South Korea said Friday it will hold another round of negotiations next week with the United States regarding sharing the cost of stationing American troops in the country.

This would mark the ninth round of negotiations in relation to the Special Measures Agreement (SMA). According to a press release from March regarding the SMA, the Republic of Korea (ROK) has helped “offset the costs of stationing U.S. forces through the SMA mechanism. Under the current five-year SMA that expires on Dec. 31, 2018, the ROK provided approximately $830 million per year.”

The current SMA expires in December, which meant both countries were running out of time for as far an agreement was concerned. A report from Yonhap News Agency said South Korean officials were aiming to strike a deal in the four-day talks set to open in Honolulu, Hawaii, Tuesday.

"South Korea and the U.S. plan to have in-depth consultations to coordinate their stances on the basis of what was discussed in the previous session," the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.

USFK South Korea said it will hold another round of negotiations with the United States next week regarding the Special Measures Agreement. In this image, Honor Guards of the United Nations Command (UNC), the Combined Forces Command (CFC) and the United States Forces Korea (USFK) participate in a change-of-command ceremony at the Camp Humphreys Pyeongtaek, South Korea, Nov. 8, 2018. Photo: Getty Images/Chung Sung-Jun

Senior diplomats from both sides met in Seoul for four days for the eighth round of negotiations last month. Prior to that, negotiations were held in Honolulu, Jeju (South Korea), Washington D.C., Seoul and Seattle earlier this year.

South Korea had divided the cost of stationing forced into three sectors — payroll, construction and logistics. A Yonhap News Agency report said Rep. Chung Jin-Seok of the main opposition Liberty Korea Party talked about how the U.S. has pressed South Korea to raise its share to around 1.5 trillion won (US$1.3 billion) during a parliamentary audit of the South Korean foreign ministry's affairs earlier in October.

The U.S. called for a 50 percent increase in South Korea’s contribution from the current 960 billion South Korean won (US$846 million) a year to support the 28,500-strong U.S. Forces in Korea. The current focus point for the meetings were to come to an agreement regarding the same.

The U.S. wants South Korea to at least partly pay for the regular or emergency deployment of the so-called strategic assets, the report said. The assets included advanced U.S. weapon systems such as aircraft carriers, stealth fighters, and nuclear subs to be deployed in case of need, like to counter North Korea's military threats.

Timothy Betts, deputy assistant secretary of state for plans, programs and operations will represent the U.S. at the meeting while Chang Won-sam, a career diplomat who served as ambassador to Sri Lanka will represent South Korea.

Amidst the unrest regarding the United States Forces Korea, the new chief of the agency, Army Gen. Robert B. Abrams, assumed command of U.S. Forces in South Korea, replacing Gen. Vincent Brooks, reports said Thursday. He took over Brooks’ control over the United Nations Command and the South Korea-US Combined Forces Command.

Despite the challenges, which include a “slight degradation” in military readiness, due to pending talks with North Korea over denuclearization that could reduce the presence of U.S. forces in Korea, Abrams stressed he will strive to maintain a strong relationship with South Korea and other nations in the UN commands.

“I’m committed to continuing to build on our special relationships with ROK and each of UN sending states and national contingence as we work together in our collective missions for a peaceful and secure Korean Peninsula,” he said, according to a report in the Korean Herald.