Monday, April 16, 2007

70 % of North Korean defectors in South Korea unemployed

Nearly seven out of every 10 North Korean defectors in South Korea are unemployed while those with jobs earn less than half of the minimum wage set by the government, a survey by a Seoul National University professor showed Monday.

The study done by Park Sang-in, a professor of public administration studies, also showed over 60 percent of North Korean defectors find jobs through private job consulting firms or their acquaintances, and only 16.2 percent or 73 respondents said they found work through government employment offices.

"(A large number of) North Korean defectors appeared to be losing interest in finding jobs due to repeated failure to find employment," said the professor.

Over 10,000 North Koreans have defected to South Korea since the end of 1950-53 Korean War. Each defector receives 6 million ($6,461) won upon arrival here in government resettlement support, and an additional 13 million won ($14,000) is available to each household for housing.

In addition, each defector can receive up to 15 million ($16, 153) won over a period of three years if he or she is employed or going through job training during the period.


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