By Yoon Sojung and Kim Min-Jeung
President Moon Jae-in has vowed to augment the Korea-India relationship and to put it on par with the relationships that Seoul has with the four key neighboring countries of the Korean Peninsula. He has also expressed his desire to implement his administration's New Southern Policy to the fullest degree possible by expanding bilateral cooperation with New Delhi.
At the Korea-India Business Forum that took place in the Indian capital on July 9, President Moon announced detailed measures to expand bilateral business cooperation and to implement his administration's New Southern Policy.
Mentioning the long history of exchanges and relations between Korea and India, which trace back to ancient times, President Moon said that the areas for bilateral cooperation are unlimited.
In this regard, he proposed that Seoul and New Delhi forge a “3P Plus Partnership” as a way to promote bilateral cooperation with an eye on future economic growth.
The “3P Plus Partnership” is an addition to the original 3P Partnership that focuses on people, peace and prosperity. The new "partnership" segment is designed to strengthen cooperation between Seoul and New Delhi by adding joint responses to the economic and business challenges that will be brought by the ongoing fourth industrial revolution.
In order to build this “3P Plus Partnership,” President Moon proposed to Indian business leaders that Korea will boost cooperation with them on the Indian manufacturing sector, which includes shipbuilding, medical appliances and food processing. He also said that both countries should work together on infrastructure construction, such as expressways and smart city projects.
President Moon told the Indian business leaders that Korea is committed to bolstering cooperation with India on key future technologies and to strengthen the foundations of bilateral trade.
In regard to expanding the foundations for bilateral trade, President Moon said that both countries should reach an agreement in the near future on the ongoing negotiations on the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) between Korea and India, and on the negotiations on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
President Moon and Prime Minister Narendra Modi then attended an opening ceremony for Samsung’s new factory in Noida, Uttar Pradesh, and vowed once again to strengthen economic ties between the two countries.
President Moon said, "This Noida factory has now become Samsung's largest smartphone factory in the world. The busier that the Noida factory becomes, so, too, will the economies of India and Korea both grow."
"I hope that smartphones produced at the Noida facility will be exported to third countries across the Middle East and Africa, and that the smartphones produced here at the Noida factory will lead the tech industries in both India and Korea,” said the president.
Prime Minister Modi also commented on the new factory, saying that, ”Today's event is a big step toward making India a manufacturing hub. There's hardly a family in India that wouldn't have a Korea-made product at home, and Samsung, in particular, holds a special place in Indians’ lives.”
The prime minister added that the construction of the Noida factory is not only the result of economic policies, but that it is also an initiative to forge closer ties with economies like Korea.