The President of the Government of Spain meets with the President of the Republic of Korea

Sánchez underlined Spain's interest in deepening excellent economic and trade relations with South Korea to Moon Jae-in

Moncloa Palace, Madrid, Wednesday 16 June 2021

The president highlighted the great opportunities for economic, trade and investment collaboration between Spain and the Republic of Korea, "two countries with a strong and competitive business fabric, which have committed to the green and circular economy as the cornerstones of economic recovery and sustainable growth".

During the meeting, Sánchez and Moon Jae-in agreed on the vision of how to face the great global challenges: with renewable energies, technological innovation, the digitalisation of the economy, and protecting the planet. Korea is one of the countries committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050, a goal it shares with Spain.

Both presidents, who have developed an agenda with a strong economic character, inaugurated a Spanish-South Korean business forum focused on opportunities for bilateral cooperation in the green and digital economy.

In fact, the green and digital economy are two of the axes of the Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan that the European Commission is approving today, which will involve up to 140 billion euros in transfers and loans. The Plan, Sánchez pointed out, "will allow sustained, long-term economic growth, which is essential for the creation of quality employment".

Sánchez stressed that the success of the Plan also depends on achieving an optimal collaboration of public and private capital and attracting top-level investors. In this sense, the head of the Executive confirmed Spain's interest in "Korea accompanying us in this economic transformation".

The two leaders also discussed EU-Republic of Korea relations, reinforced multilateralism, the pandemic, 5G, electric cars and Spain's interest in promoting knowledge of Spanish in Korea. Sánchez highlighted the deep ties between the two countries, reinforced by exchanges in many areas: scientific, cultural, linguistic, tourism and gastronomy, "which have forged and strengthen the bonds of friendship between the two societies".

Moon Jae-in's state visit, the first to Spain since the beginning of the pandemic, takes place within the framework of the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations being established between the two countries, which was celebrated in 2020.

Two partnership agreements and five MoU

Foto: Pool Moncloa/Fernando CalvoSpain and the Republic of Korea have expressed their interest in further strengthening their bilateral relations in a Joint Declaration for a Strategic Partnership. The text includes issues of politics and diplomacy; multilateral cooperation; science, technology and innovation; peace and international security; economy; culture; education; sport and tourism. This interest has been realised through the signing of two partnership agreements and five Memoranda of Understanding (MoU).

The agreement on customs matters includes collaboration to facilitate the movement of goods and ensure the application of legislation; and to prevent, investigate and combat possible infringements. The cooperation agreement in the field of public health and disease prevention and response includes the implementation of the International Health Regulations, with a special focus on the "disproportionate" impact of diseases on minorities and socially vulnerable people.

The MoU on SMEs, startups and innovation aims to promote innovation and creativity and help entrepreneurs to internationalise their SMEs. The memorandum on Industry 4.0. proposes cooperation between the two countries and exploring new opportunities in this regard. To combat climate change, one of the texts proposes cooperation on clean energy, energy efficiency and hydrogen and energy storage. Another document seeks to promote tourism between the two countries and facilitate the exchange of experiences and human resources. An MoU between the Spanish CDTI and the Korea Institute for Energy Technology Assessment and Planning has also been renewed.

Non official translation