South Korea’s situation during Russia-Ukraine War

The Russia-Ukraine War started when Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24th, 2022. There are two main reasons for the war. The first is Ukraine’s entry into NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization), and the second is Russia’s control over natural gas. NATO is an organization made shortly after World War II by 12 countries, including the United States, Britain, and France in order to protect against the former Soviet Union. Since the U.S and Russia’s relationships were not on good terms, Russia opposed Ukraine’s entry into NATO. In addition, the land of Ukraine was former Russian territory, and Russia built a pipeline in the flatlands of Ukraine. Thus, Russia could export lots of natural gas to Europe, which relies on gas imports from Russia. However, as Ukraine became independent of Russia, Russia’s control over Ukraine has been decreasing. In response to Russia’s invasion, Ukraine appealed for world support. In general, most developed countries have sided with Ukraine, and South Korea has not explicitly shown its opposition against Russia, but it has taken the position that it will join if the international community sanctions Russia. Though South Korea is not directly related to the war, it has been influenced economically. Korean companies have experienced difficulties replacing inputs necessary for the production of major products. For example, Ukraine is a major natural gas supplier, and South Korea uses natural gas for lasers that print circuits on semiconductor chips, which are the largest export item in Korea. South Korea currently imports 23% of neon gas and 18% of Krypton from Ukraine. If the ongoing war keeps interfering with the production of this gas, South Korea should find alternative gases, but it will not be easy to find them as Ukraine currently accounts for most of the world’s neon gas production. 

By. Hanseul Chang

Works Cited
Kwon, Yong. “Ukraine Invasion Highlights South Korea’s Persistent External Vulnerability.” 
– The Diplomat, For The Diplomat, 28 Feb. 2022, 
“[재테크 이슈] 러시아 우크라이나 전쟁의 영향.” [재테크 이슈] 러시아 우크라이나 전쟁의 영향 : 네이버 포스트, 
Service, Members’ Research. “Is Russia about to Start a New War in Ukraine?” Epthinktank, Epthinktank, 15 Dec. 2021,