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S. Koreans see shorter average working hours after new law Updated: 2019-09-17 16:05:49 KST

The latest data released by South Korea's labor ministry shows that most workers in Seoul worked fewer hours since the introduction of the new working hour law.

From March to May this year, workers in the Gwanghwamun area of central Seoul worked an average of thirty-nine minutes less over the 12-week period than they did the previous year.
During the same period, employees in the financial hub of Yeouido, and just outside of Seoul in Pangyo, home to many high-tech companies, worked an average of nine-minutes less in total compared to the previous year.
But, workers in Gasan Digital Complex, where many smaller firms are based, actually worked slightly longer hours than the previous year.

The labor ministry says that's because the new law only applies to big firms that employee at least three-hundred employees, and firms in Gasan Digital Complex are mostly small and medium-sized enterprises.

The labor ministry obtained the data by measuring mobile phone signals of commuters in certain locations at the four areas mentioned.

The ministry also found that many businesses pushed back their opening hours, and more workers left the workplace earlier than before. Workers in their forties benefited most from the new law, working fifteen minutes less, followed by those in thirties, twenties and fifties.

The report also found that workers spent more on fitness and leisure activities such as bowling, tennis and swimming.

Choi Si-young, Arirang News.
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