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State Secretary Dr Raščan in South Korea at the OECD-ASEAN Ministerial Conference

At the end of the second phase of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) regional programme for Southeast Asia, State Secretary Dr Stanislav Raščan participated in the Ministerial Conference of the OECD and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries in Seoul. On the margins of the meeting, he met with Yeo Seung-Bae, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea, Bui Thanh Son, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Vietnam, and the Special Envoy of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand and his Deputy Pornpimpol Kanchanalak.

At the OECD-ASEAN Ministerial Conference, State Secretary Dr Raščan spoke as a panellist in the debate on building ASEAN for an inclusive future. In his speech, he stressed that Slovenia attaches great importance to the partnership with the countries of Southeast Asia. The experience of the pandemic teaches us valuable lessons about interdependence and the importance of international cooperation. For this reason, the State Secretary presented Slovenia’s activities during the EU Council Presidency on strengthening resilience and the donation of vaccines and invited the countries of the region to participate in the work of the IRCAI International Research Centre on Artificial Intelligence, which is based in Slovenia.

State Secretary Dr Raščan held several bilateral talks on the margins of the meeting, including with Yeo Seung-Bae, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea. The two senior officials praised the good cooperation between the two countries, expressing their interest in further strengthening it, which will undoubtedly be facilitated by the opening of the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia in Seoul. Slovenia and South Korea are celebrating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations this year. On this occasion, State Secretary Dr Raščan expressed thanks for the recognition of Slovenia’s independence by South Korea on 15 April 1992. The State Secretary and the Deputy Minister agreed that there is great potential for enhancing cooperation between the two countries, particularly in the fields of the economy, science and technology. State Secretary Dr Raščan also stressed that Slovenia appreciates the long-standing successful cooperation with South Korea through the ITF Enhancing Human Security Foundation.

State Secretary Dr Raščan also met with Vietnam’s Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son and the Special Envoy of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Thailand and his Deputy Pornpimol Kanchanalak. The talks were centred on bilateral relations and opportunities to deepen economic cooperation.

State Secretary Dr Raščan also presented Slovenia’s candidacy for a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council for the 2024–2025 term.