Background

During a recent state visit to the U.S. by South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol, the two sides announced the following efforts to further broaden cooperation on trade and supply chain issues.

Supply chains. The two sides recently held the first ministerial-level meeting of the U.S.-Korea Supply Chain and Commercial Dialogue, which was launched in 2022 and to date has included working group meetings on manufacturing resilience and dual-use export controls. At the most recent meeting officials formally launched a new Digital Economy Working Group and discussed coordinating export controls, semiconductor collaboration and supply chain resiliency, and the prospects for new workstreams on robotics and additive manufacturing. They will also consider future discussions of upstream materials that include critical minerals and metals.

Critical minerals. The Korean government will make available $5.3 billion during the next five years to support Korean critical minerals and battery manufacturing investments in North America. In addition, the two sides will pursue the establishment of a more resilient supply chain in this area, including by playing leading roles in the Minerals Security Partnership.

Green shipping. To accelerate the de-carbonization of the shipping sector, the two nations committed to sign a joint statement on ambitious greenhouse gas emission reduction goals in the International Maritime Organization, support the establishment of the U.S.-Korea Green Shipping Corridor announced in 2022, and broaden technological and information sharing cooperation, particularly on green shipping.

IPEF. Korea plans to host an Indo-Pacific Economic Framework negotiation round in Busan later this year. (Click here for a report on the most recent talks.)

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