‘Cooperation with African nations is no longer option, but necessity’

People watch a performance by Burundi performers during an African culture festival held at Gwanghwamun Square in central Seoul, May 12, in the run-up to the Korea-Africa Summit which will take place on June 4 and 5. Yonhap

African countries are no longer just recipients of foreign aid, but essential partners for Korea to realize its vision of becoming a global pivotal state, according to Deputy Minister for Political Affairs Chung Byung-won.”In the current pivotal moment in the international order characterized by multifaceted global crises and the growing influence of the Global South, cooperation with Africa is no longer an option but an imperative,” Chung said during a recent written interview with The Korea Times.”African countries are no longer merely recipients of aid. They are partners with whom we must collaborate for the future,” the deputy foreign minister added. Expanding on this idea, the Yoon Suk Yeol administration has significantly increased exchanges with African countries to a level never seen before.”Since taking office, President Yoon has held bilateral meetings with the leaders of five African countries — Central African Republic, Nigeria, Gabon, Kenya and Angola — during their visits to Korea, as well as meetings with the leaders of 11 African nations at various multilateral forums such as the G7, G20 meetings and at the U.N. General Assembly,” Chung said.The upcoming inaugural Korea-Africa summit will mark the pinnacle of this momentum, solidifying Korea’s partnership with African countries.

Scheduled for June 4 and 5 at KINTEX in Goyang, Gyeonggi Province, the summit will bring together delegates from more than 45 African nations, making it the largest multilateral gathering hosted by Korea under the Yoon government since its inauguration in May 2022.”This summit will serve as a significant turning point in establishing a long-term, sustainable partnership for mutual prosperity and coexistence between Korea and Africa. In particular, we aim to leverage the strengths of both sides to create synergies that foster joint growth and build a sustainable future together,” Chung said.He noted that the summit will elevate the dialogue between the two sides from the current ministerial level to the highest level.Under the overarching theme “The Future We Make Together: Shared Growth, Sustainability, and Solidarity,” the summit will offer leaders a platform to deliberate on concrete and achievable collaboration strategies across economic domains, sustainable approaches to global challenges, and initiatives for peace and security.The two-day event will also feature over a dozen sideline events covering various topics ranging from tourism, green climate, business, health, ICT, and infrastructure, agriculture, marine and fisheries and development cooperation.”Through the summit, the Korean government aims to expand tailored cooperation by pursuing the most suitable collaboration for each African country, taking into account Korea’s strengths and the 카지노사이트킹 diverse demands of each African nations,” Chung said.

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