KCCI narrows search

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KCCI narrows search

The Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry is likely to appoint its new chairman by mid-August and Doosan Group Chairman Park Yong-maan and Daesung Group Chairman Kim Young-tae are seen as two strong candidates to take the helm of the leading business lobby group.

The position has been vacant since CJ Group Chairman Sohn Kyung-shik stepped down July 9 amid a widening investigation into slush fund allegations involving the 14th-largest conglomerate. Sohn had been chairman since 2005.

“KCCI’s 16 vice chairmen are currently discussing the matter,” said Lee Dong-geun, a vice chairman. “After collecting opinions, we will recommend a candidate as the new chairman.”

The business lobby group is scheduled to meet Aug. 11 and is likely to designate a new chairman by Aug. 20.

“We’re exchanging opinions with KCCI vice chairmen and also contacting candidates [being discussed by the media] to determine whether they are interested in leading the KCCI,” Lee added.

Observers said Doosan’s Park and Daesung’s Kim are on the short list as KCCI believes chiefs of top conglomerates have the global networks and reputations necessary to lead the 140,000-member organization.

Doosan is Korea’s 12th-largest chaebol and Daesung ranks 40th.

The KCCI chairman also serves as chairman of the 100-member KCCI Seoul chapter. The top position in the Seoul chapter also has been vacant since Sohn stepped down.

The Doosan Group chairman’s older brother Park Yong-sung and Park Too-pyong, his father and founder of Doosan Group, are past KCCI chairmen.

Daesung Group’s Kim has served as chief of the KCCI’s international committee and executive board member of International Chamber of Commerce.

BY kim mi-ju [mijukim@joongang.co.kr]

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