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Deputy Minister Yun Attends EU-Asia Connectivity Forum

  • Date : 2019-09-28 16:34:05
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1. Deputy Minister for Economic Affairs Yun Kang-hyeon of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea (ROK) attended the European Union (EU)-Asia Connectivity Forum held in Brussels, the Kingdom of Belgium, on Friday, September 27.

2. Attended as a panelist in the 1st Session on “Geopolitics of Connectivity,” Deputy Minister Yun mentioned the importance of connectivity, which has recently emerged as a significant issue on the international stage, and presented the ROK government’s efforts and contribution to strengthening connectivity through its New Southern and Northern Policies; cooperation in building connectivity between the ROK and the EU; and establishment of permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula.

Deputy Minister Yun emphasized that the efforts to achieve connectivity should be carried out in a way that economic benefits are equally distributed to its people and peaceful lives are guaranteed. He also voiced hope that the countries would seek ways to jointly respond to a number of challenging tasks beyond geographical distances through stronger connectivity, and ultimately contribute to realizing sustainable development and ensuring global peace. Furthermore, Deputy Minister Yun introduced the New Southern and Northern Policies currently being implemented by the ROK government, and commented that such policies will contribute to building a lasting peace on the Korea Peninsula beyond merely building physical and economic linkage.

Deputy Minister Yun went on to note that various connectivity initiatives, which are currently being proposed, sometimes cause concerns, because they may involve security and geopolitical implications beyond economic aspects; whereas, the ROK government-led New Southern and Northern Policies have been well received by recipient countries. Against this backdrop, if ROK’s connectivity efforts are coordinated with the EU’s initiatives, they can serve as a catalyst for generating synergistic effects among a range of connectivity initiatives around the world. Deputy Minister Yun hoped that in that regard, the ROK would work closely together with the EU in order for the ROK-EU Connectivity cooperation, which has started last year, to produce more tangible and concrete achievements.

3. The participants in the panel discussion agreed on the need for vision and leadership in achieving sustainable, comprehensive and norm-based connectivity based on shared values and principles, beyond mere physical connectivity, and expressed high expectations for the EU’s connectivity initiatives in this regard.

4. Deputy Minister Yun’s attendance at the Forum is seen to have promoted the ROK government’s willingness to cooperate with the EU in contributing to boosting connectivity between the EU and Asia, and served as an opportunity to enhance public understanding of the ROK government’s major policies for stronger connectivity.

The ROK government will continue to seek ways to positively contribute to strengthening connectivity between the EU and Asia on the basis of close cooperation with the EU as well as various cooperation projects led by the ROK at the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) level.