South Korea moves to support long-term growth of SMEs

Working in tandem with the government, the heads of the nation's five largest conglomerates have pledged their support for SMEs in the country.
By: | May 30, 2022

Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won, Hyundai Motor Group Chairman Chung Euisun, LG Group Chairman Koo Kwang-mo and Lotte Group Chairman Shin Dong-bin made the pledge at the Korea Federation of SMEs’ (KBIZ) annual convention.

The chaebol leaders also made handprints with President Yoon Suk-yeol and the heads of the country’s four lobby groups for SMEs – KBIZ, the Korean Women Entrepreneurs Association, the Korea Federation of Micro Enterprise and the Korea Venture Business Association – to symbolise win-win growth.

The business leaders also shared complaints and proposals with the president, the finance minister, the SMEs minister, and the presidential secretaries.

Yoon praised SMEs for being a pillar of the Korean economy, despite multiple challenges and crises, including the COVID-19 pandemic, global supply chain disruptions and climate change. 

READ: South Korea’s job growth slows in fourth quarter of 2021

“An extra budget bill, which includes 26.3 trillion won (US$20.8 billion) to support small businesses and self-employed people, was submitted to the National Assembly,” the president said. “The government will compensate (pandemic-hit) small businesses immediately after the Assembly passes the extra budget bill.” 

He added that the government will increase tax benefits for SMEs’ R&D investments, for them to start new businesses as their future growth engines.