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NSC chief has trilateral talks with US, Japan on NK, economic security

Sept. 2, 2022 - 09:40 By Shin Ji-hye

South Korea’s National Security Advisor Kim Sung-han (Yonhap)

South Korea’s National Security Advisor Kim Sung-han held a meeting with his US and Japanese counterparts, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and Japan’s National Security Advisor Takeo Akiba, in Hawaii on Thursday to discuss North Korea, economic security and major regional issues, the presidential office said Friday.

At the first such meeting since the inauguration of the Yoon Suk-yeol administration, the three security chiefs held extensive consultations on North Korea's nuclear program, high-tech and supply chain cooperation, and major regional and international issues, the office said.

Prior to the trilateral talks, Kim held bilateral meetings with the US and Japanese sides, respectively, on Wednesday.

During the meeting with the US, Kim discussed ways of cooperation between the two countries to explain and implement the South Korean government's “audacious initiative” regarding North Korea. The initiative, proposed last month, is one that seeks to engage North Korea and provide aid in return for steps toward denuclearization.

Kim also conveyed the Korean industry's concerns about the Inflation Reduction Act and the CHIPS and Science Act enacted in the US and called for active cooperation and interest from the US National Security Council to resolve them.

On Aug. 16, President Joe Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law. Under the act, only electric vehicles that are finally assembled in North America can receive subsidies. This would exclude Korean carmakers and deal a severe blow to their competitiveness in EV sales.

At the meeting with the Japanese side, the two security chiefs exchanged views on regional and international security issues, including North Korea. Kim explained the South Korean government's audacious initiative and asked for cooperation from both sides, while also discussing ways to cooperate with North Korea over its nuclear and missile provocations.

Earlier this month, the Yoon administration promised economic support in exchange for North Korea giving up its nuclear weapons, but the North officially refused the proposal.