In a rare public criticism towards the Korean-style family-run chaebol institution from the conservative party, Saenuri Party floor leader Rep. Chung Jin-suk Monday called for a mechanism to rein in mismanagement by untested scions who ascended to managing position through illegal hereditary succession.
Antitrust regulations must be enforced to clamp down on reckless family-run management,” Chung said in his first address to the 20th National Assembly. His comments came after a number of chaebol family names have been implicated in various scandalous allegations on corruptions and wrongdoings. The founding family members of Lotte Group are under questioning on a range of illegality charges and even as prosecution probe has been underway, the siblings have been continuing with feud over power.
“Some conglomerates are harming the business environment like invasive species that disrupt and ruin the ecosystem,” he said, particularly attacking the families of Hanjin Shipping, Hyundai Merchant Marine and Lotte Group.
Hanjin Shippping and Hyundai Merchant Marine are relying on grace from creditors, bondholders, and ship owner to stay afloat. They had been run by the wives of the group chiefs after they passed away. “Why weren’t the companies managed by skilled entrepreneurs?” he said, partly blaming the shippers’ pitiful state on the chaebol’s legacy of keeping the business within the family. He also lashed at Lotte Group for being a disgrace with the father over 90 and his two sons fighting over management control in Korea and Japan.
The executive positions should be reserved for eligible career men who built their credentials from 20 to 30 years of devotion in the company and field, not sons and daughters of the founding family, he said.
He also criticized union workers of large companies, emphasizing that irregular workers have been marginalized in the labor market due to a growing income gap with regular workers.
“Our labor market is deeply distorted as permanent workers are overly protected and irregular workers are discriminated as if under class system of the feudal days,” he said.
He said the Saenuri Party must pay more attention to fairer distribution of prosperity.
By Shin Heon-chul
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]