homeworldwide public holidaysnews and updatessouth korea > this page

South Korean 2015 Public Holidays Changes

Source: Yonhap News Agency (Seoul)
Posted on Friday, May 3, 2013


After weeks of back and forth, the South Korean National Assembly has finally passed a version of the "Substitute Holiday Bill" and which will automatically declare a one-off day in lieu non-working public holiday on the Mondays which follow an annual non-working public holiday falling on a Sunday.

The aforementioned announcement is quite a surprise. Earlier this week (2013-04-29), it was the "Substitute Holiday Bill" introduced by the Park Geun-Hye administration of South Korea, and which would automatically declare a one-off day in lieu non-working public holiday on the Mondays which follow an annual non-working public holiday falling on a Sunday, did not pass a vote in Commission, and that its consideration has been postponed until September 2013 (though there had been correct reports that the South Korean government wanted to introduce the system in a phased-in manner, beginning with the public sector)

This, despite the fact that, the week before last (2013-04-20), South Korean media had reported that the "Substitute Holiday Bill" was expected to be passed in the National Assembly before the end of the April, but despite demands by the main opposition Democratic United Party that the bill be passed during the last meeting of the parliamentary home affairs committee, the National Assembly's Security and Public Administration Committee has tentatively agreed to resume discussion of the bill only in September.

The topic of "substitute" or "day in lieu" public holidays is a recurring topic in the South Korean news. Most recently, 2 years ago (2011-06-20), the South Korean government had announced that it was examining a stimulus plan which would encourage a "substitute public holiday system" giving the next day off when public holidays overlap or fall on a Sunday.

Two years before that (2009-07-10), then South Korea's Ministry of Strategy and Finance had announced that, together with the Ministry of Public Administration and Security, it would consider implementing compensating day in lieu public holidays when a public holiday falls on a weekend.

The year before that (2008-12-09), fifteen lawmakers from South Korea's then governing Grand National Party (GNP) had signed up for a bill which would make the Monday following a Sunday public holiday also a public holiday.

As per the compromise bill passed today, the changes will take effect beginning in 2015, and will, initially, be limited to the South Korean public sector.

The passed bill will not give a day in lieu for public holidays that fall on a Saturday, even though Saturdays are officially non-working days since July 2005 (2005-06-21).


Related links, news and updates