The ruling Saenuri Party is trying to wrap up labor market reform, the government’s highest priority goal for the second half of this year, before the termination of the term of the 19th National Assembly. It is aiming to complete the legislation of bills related to the issue within this year, as the 19th National Assembly is likely to remain idle next year, with a general election scheduled for April 2016.
In this context, the ruling party discusses five major labor reform bills this week at its talks with the government and a general meeting of Assembly members. This is to put pressure on the tripartite committee and back up the government in case the committee fails to reach an agreement.
“Labor market reform is the call of the time for all of us, which will allow us to create jobs and get rid of a high-cost and low-productivity economic structure,” said chief spokesperson Kim Yeong-woo, adding, “We need to overcome obstacles no matter what, although the tripartite committee is going awry in its last stage.”
In the meantime, the New Politics Alliance for Democracy, the leading opposition party, is continuing to criticize the government’s and the ruling party’s attempt at legislation not based on the tripartite committee. “Deputy Prime Minister Choi Kyung-hwan recently remarked that the government would try to enact the bills on its own in case the meeting broke down, but it is a threat and a disregard of the National Assembly,” spokesperson Park Su-hyeon said, continuing, “What the government is in pursuit of now is the sacrifice of workers under the guise of labor reform.”