Will iPhone Ban Veto Strain U.S., South Korea Relations?

Will Apple's iPhone Strain US, South Korea RelationsAs MMW reported Monday morning, President Obama has vetoed a partial ban on the import and sale of some Apple products, which was granted back in June in response to a ruling made by the ITC.

Not surprisingly, the South Korean government isn’t pleased by the Obama Administration’s action – the first time in nearly three decades that a U.S. president has handed down such a veto.

Officials in Seoul are expressing concern that the move may negatively impact Samsung Electronics Co.’s patent rights.

The Wall Street Journal reported today that more than $1 billion was “wiped off Samsung’s market value on Monday after the surprise veto.” South Korea-based Samsung did not comment today on expectations from the International Trade Commission later this week.

The South Korean government’s statement suggests that the legal dispute between the two technology giants could escalate into a political issue depending on the outcome of the ITC’s decision.

“If the presidential veto appears to be used to give advantage to Apple over Samsung, this would be a dangerous precedent that could upset the current good trade relations between the U.S. and South Korea,” Mark Newman, an analyst with Sanford C. Bernstein, tells the WSJ.

Although some are wondering if the veto will impact U.S. and South Korean relations, others believe it already has.