Japan is readying once again to go to the World Trade Organization (WTO) over what it sees as South Korea’s unfair subsidies for its shipyards.
Tokyo has sought bilateral talks with its counterparts in Seoul over the billions of Korean won in state aid handed out to South Korea’s struggling shipbuilders. If the talks do not succeed Japan has let it be known it will head to the WTO.
The two countries have squared off over state subsidies repeatedly in the past couple of decades. South Korea surpassed Japan as the world’s largest shipbuilding nation at the turn of the century. China has since also overtaken Japan too.
“We have conveyed concerns to South Korea that (the subsidies) could distort the market, but there have been no moves to correct the practice,” transport minister Keiichi Ishii told a news conference Tuesday.