The Korea Herald


Korea, Vietnam target $150b in trade volume by 2030

Yoon pledges to provide $4b in concessional loan to Vietnam

By Shin Ji-hye

Published : June 23, 2023 - 15:36

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President Yoon Suk Yeol and Vietnamese President Vo Van Thuong shake hands at the press conference following their summit on Friday in Hanoi, Vietnam. (Yonhap) President Yoon Suk Yeol and Vietnamese President Vo Van Thuong shake hands at the press conference following their summit on Friday in Hanoi, Vietnam. (Yonhap)

President Yoon Suk Yeol and his Vietnamese counterpart, Vo Van Thuong, agreed to strengthen economic and security ties Friday, with the two nations aiming to achieve a trade volume goal of $150 billion by 2030, during a bilateral summit in Hanoi.

On his second day in Vietnam, Yoon met Thuong at the Presidential Palace of Hanoi, following his morning visit to the tomb of former President Ho Chi Minh.

In his opening remarks during the summit, Yoon expressed his anticipation of forging a "brighter and more dynamic future" for the two countries in the coming 30 years, highlighting the upgraded bilateral relationship to a comprehensive strategic partnership commemorating the 30th anniversary of diplomatic ties last year.

Yoon emphasized the increasing significance of cooperation between the two nations, stating that it was "more important than ever" given the current severe international situation and complex global crisis.

“We look forward to discussing concrete and practical cooperation with President Thuong for a free, peaceful and prosperous Indo-Pacific region,” he said.

Thuong said that Vietnam considered Korea as "an important country" in terms of economic and social development projects, as well as foreign policy priorities. He further expressed the shared intention of Vietnam and Korea to foster a comprehensive strategic partnership in a practical, effective and long-term manner.

At a press conference following the summit, the two leaders said they agreed to enhance and expedite their economic cooperation in order to achieve the target of $150 billion in trade volume by 2030.

They pledged to strengthen collaboration in mineral supply chains, recognizing that there was great potential for cooperation in relation to the development of rare earths in Vietnam. They also agreed to explore ways to cooperate in the field of liquefied natural gas power generation, hydrogen production, smart cities and climate change response.

Through the joint statement released after the summit, Yoon committed to providing a total of $4 billion in concessional loans by 2030.

Specifically, South Korea plans to expand and renew the support limit for the Economic Development Cooperation Fund from the current $1.5 billion to $2 billion, and provide the Economic Development Promotion Facility worth $2 billion over the next seven years.

The Korean government will also allocate a grant of $200 million from 2024 to 2027 in diverse areas such as environment, climate change response, health, education and digital transformation.

The two countries agreed to strengthen strategic cooperation in the field of foreign affairs and security.

The leaders agreed to establish annual meetings between their respective foreign ministries as part of efforts to enhance strategic communication, following the previous agreement to hold regular meetings between the defense ministers in March.

The Korean government vowed to actively support Vietnam in strengthening its maritime security capabilities through an agreement signed between the Korea Coast Guard and the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security on the day.