South Korean President Moon Jae-in Monday tapped Hong Jong-haak, a former Democratic Party lawmaker, as the head of the newly created Ministry of SMEs and Startups.
The nomination was made 38 days after Park Seong-jin, an engineering professor from Pohang University of Science and Technology, withdrew from his nomination due to criticism over his controversial views on religion and history.
The 58-year-old Hong studied economics at Yonsei University and earned his doctorate degree from the University of California in 1991.
Hong taught economics at Gachon University and served as a policy adviser on President Moon`s election campaign. He also worked for several liberal economic activists groups, including the Citizens` Coalition for Economic Justice.
By Kang Gye-man and Minu Kim
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