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South Korea to suspend tariff concessions on EU goods

South Korea is slated to suspend tariff concessions on European Union products in response to the EU’s safeguard measures on Korean steel products, according to the government Tuesday.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said it “notified the World Trade Organization about suspending tariff concessions on EU goods valued at about 56.8 million euros ($63.6 million).” 


The amount is the estimation of additional tariffs imposed on Korean steel products in the wake of the EU safeguard measures, which is an action to protect a specific domestic industry from an increase in imports.

For the timeframe of the suspension, the Korean government plans to take measures after considering overall conditions at home and abroad.

The notification to the WTO came as the Korean government failed to reach an agreement with the EU after calling for compensation for damages inflicted on Korean firms.

In February, the EU had decided to impose a 25 percent tariff on volume exceeding a quota for 26 steel products. Steel products produced by most Korean steelmakers, including Posco, Hyundai-Steel and SeAh Steel, have been subject to the tariffs.

The EU claimed the decision came in response to protectionism policies rolled out by the US, which caused steel producers to look to the European market as an alternative. 

By Shin Ji-hye (