Yoon to announce Cabinet lineup by end of next week

SEOUL-- The incoming government of President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol is trying to announce the lineup of the new Cabinet by the end of next week, his spokesperson said Monday, amid speculation Reps. Park Jin and Cho Tae-yong are being considered for foreign minister.

Both Park and Cho of Yoon's People Power Party are in the United States this week as part of a delegation to coordinate foreign and security policy ahead of Yoon's inauguration. If one is nominated foreign minister, the other could be tapped as the next ambassador to the U.S., sources said.

Kim Sung-han, a former vice foreign minister who currently heads the transition team's subcommittee for foreign affairs, is seen as the likely candidate for Yoon's first national security adviser, while Kim Chun-sig, a former vice unification minister, is mentioned as a strong candidate for unification minister, overseeing relations with North Korea.

Potential candidates for defense minister include former Army chief of staff Kim Yong-woo and others who helped Yoon's campaign.

On the economic policy side, PPP Rep. Choo Kyung-ho, a former economic official, has emerged as the top candidate for deputy prime minister for economic affairs, who doubles as the finance minister.

Choo currently heads the transition team's planning and coordination subcommittee.

The nominations are expected to be announced in the coming days to allow time for the parliamentary confirmation process before the launch of the new administration on May 10.

In his first Cabinet nomination, Yoon named former Prime Minister Han Duck-soo as his first prime minister Sunday.

"I believe we will need to announce and explain our thoughts on the overall Cabinet of the new government before the end of next week at the latest, and we are working toward that aim," Yoon's spokesperson Kim Eun-hye said during a press briefing Monday.

"As I see it, President-elect Yoon's schedule this week will likely be dedicated to choosing personnel and forming his Cabinet because of the actual time needed for personnel selections," she said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency