A lawmaker from the ruling Saenuri Party who has been briefed about the government's budget plan says it's highly likely the government will expand next year's budget by about five-percent for a total 374-trillion won, or roughly 368- billion U.S. dollars.
While the hike is higher than the the three.eight percent rise for the 2014 budget, it's much lower than the 10-percent bump expected by analysts and the 6-percent requested by government ministries.
The government had previously said it would continue its expansionary macroeconomic policy until the economy gets back on the path to recovery, and it had unveiled a new 40-billion-dollar stimulus package back in July to pump up the economy.
But according to the lawmaker, a major budget expansion has proven difficult given the decline in revenue from the sluggish economy.
As part of the plan, similar or overlapping government projects will be merged or abolished to cut costs.
However, there will be budget increases.
Following the deadly Sewol-ho ferry disaster that left over 300 dead last April, the government plans to increase the national safety budget by 12-percent to about 13-billion U.S. dollars.
Yoo Li-an, Arirang News.