1. On the occasion of his participation in the 14th Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum held in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, Minister of Foreign Affairs Chung Eui-yong had a series of bilateral meetings with the Foreign Ministers of Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Turkmenistan and the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan on November 29-30, and had a broad exchange of views on bilateral issues and matters of mutual interest.
※ Heads of delegations of Central Asian countries
- Tajikistan: Foreign Minister Sirojiddin MUHRIDDIN
- Uzbekistan: Foreign Minister Abdulaziz KAMILOV
- Turkmenistan: Foreign Minister Rashid MEREDOV
- Kyrgyzstan: Foreign Minister Ruslan KAZAKBAYEV
- Kazakhstan: Deputy Foreign Minister Marat SYZDYKOV
2. Foreign Minister Chung expressed hope to deepen and expand substantive cooperation with Central Asian countries by continuing to pursue the New Northern Policy, which aims to create new growth engines through economic cooperation and promote peace and co-prosperity of the Eurasian continent. The Central Asian side hoped to achieve mutually-beneficial development through a harmonious nexus between Korea’s New Northern Policy and national development strategies of Central Asian countries.
o Foreign Minister Chung and the heads of delegations of the five Central Asian countries agreed to work together to expand people-to-people exchanges and create a new turning point in the development of bilateral relations through a variety of events to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations next year.
o Foreign Minister Chung requested continued interest and cooperation of each Central Asian country to advance the Korean Peninsula peace process, and the five Central Asian countries reaffirmed their support for the Korean government’s efforts to resume the Korean Peninsula peace process.
3. The Foreign Ministers of Korea and Tajikistan welcomed that the Korean Embassy was established in Tajikistan this year following the opening of the Tajik Embassy in Korea in 2015, thereby completing diplomatic infrastructure for closer communication between the two countries.
o In addition, the two Foreign Ministers shared the view that climate change as well as the health and disease crisis triggered by COVID-19 is emerging as a new security issue of the international community, and agreed to work closely together in responding to such new issues.
4. The Foreign Ministers of Korea and Uzbekistan agreed to further deepen the special strategic partnership between the two countries including by continuing high-level exchanges and concluding agreements on trade and public health.
o Foreign Minister Chung requested Uzbekistan’s support for Korea’s bid to host the World Expo 2030, and Foreign Minister Kamilov showed interest in Korea’s efforts to host the World Expo.
5. The Foreign Ministers of Korea and Turkmenistan noted that President Moon Jae-in’s visit to Turkmenistan in April 2019 and the phone call between the leaders of the two countries last year served as an opportunity to further strengthen bilateral relations.
o Foreign Minister Chung expressed hope that Korean companies will participate in energy and public information infrastructure projects in Turkmenistan, thereby contributing to the country’s economic growth. Foreign Minister Meredov welcomed Korean companies’ investments and hoped to facilitate exchanges in culture, humanities and sports.
6. The Foreign Ministers of Korea and Kyrgyzstan appreciated that the two countries have discussed bilateral economic issues and promoted substantive cooperation through the bilateral joint economic committee meeting that has continued to be held since 2012.
o Particularly, the two Foreign Ministers agreed to work closely together to pursue cooperation in development cooperation, investment, agriculture and the digital sector that was discussed at the 4th meeting of the joint economic committee last month.
o Foreign Minister Chung said that the Korean government newly designated Kyrgyzstan as its key ODA partner this year and will diversify the areas of development cooperation and expand its support. Foreign Minister Kazakbayev highly appreciated the accomplishments in bilateral economic cooperation through ODA and hoped to continue such cooperation.
7. Foreign Minister Chung and Deputy Foreign Minister of Kazakhstan Syzdykov noted with appreciation that bilateral trade and investment are keeping upward trend despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Deputy Foreign Minister Syzdykov hoped that the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) and the Kazakhstan Agency for International Development (KazAID) will work together to pursue joint development cooperation projects in Central Asia and other regions.
8. Foreign Minister Chung’s participation in the 14th Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum and bilateral meetings with the Foreign Ministers of the five Central Asian countries, which came after the Korea-Uzbekistan virtual summit in January, the mutual visits by the Korean and Russian Foreign Ministers in March and October, and the Kazakh President’s visit to Korea in August this year, served as an opportunity to discuss with the Foreign Ministers of the five Central Asian countries the achievements of the New Northern Policy and its way forward as well as concrete ways of cooperation to strengthen diplomacy with Central Asian countries, which mark the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations next year.