[EDITORIALS]2030: Vision or illusion?

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[EDITORIALS]2030: Vision or illusion?

The Ministry of Planning and Budget yesterday announced the disputed grand blueprint for the nation’s future for the next two decades, dubbed “Vision 2030.”
The plan aims to more than triple the nation’s gross domestic product per capita to $49,000 around 2030 and enhance Koreans’ quality of life, thus reducing concerns about housing and medical fees.
The government report depicts the country’s future almost three decades from now as a heaven on earth. However, the 1.1 quadrillion won ($1.1 billion) to be spent to meet the rosy welfare project includes no details on how to finance it. The flamboyant picture was presented without any solid foundation. Even a senior official from the Budget Ministry said, “We are simply proposing how the future plan should go and it is meaningless to dig into the budget.”
The comment is an indication that the government has admitted the project is a wild-goose chase. What is the true intention of this administration, already showing symptoms of being the lame duck that it is?
Even Kang Bong-kyun, top economic policymaker at the ruling Uri Party, downplayed the significance of the project in a meeting between the party leaders and the Blue House on Oct. 20. He said, “There’s nothing that the incumbent administration can do about the plan.” It is hard to believe that the government’s Budget Ministry came up with such an unrealistic project when it has no capability and time to proceed with it.
Since the Roh Moo-hyun administration began three years ago, the real gross domestic product has been lower than the potential growth rate.
The economy is tumbling when it was about to revive. The livelihood of Koreans has been getting worse and the people are becoming hard-hearted. The reality is harsh, causing fears for the future.
The 2030 plan, targeted to outpace the quality of life in the United States in 24 years, is more than absurd. Does it give the Korean people an illusion about the future? Or is the rosy vision intended as some kind of consolation?
The government has wasted much time organizing countless road maps and medium- and long-term plans for the future. The problem is that it has no financial resources. The plans are the offspring of bureaucrats’ efforts to suck up to the president. The utmost task for now is to regain growth momentum in the nation. The government should not deceive its citizens with such nonsense.
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