Japan, S.korea Far Apart On Export Control Talks

Japan, S.Korea far apart on export control talks

Japan and South Korea have held their first meeting about a trade dispute under the framework of the World Trade Organization. The two sides failed to narrow their differences.

The about six-hour talks took place on Friday in Geneva, Switzerland. Last month, Seoul launched a WTO dispute settlement procedure over Tokyo's decision to tighten export controls on three high-tech materials.

Junichiro Kuroda, the director-general of the Japanese trade ministry's Multilateral Trade System Department, represented Japan.

He said he told his counterpart that Japan believes better controls are needed for the three materials, which could be used for military purposes.

After the talks, he said he had explained that there have been cases of improper trade controls involving raw materials on the South Korean side.

Chung Hae-kwan, director-general of multilateral and legal affairs at the trade ministry, represented South Korea.

Chung suggested he had reiterated his country's stance. He said Japan's measures must be scrapped, because they are export restrictions that violate WTO rules.

The two governments agreed to hold a second meeting.