- Korea-SICA Cooperation Fund re-financed in 11 years to strengthen cooperation between Korea and Central America –
1. Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Choi Jong Kun held a meeting with ambassadors of Central American countries to Korea on the afternoon of January 19, as his first diplomatic schedule with the diplomatic corps in Korea this year. They exchanged views on ways to strengthen exchanges and substantive cooperation between Korea and Central American countries, which celebrate this year, the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.
※ Participants : Ambassadors of Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Panama, and Costa Rica, and minister-counselor of El Salvador
2. In particular, Vice Minister Choi announced that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs re-financed the ‘Korea-SICA Cooperation Fund ($1.5 million)’for the first time in 11 years as a follow-up to last year’s Korea-SICA Summit and will carry out cooperation projects with Central American countries in the areas of food security, disaster management, and public health.
* SICA (Sistema de la Integración Centroamericana) : SICA, comprised of eight Central American countries, is a regional organization launched in 1991 with the goal of integrating and developing Central America. / Korea joined it as a non-regional observer in 2012.
** Status of re-financing the Korea-SICA Cooperation Fund
- An arrangement to establish the Korea-SICA Cooperation Fund was signed in 2002. Korea contributed a total of $940,000 between 2002 and 2010.
- Announcement of the plan to re-finance the Fund at the 4th Korea-SICA Summit (25 June 2021) → Securing $1.5 million this year
3. This meeting reaffirmed the Korean government’s will to further strengthen exchanges and cooperation with the Central American region, which is becoming increasingly important with the diversification of Korea’s diplomacy and the reshaping of the global supply chains, and served as an opportunity to communicate with the ambassadors of Central American countries to Korea to discuss ways to promote substantive cooperation.