Jan. 15 (UPI) -- South Korea's ruling Democratic Party is proposing a nationwide free Wi-Fi network as it prepares for general elections in April.
Seoul's ruling politicians said Wednesday they would allocate a budget of about $500 million for fiscal years 2020-22. Industry professionals say that might not be sufficient for a national Wi-Fi network, local news service Money Today reported.
According to the Democratic Party's plans, the Wi-Fi network would be available at more than 53,000 public sites, including schools, health and welfare facilities. Internet users will be able to access Wi-Fi at bus stops and on public transportation, the report says.
South Korean network professionals told Money Today the budget is not enough to cover equipment purchases, installation costs, operation and maintenance.
Lee Hae-chan, a leading politician of the ruling progressives, said Wednesday the party is confident it will beat rivals in the Liberty Korea Party, South Korea's main opposition, in April.
"The Liberty Korea Party is far behind us in terms of election preparation and recruiting individuals," Lee said, according to Yonhap. "We are far ahead in policy development."
Lee also said South Koreans in their 20s and 30s should "make efforts" to not give up on their dreams.
Younger South Koreans have said not enough is being done to expand job opportunities. On Wednesday, Lee did not say the government is accountable for the challenges they face in employment.
South Korea's statistics agency said last year employment is rising, but analysts have said the jobs are of low quality.
"Of the added 419,000 jobs, most of them are held by those aged over 60 and the quality of the jobs are indisputably awful. You cannot even call them jobs, it's a couple of hours of time-killing activities at best," said Sung Tae-yoon, an economist at Yonsei University, according to the Korea Times in November.
On Wednesday the National Human Rights Commission of Korea released a survey of South Korean gig economy workers who are precariously employed with ride-sharing services or through freelance labor marketplaces.
The average freelance laborer in the country is a head of household in his or her 40s or 50s who makes on average of $1,300 a month, the Kukmin Ilbo reported.