South Korean President Begins Week-Long Tour of Central Asia

On Monday, South Korean President Yoon Seok-yeol started a week-long visit to Central Asia, where he plans to tour Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan.

The trip aims to strengthen cooperation between South Korea and the Central Asian region in sectors like minerals and other key industries.

The tour will last until June 15. President Yoon is accompanied by First Lady Kim Keon-hee and representatives from over 60 Korean companies. This is Yoon’s first international trip since his state visit to the Netherlands in December.

President Yoon’s first stop is in Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan, where he will meet with President Serdar Berdymukhamedov and participate in a memorandum of understanding signing ceremony. On Tuesday, he will travel to Astana, Kazakhstan, for a three-day visit. There, he will hold talks with Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to deepen the bilateral strategic partnership and meet with ethnic Koreans and South Korean citizens.

On Thursday, the president will head to Uzbekistan to meet with President Shavkat Mirziyoyev and participate in a bilateral business forum.

First Deputy National Security Advisor Kim Tae-hyo stated that the trip would create new business opportunities for South Korean companies in energy, critical minerals, infrastructure, and other sectors, as well as expand cooperation into new areas such as climate change response and technology.

During the tour, President Yoon plans to announce a new initiative called “K-Silk Road” to establish a new model of cooperation by connecting South Korea’s innovative capabilities with Central Asia’s rich resources and development potential.

The South Korean government also plans to host a summit next year involving the leaders of South Korea and all five Central Asian countries, including Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.



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