|South Korean President Park Geun-hye (Yonhap News)|
President Park Geun-hye on Wednesday named 20 vice ministers for the Prime Minister’s Office and 13 ministries as part of the last-remaining batch in her Cabinet formation.
Deputy Foreign Minister Kim Kyou-hyun, 60, was named first vice foreign minister and Ambassador Cho Tae-yul, 58, second vice foreign minister.
The Unification Ministry’s planning and coordination director Kim Nam-sik was promoted to the ministry’s No. 2 post.
“Those with expertise in the relevant field and those that fit the state philosophy of President Park were appointed as vice ministers,” Cheong Wa Dae spokeswoman Kim Haing said.
Kim Hak-ui, head of the Daejeon High Prosecutors’ Office, was named as vice justice minister, while Knowledge Economy Ministry officials Kim Jae-hong and Han Jin-hyun were appointed as first and second vice ministers for the industry and commerce ministry respectively.
Of the 20 vice ministers, 18 of them were officials working in the respective ministries, indicating Park’s determination to underline experience and expertise.
But the announcement excluded vice ministers for brand new ministries such as the Ministry of Future Planning and Science that are yet to be formed under the new government organization bill or whose ministers are yet to be confirmed to their posts such as the ministries for strategy and finance and defense.
Other appointees included Seoul National University professor Na Seung-il for education and the Saenuri Party’s senior adviser Lee Young-chan for health and welfare. Those that were directly promoted from within the ministry included Jeong Yeon-man for the Environment Ministry, Park Ki-poong and Yeo Hyeong-gu for first and second vice land and transportation ministers and Yeo In-hong for agriculture.
Park is set to appoint heads of other government agencies including the public prosecutor general and the National Tax Service chief on Thursday.
Park has been accelerating the remaining lineup for her government after weeks of heavy political standoff with the opposition party over the government reorganization plans.
By Lee Joo-hee (email@example.com