The Story of Korean Social Economy

The Story of Korean Social Economy
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  The Story of Korean Social Economy – Happiness Sharing Mart Photo Credits: Happiness Sharing Mart Co-operative is the first supermarket in Korea to be operated  by a workers !ooperative. his start was initiated by peop#e who were invo#ved in !ampaigns against the spe!ia# #aw regarding the deve#opment of $eju %s#and and the !onstru!tion of the $eju &ava# 'ase in (angjeong vi##age. hey estab#ished their Happiness Sharing Co-operative in )*+) to he#p !reate an e!onomi! !ommunity in whi!h !ivi! so!ieties, so!ia# groups or !ommunity work together to so#ve their dai#y issues. heir first start was the gro!ery store business. here were good reasons for opening agro!ery store. %n )*++, $eju government passed regu#ations restri!ting supermarkets run by big !ong#omerates from entering the is#and. Moreover, !ompared to workers inother regions, supermarket emp#oyees in $eju %s#and fa!ed poor working !onditions  be!ause they !ou#d not benefit paid day-offs or overtime pay and most had to work average over +*hours a day.$ust in time, the gro!ery owner of the first f#oor of the bui#ding where the !o-operatives offi!e stood offered to se## the store to the !o-op. +* of the emp#oyees that were a#ready working in the store agreed to join the !o-op and the )m ) area reopened with a new name /Happiness Sharing Mart.0 he priority goa# of Happiness Sharing Mart was in!reasing the emp#oyees wage. hey graded the workers wages into +-1 a!!ording to their work e2perien!e and as of    &ovember )*+3, the minimum wage was set to K45 3,*** an hour 6the statuary minimum wage was K457,13* as of )*+78. hus, workers who got paid K45 +.) mi##ion per month for working +* hours a day for 7 days a week now earned K45 +.7-+.3 mi##ion for working  hours a day. Sa#es a#so rose )*9 in just ha#f a year.
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