Seoul — The US on Monday agreed to exempt South Korea from steel tariffs, instead imposing a quota on steel imports as the two countries agreed in principle to revise a trade pact sharply criticised by US President Donald Trump. In return, South Korea said it would improve access for US car makers under the bilateral free trade deal known as Korus, the country’s trade ministry said. In April, Trump told Reuters he would either renegotiate or terminate what he called a "horrible" trade deal that has doubled the US goods trade deficit with South Korea since 2012. The agreement means South Korea becomes the first US ally to receive an indefinite exemption, albeit with a quota, on steel tariffs imposed by Trump. Trump’s action on steel and aluminium, along with plans to slap tariffs on up to $60bn in Chinese goods had fuelled the concern of a damaging global trade war. "We had heated discussions," South Korean Trade Minister Kim Hyun-chong said at a media briefing in Seoul. "The latest ...

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