With the ASEAN-ROK Commemorative Summit underway, the Smart City Fair took place on Nov. 25 in Busan.
The fair was held under the slogan “Smart Cities, Connecting Korea-ASEAN.” Minister of Land, Infrastructure and Transport Kim Hyun-mee as well as ministers and vice-ministers from 10 ASEAN member states held a ministerial meeting and toured the smart city exhibition.
During the tour, they stopped by booths of 10 ASEAN smart cities and learned about the present and future of these new living environments.
Reporter : Kim Minji
Editor : Choi Taesoon
By Lee Kyoung Mi and Lee Jihae
The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the world's largest free trade agreement, was ratified on Nov. 4 in Bangkok, Thailand, during the RCEP's third summit.
An agreement among Korea, China, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, India and the ten member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the RCEP was ratified by all of the aforementioned nations except India.
President Moon Jae-in said, "The ratification of this agreement has led to the beginning of the world's largest free trade agreement. I hope that we build one economic cooperation zone where we respect each other's varying levels of economic development, culture and diverse systems."
"Trade barriers will be lowered and the depth of exchanges and cooperation deepened."
The president added, "I hope we jointly overcome the global economic downturn and the value of free trade spreads further."
Leaders of the nations taking part in the summit emphasized the importance of the RCEP in the face of threats to the global economy such as protectionism, as the accord is based on free and liberal standards. They agreed to quickly settle negotiations on matters such as market opening and finalize the relevant accords by next year.
The heads of state also expressed intent to cooperate with India on relevant issues. New Delhi opted not to ratify the agreement citing its chronic trade deficit.
By Hyunjin Choi
The joint declaration was made at the Telecommunication and Information Technology Ministers Meeting (TELMIN) outlining a mutual commitment to facilitate digital ecosystem especially in 5G and AI area between the 10-member ASEAN and South Korea.
Under the theme of “Smart Connectivity for ASEAN Digital Transformation,” ICT ministers convened in the Laotian capital of Vientiane last week to promote digital innovation throughout the ASEAN regions including Brunei, Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam as well as South Korea.
Korea and ASEAN agreed to conduct diverse consulting projects and cooperate in 5G communication networks and AI fields to maximize the benefits and development of the new technology. They reached an agreement to form a united community pledging to implement Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity (MPAC) and Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs).
Newly inaugurated Science and ICT Minister in South Korea, Choi Ki-young attended and stated that Korea will share its know-how in 5G, AI, and ICT fields with ASEAN partners as a global leader in the 5G sector.
“Though this opportunity, continued cooperation will help to build advanced digital ecosystem,” said Korean science minister, Choi Ki-Young. The ministers from Malaysia, Thailand, and Brunei expressed gratitude for support from the Korean government as to major ICT policies on 5G and AI.
Ahead of the joint declaration in TELMIN in Vientiane, Born2Global Centre(Chief Executive Director Jongkap Kim) under the Ministry of Science and ICT already set foot in the cooperative move for ICT field between Korea and ASEAN nations. It held “ASEAN-Korea ICT Partnership Platform 2019” on August 18th and 19th in Pangyo Startup Campus co-hosting with Seongnam industry promotion agency. The platform was prepared for both ASEAN major telecoms and Korean tech startups to develop the new business model cooperatively by expanding global networks. Over 50 leading Korean tech startups and 9 ASEAN telecommunication participated in the partnership platform and conducted over 120 business meetings, producing tangible business results.
By Kim Hwaya
The special summit between Korea and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) slated for Nov. 25-26 in Busan will feature talks on strengthening the free trade order and deepening bilateral cooperation.
Joo Hyung-chul, economic adviser to President Moon Jae-in, on Aug. 18 told a news conference at Cheong Wa Dae, "Given heightened trade tensions between major economies, Korea and ASEAN member nations will discuss ways to enhance the free trade order and expand commerce and open markets."
On if the summit will deal with Japan's export restrictions on Korea, he said, "Korea and ASEAN stress the importance of an open and free trade system," adding, "But with 100 days left until the summit, the government's position is that Japan should come to the dialogue table for an amicable resolution."
In addition, more than 20 side events will be held across the country. Before the summit starts, chartered trains taking Korean and ASEAN youths will run from Seoul to the Demilitarized Zone via Busan and Gwangju. During the summit period, the Business and Startup EXPO, the Exhibition on Smart City and an international forum on Hallyu innovation are scheduled.
Busan on Nov. 27 will also host the first Korea-Mekong summit.
Korea is hosting the ASEAN summit for the third time, following the first in 2009 and second in 2014. As the biggest international conference hosted by the country under the Moon administration, the event is expected to draw an attendance of about 10,000 including ASEAN heads of state and business delegations.
By Park Gil-ja and Lee Hana
President Moon Jae-in and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen on March 15 agreed to expand bilateral economic cooperation in areas such as finance, infrastructure and agriculture.
In their summit held at the prime minister's office in Phnom Penh, the president said, "As one of our major partners in development cooperation, Cambodia is also an important ally in implementing Korea's New Southern Policy. I hope that our countries will continue working together to bring a prosperous future to both of our nations."
Hun Sen added, "Thanks to your visit, our relations have already been strengthened, and I look forward to elevating our relations to the level of a strategic partnership."
The two leaders also said the 200 Korean companies operating in Cambodia are playing an instrumental role in stimulating the growth of both economies, and pledged to sign an agreement banning double taxation so that corporations from both sides can conduct business more freely.
Also discussing an agricultural distribution center opened in February this year with funding from both countries, both sides looked to continue expanding agricultural cooperation.
In the financial sector, Korea agreed to set up a national payment system with official development assistance (ODA) funding. The two countries will also expand financial cooperation in the private sector.
In addition to discussing the upcoming Korea-ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) special conference to mark 30 years of diplomatic relations between Korea and ASEAN member nations, both leaders agreed to work closely for the success of the inaugural Korea-Mekong summit to be held on the sidelines of the conference.
Finally, President Moon hailed the signing of a bilateral treaty on mutual legal assistance in criminal matters, saying he hopes this results in more visitor traffic between Korea and Cambodia through safer travel.