South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol said on Tuesday he would order officials to begin procedures that would return Japan to its "white list" of countries with fast-track trade status after a summit with Prime Minister Fumio Kishida last week.

Yoon announced the decision at a cabinet meeting, saying South Korea and Japan should make efforts to remove obstacles that hinder developing bilateral ties.

"I will pre-emptively order our trade minister today to begin necessary legal procedures to have Japan back on our white list," Yoon said during the meeting, which was televised live. "I'm sure Japan will respond if South Korea first starts removing the obstacles."