of the lowest among advanced countries, data showed on Wednesday, supporting the view that more budget should be earmarked for the socially vulnerable group.

According to the data compiled by the health ministry, South Korea ranked second lowest among the 34 members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) with the ratio of its public and private pension payments for the disabled to its gross domestic product (GDP) standing at 0.1 percent in 2009.

The average for the OECD countries was 1.3 percent. Norway and Iceland topped the list with 2.8 percent each, followed by Britain with 2.4 percent, Sweden with 2.2 percent, Finland with 2.1 percent, according to the data.

Also, South Korea lagged behind other advanced countries in terms of its welfare spending for disabled people with the ratio of disability-related budget spending to its GDP standing at a meager 0.6 percent in 2007, only higher than that of Mexico and Turkey.

Comparable figures for Sweden, Denmark and Norway stood at 5 percent, 4.4 percent and 4.3 percent, respectively, according to the data.

The data also showed that the monthly average income for disabled workers stood at 1.42 million won (US$ 1,248) in 2011, which is equivalent to about 50 percent of the income earned by other general workers.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/asianet/130410/s-korea-lags-behind-oecd-peers-disabled-pension-payment