1. Minister of Foreign Affairs Kang, Kyung-wha spoke over the phone with Minister of Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility of the Republic of Ecuador Luis Gallegos Chiriboga on the morning of September 24 (Korea Standard Time) at the latter’s request, and exchanged views on bilateral cooperation in responding to COVID-19 as well as ways to work together on the global stage, including the selection of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Director-General.
2. Minister Kang said that she was sorry that COVID-19 was continuing to spread in Latin America and in particular, a large number of people had been infected and died in Ecuador, and went on to express hope that Ecuador would overcome COVID-19 as soon as possible.
o In addition, Minister Kang said that the Republic of Korea, in the spirit of solidarity and cooperation, will continue to share its experiences and knowledge accumulated in the process of controlling and preventing COVID-19 with the international community, including Ecuador, and to do so, the ROK is also participating actively in the international community’s efforts towards equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.
3. Minister Gallegos commended the ROK government’s commitment to continue cooperation with the international community on COVID-19 response, and expressed deep appreciation to the ROK government on behalf of the Ecuadorian people for providing various support, including testing kits and a variety of humanitarian goods as well as experience in disease prevention and control, to help Ecuador overcome COVID-19.
4. Minister Kang noted with appreciation that the ROK and Ecuador have closely cooperated on the global stage, including by supporting each other. She said that Minister for Trade Yoo Myung-hee, a candidate for the WTO Director-General, passed the first round of voting, securing even support from different regions, and asked for Ecuador’s support in the next rounds of voting.
o Minister Gallegos hoped that the two countries will continue cooperation in the international arena, and regarding the selection of the WTO Director-General, he praised Minister Yoo’s outstanding experience and expertise.
5. Minister Kang took note that since then Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon’s official visit to Ecuador in May last year, the two countries have been actively carrying out substantive cooperation projects in a range of areas, ranging from infrastructure, including the Korea Airports Corporation’s Manta Airport operation project, to the defense industry, culture, and development cooperation.
o Minister Gallegos shared Minister Kang’s view, and expressed hope that in follow-up to former Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon’s official visit to Ecuador, the two countries would expand bilateral exchanges and cooperation, including holding Guayasamín’s exhibition in the ROK.
phone conversation between the Foreign Ministers of the two countries is seen
to have served as an opportunity to confirm that the ROK government’s
humanitarian assistance is contributing to Ecuador’s efforts to overcome the
COVID-19 crisis, and to strengthen the two countries’ commitment to work
together on the bilateral and multilateral levels post COVID-19.