A Historic Summit Bodes Well for Japan-South Korea Rapprochement -- For Now
MIN READMar 17, 2023 | 20:43 GMT
South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol (left) and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida (right) attend a joint press conference on March 16, 2023, in Tokyo, Japan.
(Kiyoshi Ota - Pool/Getty Images)
A recent summit between the leaders of Japan and South Korea marks a breakthrough in bilateral relations that is deepening their economic and security cooperation. However, unresolved issues and the prospect of a less amicable South Korean government may dim the long-term prospects for rapprochement. On March 16, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol concluded a three-day summit in Tokyo that resulted in the signing of several economic and security cooperation agreements between the two traditionally acrimonious neighbors. Among other things, Japan pledged to remove curbs on its exports to South Korea of critical materials for smartphone displays and semiconductor chips. In exchange, Seoul promised to drop a World Trade Organization complaint against Tokyo about the export restrictions. The two also said they would restart the previously halted ''shuttle diplomacy'' of regular top-level visits between the countries and ''complete normalization'' of a military intelligence-sharing...