The purpose of this paper is to examine the structural characteristics of Korea's direct payments program newly introduced for rice industry, and investigate to what extent this program can be decoupled with rice production. An attempt is made to develop the model to measure the degree of decoupling for this program. The results of this study show that the program is closely linked to rice production due to the part of variable direct payments so that the current direct payments program could not meet the decoupling requirement as is provided in WTO Agreement on Agriculture. Although this program is considered good enough to make up for rice farmers' income loss from price fall caused by market opening and policy reform, it still seems to remain out of Green Box category. From the long-run perspective, therefore, it can be suggested that the program needs to shift further in the direction of gradual decline in target price as well as the increase in fixed direct payments for the program to be in full harmony with market orientation.