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S. Korea pressuring China on IP rights

08-03-2013 05:58 BJT

By CCTV correspondent Shane Hahm

As expected, the issue of intellectual property rights has dominated discussions.

A three-way free trade deal between South Korea, China, and Japan won’t affect South Korean electronics manufacturers all that much. That’s what analysts are saying.

In fact, global tariffs on IT products, such as smartphones, semiconductors, and display panels are close to zero under the Information Technology Agreement enforced by the World Trade Organization.

In addition, when it comes to TVs and other home appliances, major builders already operate local plants in China.

"I’m sure the concerns would be greater on the Chinese side and perhaps Japanese side, but the Korean side based on the understanding that Korea has been doing pretty well in the electronics industry, once again, in semiconductors, smartphones and part of the upper end of home appliances, I don’t think Korea has that much of a psychological barrier against setting up FTAs with the other two major economies." Byug-Joo Kim, KL&P Consulting, Head said.

Also overshadowing the FTA talks will be the issue of intellectual property rights. During the first round of talks in Seoul back in March, China was reluctant to strengthen intellectual property protection under a trade deal.

"Future FTA talks must focus on the opening of the legal market on all sides as it relates to intellectual property, rather than actually strengthening the protection of intellectual property rights." Jong-Hak Jeon, Patent Attorney said.

South Korea is pushing hard for tighter enforcements on IP rights because doing so would have a direct positive effect on the South Korean economy.

"Korea must use a strategy of focusing on areas that will help create more high-quality, domestic jobs and make concessions that don’t lead to job creation."Jong-Hak Jeon said.

It may be years before a trilateral FTA between China, South Korea, and Japan goes into effect. In the meantime, negotiators have the tough task of trying to predict what the global electronics industry will look like in the long term in order to create a win-win-win situation.


Editor:James |Source:

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