South Korea's President Yoon Suk-yeol arrives for the G20 leaders' summit in Nusa Dua, on the Indonesian resort island of Bali on Nov 15, 2022. (PHOTO / AFP)
TOKYO - Japan is considering relaxing controls on exports to South Korea as its president, Yoon Suk-yeol, seeks to improve ties amid a strained East Asian security environment, the Sankei newspaper reported on Saturday.
Japan will decide whether to ease the curbs on shipping high-tech materials, which it imposed in 2019 over a dispute about Japan's wartime forced labor of Korean workers, as the neighbors hold a series of talks aimed at solving the dispute, Sankei said, citing unidentified government sources.
The issue of the export curbs would likely be resolved during consultations between South Korea and Japan on various issues including forced labor, South Korea's foreign ministry said
Japan's foreign ministry and trade ministry officials were not immediately available for comment on the report when Reuters contacted them outside regular business hours.
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The issue of the export curbs would likely be resolved during consultations between South Korea and Japan on various issues including forced labor, South Korea's foreign ministry said in a statement.
"Given the growing need to promote cooperation among countries sharing universal values at a time when the importance of economic security is increasing, we hope that Japan will judge wisely," the South Korean ministry said.
Foreign ministers of the two countries met for talks in Tokyo this month. Their diplomatic officials are due to meet on Monday in the South Korean capital, Seoul, as they near a conclusion of a plan for the resolving their dispute, Jiji news reported on Friday.
The East Asian neighbors, both important US allies, share a bitter history dating to Japan’s colonization of the Korean peninsula from 1910 to 1945.
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Yoon, who became South Korea's leader in May last year, has also made increasing cooperation with Japan a core goal despite the lingering disputes.
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