Japan promulgates bill taking S. Korea off export whitelist

TOKYO/SEOUL, Japan on Wednesday promulgated a revised bill striking South Korea off its list of trusted trading partners, following last week's Cabinet approval of the measure amid an escalating row with Seoul.

The promulgation, by Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, will put the bill into effect Aug. 28, as the enforcement takes 21 days.

Last Friday, Japan's Cabinet approved the proposal stripping South Korea of preferential status for purchasing sensitive items that can be diverted for military use.

The foreign ministry in Seoul expressed regret, reiterating its call for the withdrawal of the exclusion.

The Japanese government pressed ahead with the exclusion of South Korea from the whitelist despite concerns and criticism from the international community and repeated demands from Seoul to retract the move, a ministry official said.

Japan must withdraw the unilateral and arbitrary measure as soon as possible and accept our proposal to resolve the matter through dialogue.

The delisting of Seoul from its whitelist will likely cause delays on Seoulbound shipments and deal a serious blow to South Korean tech industries that rely heavily on Japanese materials.

Relations between the two countries have dipped to one of the lowest points ever since Japan slapped restrictions on certain exports to South Korea last month in apparent retaliation over a row surrounding wartime forced labor.

Source: Yonhap news Agency

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