South Korea is considering plans to vaccinate workers at key businesses, including chip and electronics firms, to minimize disruptions to production, the government said yesterday, amid global efforts to boost supply of scarce computer chips.
The South Korean Ministry of Labor and Employment has sent letters to companies — including Samsung Electronics Co, SK Hynix Inc and LG Electronics Inc — seeking information on their COVID-19 vaccination needs, the Maeil Business Newspaper reported on Wednesday, citing government and industry sources.
The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) and the labor ministry said they were discussing options with other government agencies, but no specifics had been decided.
“When we set up our vaccination plans for the third quarter, we will review needs for such priorities and consult with relevant ministries,” KDCA Director Jeong Eun-kyeong told a briefing, when asked about vaccinating those who work in key industries.
Samsung Electronics, SK Hynix and LG Electronics said they had received the letter.
The move comes amid a global chip shortage that has affected manufacturers around the world, particularly automakers. Samsung and SK Hynix are the world’s top two memorychip makers.
The South Korean government is trying to ramp up its inoculation drive after a slow start.
One plan under consideration is to provide vaccines for workers at units that run nonstop, and for those deemed essential to the economy.
South Korea has inoculated about 10 million people, or 19.6 percent of its 52 million people, and plans to vaccinate 70 percent by the third quarter.
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