Vice FM calls for Japan to ensure Naver can make own decision without ‘pressure’ amid Line row

A senior foreign ministry official called for Japan on Friday to help ensure that Naver Corp. can make its own decision about whether to sell down its stake in the operator of the Line messaging app without "external pressure." Second Vice Foreign Minister Kang In-sun made the call during a meeting with Taisuke Mibae, deputy chief of mission at the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, after Tokyo instructed LY Corp., which runs Line, to "review its capital relationship" in the joint venture with the South Korean internet portal giant following a data breach of user information. Seoul has requested Tokyo be sure there are no "unfair discriminatory measures" against South Korean companies that are based in Japan, amid growing concerns the issue can negatively affect the improving bilateral relations. Kang reiterated the government's firm position again to Mibae, the ministry said. "Vice Minister Kang also requested the Japanese government's special interest and caution so that Naver can make fair and autonomous deci sions without any adverse treatment or external pressure," the ministry said. Aside from the Line issue, the two sides also discussed bilateral economic cooperation and agreed to continue close consultations to move the relationship forward into a future-oriented manner, the ministry added. Source: Yonhap News Agency