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  5. Japan to Hold Consultations with the Government of the Republic of Korea (ROK) under the WTO Agreement Regarding Japan’s Update of Licensing Policies and Procedures on Exports of Controlled Items to the ROK

Japan to Hold Consultations with the Government of the Republic of Korea (ROK) under the WTO Agreement Regarding Japan’s Update of Licensing Policies and Procedures on Exports of Controlled Items to the ROK

October 10, 2019

On October 11, 2019, Japan will hold a bilateral consultation in Geneva with the government of the Republic of Korea (ROK) under the WTO Agreement regarding Japan’s update of licensing policies and procedures on exports of controlled items to the ROK.

Since July 4, 2019, Japan requests exporters to submit applications for individual export licenses regarding the exports of Fluorinated polyimide, Resist and Hydrogen Fluoride, and the transfer of their relevant technologies to the ROK, and the relevant bulk licenses for the three items and relevant technologies are no longer applicable.

On September 11, 2019, the government of the ROK requested consultations with the government of Japan under the WTO Agreement. In response to this, on October 11, 2019, the government of Japan and the government of the ROK will hold consultations in Geneva pursuant to Article 4 of Annex 2 to the WTO Agreement: the Understanding on Rules and Procedures Governing the Settlement of Disputes.

As the update is necessary to ensure effectiveness of the export control system to prevent the proliferation of weapons such as nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and their means of delivery, Japan will make clear that the update is WTO-consistent.

Reference 1: Consultations under the WTO Agreement

If a member country requests consultations under the WTO Agreement, the members concerned shall enter into consultations within a period of no more than 30 days after the date of receipt of the request (Article 4 of Annex 2 to the WTO Agreement: the Understanding on Rules and Procedures Governing the Settlement of Disputes).

Reference 2: Background

July 1, 2019: Japan released the “Update of METI’s licensing policies and procedures on exports of controlled items to the Republic of Korea”.

July 4, 2019: Japan excluded the exports of Fluorinated polyimide, Resist and Hydrogen Fluoride, and the transfer of their relevant technologies (including technology transferred with exports of manufacturing equipment) to the ROK from the items to which relevant bulk licenses were applicable, and started to request exporters/transferors of these items to submit applications for individual export licenses.

September 11, 2019: The government of the ROK made a request for consultations under the WTO Agreement with the government of Japan regarding the abovementioned update of licensing policies and procedures.

Division in Charge

Office of WTO Compliance and Dispute Settlement, Multilateral Trade System Department, Trade Policy Bureau