South Korea Prepares $3.6B COVID-19 Relief Fund

The South Korean government will release a 4.3 trillion won ($3.6 billion) stimulus package to help support small businesses that will be affected by renewed restrictions due to the latest upsurge in COVID-19 cases.

About 3.2 million small business owners whose sales will be affected by lockdowns will receive 1 million won ($843) each, South Korean media reported. The aid program will also provide handouts for about 2.3 million firms in travel and entertainment industries.

South Korean authorities announced on Thursday that social distancing measures will be reinstated, just over a month after lifting them under a “living with COVID-19” policy, after a new wave of COVID-19 infections surged across the country.

President Moon Jae-in apologized on Thursday for restoring tight health protocols which will reduce the maximum private gathering size to four people and restore a 9 p.m. curfew on restaurant hours.

Daily confirmed cases had peaked at 7,850 earlier this week, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency.

The stimulus package came weeks after the parliament approved a record high government budget of 607.7 trillion won ($512.6 billion).


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