The Korean government says it will appeal against the World Trade Organization's decision to uphold Japan's complaint on Korea's import ban and additional testing requirements on Japanese seafood suspected to have been affected by the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.
Related ministries including the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said Friday that they question the WTO dispute panel's reasoning, and said they will continue to make efforts to prevent the public from consuming food contaminated by or exposed to radiation.
The government says it has been consistent with its concerns over food safety by continuously bringing the matter forward through its joint response team established right after the 2011 nuclear disaster.
It adds the current import ban will be kept in place until the appeal process ends, saying it's expected to take more than three months for the process to even begin.
A report by the WTO panel released Thursday stipulated that Korea's measures were inconsistent with WTO rules to not "arbitrarily or unjustifiably discriminate" against another member country, and said the import ban "is more trade restrictive than required."
Three days after the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, Korea imposed an import ban on 50 seafood items from eight prefectures in Japan, and 26 agriculture products from 13 prefectures.
Korea also required additional testing for radiation on agricultural and processed goods from anywhere from Japan if cesium was detected in the imported goods.
And Korea added imported marine products from anywhere in Japan to the list five months later, after Japan revealed that contaminated water from the nuclear facility had leaked into the sea.
Kim Ji-yeon, Arirang News.