• EU To Strengthen Environment and Labor Regulations and Protectionism
    2019-06-07 hit 379

     EU To Strengthen Environment and Labor Regulations and Protectionism


    - KITA, forecast trade policy in accordance with the election result of European Parliament election to be prepared for the US-China trade conflict -


    As it is expected for Europe to strengthen the environmental and labor regulations, Korean companies are required to pay closer attention when export to Europe.


    According to a report titled Trade Policy Outlook and Countermeasures to Results of European Parliament Election issued by the Brussels Branch of the Korea International Trade Association (Chairman, Kim Young-joo) and the Brussels office of the law firm Steptoe (Head: Ruxandra Cana) specialized in trade on June 5th, the election result of the 9th European Parliament in May signals that the consistency of the existing trade policy will be maintained as the pro-EU political parties have secured 506 seats (67.4% of the total) despite the rapid growth of extreme right-wing and European skepticism parties.

    * Pro-EU Political Parties (506 seats): EPP(179), S&D(153), ALDE&R(105), Greens/EFA(69)


    The report, however, anticipates that the EUs new protectionist measures and eco-friendly and pro-labor policies will have a negative impact on the exports of Korea's major items: machinery, household appliances, transportation equipment and chemical products. 


    It is anticipated that the EU will push for new trade restrictions, such as border tax, as well as existing trade remedies, including anti-dumping and safeguard measures in response to the US-led trade war on imports of steel and automobiles. In fact, the EU has also exercised safeguard on Korean steel products to as a measure against the United States' Section 232.   


    In addition, it is forecast that the EU will emphasize compliance with labor and environment-related regulations and intensify pressure on Korea by insisting on the ratification of the International Labor Organization (ILO) treaty under the Korea-EU free trade agreement (FTA).


    Choi Kyung-yoon, deputy manager at the Brussels Branch of the Korea Internaitonal Trade Association, said, The EU will maintain its existing trade policy direction. However, it is anticipated that there will be disagreement in the legislative process in the future due to the prevalence of extreme right-wing and European skepticism parties. The deputy manager stressed, Korean companies need to be thoroughly prepared by paying closer attention to the EU's actions to strengthen trade protectionism as well as the legislative trends in environment and labor.

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