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Business lobby chief voices concern over corporate regulations

All News 14:40 July 21, 2016

By Kim Han-joo

JEJU, South Korea, July 21 (Yonhap) -- The head of the nation's leading business lobby group has expressed concerns over a set of bills designed to toughen corporate regulations, saying that they could be a big burden for the companies.

"A total of 119 bills are related to regulating (companies)," Park Yong-maan, president of the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI), said at a forum held on the southern resort island of Jeju on Wednesday. "I fear the situation will be like a waterfall full of regulations."

Park, who formerly headed power equipment and construction conglomerate Doosan Group, further noted that of the 870 bills tabled at the 20th National Assembly which kicked off in May, 119 of them are related to the regulations.

"I wish the system will change from regulation and supervision to giving more freedom and responsibility," said Park, asking for patience so that companies can reform in a positive manner.

The KCCI chief also expressed hope that President Park Geun-hye would issue special pardons to convicted business tycoons so that they could return to their business activities.

In South Korea, the president usually grants special pardons in celebration of major national holidays, though the practice has long been under fire for being abused to give favors to business leaders jailed for corruption.

The president is scheduled to issue the pardons to mark the anniversary of Korea's independence from Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule. Liberation Day falls on Aug. 15.

"The issue of pardons is the president's sole right. We surely do have the hope that more businessmen would be pardoned so that they could return to work," the KCCI president said.

President Park has been critical of issuing special pardons recklessly since taking office. Business tycoons were completely excluded earlier this year and only SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won was pardoned ahead of the 70th Liberation Day in 2015.

khj@yna.co.kr
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