World Trade Organization (WTO)

South Korea Heads to WTO Over Trade Row With Japan

Posted Wednesday, September 11, 2019 by
Arslan Butt • 1 min read

Amid escalating trade tensions, South Korea is considering filing a complaint with the WTO against Japan’s decision to curb exports of key raw materials. Japan had restricted exports of key raw materials used by South Korean tech companies to manufacture memory chips and smartphone displays over the issue of compensation for forced wartime labor, which has since escalated into a diplomatic issue between the two nations.

Japanese companies wishing to export these materials to South Korea have to now seek special approvals from the government, a process which can take up to 90 days. Since July, the Japanese government has approved only three shipments of exports so far to South Korea.

South Korea alleges that Japan’s decision is politically motivated and discriminatory, and that its companies ar experiencing “serious damage” in the face of these curbs. As the trade row escalated, Japan removed South Korea from its trade white-list while South Korean consumers started a viral campaign to boycott goods imported from Japan in retaliation.

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