Of the 53 CSOs that received government funding four times (once per year) during the five years of the Moon Jae-in administration, 19 (36%) were excluded this year. Instead, 38 CSOs that did not receive a single grant during the five years of the previous administration were selected for support for the first time since the Yoon administration took office.
According to an analysis of data received from the Ministry of the Interior and Safety by Cho Eun-hee of the National Assembly’s Committee on Public Administration and Security on Monday, a total of 1023 civil society organizations (including duplicates) were selected for the ministry’s ‘Support for Public Interest Activities of Non-Profit Private Organizations’ during the five years of the Moon Jae-in administration, of which 104 organizations received intensive support four or more times.
However, this year, the government decided to exclude ‘selected organizations for the last five consecutive years’ from support, which automatically excluded 51 CSOs that received support for all five years of the Moon Jae-in administration. In addition, 19 of the organizations that received support four times under the previous administration were eliminated from this year’s selection, leaving only 34 (33%) of the organizations that received intensive support under the Moon administration. A total of 180 organizations received support this year, of which 38, or about 21%, were newly selected.
The Ministry of the Interior and Safety announces the selected organizations around February and March each year, and this year was the first nonprofit support project since the Yoon administration took office. Organizations that receive funding from other government ministries or local governments are not eligible. As a result of the selection of the first support project after the regime change, unification and carbon neutrality movement organizations such as the Peace Movement Alliance and the Natural Environment Love Movement Headquarters were excluded, while security and North Korean human rights organizations such as Blue Union and the Unification Future Alliance were newly selected.
38 civil society organizations that were not supported during the Moon administration, newly supported by the Yoon administration
Bonobo analyzes six years of support
Support for eco-friendly organizations decreased significantly
New support for false news monitoring organizations
Excluded from the list for 5 consecutive years… Will not support even if accounting evaluation is low
Founded in 2011 by Choi Hyun-jun, a former North Korean soldier, the Unification Future Alliance’s main activity is to support the resettlement of North Korean defectors. The organization, which received no government support during the five years of the Moon Jae-in administration, received 33 million won this year for the first time since the Yoon administration took office.
The Peace Movement Alliance, which has carried out projects such as the “Peacekeeper Camp to Overcome the Peace Crisis on the Korean Peninsula,” has received government funding four times under the Moon administration. The organization also applied for support at the end of last year, after the Yoon administration took office, but was not selected this year.
Dong-A Ilbo analyzed data from the Ministry of the Interior and Safety’s “Status of Support for Nonprofit Private Organizations from 2018 to 2023” on the 28th and found that the number of organizations receiving government subsidies has changed significantly since the Yoon administration took office. The average number of organizations supported per year decreased from 204.6 (Moon Jae-in’s government) to 180 (Yoon’s government), and security and North Korean human rights organizations were newly included in place of organizations promoting eco-friendly and inter-Korean exchanges.
Support for ‘North Korean human rights’ organizations instead of ‘inter-Korean exchanges’
Thirty-eight new organizations received support this year, after not receiving any during the five years of the previous administration. The Korean Peninsula Development Alliance, which has been highlighting human rights issues in North Korea, received government support for its project to secure a social safety net for North Korean defectors, and the Korea-China-ROK Leaders Forum, which supports multicultural and newcomer youth, was also named for the first time. On the other hand, the International Blue Tree, an international relief and humanitarian aid organization founded in 2010, received a total of 122 million won for its ‘Sketchbook for Peace and Unification on the Korean Peninsula’ project during the Moon Jae-in administration, but was not eligible this year. The inclusion of North Korean human rights and humanitarian aid projects, rather than inter-Korean exchanges, is attributed to the government’s clear shift in policy toward North Korea after the change of regime.
Organizations in the eco-sector were also excluded this year. The Natural Environment Love Movement Headquarters, which received support from the Moon Jae-in administration four times for its ‘Achieving Carbon Neutrality Goal’ project, applied for government support this year but was rejected. The Environmental Love Sharing Society, which also received support four times in five years, applied for a project to restore river ecosystems, but was not selected. Instead, Fair Media Solidarity, a conservative media watchdog organization that runs a fact-checking committee, was among the new applicants this year. Blue Union, a citizen security organization, also received government funding this year.
However, 142 organizations, including the Love Organ Donation Movement Headquarters, which has been conducting life-sharing awareness projects, the National Federation of Community Children’s Centers, which has been conducting various youth support projects, and the Korea Rescue Association, which has been conducting first aid training, will receive support under the Yoon Seok-yeol government following the Moon administration.
MSS tightens exclusion criteria for grant funding
The significant change in the list of organizations supported by MSS this year is also due to the changed application requirements. The ministry issued an announcement at the end of last year stating that ‘organizations that have been selected for support projects for the last five consecutive years’ and ‘organizations that scored 50 points or less in the accounting field in the previous year’s comprehensive business evaluation’ are excluded from support. The standard for the amount of money to be recouped due to subsidy mismanagement was also changed from ‘more than 2 million won’ to ‘more than 1 million won,토토사이트‘ tightening the criteria for exclusion from support. A passport official pointed out that “civil society organizations that received support from the previous government operated negligently and government subsidies were not properly executed.”
The ministry’s move comes as the government is pushing for a complete overhaul of state subsidies to civil society organizations. The subsidies received by nonprofit CSOs consist of direct government support, such as the Ministry of the Interior’s support program, “matching funds,” in which the central government and local governments share a certain percentage, and support through local governments and provincial education departments. In January, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Strategy and Finance Chu Kyung-ho said, “We will completely improve the subsidy management system to prevent fraudulent receipt of state subsidies, which have recently surged to 100 trillion won a year.”
The ruling Bareun National Party has also joined the movement to verify grants to civil society organizations. The Bareun Party plans to promote the “Task Force on Normalization of Civil Society Organizations” to operate as a special committee of the party to check the use of state subsidies and donations by civil society organizations. The task force will be chaired by three-term lawmaker Ha Tae-kyung and will include lawyers, civil society organizations, and others.