Japan takes food row with SKorea to WTO

21st May 2015, Comments 0 comments

Japan on Thursday took its food row with South Korea to the World Trade Organization concerning import bans and new testing procedures following the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster in 2011.

Japan said the measures taken by Seoul after the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in the wake of a tsunami on the grounds that food imports could be contaminated with radiation were "inconsistent" with many WTO regulations.

Japan also said South Korea had "failed to provide the required information about the measures taken, and their lack of consistency or justification."

Japan's request for consultations is the first step at the dispute settlement system of the WTO.

A response has to given within 10 days and if there are no talks, an expert panel can be formed to handle and rule on the dispute.

The row comes against the backdrop of frosty ties linked to territorial and historical disputes between the two Asian countries.

South Korea is concerned about Japan exercising the doctrine of "collective self-defence" around the Korean peninsula without its consent.

But the two neighbours share common concerns about growing threats from nuclear-armed North Korea.

© 2015 AFP

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