South Korea: Making Nice Via More Trade

RYAN LIPPERT WRITES- South Korea, China, and Japan are making progress in efforts to create a free trade zone that would potentially tower over the combined European Union and North American economic hulk. Despite successfully setting aside their otherwise tension-ridden relations to start such discussions, any hope of advancement may take months or even longer. It took nearly 10 years to even begin these talks.

Three days of trilateral meetings in Seoul came to an end in late-March. South Korea stated that officials settled on the decision to organize two more rounds of negotiations this year. The next meeting is set to be held in China this summer. Topics to be covered include goods, services, and investment – and might even be stretched to comprise electronic commerce and intellectual property rights.

In 2011, trade between these three Asian superpowers amounted to $684 billion, which was more than five times the total in 1999. This further proves that Asia is rapidly growing up economically.  Not surprisingly, the deal is being covered by all ranges of media: from newspapers to radio to the blogosphere.

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