As I explained in my Liberation Day speech, the peace economy is a key challenge and opportunity for our future. The initiative is also globally significant as it would dismantle the last remaining Cold War regime on earth and build a new order of peace and prosperity. At the same time, it is a matter of life or death for the people of Korean Peninsula.
In addition, the initiative is all about eradicating the history of confrontation and distrust that dates back more than 70 years and changing the fate of the Peninsula as well. As the two Koreas’ commitments must be paired with global cooperation, it will be extremely challenging. Still, it is a path that we cannot afford to give up on in order for us to become a peaceful and strong country. The same goes for North Korea as well.
What matters most is the fact that dialogue among the two Koreas and the United States has commenced and is now making progress. The current stage of dialogue did not come by itself. Rather, it has been created like a miracle after an arduous process: The determination and bold decisions of the leaders of both Koreas and the United States were combined with excellent utilization of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics that came just in time amid worries about extremely heightened tensions.
Should this opportunity be missed, we may not be able to create another opportunity. Given this, the two Koreas, the United States and other related countries, as well as each of us, must cherish this golden opportunity and be sure to make the most of it.
Exercising caution is essential as if carefully taking one step at a time while carrying fragile glassware. We must have the sincerity and wisdom of putting ourselves into other’s position. Dialogue will be successful when we all work together to promote things that are conducive and discourage things that hinder it.
The Government – as it has done consistently so far – will continue to move forward steadfastly without losing its focus. We will boldly take on challenges and confidently overcome difficulties for that day when the Korean Peninsula becomes a land of prosperity, rather than one of disputes, and contributes to the common prosperity of not only the two Koreas but also of Asia and the rest of the world.