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S. Korea should be 'cautious' in deciding on joining U.S.-led chip alliance: ICT minister

It 13:27 July 20, 2022

SEOUL, July 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea should be cautious in deciding whether to participate in a U.S.-proposed chip alliance known as the Chip 4 or Fab 4, as potential ramifications could affect not only the country's semiconductor industry but the economy at large, Seoul's ICT minister said Wednesday.

Earlier, a source in Washington told Yonhap News Agency the United States has asked South Korea to inform Washington by end-August whether it plans to participate in the envisioned platform comprised of South Korea, Japan and Taiwan.

South Korea's presidential office said Seoul and Washington are using "various channels" to explore ways to strengthen cooperation in the chip sector.

"I believe we need to be cautious" in deciding on the chip alliance matter, Science and ICT Minister Lee Jong-ho said at a press conference in Seoul when asked about the issue.

"If a problem arises (from the decision), it could affect not only the semiconductor industry but also affect other industries," Lee said, adding that he has collected opinions on the matter, including from people that do business in China.

The minister said a decision on whether to join the alliance should be reached after making "cool-headed" assessments on the pros and cons.

Science and ICT Minister Lee Jong-ho delivers a speech at a research and development (R&D) event at Incheon National University in Incheon, about 30 kilometers west of Seoul, on July 14, 2022. (Yonhap)

odissy@yna.co.kr
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