SEOUL, Jul. 28 (Korea Bizwire) — At a special ‘beer garden’ meeting held on Thursday at the Blue House with President Moon, executives from South Korean conglomerates raised the issue of China’s economic retaliation against South Korean companies, particularly electric vehicle battery manufacturers, urging the government to take action.
During the unique meeting, Moon was accompanied by eight business heavy hitters and discussed the impact of China’s continuous ‘unofficial’ sanctions in response to South Korea’s THAAD missile system deployment, measures that are helping rival countries like Japan and Vietnam.
LG Electronics vice-chairman Koo Bon-Joon chimed in during a conversation between Moon and Shinsegae Group’s vice-chairman Chong Yong-Jin about the unfair treatment of South Korean electric car battery makers in China.
“Though we produce batteries for electric vehicles, products from Japanese companies get the go-ahead while it’s almost an unspoken rule that South Korean companies are denied the same opportunities,” Koo said.
CJ Group head Son Kyung-Sik seconded Koo’s complaint.
“Apparently, there has been some sort of pressure on Vietnam. As we are on bad terms with China, exports to Vietnam are being reportedly blocked by China.”
During the meeting, Moon urged the conglomerate officials to solve the issue with a ‘sense of duty’.
When it was brought to light that Japanese companies currently dominate the electric vehicle battery industry, Moon said, “Our research and development of next-generation vehicles has been focusing on hydrogen vehicles. If we concentrate on electric cars, we’ll be able to catch up on that front.”
Hyunsu Yim (firstname.lastname@example.org)