Following the loss of COVID-19, a number of South Korean company owners committed suicide.

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Following the loss of COVID-19, a number of South Korean company owners committed suicide.

According to a trade group that set up a memorial altar near Seoul’s National Assembly building this week, at least 22 South Korean small business owners committed suicide after trying to stay afloat under COVID-19 distance laws.

The sidewalk memorial was constructed Thursday by the National Self-Employee Emergency Response Committee, an umbrella group of business organizations, to draw attention to the harm that COVID-19 limitations have caused small enterprises.

Visitors lighted incense, bowed, and put flowers on an altar draped in white chrysanthemums while the organizers handed out black ribbons.

According to Jeong In-Seong, executive director of the Korea Billiard Club Association, regulations requiring venues to close by 9 p.m. and limiting private gatherings to two individuals in the evenings have had a significant impact on his company.

As he greeted guests to the memorial on Friday, Jeong stated, “So many owners have lost everything because of the COVID-19 restrictions.” “We’ve come to memorialize them and to remind the government that more needs to be done to assist them.”

The distancing rules have been marginally modified in recent weeks, but many pool halls, bars, small eateries, and karaoke singing rooms have suffered insurmountable losses, according to Jeong.

South Korea’s economy has fared well in the aftermath of the epidemic, with the central bank forecasting 4% GDP growth in 2021 on the basis of strong exports. However, COVID-19 has had the greatest impact on the country’s 7 million self-employed persons.

According to the National Self-Employed Emergency Response Committee, over 450,000 businesses have shuttered since the outbreak began, and a growing number of deaths among company owners have been reported in local media.

According to local media, three business-related suicides occurred in the last week, including a pub owner who was many months behind on his rent and the owner of a fried chicken company who left a letter stating that he was facing financial issues.

According to a poll issued earlier this month by the Korea Economic Research Institute, nearly 40% of small business owners are considering closing their doors, with more than 91 percent stating they would close within a year if conditions did not change.

Since more restrictive limitations went into effect, nine out of ten respondents indicated sales have dropped by an average of 26%. Article Summary from Nokia News

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