Japan Criticizes S Korea Li-Ion Battery Certification Plans

June 22, 2009 by Jeff Shepard

Japan’s Trade Minister, Toshihiro Nikai, critcized South Korea’s planned introduction of a compulsory certification system for lithium-ion batteries, stating that the proposed new system could hurt Japanese exports. He said that Japan may formally complain to the World Trade Organization this week in a bid to put a halt to the plan.

South Korea had earlier announced that manufacturers and sellers of products with lithium-ion batteries will have to obtain approval from a South Korean government organization. The new regulations were to start in July 1st.

The Japanese criticism is related to reports that South Korea had extended an exemption for U.S.-made products from the rule in October of last year, allowing for the certification to be completed by an American organization.

Japanese manufacturers are said to control about 60% of the global lithium-ion battery market.