Lee calls for greater government role in shared growth

February 23, 2012 11:41 am 

SEOUL, Feb. 23 — President Lee Myung-bak on Thursday said the government should play greater roles in reining in "jungle-like competition" in the market economy and narrowing social inequalities, stressing that capitalism faces a crisis and the market economy has limitations.

During a keynote speech at the government-organized 2012 Global Korea International Forum on Shared Growth, Lee also renewed his appeal for conglomerates to do more to carry out their responsibilities to create jobs and narrow the gap between rich and poor.

"The government needs to play its role effectively in order to realize shared growth … In order to avoid falling back into the trap of market triumphalism, the government needs to take measures to build awareness of the market economy's inherent limitations," Lee said during the address.

"We need to abstain from unbridled jungle-like competition in the market and pursue shared growth through which everyone can live in fair abundance. Individuals' creativity and freedom need to be protected while excessive concentration of power is kept in check," he said.

Lee said conglomerates are being asked to play a different role in carrying out their increased social responsibilities for "pursuing shared growth in the industrial area, creating more jobs, and improving the quality of life for all."

The appeal is in line with Lee's campaign for shared growth, or ecosystemic development.

Lee believes that social inequalities have worsened so much in market-based economies that they could destabilize societies unless the gaps are narrowed. Lee has also called for a new type of market economy that puts a greater emphasis on sharing the benefits of growth with the less privileged. (PNA/Yonhap)

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