India, South Korea agree to deepen economic, strategic partnership

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 11 Jul 2018 08:27:43



India and South Korea sign 11 agreements, including in the areas of trade, cultural and scientific and technological cooperation

IN BID to further boost their economic and political ties, India and South Korea agreed to upgrade
their Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) and strengthen the Special Strategic Partnership they share following delegation-level talks headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South Korean President Moon Jae-in here on Tuesday.

As part of Moon’s visit to India, his first since becoming President in May last year, India and South Korea signed 11 agreements, including in the areas of trade, cultural and scientific and technological cooperation.
“We have taken an important step in the form of an Early Harvest Package to further upgrade our Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement,” Modi said. “Keeping in view the future of our relationship and the rapid technology changes across the world, we have decided to set up an Innovation Cooperation Centre and form a Future Strategy Group,” he said.

Modi lauded Korean companies for not only investing in India but also creating employment opportunities under the Make in India initiative.

A joint declaration titled “A Vision for People, Prosperity, Peace and our Future” issued following Tuesday’s meeting said that noting the complementarities between India’s rapid economic growth and its highly-skilled workforce, and South Korea’s technological prowess, manufacturing excellence and developmental experience, both sides agreed to partner with each other to secure mutual economic growth and contribute to global economic development.

“India welcomed ROK’s (Republic of Korea’s or South Korea’s) willingness to partner in India’s flagship initiatives, including Make in India, Skill India, Digital India, Start-up India and Smart Cities,” the declaration said.
Following Tuesday’s talks, the two sides also decided to further strengthen their Special Strategic Partnership. The India-South Korea relationship was elevated to that of a Special Strategic Partnership during Modi’s visit to that country in 2015.

The Prime Minister also said that India’s Act East Policy that seeks to strengthen ties with South-East Asia has natural commonalities with President Moon’s New Southern Policy.
In his address to the media, Moon said that he is pressing ahead with the New Southern Policy that seeks to make India South Korea’s key partner for cooperation. Modi said that India is one of the stakeholders of the success of this as proliferation links between South Asia - a veiled reference to Pakistan - and Northeast Asia is a cause of concern for New Delhi.

Pakistan is known to have helped North Korea in its nuclear programme, a cause for global concern.
Moon also briefed Modi about his two meetings with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.