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‘Moon Fund’ raises W33b in 1 hour

The “Moon Fund,” Democratic Party of Korea’s presidential candidate Moon Jae-in’s fundraising vehicle, reached three times more than its initial target within an hour of going public Wednesday.

The fund’s website, www.moonfund.co.kr, opened at 9 a.m. The amount collected was 33 billion won ($28 million), far above the targeted 10 billion won, in 61 minutes.

The website for the “Moon Fund” shows a closing message that reads, “The account has closed. Thank you for all your support.” (Screen Capture)
The website for the “Moon Fund” shows a closing message that reads, “The account has closed. Thank you for all your support.” (Screen Capture)

“Some 10,534 people made attempts to donate, and only 4,488 supporters were actually able to make deposits,” Moon’s camp said.

The website is said to have been inaccessible to many would-be contributors due to heavy traffic.

Moon’s camp had planned their campaign budget to be some 47 billion won. It had decided to close the first round of fundraising after an hour, as it had also received some 13 billion won from the National Election Commission, it added.

“The ‘Moon Fund’ is closed. I did not expect to reach the goal so quickly. Thank you for all your attention,” read a Facebook post by Moon’s spokesperson Rep. Park Kwang-on, after donations closed.

Anyone regardless of age and nationality could contribute to the fund, with the amount starting at 10,000 won. There was no upper limit. It was created as part of Moon’s plan to make politics more transparent and to “prepare campaign funds from citizens seeking for a just and fair nation.”

Moon’s campaigners said the fund reflects the candidate’s will to cut ties between the government and businesses, as part of a bigger plan to rid the country of political corruption.

A second round of fundraising may be planned, though the date has not been confirmed.

Those who contributed to the fund will have their investments redeemed by July 19, once the state’s election subsidies are paid out. Moon’s campaign will provide investors with an interest rate of 3.6 percent, which is an average of the rates offered by 16 major South Korean banks.

By Jo He-rim (herim@heraldcorp.com)
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