Korea falling behind in recovery, says KCCI chief

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Korea falling behind in recovery, says KCCI chief

Korea has not gained the momentum needed for early recovery despite the global economy showing signs of picking up pace, the head of a local business group said Thursday.

“The pace of domestic economic recovery is still slow, although things have picked up for the global market,” Park Yong-man, chairman of the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry, told leaders of the country’s four major political parties during a meeting at the National Assembly.

Korea appears to be suffering from chronic low growth with the Bank of Korea forecasting economic expansion at 2.5 percent this year citing a high unemployment rate, surging household debt and China’s economic sanctions over a missile row.

The U.S. Federal Reserve has said it will continue rate increases for the coming few years based on confidence in its economic recovery. Such a development can lead to a rise in Korea’s exports. The OECD projected in November that the U.S. economy would grow 2.3 percent in 2017 from a year earlier, compared with a 2.6 percent forecast for Korea.

“Our growth rate may plunge to zero unless we change now, even though we are currently maintaining a 2 percent range growth rate,” Park said.

The former head of Doosan Group called on political leaders to serve as a catalyst for change, saying, “It is high time for us to recover the ‘formula of hope’ in which people can fairly reap the benefits of their labor.”

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