The change of command ceremony took place at the Gyeryongdae Complex, the headquarters of the ROK Navy, and was attended by major ROK military commanders and naval officers.
At the ceremony Kim expressed his explicit support for the CVX program:
“Because light aircraft carriers are a national strategic asset and the culmination of joint operations doctrine, we shall continue to push forward with the program,”
Admiral Kim Jung-soo, ROK Navy CNO
“There are many opinions regarding the budget for the light aircraft carrier program. We will do our best to reflect such opinions as we proceed with the project and to maximize the ship’s potential.” Kim expressed similar views at a meeting with President Moon Jae-in on December 20, saying, “We will do our best to ensure that the light carrier project proceeds without setbacks.”
Despite Kim’s enthusiasm, he is likely to face an uphill battle. Public opinion against the CVX program and resistance in the National Assembly will need to be overcome if the ROK Navy is to bring the plan to fruition. The ROK Navy just barely secured funds for CVX development in fiscal year 2022 earlier this month.
Kim has held many important positions throughout his career. His previous positions include: Vice-CNO, ROK Navy Headquarters Chief Secretary, and Commander of Maritime Task Flotilla Seven.