South Korean finance minister warns impeachment could hinder growth

World Today

South Koreans react after President Park's impeachment Banners are displayed to celebrate President Park Geun-hye’s impeachment in front of a hotel in Busan, South Korea, Friday, Dec. 9, 2016. (Jo Jung-ho/Yonhap via AP)

Prosecutors in the Republic of Korea have concluded investigations into the corruption scandal that has rocked the country. Their inquiry led to the indictment of two former senior officials who served under President Park Geun-hye, as well as allegations of bribery and abuse of power against Park herself. Meanwhile, the country’s Finance Minister has said last Friday’s impeachment vote could hurt the country’s already flagging economy.

CCTV’s Jack Barton reports from Seoul.

South Korean finance minister warns impeachment could hinder growth

South Korean finance minister warns impeachment could hinder growth

South Korea's finance minister says the country's biggest negative economic impact stems from the corruption scandal surrounding many big firms and president Park Geun-hye. CCTV America's Jack Barton reports.

It’s been a tough year for some of South Korea’s biggest firms like Hanjin shipping, which went bust, and Samsung with its self combustible Note 7 handsets. The country’s sluggish economic recovery is again slowing.

But the country’s finance minister says the biggest negative economic impact stems from the corruption scandal surrounding many big firms and president Park Geun-hye, whose potential impeachment is currently under review by the constitutional court.

President Park Geun Hye had planned to launch a stimulus plan. Instead, South Korea has been plunged into economic and political paralysis. The president’s critics want that paralysis to end.

If Park Geun-hye doesn’t step right down right now, it will be the most chaotic government we have ever had,” said Kim Hwan-young, an anti-Park protestor.

In November consumer sentiment hit its lowest level since the Asian financial crisis.

The constitutional court has six months to review the president’s impeachment, during which she has immunity from prosecution.

If she’s impeached, new elections will be held within two months. If she’s cleared of all charges, the country will have to limp on under a president with the lowest popularity ratings ever for a South Korean leader.