The top office says that Tokyo’s greenlighting of a shipment of high-tech materials to South Korea does not demonstrate a fundamental change in Japan’s attitude towards bilateral relations.
An official from the presidential office made the remark Tuesday when asked by reporters to comment on Japan’s recent approval of a shipment of photoresists, a key material used in semiconductor production, to Samsung Electronics.
The official said that only withdrawing export restrictions as well as re-adding South Korea to a “whitelist” of countries that enjoy streamlined trade with Japan will show Tokyo has changed its attitude.
Last month, Japan introduced export controls on photoresists and two other high-tech materials to South Korea and will remove South Korea from a list of preferred trading partners on August 28.
The moves are widely understood to be retaliation for recent court rulings ordering some Japanese firms to compensate Korean victims of wartime forced labor.
Regarding whether South Korea will extend a pact with Japan on sharing military information, known as the General Security of Military Information Agreement, the official said nothing has been decided yet.