Special Measures Agreement History

5. The ROK government has taken useful steps to improve the system to address the problems encountered during the implementation of the ADM and to improve transparency and accountability for implementation. The 9th SMA (2014-2018) expired on 31 December 2018. 2. As two close allies, the ROK and the United States reached agreement on the text of the SMA and the implementation agreement in a spirit of mutual respect and trust, after ten formal meetings and various diplomatic channels. Both parties strive to achieve satisfactory, win-win results. While previous renegotiations in 2013 also exceeded the year`s closing deadline, the chances of reaching a new agreement in January appear slim. Not only are the two countries still far apart in terms of the nature of the final agreement, but there are also a number of other possible aggravating factors. While members of the U.S. military service in South Korea are not likely to be plunged into the current government truce, the State Department in charge of the ADM negotiations is responsible.

It is not certain that the shutdown will hinder the ability of U.S. negotiators to discuss, but the risk that it will increase with the end of the shutdown, and it does not seem that an end is in sight. Moreover, if Trump compromises on funding the border wall, he could consolidate his position vis-à-vis Seoul so as not to give in to return negotiations. o Although two parties have agreed on an effective one-year period, the ICC and the United States have allowed the agreement to be renewed if two parties agree on a possible expiration between the agreements, unless the next ADM is concluded at an appropriate time. Although the United States and the Republic of Korea (ROK) have made some progress in negotiating the Exceptional Measures Agreement (SMA), the two sides do not appear ready to engage in meaningful negotiations. The basic positions of the two countries remain totally different: the United States wants a negotiated agreement that reflects the total cost of ROC defence beyond the existing ADM, including transportation, training and equipment for the Korean Armed Forces (USFK), while the ROK tries to maintain the current framework of the SMA, which covers only three categories : the cost of labor for Korean workers in USFK, logistics costs and construction for USFK. o Two pages agreed on the total amount of 1.0389 trillion won for 2019 and an effective one-year period. 3. During the consultations, the ROK and the United States reaffirmed the importance of a strong ROK-US alliance and the need for a stable deployment of US troops to Korea, amid the rapidly changing political landscape on the Korean Peninsula. o The United States, in particular, has reassured itself of its strong commitment to defending ROC, while stressing that the United States is not considering changing the size of the USFK.

Comments are closed.