According to the latest customs data, China is South Korea's largest trading partner, accounting for 26.05 percent of South Korea's overall exports in 2013. That’s more than double the U.S., which accounted for 11.09 percent of South Korea's total exports. (South Korea implemented its bilateral FTA with the U.S. in March 2012.)
"The reason an FTA with China will be more significant than the one with the United States is China's physical proximity to South Korea, which means the countries' bilateral trade has so much more potential to grow following the implementation of the FTA," Yonhap news agency reports an official from the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy as saying.
Due to be implemented next year, the FTA could boost the countries' annual bilateral trade to $300bn, 40 percent more than 2012 figures.
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