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FKI Board Meeting Fails To Discuss Selection Of New Chief

By February 20, 2017 at 7:01 am
Korea's large conglomerates withdrew from the FKI after the scandal went public that eventually led to the impeachment of President Park Geun-hye. (Photo : BBC)

The board of the Federation of Korean Industries held a brief meeting Friday that did not produce any meaningful progress as there was notable absence of many board members who preferred to distance from the organization now facing a potential collapse.

The 30-minute meeting reportedly did not include any discussions about selecting a new leader for the business lobby organization and plans for reform. Members who attended only tackled this year's budget and the results of businesses in 2016.

Prior to the meeting, there was an expectation that finding a new chief to replace outgoing chairman Huh Chang-soo will be discussed.

Despite a visible lack of quorum, Friday's meeting went ahead with around 50 members, mostly attended by deputies of chief executives. The board of directors consists of CEOs, but only Hanjin Group head Seo Yong-won was present.

The closed-room meeting came following the mass departure of key group members, including Hyundai Motor Group and Samsung Group, after the group was implicated in a corruption scandal where it allegedly gave illicit donations to two sports foundations controlled by Choi Soon-sil, a friend of President Park Geun-hye.

Hyundai and Samsung, along with SK and LG groups, withdrew from the business lobby after the scandal went public that eventually led to the impeachment of President Park.

Huh in December apologized for the lobby group's involvement in the massive corruption scandal and said that he is not looking to extend his term.

Efforts to find a new leader for the 55-year-old lobby group appears to be meaningless amid a mass withdrawal of key member companies that essentially threatens the very existence of the organization.

Earlier, Hyundai Motor Group Chairman Chung Mong-koo has been eyed as a candidate because of his seniority, but his company's exit from the group and his busy schedule makes this unlikely.

Industry observers said that Daelim Industrial Honorary Chairman Lee Joon-yong is tipped to be the next FKI chief. 

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