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SEOUL, Jan. 24 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's public institutions plan to hire more than 26,000 new regular workers this year in an effort to help buttress job creation, the finance minster said Monday.

The move is aimed at meeting growing demand in the public service sector, including public health, safety and New Deal policy initiatives, according to Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki.

He said the public firms also plan to hire around 22,000 interns to help them build work experience.

"The government will spare no effort to help public firms serve as a catalyst in creating jobs in the non-public sector," Hong said at an opening speech for a job fair on public institutions.

South Korea added the most jobs in seven years last year as the job market recovered to pre-pandemic levels due to the base effect and the economic recovery.

The number of employed people reached 27.27 million last year, 369,000 more than a year earlier, according to government data.

But despite the overall job recovery, in-person service segments, such as accommodations and retail, reported an on-year fall of 150,000 jobs last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The finance ministry forecast the number of employed people to increase some 280,000 this year. The Bank of Korea put its 2022 estimate at an on-year rise of 250,000.

Since taking office in May 2017, President Moon Jae-in has placed top priority on creating more jobs, promising to add 810,000 new jobs in the public sector during his single five-year term.

This file photo, taken Dec. 27, 2021, shows a job information bulletin board at a university in Seoul. (Yonhap)


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