(via Video-Conference), 9 September 2020


ASEAN  –  Korean  Strategic  Partnership  has  been  exemplary  throughout this pandemic.

It has shown how  mutually beneficial cooperation  can  address  this  crisis together…

especially  at a time  where declining trust and narrow nationalism is on the rise.
And going forward…  our partnership  must  move  beyond  addressing  the pandemic… and head towards:

Building regional health resilience; and
Expediting economic recovery
In this regard… I’d like to address two points

FIRST… on building regional halth resillience.

A  strong  national  health  resilience  will  support  a  solid  regional  health resilience.

In this context… I welcome ROK's proposal to collaborate with ASEAN on Building  a  Resilient  Health  System  and  a  Sustainable  Universal  Health Coverage.

Simultaneously…  our  collaboration  should  also  focus  on  developing national health industries to promote self-reliance.

Including initiatives on joint research and development.
SECOND… on collective economic recovery efforts

I  welcome  ROK’s  joint  initiative  with  ASEAN  to  bolster  economic connectivity in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

And this initiative needs to be followed-up by concrete measures including by….

Implementing  economic  integration mechanisms…  among  others  the ASEAN-ROK FTA and RCEP;
Preparing MSMEs for digitalisation and e-commerce;
Bolstering  creative  economy  cooperation..  including  ones  utilizing digital technologies
In  closing…  allow  me  to  underline  the  importance  of  safe  and  stable region… including in the Korean Peninsula.

Such  condusive  environment  will  enable  efforts  to  promote  meaningful progress  in  realizing  our  commitments  to  tackle  Covid19  and  expedite economic recovery.

I Thank you.