Korea has one of the highest ratios of businesses
to GDP in the developed world， fueled largely by a large number of self－employed small
business owners. Song Ji－sun reports.
Korea has the highest ratio of businesses… to GDP in the OECD.
As of 2013， Korea′s GDP was 1－point－4 trillion dollars… and there were 4－point－8
million businesses in the country. According to a new OECD report out this month，…
that translates to a ratio of three－point－three－three the highest among member nations.
The report says this is due to the high number of self－employed business owners in the
country. An earlier OECD report from March also suggests…
that Korea has the fourth highest number of self－employed people among member countries，…
following Greece， Turkey and Mexico. Self－employment accounts for over a quarter
of Korea′s total employment at 27－percent. Over 90－percent of small businesses with
less than 10 employees are classified as self－employed， either with or without employees.
However， low productivity is a concern for self－employed entrepreneurs.
The OECD report also notes that productivity at Korean companies with less than 10－employees
is the lowest among member countries. Local experts say self－employment is largely
involuntary here in Korea， as many small business owners have been left with few options
but to start their own businesses in order to make a living， including baby－boomers
who re－enter the job market after retiring. Song Ji－sun， Arirang News.