The first ‘union-recommended outside director’ in the financial sector came from the Export-Import Bank of Korea (Suk-Eun). The ‘financial union-recommended board system’, which President Moon Jae-in promised during his presidential campaign, was introduced only in the last year of his term.
Previously, the unions of IBK and KB Kookmin Bank also recommended outside directors, but failed to enter the board of directors due to opposition from management and the government. The financial sector expects that the union-recommended outside director system will be introduced in other banks as the first union-recommended outside director was born in the financial sector.
According to the financial industry on the 17th, the Ministry of Strategy and Finance appointed two new outside directors, Lee Jae-min, CEO of the Maritime Finance Research Institute, and Yoon Tae-hyo, a lawyer for the Pacific Ocean.
The outside director recommended by the union is Jae-min Lee, CEO. He was a former Mercury graduate who served as the head of the ship finance division, the export finance division head, and the trade investment finance division head at Sueun. After retiring, he served as a professor of ship finance at Korea Maritime University. Mercury’s union is said to have recommended him because he believes that he will be able to communicate well with his employees and his professionalism in his work.
The government initially planned to appoint only lawyer Yoon, recommended by the management, as outside directors. However, the union suggested that one more outside director be appointed in consideration of the soundness of the governance structure, and the government and the government accepted the proposal.
With the government’s forward-looking attitude, as the first union-recommended outside director from Mercury, this system is expected to spread to other banks. Previously, commercial banks such as KB Kookmin Bank, IBK Industrial Bank of Korea, and Korea Asset Management Corporation (Kamco) attempted to introduce union-recommended directors, but failed every time due to the government’s lukewarm attitude.
The financial sector believes that the strong ‘push’ of the ruling party on the introduction of a union-recommended outside director system has led to a change in the government’s attitude. Some are interpreting that the government accepted the union-recommended outside director system in order to dispel the recent controversy over parachuting in the financial sector.
An official from the financial sector said, “The government’s acceptance of the union’s request means that it will change its existing attitude on this issue. It is very likely to happen,” he said.
Jaeyong Min reporter [email protected]
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