Empty alleys and store fronts have become a common sight in Seoul's popular Myeondong shopping district amid tough restrictions aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19. (Photo: Yonhap)
The government says it plans to provide another round of emergency coronavirus relief funds to most citizens next month.
Around 20.3 million households, including those in the bottom 80 percent income bracket, are expected to receive cash handouts, which translate into 250,000 won per person.
The finance ministry said Monday the government will be able to provide stimulus checks in late August, but indicated they may be pushed back, depending on the domestic virus situation.
This comes after the National Assembly approved an extra budget of 34.9 trillion won last week to help the country overcome the economic fallout from a fourth wave of the pandemic.
Aside from the 11 trillion won in stimulus checks, the government said it has earmarked 5.3 trillion won to support small merchants ravaged by coronavirus business restrictions.
The government plans to offer support to merchants and the self-employed starting August 17, and depending on their damages, recipients can get up to 20 million won in support.
Merchants may also begin to receive compensation for the losses they incurred because of state orders on business restrictions in late October.
The government said it will run the cash-back reward scheme for card spending for two months, but did not give a clear start date.