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Minister Logar visits Korea to strengthen cooperation and open an embassy

Foreign Minister Anže Logar concluded a two-day working visit to Korea today. He met with his host, Chung Eui-yong, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Korea. They advocated strengthening political and economic ties between the two countries, including the opening of the Slovenian Embassy in Seoul. Minister Logar also took the opportunity to present the priorities of Slovenia’s EU Council Presidency in the second half of this year and to exchange views on current international issues.

He told Minister Eui-yong about Slovenia’s interest in further strengthening political and economic ties with Korea, which is why a Slovenian Embassy will be opened in Seoul. He advocated enhanced investment cooperation between the two countries, expressing the hope that Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) will reopen its branch in Ljubljana.

Korea ranks among the most industrialised members of the G20 group, is one of the world’s most competitive economies and is considered the 10th largest economy in nominal gross domestic product and 14th in purchasing power. It is also one of the leading innovative countries in the world. This year is the seventh time it has been declared the most innovative country in the world, according to the Bloomberg Innovation Index, which was launched in 2012.”

The Foreign Ministers confirmed friendly relations between the two countries, which will celebrate the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations next year, and which share the same views on important issues within the international community. Minister Logar thanked his host for the successful cooperation within the framework of the ITF and other joint multilateral initiatives on human rights and the rule of law.

Minister Logar also briefed his counterpart on the priorities of the Slovenian EU Council Presidency, focusing on the strategic partnership between the EU and Korea, which is one of the Union’s four strategic partners in Asia. The EU’s first free trade agreement with an Asian state, which has been in force since 2011, has yielded numerous benefits over the last ten years and has undoubtedly helped mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on European economies. The Ministers also advocated cooperation between the EU and Korea on combating climate change and the green recovery.

They also exchanged views on the current situation on the Korean Peninsula, the Indo-Pacific region and the Western Balkans, which will be one of the foreign policy priorities of the Slovenian Presidency.

At the beginning of the meeting, Minister Eui-yong stressed that this was the first visit of an EU foreign minister to Korea since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, expressing confidence that today’s meeting would pave the way for closer relations between the two countries and intensified cooperation with the EU as a whole.

Minister Logar also met with the President of the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), President of the European Chamber of Commerce, representatives of the Korean Parliament and Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI), Head of the EU delegation and some of the resident ambassadors of the EU Member States. President of the Assembly of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia and Chairman of the Management Board of the Port of Koper Dimitrij Zadel, who is on a business trip to Seoul, also joined the Slovenian official delegation. The participants of the talks recognised the importance of the Port of Koper as an important entry point for exports of Korean companies to Central Europe.