Thursday, September 02, 2004


If you are at all interested in the South Korean economy (or in contemporary Korean affairs more generally), you really should be looking at this every month. Some highlights of this edition:

China's share of trade with both the ROK and the U.S. continues to grow:
Even though trade between the United States and Korea increased in the first six months of 2004, China is grabbing an increasing share of trade from each country. China overtook the United States as Korea’s number one trading partner in the first half of 2004, accounting for $36.99 billion or 16 percent of two-way
trade, compared to the $34.22 billion or 14.8 percent of twoway trade with the United States. China’s share of U.S. trade has also grown. In January–June, China’s share of U.S. trade increased to 9.4 percent from 8.3 percent during the same period in 2003, with U.S. exports up 36.7 percent and imports rising 28.8 percent.

But all is not well with Korean investors in China

Many Korean businesses invested in China in expectation of high returns, but the record shows that they often could not even collect the amount they had invested.

And the U.S. continues to worry about "nagging issues"
In January, USTR elevated Korea to the Priority Watch List (PWL) as a result of its Special 301 “out of cycle review” of Korea’s intellectual property rights protection, largely because of piracy of online music and U.S. motion pictures. U.S. companies also continue to complain about Korea’s regulatory environment, labor market rigidity, and the lack of transparency in the Korean government’s rule-making and standards application.

Of course there is absolutely no piracy on online music and movies in the U.S., right? Of course not!

And, there's this summary of recent North Korean harsh rhetoric and actions:
Speculation about the motives for North Korea’s latest outburst centers on two possibilities: North Korea may be trying to increase the price they would expect China to pay to persuade it to attend the next round of six-party talks, or North Korea may have decided to wait for the results of the U.S. election before deciding what approach to take in the ongoing diplomatic efforts to persuade it to abandon its nuclear weapons programs. In other actions, North Korea recalled its Ambassador to Vietnam to protest the Vietnamese role in facilitating the return to South Korea of 460 refugees who had fled North Korea. North Korea also cancelled inter-Korean economic talks.

As always, read the whole thing.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?