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Trade chief to visit US for talks on EV tax credit

South Korea's Trade Minister Ahn Duk-geun speaks before departing for the United States from Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, last  Sunday, to discuss the US' Inflation Reduction Act with US officials. (Yonhap)
South Korea's Trade Minister Ahn Duk-geun speaks before departing for the United States from Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, last  Sunday, to discuss the US' Inflation Reduction Act with US officials. (Yonhap)

South Korea's Trade Minister Ahn Duk-geun will depart for the United States on Monday for talks on the US Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) that excludes electric vehicles assembled outside North America from tax incentives.

The IRA, signed by US President Joe Biden in August, gives tax credits to buyers of EVs assembled only in North America, sparking concerns that carmakers here will lose ground in the US market as they make EVs at domestic plants for export.

During the three-day stay through Wednesday, Ahn plans to hold meetings with US Trade Representative Katherine Tai and other government and Congress officials to seek resolutions, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

Ahn's planned visit came after a government delegation's trip to Washington last week to discuss the issue with the US side. Industry Minister Lee Chang-yang also plans to visit the US this month, according to his office.

Last week, the National Assembly also passed a resolution expressing concerns over the discriminatory nature of the law.

The US has vowed to have discussions with South Korea over the issue, and Seoul has proposed forming a formal consultation channel, according to government officials.

Following the visit to Washington, Ahn will fly to Los Angeles to attend the two-day ministerial meeting on the Indo-Pacific Economic Partnership set to begin Thursday, the ministry said. (Yonhap)

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