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Japan to Ease Controls over S.Korea exports

Japan is considering relaxing controls on exports to South Korea as its president, Yoon Suk-yeol, seeks to improve ties amid a strained East Asian security environment.

The Sankei newspaper reported on Saturday that Japan will decide whether to ease the curbs on shipping high-tech materials, which it imposed in 2019 over a dispute about Japan's wartime forced labor of Korean workers, as the neighbors hold a series of talks aimed at solving the dispute.

According to the report, Japan's foreign ministry and trade ministry officials were not immediately available for comment on the report when Reuters contacted them outside regular business hours. However, the South Korean foreign ministry stated that the issue of the export curbs would likely be resolved during consultations between South Korea and Japan on various issues including forced labor. The statement further added, "Given the growing need to promote cooperation among countries sharing universal values at a time when the importance of economic security is increasing, we hope that Japan will judge wisely." Foreign ministers of the two countries met for talks in Tokyo this month. Their diplomatic officials are due to meet on Monday in the South Korean capital, Seoul, as they near a conclusion of a plan for the resolving their dispute.

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