Navigating Korea’s Labor Market Reforms



Faced with growing youth unemployment and public dissatisfaction with labor market conditions, representatives from South Korean labor, management, and government finalized an agreement to reform the domestic labor regime in September last year. This first step to reform South Korea’s labor market introduces a number of significant new measures, including the expansion of the social safety net and clarification of employment guidelines, but significant opposition from major labor unions jeopardizes its full implementation.

In his paper, Dr. Chang Hong-geun outlines the importance of this agreement and how the political differences among the three stakeholders can be navigated to advance the initial stages of South Korea’s labor market reform.


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