Nation’s unused phone booths costing tax payers money

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Nation’s unused phone booths costing tax payers money

Korea has 5,614 public phone booths with monthly sales of less than 1,000 won ($0.90), according to the Committee on Culture Sports, Tourism, Broadcasting and Communications yesterday.

When calculating all the unusable change left in the phone after calls were made, less than 10 people use them a month on average, it said.

The Democratic United Party analyzed data supplied by the commission and KT and found that the number of pay phones nationwide with monthly sales below 1,000 won hit 5,614 in July, up 2.8-fold from July 2009, according to lawmaker Jun Byung-hun.

The number of phone booths with more than 10,000 won of monthly sales decreased by 31 percent in July compared to the same period in 2009. There were 114 phone booths with zero sales in July.

The booths’ total revenue plunged from 111.3 billion won in 2003 to 14.5 billion won in 2011.

As pay phone use continues to fall, the government has been dismantling between 5,000 and 7,000 every year. This saw their number fall from 88,890 in July 2010 to 78,289 this July.

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