South Korean President Moon Jae-in Sunday nominated Rep. Kim Young-joo, a three-term lawmaker of the ruling Democratic Party, as Minister of Employment and Labor, making her the fifth incumbent legislator invited to join his cabinet.
With the appointment, Moon would have almost completed forming his first cabinet and filled six out of 19 ministerial posts with women as he had promised to do during campaign. He would name the last remaining post - minister for small, medium, and venture enterprises elevated to the ministerial post through a reorganization bill that passed the legislative this week.
The appointment which is subject to a confirmation hearing at the National Assembly comes after former labor minister-nominee Cho Dae-yop gave up the nomination earlier this month after a series of ethical issues arose during a confirmation hearing.
Kim started her career as a professional basketball player for the Korea Trust Bank and went on to work for the bank and joined its labor union’s leadership in 1985. After joining politics in 1999, she served as chairwoman of the Environment and Labor Committee of the National Assembly.
“The role of the employment and labor ministry is more important than ever, as income polarization is increasing due to economic inequality," she said, adding “Job creation is at the top of the policy agenda. The government should be first equipped with a comprehensive evaluation system to help create jobs and increase job quality.”
By Kang Gye-man
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