FSS tweaks advisory panel

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FSS tweaks advisory panel

The Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) will enhance its advisory committee on reviewing sanctions on financial institutions and restrict participation of Financial Services Commission (FSC) officials to boost the committee’s independence.

The financial watchdog said Thursday it will implement a revised operation plan for the committee by June as part of efforts to boost transparency and legitimize decisions on sanctions.

The aim is to prevent confusion like what occured when the FSS overturned the committee’s recommendation on penalties for former executives of KB Financial Group in 2014.

At first, the committee, including FSC officials, recommended mild penalties for Lim Young-rok, former KB chairman, and Lee Kun-ho, former KB Kookmin Bank CEO. But Choi Soo-hyun, the former FSS governor, rejected the recommendation and issued stern punishments.

It was the first time an FSS governor didn’t accept the committee’s recommendation.

The FSS considers the committee an independent advisory body for the FSS chief, so it should not be influenced by the FSC.

“FSC officials’ voting rights will be minimized and limited to only when there is a tie,” said Seo Tae-jong, senior deputy governor of the FSS at a press briefing.

The six-member committee will be expanded to 12 members and qualifications to become a member will be enhanced.

Financial and IT experts with more than 10 years of experience in the private sector will be eligible to serve on the committee

Discussions by the committee will be strictly confidential, and a minimum amount of information will be disclosed to the media if cases are considered to have a significant impact on society.

The FSS will appoint six more members by June.

But names of members who handle a particular issue will be kept secret to prevent them from being influenced by outside forces.

Multiple discussions of serious issues will be held in the shortest-possible period of time in order to help wrap up issues swiftly and minimize rumors and inefficient procedures that might delay the implementation of penalties, the FSS said.

Earlier this week, the FSS announced it will minimize intervention in the internal issues of financial institutions to give them more autonomy, but they will be strictly punished for any wrongdoing.

BY SONG SU-HYUN [ssh@joongang.co.kr]

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