COVID-19 INFORMATION What you need to know about the coronavirus if you are living in Japan or planning a visit.
politics

Japan-Korea trade spat to intensify with new export limits

45 Comments
By MARI YAMAGUCHI and ELAINE KURTENBACH

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.


45 Comments
Login to comment

If SK stopped allowing trade to slip through to North Korea, none of this would have happened. It is purely a security issue. And SK are making things worse by allowing citizens to burn Japanese flags and pictures of PM Abe, which is unforgivable.

Moon, stop this nonsense or many more Japanese exports will be put on banned list. Stop allowing trade with Communist North Korea!

11 ( +22 / -11 )

@Ganbare Japan!

If SK stopped allowing trade to slip through to North Korea

This is an nonsense argument, considering how China has the 3-year comprehensive approval on sensitive material. What Japan is claiming is that China is more trustworthy on North Korea sanctions than the ROK is.

Of course the WTO will rule against Japan when the case is formally filed by the ROK, and award retaliatory tariff on Japanese product.

-18 ( +8 / -26 )

Short term economic pain is worth the long term improve relations with S. Korea if we resolve this issue.

Paying compensation and apology is short term solution Koreans favor, we've been on this road with them for decades and relations only got worse.

12 ( +16 / -4 )

Paying compensation and apology is short term solution Koreans favor, we've been on this road with them for decades and relations only got worse.

Things got worse because Japan came to Korea to negotiate a final solution in good faith, and Korea negotiated in bad faith, ripping up the agreement without proposing anything in replacement, then, or at any time ever since.

This is entirely the fault of inept leaders in Korea. Poor leadership leads to situations like this. And how does Korea think they are going to fix it - who is ever going to negotiate with them in good faith ever again? They destroyed their reputation, and now they're whining that they don't like lying in the bed they made.

10 ( +19 / -9 )

If SK stopped allowing trade to slip through to North Korea, none of this would have happened. It is purely a security issue.

@Ganbare Japan!

If that were true then Japan would have made this move a long time ago. Not after the breakdown in the comfort women issue.

@Strangerland

This is entirely the fault of inept leaders in Korea.

Sure. I’m sure that’s why Japan is also currently having trade issues with Russia and China. Because every other government except Japan’s is 100% liable.

Japan’s apology only stated that the military did wrong and not the country or the government. Also, $8.3M to over 200,000 women is about $40 per person. Again, taking advantage of a small third world country isn’t really setting things right. Korea is simply seeking fairness now that it has a leg to stand on.

-18 ( +7 / -25 )

Sure. I’m sure that’s why Japan is also currently having trade issues with Russia and China. Because every other government except Japan’s is 100% liable.

Um, for entirely different reasons, duh.

11 ( +16 / -5 )

JJ Jetplane

It's says the military but not the government...

It says this but not that...

My grandmothers foot doesn't say anything about that...

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

South Korea's trade ministry has acknowledged that from 2015 to March 2019 the government detected 156 cases of unauthorized exports of sensitive materials that could be used for military purposes. It said the cases show its monitoring system is working and is more transparent than Japan's.

So they let this happen?

12 ( +14 / -2 )

South Korea's trade ministry has acknowledged that from 2015 to March 2019 the government detected 156 cases of unauthorized exports of sensitive materials that could be used for military purposes. It said the cases show its monitoring system is working and is more transparent than Japan's.

A report by the Japanese network Fuji TV that cited government data said the illegal shipments included thermos-cameras, carbon fibers, zirconium and sodium cyanide, among other items, and went to countries like China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran, Syria, Turkey and Sri Lanka. It's unclear if any of those cases involved imports from Japan or if they were the main reason for Japan's decision to impose stricter export controls.

My my, the devil's in the details my friends. FINALLY the media and South Korean government admits that not one, not 10, but 156 cases of unauthorized exports of sensitive materials were detected.

Let's see how the anti-Japan crowd here and in South Korea try to spin this one.

Seeing as the South Korean government has nothing to back up its childish claims, it is already going back to its usual standby when all else fails: the comfort woman/colonial atrocity card. Just keep screaming to the world that Japan has 'never' apologized, and start making more comfort women statues around the world to stir up emotions and hatred.

Hinomaru flags have already been burned, next up Japanese products will be destroyed on the streets, and possibly physical harassment and antagonism of Japanese citizens in South Korea. Of course the anti-Japan crowd and their blind followers around the world will conveniently excuse such acts (again, the 'atrocity card'), but if even one Japanese citizen in Japan, fed up with this nonsense, goes on an anti-Korean diatribe or action, these same folks will pounce on that and condemn all Japanese as hateful, white washing ignoramuses.

Grow up!

10 ( +17 / -7 )

these same folks will pounce on that and condemn all Japanese as hateful, white washing ignoramuses.

Oh? Given that one of the top selling books on amazon japan is anti Korean, it's safe to say, a majority of the people for this category perfectly.

But please, by all means continue living in denial!!

-11 ( +4 / -15 )

Oh? Given that one of the top selling books on amazon japan is anti Korean, it's safe to say, a majority of the people for this category perfectly.

You're right. If Japan wanted to solve this problem, they'd show it by working together with Korea to come up with some sort or solution. One that is final and irreversible even. If they were serious, they would do that in good faith.

Oh, wait....

9 ( +13 / -4 )

I don't understand why SK doesn't want to fix their import export laws on this material??? Do they want to keep the re-export trade running???

5 ( +6 / -1 )

It's very unfortunate that the issue is mixed up with emotions," Ono said.

Exactly.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I like how South Koreans are calling for a boycott of Japanese goods because Japan is making it more difficult to export goods to South Korea. Talk about inconsistent.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Unecessary! Abe is just exploiting the current situation to ultimately destroy Japan-Korean relation for good because he see South Korea as a dominant threath against Japans position in East Asia.

Abe is doing nothing in order to maintain ties with South Korea, rather on the contrary he's actually trying to dissolve it! Both Japan and South Korea should stop the spit-spat and work together as friends against even more dominating threats like Russia and China!

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

A point that was raised earlier, and conveniently overlooked and buried by the anti-Japan crowd on here and around the world, is that South Korea is the only Asian nation that is on the so called "white list" of favored trading partners (since 2004).

That's right, the ONLY Asian country that was on Japan's "white list."

China is Japan's biggest trading partner, and I don't see them crying about not being on that list.

Taiwan is Japan's fourth biggest trading partner, a nation that has always had very warm ties to Japan (Taiwan contributed the second largest donation amount among world nations to Japan following the 3/11 disaster). Same with Thailand, a country that has had for a very long time warm relations with Japan, and the sixth biggest trading partner with Japan. Neither of these two countries are whining either about not being on the "white list."

So I doubt anyone will answer this, but pray do tell, by what logic does South Korea need to be on this "white list" to the point that it is starting to engage in anti-Japanese racial rhetoric and bringing in irrelevant issues about comfort women and Japanese colonialism? What gives South Korea the right to be on that list while all other Asian countries are not?

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Hinomaru flags have already been burned, next up Japanese products will be destroyed on the streets, and possibly physical harassment and antagonism of Japanese citizens in South Korea. 

Well argued old man, well argued. This is very worrying. If Japanese restaurants, shops and cars start getting smashed up, and Japanese citizens physically harassed on the streets of Korea as you say, the number of Koreans tourists permitted to enter Japan should be drastically cut.

It is a privelege NOT a right to enter Japan.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Well argued old man, well argued. This is very worrying. If Japanese restaurants, shops and cars start getting smashed up, and Japanese citizens physically harassed on the streets of Korea as you say, the number of Koreans tourists permitted to enter Japan should be drastically cut.

No need to run to hypotheticals, cobber.

Let’s deal with that if it happens. You seem to be chomping at the bit.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Stubborn and smart are twins.

-12 ( +1 / -13 )

Look, this is a red herring. If Japan had proof of SK being reckless with those chemicals they would've showed it. This was really about Abe drumming up support before the election on his "tough" stance with SK. Mostly about how fed up the Japanese gov. is with the SK gov. constantly scapegoating Japan. Typical move by incompetent leaders. They absolutely love playing the Korean sex slave card in order to shift attention away from their domestic policy failures.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

South Korea's trade ministry has acknowledged that from 2015 to March 2019 the government detected 156 cases of unauthorized exports of sensitive materials that could be used for military purposes. It said the cases show its monitoring system is working and is more transparent than Japan's.

The worse part is that they have caught the same company doing it multiple times meaning they have not revoked export permits to those companies. Basically the SK government is just slapping their wrist and having them do it again.

How can a nation with such lax export regulations be trusted in the first place?

6 ( +10 / -4 )

And the anti-Korean rhetoric will increase in Japan along with who knows what else?

Hate crimes?

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

So I doubt anyone will answer this, but pray do tell, by what logic does South Korea need to be on this "white list" to the point that it is starting to engage in anti-Japanese racial rhetoric and bringing in irrelevant issues about comfort women and Japanese colonialism? What gives South Korea the right to be on that list while all other Asian countries are not?

That's just it, there's no right for South korea to be on that list. It was a gesture of goodwill from Japan, in conjunction with monetary compensation and loans etc provided to the SK government.

That Japan has removed South Korea from the list as a reult of South Korean government abuse of the relationship to the point of lunacy; in South Korea's eyes it is tantamount to the worst of all public disrespect Japan could do to South Korea, for these reasons:

It shows the world that South Korea is vitally dependent on Japan for their high tech component production

It shows the world that South Korea has acted unscrupulously concerning its Northern neighbour which is under trade saction

It shows that South Korea engineered this response from Japan in a act of complete self-righteousness, thinking that it had won over global support, not really ever testing it out until now. That other member nations at the WTO left a wide berth and did not want to get involved in a domestic squabble speaks volumes about South Korea's failed expectations

With any unwarranted moves to sqeeze more from a relationship there's always going to be a risk of a backlash. That South Korea continually flaunted that all this time not only shows how myopic they are, but also how incredibly lenient Japan has been with them in terms of trade.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

That's just it, there's no right for South korea to be on that list. It was a gesture of goodwill from Japan, in conjunction with monetary compensation and loans etc provided to the SK government.

That Japan has removed South Korea from the list as a reult of South Korean government abuse of the relationship to the point of lunacy; in South Korea's eyes it is tantamount to the worst of all public disrespect Japan could do to South Korea, for these reasons: ....

Very brilliantly put. So many people seem to miss these points...

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Conservative forces including Abe, HNK, Nihon Kaigi and the Shinto Shrines Association will go to any length to protect the imperial legacy of Showa Tenno, whose memory must remain unstained. Japan has in many regards failed to become a modern country, even 30 years after his death.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

Japan would not dare do this to any country other than a former colonial outpost. I'd like to see them try it with China.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

expatToday  01:46 pm JST

Japan would not dare do this to any country other than a former colonial outpost. I'd like to see them try it with China.

China already isn't on the white list, so there's nothing to 'try'.

Or are you suggesting that Japan put China on the white list, then later after China has abused the goodwill Japan extended to them to the extreme, then Japan dare to remove them?

If it's the latter I'd say Japan would do anything they saw fit given the situation, China, South Korea, anyone. There's no 'balls' involved in this, it's pure procedure.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

This will not end well for either side. It will get worse before it gets better. Some hard liners on both sides would even be happy if war broke out. This is being stoked by indignation of those hard liners on both sides and it seems the ability to be rational and wise is nowhere to be found.

Both blame the other side as being at fault and will not show any good sense. It is easier to be angry than forgiving. Easier to hate than get along. Easier to damage than to build.

That there are issues that still aggravate both sides is obvious. The ability to address them and come out better is what is needed. No finger pointing, no accusations.

This can be an opportunity to get past these issue's and improve relations or to let things get so bad that diplomatic relations are broken off and trade stopped entirely. The damages that brings to both nations is by far the worst outcome short of war. Surely both sides would rather a better outcome.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

This will not end well for either side. It will get worse before it gets better. Some hard liners on both sides would even be happy if war broke out. This is being stoked by indignation of those hard liners on both sides and it seems the ability to be rational and wise is nowhere to be found.

It’s sad that just four years after coming together to make a final agreement, when both countries agreed upon terms to end it once and for all, that its degraded to this point.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Looks like a version of the foretold battle of Agog and Magog is unfolding. I'd think yesterday's reported withholding of interactions a good thing. For greater good, everybody should return to their own enclaves and wait for another opportunity, which may come when eventually when the pain becomes unbearable to either or both parties, and should lead to an all-out, no-holds-barred round table talks. Any other deviation is unwelcome.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

President Moon Jae-in Government has politically, diplomatically sown the seed that has left the Government of Japan no option other than to slam the door shut, until President Moon Jae-in respects International Law.

President Moon Jae-in should resign.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

The Koreans it seems require more than monetary compensation to put the away history. This is reason that money itself isn’t enough and they always seem to want more. They appear to want remorse, apology, compensation, and the recognition of history. If they don’t receive all of that from Japan, then the past is not settled to them in my opinion.

The Japanese would like to put history behind, once and for all, and have the two countries move forward. The Koreans however keep bringing up the past, and every time they do so, the relationship wears thinner and thinner.

Japan somehow got tricked into thinking that compensation itself will settle the past but history has shown this has not sufficed.

It isn’t clear who told the Japanese that if they just paid some money then “it’s all good” because obviously it isn’t true. Look at what’s happening. And this further frustrates the Japanese because they feel they have been duped again

Most internet poster vent and take “the hell with Korea” attitude. This is mere frustration. The Japanese I know - real people not the anonymous internet poster - are cordial towards Koreans and hope the problems of the past will be settled.

And in order to settle this, the following will be required without any contradicting statements or attitudes made later that will undo this process.

Apologize and say what you’re sorry for; e.g,

We apologize for all individuals who worked for all Japanese companies without any compensation received. This is regrettable and unjust. A person should be compensated for his work and performance. We failed to carry out the remuneration for the labor performed by many in your country, and for that we are sorry.

Explain why you did it and what you were thinking; e.g.

We didn’t pay you for your labor because we are a very hierarchical society with shadows of feudalism. We have a tendency to see that those with authority tell the subordinates what to do, and the subordinates are expected to obey.

We are not proud of this, and though this may not mean much, you are not the only ones who worked without pay. Even Japanese today work long hours overtime without pay. They do not receive any payment for those hours and are often, like the many Koreans, unfairly taken advantage of. This is not right and we are working on changing our labor laws.

It’s not that we think we are the masters and you are the slaves, but our thinking was that those who have authority have the right to tell the subordinates what to do. And with Japan in rule in Korean society at the time, we saw ourselves as those with that authority.

Offer restitution in principle; e.g,

We regret the situation where labor performed received no compensation and in order to accept our responsibility, we offer to pay ___ amount to such individuals.

In the past, specifically 1965, we have offered and executed payment for this issue, but we understand that the compensation may not have reached all such individuals. We are committed to making sure all such individuals are compensated properly and would like to request your cooperation in making sure those indivuals receive restitution.

It is our hope that all individuals who truthfully worked for a Japanese company without receiving pay will receive compensation. Therefore, any such individuals can, in the present or in the future, file a claim for unpaid labor. We appreciate your cooperation in the processing and verification of such claims of application.

Express desire to build relationship; e.g.

Japan is commited to building a strong relationship of trust and cooperation with her neighbors, and especially with Korea. We are committed to taking action to remove any barriers, past, present, and future, that would hinder our efforts to do so.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

You reap what you sow, South Korea. Did you really expect Japan to surrender?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Trade will continue, as simple as that.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

This is the trade war initiated by reckless Moon who is taking over power unconstitutionally.

Moon and his far left socialists regarded as Korean style communist party should stop nonsensical communist like brain washing of Korean, some of whom have been badly affected enough to become uncivlized candlelight zombies.

Said that, I hope Abe need to deveop a trade war for segregating the bad apples from good ones.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Great points Hillclimber.

And as expected no responses from the anti-Japan crowd as to why as to why South Korea has a right to be on the white list while all other Asian countries are not. It is a privilege not a right, and how South Korea continued to be on this list while there have been many instances of unauthorized exports, is beyond me.

The anti-Japan crowd would never tolerate if a trading partner of their own country repeatedly violated export controls and allowed exports to rogue nations. Double standards and hypocrisy as per usual with these people.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

The dispute with Japan, slowing demand and the U.S. trade war with Beijing have hammered South Korea's export sector, with economic growth forecast to drop to 2% this year, the slowest pace in a decade.

South Korea exported $127 billion of memory chips in 2018, mostly to China and the U.S. But such shipments fell by nearly a quarter from the year before in January-March.

Some days before some Korean youtube's users told that Korea would be fine and it would only damage Japan.

I don't know about Japan and how it will be affected, but for sure Korea is already getting this negative effect.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

oldman_13, the white list itself is double standard.

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

So much time ???no wonder Japan is slow in everything. Using time to create problems to any countries that are their neighbours ???.

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

Japan's trade ministry says Seoul has undermined a "relationship of trust," including export controls, with lax controls on re-exports to other countries.

It's that simple.

Koreans needed to convince Japan and Japan only that their export controls are strict and practicing due diligence.

Instead, what do they do.

Postpone METI's request to meet to discuss the inconsistencies of Korea's control management. (No clear detail on ROK's catch- all policy especially in regards to conventional weapons) This lapse in discussions lasted almost three years.

Korean officials distorting the July 12th Administrative Briefing as "Negotiation" of between the export control authorities of the two countries.

Bringing forth Japan's revised administrative policy (essentially reverting back to a status of 'normal country') to WTO and RCEP. As to WTO, it applies under Article 21 exception clause. (Please see #1 above)

Crying to U.S. for help.

Using the over used, over leveraged 'history' card.

Korea's continuous cry to play the victim once again will garner stricter export controls from Japan

9 ( +10 / -1 )

@nigelboy

Koreans needed to convince Japan and Japan only that their export controls are strict and practicing due diligence.

Not at all. Koreans only needs to convince WTO that Japan's export control violates WTO rules and that Japan needs to be punished with punitive tariffs.

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

Not at all. Koreans only needs to convince WTO that Japan's export control violates WTO rules and that Japan needs to be punished with punitive tariffs.

Nah. This isn’t an embargo. It’s simply a reclassification of a status due to Korea’s incompetence and utter failure to live up to the standards required by Japan and Japan only. They are now essentially treated as “normal” country. Be thankful for that, I say.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@SammiBatsu

The matter was already taken to the WTO by South Korea and diplomats from other countries said they're not interested and rather stay out of that drama.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Koreans only needs to convince WTO that Japan's export control violates WTO rules and that Japan needs to be punished with punitive tariffs.

“They’re discriminating against us by not treating us with privileged status!”

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"Not at all. Koreans only needs to convince WTO that Japan's export control violates WTO rules and that Japan needs to be punished with punitive tariffs."

Is this a deliberate joke or total obliviousness of the facts on the ground?!

"South Korea had brought the dispute to the WTO’s General Council, hoping to rally international opposition to Japan’s move.

But no other WTO members took the floor, and diplomats from several other countries told Reuters they preferred not to get involved in the dispute between two nations with an intertwined and complex history."

https://uk.reuters.com/article/us-southkorea-japan-laborers-wto/japan-and-south-korea-clash-at-wto-over-trade-row-idUKKCN1UJ1EM

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites