SEOUL, Nov. 29 (Yonhap) — South Korea on Monday asked China’s eastern province of Jiangsu for its cooperation on the smooth importation of urea amid the ongoing supply shortage of the key material needed to cut emissions from diesel vehicles, Seoul’s industry ministry said.
Seo Ga-ram, chief of the ministry’s trade cooperation bureau, made the request during an online meeting with the Chinese provincial government as South Korea has suffered from the supply crunch of urea solution following China’s export curbs on urea to ease domestic supply bottlenecks.
“Jiangsu is one of the major urea producing regions in China and is geographically close to South Korea. So we’ve asked for its cooperation in exporting urea here and its smooth transportation to South Korea,” the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said in a release.
South Korea is heavily dependent on China for its urea supply, with more than 97 percent of the material coming from the resource-rich neighboring country during the first nine months of this year.
Seo also asked for the Chinese province’s attention to help resolve business concerns over Beijing’s electricity usage curbs and strict COVID-19 isolation measures.
China has been restricting electricity consumption of some energy-intensive sectors since September to reduce carbon emissions and to reserve energy ahead of winter. The country has also required at least three weeks of quarantine for foreign businesspersons.
“During Monday’s meeting, the two governments also discussed ways to support their companies in achieving zero-emission goals, and to boost bilateral investment and trade,” the ministry said in a release.
Jiangsu is South Korea’s largest trading partner among China’s provinces, accounting for 26 percent of the total trade volume between South Korea and China, and 24 percent of South Korea’s investment in the neighboring country.
In 2016, South Korea and the Chinese province signed a memorandum of understanding on trade cooperation, and have held meetings on a regular basis, according to the ministry.