[EDITORIALS]Business at Assembly’s mercyAn absurd thing has happened at the National Assembly. An agreeement between the government and the governing party was nullified by the objections of some ruling party lawmakers.
The agreement, that the window dressing of companies’ accounts done in the past would not be subject to class action lawsuits for two years, was overturned in the Assembly’s Legislation and Judiciary Committee. From next year, listed companies with assets worth more than 2 trillion won ($1.9 billion) will face a situation of being dragged into a chain of lawsuits because they were not free of those practices in the past.
Above all, the incident has damaged the predictability of government policy. If a bill agreed upon by the Policy Committee, an official organ of the party, is dashed by a few lawmakers, on the ground that they don’t share the same opinion of it, there can’t be cooperation between the government and the party. The government can no longer pursue a policy through consultation with either side of the Assembly.
On the side of enterprises, it will be hard to run their own businesses as they must brace for chain lawsuits. They believed in the two-year suspension, but it was rejected just like that. How can they dare to continue business? Businesses have also tried to apologize and clear up their past wrongdoings. What they want is not amnesty for their old vices, but a request for time to adjust to a sudden change in the system. The reason that the party and the government reached an agreement was because the side effects of the law would be so great. Therefore, the economic deputy prime minister and the leaders of the Uri Party agreed on the suspension.
The president said he would exert all his efforts toward reviving the economy next year. The government will excute fiscal projects earlier next year in an effort to revive the economy. What is important, however, is not economic blueprints or promises, but confidence.
The reason why we lack investment and consumption is because people do not have confidence in their future. If things like this happen, it is no use to prescribe good medicine for our economy. What is important is enhancing the predictability of government policy and easing the anxiety of businessmen. The Assembly must call a special session early next year and pass the suspension bill. Then, businessmen will be able to run their businesses and the economy will survive.