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S.Korean president’s visit establishes new milestone in Vietnam-South Korea relations

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong expressed his confidence that the relationship between Vietnam and South Korea will further flourish during his meeting with President Yoon Suk Yeol on June 23.

Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong warmly welcomed President Yoon and his spouse to Vietnam, following the upgrade of the bilateral relationship to a comprehensive strategic partnership in late 2022.

General Secretary Trong emphasized that the two countries’ relations have been strengthened and developed over the years and expressed his hope for further promotion of mutual benefits. He suggested both sides continue enhancing mutual understanding and political trust through regular exchanges and contacts at all levels.

President Yoon acknowledged Vietnam’s significant role as a key cooperation partner of South Korea in Asia over the past three decades. He expressed his belief that this visit will mark a new beginning for the next three decades of the South Korea-Vietnam relationship.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (R) meets with President Yoon Suk Yeol – PHOTO: VNA

In a meeting at the Government Office in Hanoi, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh praised President Yoon Suk Yeol’s visit as a demonstration of the South Korean leader’s appreciation for the bilateral relationship, particularly after the upgrade to a comprehensive strategic partnership in late 2022.

PM Chinh proposed effective implementation of the Vietnam-South Korea Free Trade Agreement (VKFTA) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) to achieve the goal of raising bilateral trade revenue to US$100 billion in the near future and US$150 billion by 2030 in a balanced and sustainable manner.

The Prime Minister also suggested that South Korea open its market further for Vietnam’s key products such as agro-fishery goods and seasonal fruits. He encouraged Korean businesses to expand their investments in Vietnam and for Vietnamese enterprises to participate more deeply in the global supply chains of Korean companies.

In response, President Yoon assured that the Government of South Korea will continue to encourage and facilitate local enterprises to invest in Vietnam. He proposed strengthening cooperation between the two countries in the defense industry and sought Vietnam’s further support for Korean businesses in Vietnam.

NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue (R) welcomes President Yoon Suk Yeol at the National Assembly Office – PHOTO: VNA

National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue met President Yoon in Hanoi, where he appreciated the cooperation between the two countries in the economy, trade, and investment sectors. Chairman Hue suggested further enhancing trade facilitation and promoting bilateral trade towards balance and sustainability.

President Yoon highlighted the importance of the two legislative bodies in creating a favorable legal environment for the development of bilateral relations and cooperation in various sectors.

President Yoon and his spouse commenced their three-day state visit to Vietnam at the invitation of President Vo Van Thuong from June 22-24.

Vietnam and South Korea established diplomatic ties on December 22, 1992, and upgraded their relationship to a strategic cooperative partnership in 2009.

South Korea is one of Vietnam’s most important partners, ranking first in investment, second in official development assistance, and third in trading. Two-way trade reached US$87 billion last year, representing an 11.4% increase from 2021.

As of April 2023, South Korea had over active investment projects in Vietnam with total pledged capital of US$82 billion.

South Korea is also Vietnam’s second-largest labor export market after Taiwan, with approximately 48,000 Vietnamese workers employed in the country.

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