President Moon Jae-in spoke on the phone with President Joseph R. Biden of the United States for 32 minutes from 8:25 a.m. today. It was their first phone conversation since President Biden took office.
Congratulating President Biden on his inauguration, President Moon wished that the United States would successfully realize the vision of uniting the nation and building back better under President Biden’s leadership. President Biden thanked President Moon for his warmhearted congratulations and support.
President Moon said, “Hearing your inaugural speech, I could feel your will to get through the unprecedented challenges and complete an American story full of hope.” President Biden replied that Korea is part of the hope. He went on to say that Korea-U.S. relations have continued to advance over the past 70 years and that he looks forward to strengthening bilateral cooperation in many more areas going forward.
The two presidents reaffirmed that the ROK and the U.S. are vital allies for peace and prosperity in the region. They agreed to continue to develop the alliance of responsibility, anchored in shared values, into a comprehensive strategic one that contributes to the promotion of democracy, human rights and multilateralism, going beyond cooperation on the Korean Peninsula and in the Indo-Pacific region.
The two leaders also engaged in in-depth discussions on global challenges such as climate change. President Biden said that taking action on climate change will bring significant economic benefits, including the creation of new jobs and new industries. In reply, President Moon introduced Korea’s Green New Deal policy, which features expanded utilization of new renewable energy, adding that responding to climate change will become a new growth engine.
In addition, the two presidents also agreed to expedite mutually beneficial cooperation for the success of the Leaders’ Climate Summit and the P4G Summit, the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines and treatments and the recovery of the global economy.
President Moon said that the two countries should work together to advance denuclearization and the establishment of permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula. Noting the efforts of Korea as a main player in resolving Korean Peninsula issues, President Biden said that it is important to be on the same page with Korea and that he will closely work together with Korea toward common goals. The two leaders shared a common understanding that it is necessary to jointly devise a comprehensive strategy toward North Korea at the earliest date possible.
Moreover, the two presidents shared the view that improving Korea-Japan relations and cooperation among Korea, the United States and Japan are important for the region’s peace and prosperity. They also exchanged opinions on the latest developments in other parts of the world, such as Myanmar and China. In particular, the two leaders shared their concerns over the recent situation in Myanmar and concurred on cooperation to resolve the issue in a democratic and peaceful manner.
The two leaders agreed to continue to closely communicate with each other and hold a bilateral summit as soon as the COVID-19 pandemic is brought under control.