The Seoul Metropolitan Government has secured a budget to provide COVID-19 emergency relief funds to foreigners.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government said Thursday that the third supplementary budget bill for 2020 passed by the Seoul Metropolitan Council included items for emergency relief funds for foreigners.
Since the city plans to secure the budget related to foreign emergency relief funds from the disaster management fund’s relief account, which increased the budget by 50 billion won through the supplementary budget, the maximum amount of support, in theory, is 50 billion won.
According to the city, however, the number of foreigners registered in the city is around 300,000 and it is estimated that about 100,000 households will be eligible for support considering the average number of people per household. Emergency relief funds shall be provided on a household basis.
The city’s calculation is that the amount of support for foreign emergency relief funds will be around 30 billion won when the median income of less than 100 percent is expected to be applied, such as local Koreans.
A city official said, “We did not include the amount in the extra budget plan. We will apply the same standards as Koreans to support the plan.”
He said registered foreigners who make a living in the country can get the relief funds if they meet the income criteria. He did not reveal when the payments would be made.
The decision was made following the judgment of the National Human Rights Commission of Korea that the city’s exclusion of foreign residents from the list of emergency relief funds was discrimination without reasonable reasons.