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South Korea should abandon its goal of unification with North Korea
The economic costs of unification are too excessive to justify its implementation.
Rampant unemployment will stress an already struggling SK economy.
SK will have to provide a social-security system to 25 million North Koreans.
totaled around USD $2 trillion over two decades. This gives us a base from which to estimate Korean unification costs.
that unification will cost 7% of SK's GDP over the span of a decade.
The Korea Institute for International Economic Policy
unification costs to run up to USD 6 trillion.
commissioned by the SK National Assembly Committee estimated unification costs at USD 1.3 trillion dollars, however, the Presidential Council for Future and Vision estimated that these expenses "would surge
if North Korea collapses".
According to extensive
by Goldman Sachs, the costs of unification, while expensive, can be "reduced to an affordable level, if backed by appropriate policies." (p. 20).
NK also possesses the richest deposit of rare earth metals in the
, estimated up to
10 trillion dollars
The development of NK infrastructure combined with its abundant labor and vast mineral deposits will create a vibrant, booming economy, offsetting initial integration costs.
Economic costs should not be seen as a barrier to a unification that would vastly improve the quality of life of millions of people, as well as removing an ongoing threat to world peace.
South Korea could reduce military spending once unification is accomplished.