The number of foreigners on South Korea's corporate board of directors accounts for 1.4 percent of the total, a decline from three years ago as their biggest employer Samsung cut back on such hirings, data showed on Oct. 29, 2018.
An analysis by the market researcher Korea CXO Institute counted 94 foreigners out of 6,843 people sitting on corporate boards. This is a decrease from 101 in the analysis from 2015, which accounted for 1.5 percent.
The number of companies that have non-Koreans on the boards increased from 18 to 20 during the period.
The results were drawn from a survey of the top 100 local companies in terms of sales.
Data showed 47.9 percent of the foreign board members were at Samsung Electronics. Hyundai Motor was a distant second with eight. followed by Tongyang Life Insurance, which had five. LG Electronics, Samsung C&T and SsangYong Motors each had four.
The smaller presence of foreign members is apparently due to the decline in their numbers at Samsung affiliates. Samsung Electronics had 45 non-Korean board members this year compared with 57 three years ago. Samsung C&T cut back from 13 to four.
Other affiliates, such as Samsung Engineering and Samsung SDI, also scaled back on hiring foreign board members. Yet, South Korea's largest conglomerate had the largest number and more than half of the total of such members with 55.
In the case of Hyundai Motor Group, the company increased the number from two in 2015. Kim Motors, which had none three years ago, has newly hired two.
The average age of these board members was 53.5.