US and South Korea Commemorate KORUS FTA

The United States and South Korea are set to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Korea-US Free Trade Agreement (KORUS

US and South Korea Commemorate KORUS FTA

Photo: Center for American Progress

The United States and South Korea are set to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Korea-US Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) today.

Korean trade minister Yeo Han-koo and a parliamentary trade delegation landed in Washington on Monday. Today they will meet with US trade officials and lawmakers on boosting economic ties. The talks are also set to discuss building more resilient supply chains in the wake of pandemic-related disruptions, especially in manufacturing of tech components including microchips, which are produced in Korea but the materials for which are sourced in the US. This commemoration of reinforces support for US investment into Korea, and vice versa.

Expect that the US and South Korea to continue to strengthen economic ties in the short term when the new Conservative president, Yoon Suk-yeol takes office. The president-elect has been described as pro-Western, and hawkish on China. This stance is likely to work well with the US orientation towards a Free and Open Indo-Pacific (vis-à-vis Chinese assertiveness in the region). South Korea is also a priority member for the envisioned US-led Indo-Pacific economic framework, while also reviewing an option for joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific partnership to which China has also applied.

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