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Joint Press Statement on the occasion of the official visit by the Foreign Minister of the Republic of Slovenia to the Republic of Korea

Date
2015-03-13
hit
6232

Joint Press Statement on the occasion of the official visit by the Foreign Minister of the Republic of Slovenia to the Republic of Korea

1. Upon the invitation of H.E. Yun Byung-se, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Korea, H.E. Karl Viktor Erjavec, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Slovenia paid an official visit to Seoul on 11-13 March 2015. The two Ministers had a meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea on 13 March 2015. Minister Erjavec also paid a courtesy call to the Speaker of the Korean National Assembly, who was accompanied by some members of the ROK-Slovenia Parliamentary Friendship Group, and visited a number of industrial facilities. The Minister was accompanied by a delegation from the automotive cluster who held meetings with main Korean companies from this sector and by representatives of Slovenian scientific community (National Institute of Biology, President of the Council for Science and Technology of the Republic of Slovenia).

2. The two Ministers expressed their satisfaction with the steady development of bilateral relations, which are founded upon mutual friendship, trust and common values. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties in 1992, the two countries have made progress in the areas of political dialogue, economic cooperation as well as cultural and people-to-people exchanges. Minister Yun welcomed Minister Erjavec’s visit to Korea as it was the first visit in ten years by a foreign minister of the Republic of Slovenia. The two Ministers shared the view that the visit will provide significant momentum in advancing bilateral ties.


3. The two Foreign Ministers agreed there is still untapped potential for cooperation on the economic level and welcomed the entry into force of the Economic Agreement in February 2015 which will be helpful in promoting exchanges of business people and mutual investment.

4. The two Ministers appreciated that the first Joint Economic Commission was held on the occasion of Minister Erjavec's visit. Both sides agreed that trade and investment between Korea and Slovenia, should continue to expand within the framework of the ROK-EU Free Trade Agreement, and that bilateral economic cooperation should be strengthened to cover other areas including the creative economy, science and technology (S&T), transport and logistics, information technology and tourism. In this regard, both sides welcomed the increasing cooperation of the Slovenian Port of Koper with Korean partners and stressed the importance of the Port of Koper as a convenient entry point to the markets of Central and South Eastern Europe.

5. Both sides agreed to work on the reinforcement of the legal basis for the cooperation. Therefore they will continue their efforts for an early Arrangement of the Mutual Recognition of Driving Licenses and for the conclusion of the Social Security Agreement.

6. The two Ministers welcomed the recent increase of people-to-people exchanges, taking note of the rising number of the Korean tourists to Slovenia and appreciating the heightened status of Korean studies as a major program at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia. Against this backdrop, they shared the view that the two sides will continue to exert their efforts to promote tourism and academic exchange between the two countries, including the promotion of Korean studies in Slovenia.

7. Both sides decided to strengthen their cooperation within the ROK-EU cooperative framework, as well as on the international front as reliable partners that share common values such as democracy and respect for human rights.

8. The Ministers expressed their satisfaction about the good cooperation in the framework of Slovenia based ITF Enhancing Human Security (ITF) and agreed to further cooperate in ITF activities with a view to promote human security.

9. Also, the two Ministers exchanged their views on relevant regional issues. They expressed their deep concern about North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs and reaffirmed their will to work together to promote improvements in human rights and the humanitarian situation in the DPRK based on their shared concern. Regarding the situation on the Korean peninsula and Northeast Asia, Minister Erjavec appreciated and supported the Korean government’s "Trust-building Process on the Korean Peninsula" and "the Initiative for Peaceful Unification on the Korean Peninsula" as well as "the Northeast Asia Peace and Cooperation Initiative (NAPCI)" aimed at bringing about the peaceful unification and realizing sustainable peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula, Northeast Asia and beyond. The two Ministers also exchanged their views about the current situation in Europe, including the Ukraine crisis and the situation in the Western Balkans.

Seoul, 13 March 2015  

* unofficial translation