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S. Korea to set up response teams to deal with China's retaliatory measures

All News 10:40 January 20, 2017

SEJONG, Jan. 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea will beef up its government-level response to China's retaliatory trade actions against its products and businesses in apparent retaliation for welcoming a U.S.-owned missile system, the government said Friday.

At an economic meeting in Seoul chaired by Vice Finance Minister Choi Sang-mok, the government decided to set up subcommittees on industrial sectors, such as batteries, that are known to be targets of China's trade reprisals under the government-led task force team on Chinese nontariff trade barriers, according to the Ministry of Strategy and Finance.

The subcommittees will strengthen monitoring of the issue sector by sector and increase communication with concerned businesses.

It is part of South Korea's measures towards Beijing, which has implemented anti-Korean moves against South Korean businesses in retaliation for Seoul's plan to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) on its soil.

The Chinese authorities banned its local broadcasters from airing South Korean TV programs and removed subsidies on cars equipped with Korean-made batteries.

Recently, Korean-made cosmetics, bidets and air purifiers also failed to get import approval from the Beijing government.

The South Korean government earlier said it would take a firm stance against the Chinese movements and continue to object to the Chinese hostile measures.

Since the two neighboring countries started diplomatic relations in 1992, China has become South Korea's biggest trading partner with the China-bound exports reaching $124.3 billion last year to account for 25 percent of the country's total outbound shipments.

They agreed on a free trade pact, which took effect in December 2015, with tariffs on about 90 percent of goods to be eventually removed over the next two decades.

South Korea's Vice Finance Minister Choi Sang-mok speaks at a meeting in Seoul on Jan. 20, 2017. (Courtesy of the Ministry of Strategy and Finance)

brk@yna.co.kr
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