DP urges gov’t to accept blame for savings crisis

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DP urges gov’t to accept blame for savings crisis

The National Assembly continued its tug of war with the government yesterday over lawmakers’ move to raise the ceiling on compensation payouts to depositors and investors of failed savings banks.

“The government must take responsibility for its mistake,” said Sohn Hak-kyu, chairman of the Democratic Party. “The savings bank crisis is a failure of both governmental policy and oversight.”

The ruling and opposition parties agreed late Tuesday to establish a special law that would allow depositors with up to 60 million won ($55,500) in any of the suspended savings banks to be fully reimbursed. The proposed ceiling is 10 million won higher than the current limit.

The lawmakers initially planned to push for reimbursements of up to 200 million won for each depositor but retreated in the face of government protests that such a measure was unfair and populist.

They responded by suggesting partial reimbursements of up to 95 percent for amounts over 50 million won, plus up to 10 million won for subordinate debt holders. The latter group would also be eligible to claim back most of the money exceeding this limit, according to their plan.

But Minister of Strategy and Finance Bahk Jae-wan made clear his opposition to any changes and criticized the lawmakers on Tuesday for disrupting financial equilibrium in the nation.

He also hinted at the possibility of a presidential veto if the National Assembly maintains its current course, telling Democratic Party Representative Kim Sung-gon on Tuesday that “the government will do its best to block such legislation.”

The ruling and opposition lawmakers criticized the government yesterday in a heated session at the Assembly. They honed in on financial regulators for what they claimed was a failure to properly oversee the savings banks and attempts to dodge responsibility for the outcome.

Bahk reiterated that the government has no plan to support the lawmakers’ generous program at the expense of taxpayers.

“Approving a compensation measure that shakes the order of the financial market would deal a serious blow to the government’s credit standing.”

Bahk suggested a donation drive for victims but this was shot down by lawmakers.


By Ser Myo-ja [myoja@joongang.co.kr]

한글 관련 기사 [연합뉴스]

손학규 "저축銀, 국가 잘못은 국가가 책임져야"

민주당 손학규 대표는 10일 저축은행 투자 피해자 구제대책에 대해 "국가가 잘못했으면 국가가 책임져야 한다"고 주장했다.

손 대표는 이날 여의도 한 음식점에서 기자간담회를 열어 "저축은행 사태는 크게는 정부의 정책 및 감독 실패이며, 심지어 영업정지 이전에 사전인출 사태까지 있었다"고 지적하며 말했다.

그는 "은행이 '후순위 채권으로 바꾸면 이자가 높다'고 꾀는 바람에 저축한 3천만원 중 한 푼도 구제받지 못하게 된 할머니가 있다. 이게 할머니의 잘못이냐"고 반문하고 후순위 채권 투자자에 대한 구제 필요성도 역설했다.

그는 야권통합에 대해 "지난 4ㆍ27 김해을 보궐선거에서 민주당 후보가 나서야 이긴다고 확신했지만 야권연대와 후보단일화를 위해 결국 양보했다"면서 "민주당은 헌신과 희생의 자세로 야권통합에 임할 것"이라고 약속했다.

그는 한진중공업 사태에 대해 조남호 회장에게 더욱 적극적이고 긍정적인 자세로 노사협상에 임하길 주문하면서 "정리해고를 철회할 수 있는 선택을 해달라"고 당부했다.

야권의 '희망버스' 행사에 대해 긍정적인 평가를 했으나 "당 대표가 할 일은 따로 있다. 한진중공업 사태 해결을 위해 나름의 역할과 노력을 해왔다"고 강조했다.

그는 최근 문재인 노무현재단 이사장의 지지도 상승에 대해 "민주 세력과 민주당에 대한 지지의 총합을 높여주는 것으로 큰 틀에서 반가운 현상"이라고 말했다.

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