SEOUL — President Yoon Suk Yeol has appointed Joo Hyung-hwan, the former Industry Minister, as the vice chairman of the Presidential Committee on Aging Society and Population Policy. The announcement was made by Lee Kwan-sup, the presidential chief of staff, highlighting Joo's reputation as a policy expert with a proven ability to achieve results efficiently. Joo's appointment is part of a broader initiative to address the critical challenges posed by South Korea's aging population and declining birth rates.
According to Yonhap News Agency, the committee aims to enact significant structural changes across economic, social, and cultural sectors to combat the nation's demographic crisis. South Korea reported a total fertility rate of 0.78 in 2022, the lowest globally, far beneath the 2.1 replacement level necessary to sustain its current population. In addition to Joo's appointment, President Yoon also named Yun Oh-jun as the third deputy director of the National Intelligence Service, focusing on science and cyber intelligence operations, a decision lauded by Lee for Yun's extensive experience and expertise in IT policy and cybersecurity.