South Korea’s total state spending for 2009 was finalised at 284.5 trillion won (US$207.8 billion), up 10.6% from this year, the finance ministry said on Sunday.
The comprehensive budget included a 217.5 trillion won budget in general and special accounts approved by the parliament on Saturday and public funds under the government’s direct control.
The increased government spending will leave the nation’s fiscal deficit at 24.8 trillion won in 2009, amounting to 2.4% of the gross domestic product and up from this year’s shortfall of 11 trillion won.
The government will issue a total of 19.7 trillion won in treasuries to make up for the expected fiscal deficit next year, the finance ministry said.
The government plans to beef up its spending on social infrastructure and small-and mid-sized firms next year amid growing fears Asia’s fourth-largest economy may slip into a recession for the first time since the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis.