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Korea-Russian Far East and Siberia Sub-committee Holds its 13th Meeting

  • Date : 2019-12-12 09:55:08
  • Hit : 433

1. Deputy Minister for Political Affairs Kim Gunn, together with Deputy Minister for the Development of the Russian Far East and Arctic Alexander Krutikov, held the 13th meeting of the Korea-Russian Far East and Siberia Sub-committee in Seoul on December 12. In the meeting, the two sides discussed cooperation in the Far East in health and medical care, shipbuilding and energy, transportation and logistics, and agriculture and fisheries, as well as cooperation in people-to-people exchanges and between provincial governments.


2. The two sides welcomed the expansion of trade and people-to-people exchanges between Korea and the Russian Far East, as seen from the fact that Korea has become the Russian Far East’s biggest trading partner with bilateral trade volume amounting to 8.1 billion USD this year (from January to September), and that the number of Koreans visiting Primorsky Krai has increased from about 30,000 in 2015 to a whopping 250,000 this year (from January to September).


o Deputy Minister Krutikov said that despite this progress in trade and people-to-people exchanges in the Far East, there is potential for further increase in Korean companies’ investment in the region, and expressed hope for Korean companies’ participation in projects in the Far East that the Russian side is taking interest in.


o Deputy Minister Kim took note of the Russian government’s active investment policies with the aim to develop the Far East, including the Advanced Special Economic Zone and the Free Port of Vladivostok. He also noted high-level Russian officials’ attention and support to resolve the difficulties facing the Korean companies, including holding the Korean Investors Day. He went on to stress the importance of making continued efforts to improve the investment environment and creating successful cases of the existing companies in Russia.


3. The two sides agreed to work together to expand Korean companies’ investment in the Far East and to discover representative cooperation projects between the two countries. Especially, they agreed to build successful cases with a focus on projects expected to make tangible progress, including the project to establish an industrial complex in Primorsky Krai, and Korean medical institutions’ inroads into the international healthcare zone in the Far East.


o The two sides expressed expectation that the project to build an industrial complex in Primorsky Krai would become a representative project of bilateral cooperation in the Far East. Deputy Minister Kim asked the Russian side to pay attention and provide support until the project is in full gear, as the Russian government’s cooperation is essential in pursuing the project.


o The two sides also expected that when the international healthcare zone is established in the Far East, Korean medical institutions would be able to make inroads into the zone and contribute to improving the quality of life for residents.


4. Furthermore, the two sides noted that the Korea-Russia Interregional Cooperation Forum, which took place in Pohang in September 2018 and in Vladivostok in September 2019, had established itself as a platform for cooperation to step up exchanges between provincial governments of the Russian Far East and metropolitan governments of Korea in a range of areas, including economy, trade, education and culture.


o Deputy Minister Kim voiced hope that the Interregional Cooperation Forum to be held in Ulsan in 2020 would be jointly organized with the commemorative events for the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Korea and Russia, offering a good opportunity to facilitate exchanges between the private sectors of Korea and the Russian Far East and provincial governments of the two sides.


5. The 13th meeting of the Korea-Russian Far East and Siberia Sub-committee served as an opportunity to discuss concrete ways to strengthen cooperation in the Far East, a key cooperation partner in Korea’s New Northern Policy, ahead of 2020, which marks the 30th anniversary of diplomatic ties between Korea and Russia.