On May 19, South Korea’s finance minister met with China’s ambassador to discuss economic cooperation. This meeting comes as diplomatic tensions between the two nations add another blow to South Korea’s faltering economy. During the meeting, the minister expressed his hope for continued economic cooperation between the two countries based on reciprocity and mutual respect. He also requested help with preparations for the bilateral economic ministerial meeting. The ministry did not disclose statements made by Ambassador Shin Hai-min during talks held after the South Korean ambassador to Washington announced that the South Korean government would soon pursue high-level engagement with the Chinese government.
The diplomatic tensions, mostly over regional geopolitical issues, including those over China’s policy toward Taiwan, could negatively impact South Korea’s economy, which is already suffering from a slump in exports. However, on Friday, shares of South Korean companies with exposure to China operations rose, with ENM and Netmarble gaining 2.5% and 1.5%, respectively, according to a statement by media content production company CJ.
The meeting between the finance minister and the Chinese ambassador highlights the importance of economic cooperation between the two nations, despite existing diplomatic tensions. It remains to be seen how these tensions will affect South Korea’s economy in the long run, but for now, companies with exposure to China operations seem to be performing well.