Korea spent 82.8% of budget in first 3 quarters

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Korea spent 82.8% of budget in first 3 quarters

Korea spent 82.8 percent of its state budget earmarked for 2018 in the first nine months as it moved to maintain its recovery pace and create more jobs, the Finance Ministry said Friday.

The government spent 232 trillion won ($206 billion) in the January-September period, up 10.3 trillion won, or 3.7 percentage points, from the planned outlay of 221.7 trillion won, according to the Ministry of Economy and Finance.

The government made efforts to frontload its budget spending to minimize any fallout from a hike in the minimum wage.

The government raised the minimum wage by 16.4 percent to 7,530 won as of Jan. 1 this year, the biggest jump in about two decades. The government earmarked 3 trillion won to reduce the burden on smaller businesses that hire mostly part-time workers.

The ministry said the government spent 28.8 trillion won on social infrastructure projects in the January-September period, 1.8 percentage points higher than originally planned.

Some 3.35 trillion won, or 88.5 percent, of the 3.78 trillion-won supplementary budget was also spent. The supplementary budget, passed in June, was aimed at boosting job creation.

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