South Korea and Britain Commence Talks to Enhance Bilateral Trade Agreement

SEJONG – South Korea and the United Kingdom have officially begun discussions to revise their bilateral free trade agreement (FTA). The first round of negotiations, which kicked off on Tuesday in Seoul, is set to continue through Thursday, focusing on incorporating contemporary global trade standards, particularly in sectors like digital industry and supply chains.

According to Yonhap News Agency, Industry and Energy, these discussions aim to modernize the FTA to align with the latest global trade norms. The two nations had initially put the FTA into effect in January 2021 following Britain's exit from the European Union. The current talks are expected to explore "future-oriented" and "strategic" trade relations, with an emphasis on industries such as clean energy.

Trade Minister Cheong In-kyo emphasized the dynamic nature of global trading norms in his opening address, citing the rise of protectionism and shifts in international supply chains as key factors necessitating the revision of the FTA. Cheong underscored the need for both countries to jointly navigate these internal and external uncertainties and stressed the importance of creating a business-friendly environment.

The ministry also announced that the second round of negotiations is scheduled to take place in London in March. These discussions are seen as a critical step in strengthening the trade relationship between South Korea and the United Kingdom, reflecting both countries' commitment to adapting to the changing global trade landscape.

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