Skip to main content

15 March 2022

Assessing the task ahead for new president

Challenges lay ahead for the new president-elect of South Korea after the tightest election campaign in the country’s history.

South Koreans went to the polls on 9 March. Picture: STOCK IMAGE

People Power Party candidate Yoon Suk-yeol was declared winner of the 9 March poll, edging out Lee Jae-myung by less than a single percentage point, in an election dominated by discussions about housing, the economy or the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr Yoon is a relative newcomer to politics and, according to Professor Ramon Pacheco Pardo, head of the Department of European and International Studies at King’s, he will have to find a way to work together with the opposition Liberal Party that retains control of the National Assembly.

Prof Pacheco Pardo told the New Statesman: “This will be a massive constraint for Yoon. For the next two years, at the very least, the liberals have a supermajority, and Yoon, who is a complete outsider with no experience of National Assembly politics at all, will have to find a way to work together with them.”

Prof Pacheco Pardo reflected on the economic outlook ahead for Yoon in a piece for the Financial Times and also considered the foreign policy issues that will be most pressing for the new president in an article for the Guardian.

Prof Pacheco Pardo, who is also King's Regional Envoy for East and South East Asia, also shared his insights on the election with Reuters, France24, and Airirang News, among others.

In this story


Head of the Department of European & International Studies and Professor of International Relations