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South Korean Substitute Public Holidays Bill Official

Source: Yonhap News Agency (Seoul)
Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2021
Most recent follow-up news item: August 3, 2021


Earlier today, the South Korean National Assembly approved legislation which will increase the scope of day in lieu (aka. alternative or substitute) statutory public holidays by automatically mandating a compensatory public holiday for all South Korean public holidays that fall on a weekend day.

A "Substitute Holiday Bill" was passed 8 years ago (2013-05-03), declaring a one-off day in lieu non-working public holiday on the Mondays which follow the Seollal or Chuseok multi-day public holidays containing a Sunday, and the Children's Day public holiday falling on a Saturday or Sunday.

From 2015 to 2019, these changes were limited to the South Korean public sector, but have since been phased-in to companies with a lower number of employees (300 employees for 2020, 30 employees for 2021, and businesses with 5 or more employees, beginning in 2022).

As per the announced list of 2021 public holidays in South Korea (2020-06-15), 7 public holiday dates would have been lost in 2021, and for its part, 2022 would see 6 of the 15 annual South Korean public holidays falling on a weekend.

A bill that would declare a day in lieu substitute public holiday, for all South Korean public holidays falling on a Saturday or a Sunday, the Transfer Holiday Expansion Law, gained momentum earlier this month (2021-06-06) in the South Korean National Assembly, with bipartisan support from the ruling Democratic Party of Korea and the opposition People Power Party.

Bipartisan support for the Transfer Holiday Expansion Law broke down in the Public Administration and Security Committee of the South Korean National Assembly, last week (2021-06-16), and the deadlock was broken by the ruling Democratic Party of Korea unilaterally forcing the bill through the parliamentary public administration committee (2021-06-23).

The Transfer Holiday Expansion Law which was expedited to take effect immediately will lead to 4 additional substitute public holidays in South Korea, before the end of the year; August 16 (National Liberation Day), October 4 (National Foundation Day), October 11 (Hangeul Day) and December 27 (Christmas).

Recall that Saturdays are officially non-working days in South Korea since July 2005 (2005-06-21).



Links and References


Below are links to the news stories referred to in the above "South Korean Substitute Public Holidays Bill Official" news story, as well as links to subsequents news stories which refer to the present news story.