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South Korea to withdraw WTO complaint against Japan's export curbs

Xinhua | Updated: 2023-03-16 17:10
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SEOUL - South Korea's trade ministry said Thursday that it will withdraw its complaint at the World Trade Organization (WTO) against Japan's export curbs which Tokyo has agreed to lift.

Officials from South Korea's Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy held talks with their Japanese counterparts from Tuesday to Thursday about export management between the two sides, according to the ministry.

Based on the policy dialogue, the Japanese side decided to lift its export restrictions on South Korea.

South Korea agreed to withdraw its WTO complaint against Japan as soon as Tokyo enforces the lifting of its curbs.

The two sides also agreed to closely discuss ways to reinstate each other to their whitelist of trusted trading partners.

In July 2019, Japan imposed tighter control over its export to South Korea of three materials vital to make memory chips and display panels that are the mainstay of South Korea's export.

In August of the same year, Japan dropped South Korea off its whitelist that gives preferential export procedures.

In response, Seoul removed Tokyo from its whitelist of trusted export partners the following month, filing a petition with the WTO against Japan's export restrictions.

Japan's export curbs came in protest of the South Korean top court's rulings in 2018 that ordered some Japanese companies to pay reparation to the South Korean victims who were forced into hard labor without pay during World War II.

Last week, South Korea announced its plan to compensate the forced labor victims through a private sector-funded foundation rather than direct payment by responsible Japanese companies.

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