EU Pressures Korea to Ratify Int'l Labor Standards

  • By Choi Hyun-mook, Kwak Chang-yeol

    April 10, 2019 13:01

    The EU on Tuesday warned Korea of legal measures if it continues to drag its heels in ratifying key International Labor Organization rules.

    European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom, who is visiting Korea, met with Labor Minister Lee Jae-kap and said the EU would have to launch a panel of experts to review Korea's compliance with their bilateral free trade agreement unless concrete progress is made soon.

    Malmstrom accused Korea of violating free trade rules by ensuring cheaper labor than the EU by failing to guarantee workers' full rights.

    Labor Minister Lee Jae-kap (left) meets with European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom in Seoul on Tuesday. /Newsis

    The EU is citing four of eight ILO key conventions Korea has yet to ratify as promised in the FTA.

    The four conventions are in conflict with Korean law, which prohibits laid-off and unemployed workers and public servants from joining unions.

    Several other ILO member states have also failed to reconcile all their laws with the conventions. The U.S., which foots half of the ILO's expenses, has only ratified two and Japan six. 

    • Copyright © Chosunilbo &
    Previous Next
    All Headlines Back to Top