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The Republic of Korea and the IPEF

The Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) was announced as newly elected President Yoon began a tilt towards the United States (US), endorsing it as a chance to write rules and not take them.

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Extensive consultations between business and ministries ensured that each Pillar was examined, but showed little evidence of rule writing until May 2023. The Korean Ministry of Trade and Industry was also protesting the impact of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and the Creating helpful incentives to produce semiconductors (CHIPS) Act with the same US negotiators as for the IPEF. Minister Ahn of the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) sees opportunities to draw the US closer to the international position especially by creating a carbon trading zone in the Clean Economy Pillar, and played a role in the Supply Chain committee creation. Korea covered the same issues with the Chinese on a bilateral basis ensuring that Korea was not drawn fully into any decoupling strategy. Discussion in Korea in June showed MOTIE optimistic, but business doubtful about the efficacy of the IPEF which could be challenged in Congress with Executive Orders which could be abandoned by the next US President.

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Contact Person

Cristita Marie Perez

Cristita Marie Perez KAS

Senior Programme Manager, Regional Economic Programme Asia (SOPAS)

cristita.perez@kas.de +81 3 6426 5041

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