An unofficial association composed of 6 million of independent businesspersons in South Korea began to reject buying Japanese products. According to news reports, they are opposed to performing the ceremony of “Day of Takeshima” by Shimane prefecture in Japan.
A Boycott against Japan in Korea, MSN Sankei News site (in Japanese)
Takeshima is an area of which there is a severe conflict about which is the fair ruler.
About Kakeshima, actually, I do not know whether is right or wrong. History is unavoidable from distortion. Even if an international court decides the true ruler, the loser would not accept it. As a Japanese, I believe in the claim by the Japanese government. But I can also imagine the political stance of South Korea. Such a conflict is hardly to be resolved.
On the other hand, it is far from my understanding why Koreans should begin a boycott.
First, now Takeshima is under the control of South Korea. In this situation, ruling side has not to mention the problem of territory. If they were continuing to rule the area silently, the evidence of the fairness of their ruling would be strengthened. Besides, loser side, Japan must be agitated about this to let other countries know about this problem. This is a common strategic theory for problem of territory.
Second, this is much greater, the reason why an unofficial association leads this social movement is unknown.
South Korea is a country highly dependent on foreign currency. It is contrasted with Japan. They were struggling to compete against foreign countries, especially after fiscal crisis in 2008. Samsung and LG electronics are now world famous companies. I guess that the government of South Korea has made great effort to grow up them. As a result, Korean industry is essential for the world. Samsung and LG are now international companies. Of course they need more international cooperation in both economic and industrial views for more prosperity.
For such mega companies, conflict against other countries is quite harmful. If South Korea were deemed to be risky, most countries would be hesitated to deal with South Korea. Moreover, Japan is one of important partners in South Korea.
I do not know whether it is advantageous for independent businesspersons association to be against Japan.
Perhaps, some agitators may lead this movement. If so, the move would no longer continue. International problem of territory is not easy to be resolved. No one hopes that a conflict would influence badly for the daily life of Koreans.
I am not emotional about this problem. Indeed, I like Korean cuisine very much. That’s all.