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South Korea could raise concerns over US EV subsidy changes this week

South Korea could raise concerns over US EV subsidy changes this week

The South Korean and American flags fly next to each other at Yongin, South Korea, Aug 23, 2016. (File photo: Courtesy Ken Scar/US Army/Handout via REUTERS)

SEOUL: South Korea might raise concerns over the US Inflation Reduction Act's potential impact on its automakers at a meeting between the countries' top security advisers this week, Seoul's presidential office said on Thursday (Sep 1).

South Korea's national security adviser Kim Sung-han is slated for meetings in Hawaii with his US and Japanese counterparts chiefly to coordinate their Indo Pacific policies amid flaring tensions between China and Taiwan.

The meeting comes amid growing concerns in South Korea over the Inflation Reduction Act, signed into law by US President Joe Biden last month. Among other measures, the new law would halt subsidies for EVs made outside North America, which could hurt companies like Hyundai Motor and its affiliate Kia.

A presidential official said the issue could be raised when Kim separately met US national security adviser Jake Sullivan.

"I think it could be set as an item for bilateral talks to promote our national interests," the official told reporters.

South Korea's parliament passed a resolution expressing concern over the new EV rules, which have eliminated federal tax credits previously eligible for South Korean automakers' EVs in the United States.

The resolution called for the South Korean government to respond to the issue, saying the law was discriminatory.

Lee Do-hoon, a South Korean vice foreign minister, said on Tuesday that Seoul has asked Washington to postpone the new rules until Hyundai completes building its Georgia factory in 2025. Seoul officials have also said the law may violate a bilateral free trade agreement.

Source: Reuters/fh

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