The Ministry of Economy and Finance will look into various financial options to curb fine dust, which has blanketed Korea for days, an official said on March 6.
The move came soon after President Moon Jae-in called on officials to draw up an extra budget, if necessary, to reduce fine dust pollution, which can cause various health problems.
The budget, if approved, could be used in increasing the use of air purifiers and expanding joint projects with China, presidential spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom said.
Experts said external sources, mostly in China, account for up to 80 percent of Korea’s fine dust air pollution.
The ministry said it will look into whether it has to resort to an extra budget or tap into reserve funds to deal with the issue.
The National Finance Act stipulates that an extra budget can be drawn up only in emergencies such as war, natural disaster, economic recession or massive unemployment. In South Korea, yellow dust is regarded as a natural disaster.
By Ram Garikipati and newswires (email@example.com)