From January 16 to January 17, 2023, Shri Saurabh Kumar, Secretary (East) of the Ministry of External Affairs at the Government of India, traveled to the Republic of Korea (ROK) to co-chair the Fifth Foreign Policy and Security Dialogue (FPSD) with his ROK counterpart, H. E. Mr. Cho Hyundong, First Vice Foreign Minister.
As the two nations celebrate 50 years of establishing diplomatic relations this year, both sides agreed to strengthen strategic communication during the FPSD, including the Foreign Minister-level Joint Commission Meeting, the “2+2” dialogue between the foreign ministry and defense ministry at the Vice Minister/Secretary level, as well as other ministerial and senior official dialogues.
In areas like trade and investment, security and defense, science and technology, as well as cultural and people-to-people exchanges, both sides agreed to increase cooperation. The opportunities India provides to Korean businesses for investments in manufacturing, infrastructure, and other sectors were disclosed to the Korean side by Secretary (East). To improve the resilience and strength of global supply chains, the two sides agreed to work together. Additionally, they pointed out that bilateral trade had reached an all-time high of roughly USD 28 billion. and decided to take action to realize the goal of increasing it to USD 50 billion by 2030. Opportunities for collaboration in cutting-edge technologies were also discussed by both sides.
The FPSD offered a chance to discuss regional and international issues, such as the situation in the Indo-Pacific region and the Korean Peninsula. The two sides agreed that ROK’s recently unveiled Indo-Pacific Strategy offers a chance to strengthen bilateral ties and expand it to new regions. They also talked about multilateral fora cooperation. The ROK side was informed by Secretary (East) of India’s priorities during the G20 presidency. The latter acknowledged India’s efforts and pledged to back the G20 with full support.
Representative Kim Tae Ho, head of the ROK National Assembly’s Foreign Affairs and Unification Committee, Mr. Shin Beomchul, vice minister for defense, and Executive Vice Chairman of peaceful unification Advisory Council, were also present at separate meetings with Secretary (East).