South Korea to Bid for TPP Membership

Politics

Seoul, Dec. 13 (Jiji Press)--South Korea will begin the procedures needed for its bid to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement, the government said Monday.

The government is expected to make an official application after the necessary internal procedures, including making a report to the National Assembly, move forward.

South Korea will launch work to gain consensus among the public and necessary discussions about applying for TPP membership, Deputy Prime Minister and Economy and Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki told a meeting of relevant ministers.

The road to joining the TPP framework, however, is expected to be arduous, as the move has been met with strong opposition from a domestic agricultural organization. South Korea will also need to mend its frayed relationship with Japan in order to join the TPP.

Out of consideration for Beijing, Seoul had previously distanced itself from the TPP, which it saw as aimed at countering China. South Korea relies heavily on China in external trade.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press