March 9, 2022 Presidential elections in South Korea
Like Japan and India, South Korea also needs to balance its relationship between China and the US. And the latest missile tests conducted by North Korea’s are not really helpful in this.
Foreign policy and national security has become one of the main topics in the 2022 Presidential election in South Korea. The outcome of the elections may shift the balance to one side -US- or the other -China- . It also may shift the delicate balance of security in the whole of Asia. And it is close call between the two main presidential candidates Moon and Yoon.
The outcome was 48.6 % for Yoon, who therefore is the next President of South Korea against 47.8 for Moon. A different party will govern South Korea.
The conservative Yoon Seok-youl of the People’s Power Party (PPP), wants to get closer to the US. This to him does not only mean additional air defence systems from the US – the THAAD, Terminal High Altitude Area Defence – as a protection to North Korean missiles, he also seeks a close connection to QUAD, the new security alliance of US, Japan, India and Australia. The relationship between Seoul and on the other hand Beijing and Pyongyang may worsen, that with Washington and Tokyo may blossom up. It may reflect the voice of the majority of the South Korean people who have a more positive feeling about Japan above China.
The candidate of the current ruling party, which lost was Lee Jae-myung of the Democratic Party (DP). He would have been more cautious not to alienate South Korea from China.