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KOR

Press Releases

1st ROK-Federal Republic of Germany Meeting of Directors-General for Regional Affairs Takes Place

Date
2019-01-15
hit
5856

1. The 1st Republic of Korea-Federal Republic of Germany meeting of directors-general for regional affairs took place at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Seoul on January 15. In the meeting, the two sides noted the progress in the ROK-Germany relations, and engaged in a broad exchange of views on ways to increase substantive cooperation in trade and investment, as well as regional situations.

 

o The ROK-Germany meeting of directors-general for regional affairs has been created in accordance with the agreement reached at the 1st ROK-Germany Foreign Ministerial Strategic Dialogue in July last year. The ROK and German delegations to the meeting were led by Director-General for European Affairs of the Foreign Ministry Jung Ki-hong and Deputy Director General for East Asia, South East Asia and Pacific Petra Sigmund, respectively.

 

2. The two sides took note that the ROK and Germany, marking the 136th anniversary of diplomatic relations this year, had been maintaining best relations, sharing belief in the world order based on democracy, free trade and multilateralism.

 

o In particular, citing President Steinmeier’s visit to the ROK in February last year, followed by the ROK-Germany summit held on the sidelines of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in October, the two sides agreed to continue robust high-level exchanges, including exchanges between the leaders of the two countries.

 

o They also agreed to facilitate regular consultations between the two countries at each level in each area, including the newly-created ROK-Germany meeting of directors-general for regional affairs.

 

3. The two sides welcomed the mutually-beneficial trade and investment relations that the two countries are maintaining based on the ROK-EU FTA, and said that it was a representative case showing the excellence of free trade and an open economy amid the recent rise in protectionism.

 

o They also agreed to continue to expand trade and investment between the two countries, and to strengthen cooperation in responding to the Fourth Industrial Revolution and providing vocational education for youth.

 

o While expressing concerns over the European Union’s notification to the World Trade Organization (WTO) of its intent to impose definitive safeguard measures on certain steel products, Director-General Jung requested that the German side support the ROK’s position in order to maintain the mutually-beneficial flow of trade between the ROK and the EU.

 

4. Director-General Jung shared the latest progress in inter-Korean relations, and took note of Germany’s consistent support for the ROK government’s North Korea policy. He also asked for continued cooperation from Germany, a non-permanent member of the Security Council.

 

5. Regarding the joint Korean team competing at the Men's Handball World Championship (January 10-28) currently underway in Berlin, Director-General Jung conveyed Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha’s sincere appreciation to Foreign Minister Maas of Germany, the co-host of the championship, for saying in his statement that the joint Korean team was sending a “strong signal for peace and reconciliation.”

 

o Deputy Director General Sigmund took note of the ROK government’s efforts to make progress in the situation on the Korean Peninsula, and stressed that Germany, as a country which shares the experience of division, would continue to play constructive roles in establishing peace on the Korean Peninsula.

 

6. Besides, the two sides engaged in a broad exchange of views on possible responses when Brexit happens; the recent situations in Europe, including Germany and France; ways to work together at ASEM; and the EU’s Euro-Asian connectivity strategy.

 

 

* unofficial translation