0721 GMT February 21, 2019
Out of 122 firms with 300 employees or more, 122, or 51.6 percent, answered that they will recruit as many people as last year, with 23.8 percent having bigger hiring plans, according to the Korea Economic Research Institute (KERI), citing the poll conducted by Research and Research Inc, according to Yonhap.
The same finding, however, showed 24.6 percent of the firms are consider hiring fewer workers than last year.
KERI said Samsung Group, the country's biggest business group, pledged to hire some 40,000 workers in the coming three years, double its earlier plan of 20,000, while SK Group will put a new 8,500 people on its payroll this year, slightly up from 8,200.
LG Group increased its 2018 hiring plan by 10 percent to 10,000, and GS Group said it will create an annual 4,200 jobs in the next five years.
"Leading business groups announce plans to expand employment this year. They are playing a leading role in easing the tightened job market," KERI said.
South Korea has been suffering from sluggish employment for months due to an economic slowdown and protracted corporate restructuring of labor-intensive manufacturing sectors like shipbuilding and automaking.
The government has made constant efforts to bolster employment, including mapping out a four trillion-won supplementary budget for this year.
But recent jobs data have been disappointing as job creation in July was the lowest recorded since January 2010.