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Mode 4 Issues in the Trade Negotiations: Progress and Policy Implications for Korea Multilateral negotiations, Trade policy

Author Jun-Gu Kang Series 14-02 Language Korean Date 2014.07.11

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The purpose of this study is to examine how the recent trade negotiations have dealt with Mode 4 issues and what policy implications have been drawn for Korea’s Mode 4 negotiations and the improvement of the domestic system related to Mode 4.
This study provides the following policy recommendations for Korea’s Mode 4 negotiations. First, the Korean government needs to set up the consistent bargaining strategy in Mode 4 issues based on medium-and long-term foreign labor policy such as immigration policy. The coherent policies are the most effective way to negotiate Mode 4 issues with developing countries. Second, as to the issues of Mode 4 coverage, Korea has to build closer cooperation with like-minded developed countries against the GATS-plus requests made by developing countries in the multinational or plurilateral trade negotiations. Third, in the RTA negotiations with developing countries, while the Korean government should stick to the negotiation principle of Mode 4 whose scope is limited in the GATS, it should also take part in the discussions of professional mobility for CSS (Contractual Service Suppliers) and IP (Independent Professionals) with a prospective attitude. Forth, the Korean government authorities should conduct in-depth research on the gap between supply and demand of the specific labor markets to identify the prominent areas for liberalization of CSS and IP in the domestic services sectors. Fifth, in order to prevent from using foreign workers illegally and maximize economic benefits from Mode 4 liberalization, it is crucial for the Korean government to establish its own Mode 4 monitoring system. Finally, it is essential to improve and align the Korea’s professional licensure system with the global standards, which will facilitate mutual recognition for the attainment of policy objectives, such as preventing the substantial influx of the unqualified and promoting overseas employment of Korean professionals.

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