Ex-innovation chief slams finance minister

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Ex-innovation chief slams finance minister

Lee Jae-woong
By Lee Kyung-min

Lee Jae-woong, the founder of Korea's first portal Daum, has blasted Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki over what he claims was a "misplaced blame" for the failure of now-disbanded innovation taskforce set up under the finance ministry.

Lee, currently CEO of Socar, a car-sharing company, resigned as the head of the Innovation Growth Center in December 2018 amid continued discord with the ministry over policy stance differences.

"I do admit that I lacked the willpower," he wrote in his sarcasm-ridden post on Facebook.

"But isn't the innovation-led growth lagging behind because the minister lacks willpower, which I saw President Moon Jae-in had…," he added.

The post is an apparent rebuttal against the minister who said Lee could have better managed the taskforce if he had played the role expected of him.

At a meeting with a group of reporters in Washington D.C April 12 (local time), he said "Lee could have done a better job had he had the determination."

Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki
The comment was made in response to a question over why the taskforce had been disbanded and the ministry instead launched an organization with similar function with the post Lee served at removed.

The mentioning of "determination" largely directed Lee to have a moment of self-reflection before mounting a heated critique on a range of politically divisive issues including the controversial implementation of ride-sharing.

The "sharing-based economy" was an initiative led by many social ventures and startups including Kakao Mobility, an arm of KaKao Corp.

Lee's most heated criticism of the government was made in February, when he wrote a similar post slamming Hong for having what he considered was an outdated, archaic mindset for pushing tax benefits for children who continue family-run businesses.

The gist of the measure was giving increase in deductibles for 10 years, on condition that the children continue to maintain the business and hiring.

"I am confounded as to which time period Hong is from. Does he think inheriting the family-run business will help innovation amid sluggish economy with investor and entrepreneurial sentiment dampened?"

Another issue was stressing compromise among parties with conflicting interests, a remark that came amid an escalating conflict between taxi drivers and a group of newcomers that sought to enter the ride-sharing businesses.

"He is mistaken to think that what we need is compromise among parties with vested conflicting interest. What we need is compromise among all members of society."




Lee Jae-woong
By Lee Kyung-min

Lee Jae-woong, the founder of Korea's first portal Daum, has blasted Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki over what he claims was a "misplaced blame" for the failure of now-disbanded innovation taskforce set up under the finance ministry.

Lee, currently CEO of Socar, a car-sharing company, resigned as the head of the Innovation Growth Center in December 2018 amid continued discord with the ministry over policy stance differences.

"I do admit that I lacked the willpower," he wrote in his sarcasm-ridden post on Facebook.

"But isn't the innovation-led growth lagging behind because the minister lacks willpower, which I saw President Moon Jae-in had…," he added.

The post is an apparent rebuttal against the minister who said Lee could have better managed the taskforce if he had played the role expected of him.

At a meeting with a group of reporters in Washington D.C April 12 (local time), he said "Lee could have done a better job had he had the determination."

Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki
The comment was made in response to a question over why the taskforce had been disbanded and the ministry instead launched an organization with similar function with the post Lee served at removed.

The mentioning of "determination" largely directed Lee to have a moment of self-reflection before mounting a heated critique on a range of politically divisive issues including the controversial implementation of ride-sharing.

The "sharing-based economy" was an initiative led by many social ventures and startups including Kakao Mobility, an arm of KaKao Corp.

Lee's most heated criticism of the government was made in February, when he wrote a similar post slamming Hong for having what he considered was an outdated, archaic mindset for pushing tax benefits for children who continue family-run businesses.

The gist of the measure was giving increase in deductibles for 10 years, on condition that the children continue to maintain the business and hiring.

"I am confounded as to which time period Hong is from. Does he think inheriting the family-run business will help innovation amid sluggish economy with investor and entrepreneurial sentiment dampened?"

Another issue was stressing compromise among parties with conflicting interests, a remark that came amid an escalating conflict between taxi drivers and a group of newcomers that sought to enter the ride-sharing businesses.

"He is mistaken to think that what we need is compromise among parties with vested conflicting interest. What we need is compromise among all members of society."




Lee Kyung-min lkm@koreatimes.co.kr


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