Seoul's trade chief in Europe for economic ties, Expo bid support
SEOUL, Oct. 26 (Yonhap) -- South Korea and Hungary have agreed to push for the signing of a new framework meant to promote bilateral trade and investment, Seoul's trade ministry said Wednesday.
The agreement was reached during a meeting between South Korean Trade Minister Ahn Duk-geun and Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto on Monday. Ahn visited Budapest as the first stop of his weeklong three-nation trip to Europe as a special envoy of President Yoon Suk-yeol, according the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.
During the meeting, the two sides vowed to work on the establishment of the framework as part of effort to enhance bilateral investment and cooperation in digital and clean energy fields and to jointly ensure stable supply chains.
Ahn also asked for Hungary's support for South Korean firms operating there, facing difficulties over high energy prices in Europe, the ministry said.
Ahn expressed gratitude for Hungary's backing for Seoul's bid to host the 2030 World Expo. Hungary is the first European nation that officially expressed support for Seoul's effort, it added.
On Wednesday, Ahn is scheduled to visit Lithuania and meet with economy minister Ausrine Armonaite to sign a memorandum of understanding on bilateral industrial and trade cooperation, and discuss ways to promote investment and corporate ties in bio, laser and other advanced fields, according to the ministry.
During a planned meeting with Government Chancellor Giedre Balcytyte, Ahn will deliver Yoon's letter seeking the nation's support for Seoul's Expo bid.
Ahn will then visit the Czech Republic on Thursday as the final leg of his trip, where he plans to meet with the country's Prime Minister Petr Fiala to discuss ways to deepen relations in such sectors as electric vehicles and nuclear power generation, the ministry said.
He is also scheduled to join some 40 ambassadors to Prague from around the world at the ceremony marking the opening of a new Korean embassy building there, and to use his speech as a chance to stress Seoul's commitment to winning the contract for the Czech Republic's Dukovany nuclear reactor construction project, it added.
Ahn will return home on Friday.
"Throughout the visits, Ahn will stress South Korea's capabilities and strong will to successfully host the 2030 Busan Expo, and ask for the nations' support," the ministry said in a release.
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