Relations between Japan and South Korea are currently strained due to a dispute over former civilian workers from the Korean Peninsula during World War II. The heart of the problem is whether the promises made between our two sovereign states when they decided to normalize their relations in 1965 will be kept or not.
In some people's view, Japan's recent update of its export control measures related to South Korea is linked to this question of former civilian workers. I want to make it clear that they are completely separate issues.
In 1965, after 14 years of hard negotiations, Japan and South Korea concluded the Agreement on the Settlement of Problems concerning Property and Claims and on Economic Co-operation between Japan and the Republic of Korea. Under the terms of the 1965 agreement, Japan extended $500 million in grants and loans — a sum that totaled 1.6 times as much as South Korea's national budget then. All problems concerning claims between the two countries and their nationals were confirmed to be "settled completely and finally."