The election is about 4 months away, with the presidential election day for the 20th president of the Republic of Korea scheduled to take place on March 9th next year. With former Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl nominated as the presidential candidate of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP) last Friday, he will now be competing against three other candidates – the ruling Democratic Party (DP)’s Lee Jae-myung, People’s Party (PP)’s Ahn Cheol-soo and Justice Party’s Sim Sang-jeong – in the 20th Presidential Election which is coming up next March.
Citizens aged 18 or older (born before March 10th, 2004) have the right to vote for the president and members of the National Assembly, and citizens living or staying abroad can also hold “overseas elections” in foreign countries other than Korea through certain procedures.
Overseas Koreans who can participate in the election refer to “Korean citizens living or staying abroad,” and the application period for registration of oversees voters and absentees is until January 8th, 2022 through https://m.nec.go.kr/site/abroaden/main.do.
Overseas citizens who can hold overseas elections are first divided into overseas electors and overseas absentees. Those who are not registered as foreigners are overseas absentees, and this mainly includes permanent residents aged 18 or older, business residents, international students, and travelers. Overseas electors are those aged 18 or older who are not registered in the Republic of Korea. In the case of overseas electors, if they are listed on the list of overseas electors for the 21st National Assembly election, they can vote without applying for registration. Hence, you must check if you are listed on the website of the National Election Commission of Overseas Voting.
The voting period for overseas electors and absentees is from February 23rd to February 28th, 2022. Once the registration of overseas electors and absentees is completed, overseas voting is possible during this period. Overseas polling stations are set up in the Republic of Korea’s diplomatic offices and for Coloradans, overseas polling stations will be announced later on through https://overseas.mofa.go.kr/us-sanfrancisco-ko/index.do. Voting will be available for the above-mentioned six days from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
At the time of voting, either a photo of passport, resident registration card, public official card, or driver’s license is needed issued by the government office or public institution. If a photo is not attached to the national confirmation document, another identification certificate with the voter’s photo must be accompanied, and the nationality confirmation document must be presented at the polling station to vote. Last but not least, you can select one candidate or one political party on the ballot, marked using the voting tools placed in the relevant column, and sealed in a return envelope.
For more information about overseas election registration and voting procedure, you can visit the National Election Commission’s overseas election website https://ova.nec.go.kr/cmn/main.do.