South Korean government wades into Apple vs Samsung waters

Govs step into World War Mobile Device

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It's been a rough few days for Samsung.

First, the Obama administration vetoed an earlier decision by the U.S. International Trade Commission to ban certain Apple products from U.S. import. And today, Samsung's company value was cut by more than $1 billion (about £651m, AU$1.12b) in light of the veto.

At least Sammy has one supporter in its corner, a powerful one to boot.

"We express concerns about the negative impact that such a decision would have on the protection of patent rights," the South Korean Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy said in a statement about the veto, as reported by ZDNet.

Expressing concern sounds about as effective as "I'm thinking about watering the lawn," but remember we're dealing with foreign governments here. The U.S. and South Korea are close politically and economically, so for the Korean government to note it's watching the situation closely and doesn't like what it sees is a pretty big deal.

I've got my eyes on you

Samsung won an import ban on the AT&T versions of the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 3 and iPad 3G and iPad 2 3G in June. The Obama administration, stepping in for the first time on an ITC decision since 1987, cited "undue leverage" concerns as a reason for disapproving the Apple ban.

The South Korean Ministry will keep its attention turned on the U.S. this week as Samsung faces a similar ban for several Galaxy products, including the Galaxy S2 and Galaxy Tab 10.1, according to the Wall Street Journal.

"We hope to see a fair and reasonable decision on the matter," the agency's statement read.

A decision on those products is anticipated Friday. Should an import order come down, Samsung is expected to push for a veto similar to the one granted Apple.