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Statement31 October 2023BrusselsDirectorate-General for Trade1 min read

Joint Statement on the launch of negotiations for an EU-Korea digital trade agreement

Joint statement by European Commission Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis and Korean Minister for Trade Dukgeun Ahn on the launch of negotiations on an EU-Korea digital trade agreement.

Today, in the margins of the 11th EU-Korea Trade Committee, we agreed to launch negotiations between the EU and Korea on a digital trade agreement that will provide legal certainty for businesses and consumers engaged in digital trade, enhance their protection in digital transactions, and foster an open, free and fair online environment.

The EU and Korea share long-standing and robust economic relations underpinned since 2011 by the EU-Korea Free Trade Agreement. With these negotiations, we aim to bring this partnership into the digital domain. It demonstrates our commitment to being at the forefront of new developments in the digital economy, countering digital protectionism, and playing a leading role in setting digital trade rules which are future-proofed as well as responsive to innovation and emerging technologies.

Building on the cooperation and convergence shown by our Digital Trade Principles, the EU and Korea intend to negotiate an ambitious and modern digital trade agreement that contributes to our societies’ digital transformation, corresponds to the fast-evolving nature of the digital economy, and builds on and complements our existing preferential trade framework.  

The EU and Korea consider that digital trade is an essential part of the digital and green transitions of our societies. It entails a further deepening our trade relations, supports job creation, and empowers companies to participate in the global economy, notably micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises. It also responds to online consumer needs and fosters innovation.

Our digital trade rules should build consumer trust, ensure predictability and legal certainty for businesses, remove and prevent the emergence of unjustified barriers to digital trade, and facilitate cooperation therein, while ensuring that we can continue to develop and implement the policies required to address new challenges posed by the digital economy.


Publication date
31 October 2023
Directorate-General for Trade
Country or region
  • South Korea
Trade topics
  • Digital trade
  • Negotiations and agreements