Dynamic prospects for Korean banks' monitoring of business groups
The Korean government adopted the modified London approach for the restructuring following the crisis. While restructuring measures include vitalising the market force, the relationship between banks and business groups has shifted more toward the Japanese bank-led system and subsequently the ex ante required banks' business group monitoring has increased, due mainly to ownership and contractual effects of recapitalised bank-led chaebols restructuring. However, ex post effectiveness of banks' business group monitoring from this short term shift will be constrained by challenging issues, such as snow-balling nonperforming loan and business uncertainties in the banking sector, limited feasibility and lack of incentive to monitor. Other factors affecting corporate-bank relationship include degree of diversification of corporate financing, coupled with capital market development and financial market liberalisation, an improved corporate governance mechanism and ad hoc change in government's bank ownership and banks' business group ownership given cultural factors. While stylised scenarios of this business group monitoring are divided into government-led centralised, bank-led relationship orientation, and market-led arm's length, actual evolution of this mechanism in Korea depends on the relative importance of the current constraining factors, as well as the various mid-to-long term determining factors discussed in the paper.
The Korean Economy at the Crossroads