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Seoul sends a delegation to Washington for auto tariffs

Posted July. 09, 2018 07:26,   

Updated July. 09, 2018 07:26


The South Korean government has been working on finalizing the members of the delegation to visit the United States in response to the Trump administration’s move to impose high tariffs on imported automobiles.

The delegation led by Deputy Trade Minister Kang Sung-cheon, which will include government and corporate officials, will attend a public hearing on auto tariffs slated for July 19 to 20 (local time) in Washington, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy and industry sources Sunday. The U.S. Department of Commerce is currently investigating whether imported vehicles and auto parts have adverse impacts on the U.S. national security and whether it is possible to slap tariffs of 25 percent on them under Section 232 of Trade Expansion Act.

The delegation is set to stress that “South Korean automobiles and auto parts do not pose a threat to Washington’s national security but lead the creation of jobs in regions.” Hyundai Motor Company had recommended John Hall for the public hearing, one of its American workers at a factory in Alabama who has been working for the company for 13 years. Hall is reportedly planning to state that his job at the factory in Alabama has allowed him to provide for his family and also had positive impacts on Alabama’s economy.

Also, the South Korean government recently submitted a written statement to the United States together with Hyundai Motor, Kia Motors, 26 primary subcontractors for auto parts, and the council of local dealers, which argues that high tariffs on vehicles would dampen local employment.

Hyoun-Soo Kim kimhs@donga.com