President Moon Jae-in and Russian President Vladimir Putin held a summit for approximately an hour from 4:40 this afternoon. It was their fourth summit since President Moon took office. Both Presidents are currently in Singapore for separate ASEAN-related summits.
President Moon began by saying that his state visit to Russia in June served as a catalyst for elevating Korea’s relationship with Russia, a key partner in implementing the Korean Government’s New Northern Policy. He went on to note that senior-level exchanges have been more vibrant recently, citing the Korean Prime Minister’s participation in the Eastern Economic Forum in Russia and the Russian Federation Council Chairwoman’s visit to Korea as contributions to advancing bilateral relations.
President Putin highlighted the fact that Korea-Russia relations have grown closer since the inauguration of President Moon. He went on to suggest that both countries work together to expand forward-looking, mutually beneficial cooperation.
Welcoming the successful launch of the Korea-Russia Local Cooperation Forum last week, the two Presidents expressed the hope that the forum would serve as a means to further develop bilateral relations into a comprehensive partnership to include cooperation between the two central governments and among local governments. The two Presidents agreed to work together to achieve the goals of increasing bilateral trade to US$30 billion and the number of people travelling back and forth between the two nations to one million by 2020, the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties.
The two leaders evaluated the progress of implementation of their June summit agreements. This includes a proposal for joint cooperation in the development of the Russian Far East. The "Nine Bridges" proposal comprises farming and fishing industries, gas exploration, railway construction, power generation, port construction and shipbuilding, as well as development of the Northern Sea Route and an industrial complex. They also examined cooperation in science and technology and innovation together with healthcare and medical services for the sake of securing future growth engines. Regarding these matters from their previous summit, the two Presidents agreed to further enhance cooperation to produce tangible outcomes.
President Moon explained recent developments on the Korean Peninsula, including the results of the inter-Korean summit in Pyeongyang two months ago. President Moon also extended his gratitude to President Putin for showing active support for and interest in the Korean Government’s efforts to improve inter-Korean relations and bring peace and prosperity to the Peninsula.
President Putin expressed high regard for President Moon and the Korean Government’s leading efforts to establish peace on the Korean Peninsula, adding that there has been great improvement to date. Expressing his support for the East Asian Railroad Community initiative proposed by President Moon, the Russian President also promised that Russia would actively cooperate to bring it to fruition.
President Putin stated that if there were progress in North Korea’s denuclearization, corresponding measures should follow. President Moon called on Russia to play an active role so that the North could take even bolder steps toward denuclearization.