This has ended up being a good trip for President Park by signing these economic deals with Vietnam:
South Korea and Vietnam agreed Monday to conclude a bilateral free trade agreement next year and cooperate closely for nuclear power development in the Southeast Asian nation.
South Korean President Park Geun-hye and Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang reached the agreement during a summit in Hanoi, pledging to work together to triple trade volume between the two sides to reach US$70 billion by 2020.
“We agreed on accelerating negotiations to conclude a comprehensive, high-quality FTA in 2014,” Park said during a joint news conference with Sang after the summit talks at Vietnam’s presidential palace.
It was the first time the two sides have set a target timeframe for a deal since they officially launched the trade negotiations last year. The sides have so far held two rounds of talks, and a third round is scheduled for October in Hanoi.
Trade volume between South Korea and Vietnam amounted to US$21.6 billion last year, a 44-fold rise from less than $500 million in 1992, when the two former battlefield foes established diplomatic relations.
Park also said the two sides agreed to continue to cooperate for nuclear power development in Vietnam based on a shared understanding that South Korea’s experiences in nuclear power development and technologies would contribute to fostering Vietnam’s nuclear power industry.
The agreement brightened the prospects of Korean firms winning nuclear power plant contracts.
Vietnam plans to build 10 nuclear reactors by 2030, and South Korea hopes to take part in the construction of two of them, producing more than 1,000 megawatts each. The two-reactor projects are worth about US$10 billion. Russia and Japan are also vying for participation. [Yonhap]
You can read more at the link, but I think the Vietnamese government is smart to try and have the South Koreans help them develop economically. I have always felt that there probably is no other country that is a better example of rising up from poverty to a world economic power than the South Koreans. The Vietnamese would be wise to follow the ROK’s example.