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Pres. Yoon meets with several European heads of state

Posted July. 13, 2023 07:54,   

Updated July. 13, 2023 07:54


During his visit to Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, prior to the NATO summit, President Yoon Suk Yeol engaged in a series of consecutive bilateral summits with the leaders of 13 countries as part of his “sales diplomacy” efforts. The primary objective was to diversify the global supply chain.

President Yoon held meetings with several European heads of state, including Hungary, the Netherlands, Romania, Sweden, and Finland, on Tuesday and Wednesday. During the summit with Prime Minister Viktor Orban of Hungary on Tuesday, President Yoon emphasized the potential for collaboration between the two countries. He highlighted Hungary’s strengths in natural science and South Korea’s competitive edge in manufacturing and information and communication technology (ICT). President Yoon encouraged Hungary to partner with South Korea in research and development (R&D) initiatives, specifically in biology, as well as nuclear power technology, such as small modular reactors. South Korea is currently the largest investor in Hungary.

President Yoon had a luncheon and bilateral summit with Prime Minister Mark Rutte of the Netherlands. During this meeting, the two leaders reached an agreement to strengthen substantial cooperation in artificial intelligence and semiconductors. According to the South Korean presidential office, they discussed the importance of close collaboration in the semiconductor sector. They expressed a shared commitment to reinforcing and expanding bilateral cooperation to enhance the stability of the global semiconductor supply chain. The Netherlands is home to ASML, the world’s leading semiconductor industry supplier.

During a meeting between President Klaus Iohannis of Romania and President Yoon, the two leaders discussed potential areas of collaboration, including nuclear power, port construction, and the defense industry. In another summit with Sweden’s Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson, President Yoon explored ways to establish a crucial supply chain related to batteries and rare-earth elements.

Deputy Director of the Office of National Security Kim Tae-hyo explained in a local briefing that while the summit has emphasized Western Europe and America Continent so far, President Yoon’s visit to Europe this time focused on cooperating with many Northern European countries in the fields of the global supply chain. “Countries in Eastern Europe have strong and sound science and technology fundamentals and great potential. Cooperation with these countries is strategically complementary to Korea’s economic and security cooperation with Western European countries,” Kim said.