Ms. Oureye Sall, a student staying in Korea from Senegal says, the priority sectors for the Korean business companies desired to invest in her country, Senegal are, rural development, agriculture, fishing, transport, construction, water management and health.
According to Ms. Sall, Samsung electronics and LG electronics have shown their leadership in the field of electronic industry field and in the automobile industry the Kia and Hyundai motors.
There also are small-medium size Korean companies active in her country and they are manufacturers of wigs and wicks such as Nina, Linda and Unibella.
According to the Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Senegal, who won her independence in 1960, is rated as a model country in Africa for the peaceful transfer of government power through democratic elections. Based on this political stability, Senegal is actively implementing her ‘Plan Senegal Emergent’ with an aim to join the fast-developing countries of the world by 2035.
Korea and Senegal established formal diplomatic relations in 1962 and have been actively and continuously increasing their bilateral relations. In particular, President Maki Sall of Senegal visited Korea in 2015 and the Presidents of Korea and Senegal met with each other in September 2017 during the session of the United Nations General Assembly.
Today, Korea and Senegal are actively pushing ahead a wide variety of programs in all fields, especially the economic development cooperation area and also in the cultural field.
As seen above, Korea and Senegal are now in for substantially increased cooperation in the economic, trade, industrial and various other fields.
On Sept. 20, 2017, President Moon Jae-in of Korea and President Macky Sall of Senegal held a summit meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. It was President Moon’s first summit with an African head of state since he took office. Senegal is a leading African democracy that has achieved a transfer of power for the first time in 40 years.
According to the Korean Presidential Mansion of Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul, the two heads of state noted that Korea and Senegal had a common denominator in that they had advanced democracy in an exemplary manner. The two leaders could relate to each other in particular because they shared a common governing philosophy about creating jobs and empowering women.
Senegal is also an importer of Korean-made weaponry. In 2016, Senegal signed a contract with Korea to purchase four KT-1 trainer aircraft. President Sall gave a high evaluation to the outstanding performance of the Korean-made trainer plane, expressing the hope that bilateral defense industry cooperation would be further stepped up in the future.
President Moon expressed his appreciation to his counterpart for the fact that Senegal, a non-permanent member of the Security Council, has supported Korea`s stance in the international arena. In response, President Sall said he would actively join forces in responding to the North Korean nuclear issue.
Expressing his hope for the success of the Plan Senegal Emergent, the socio-economic development blueprint of Senegal, one of the major recipients of Korea`s Official Development Assistance, President Moon proposed that the two countries further enhance cooperation in various sectors, including agriculture, education, healthcare and infrastructure.
President Sall reminisced about having received an honorary doctorate in engineering from Pukyong National University when he visited Korea in 2015. He also commented that Korean automobiles and mobile handsets were very popular in Senegal and that he considered Korea, with its economic development over a short period of time, an important role model for his country, expressing affinity with Korea.
In response, President Moon expressed his expectation that Korea’s experience of making a leap forward from an aid recipient to a donor country would benefit Senegal. Then, the President also asked for Senegal’s cooperation on the thorough implementation of the U.N. Security Council sanctions resolution against North Korea.
Excerpts from the article contributed by Ms. Sall:
Located in West Africa, Senegal has a solid democratic regime and a culture anchored in peace and social stability. This positive image of Senegal has enabled many developed countries particularly South Korea to implement its business in several areas.
Indeed, the presence of Koreans which is becoming more and more spectacular, is reinforced by the diplomatic relations maintained by these two countries since 1962.
South Korea, considered as an economic model of development, keeps an excellent relationship with Senegal materialized by the funding of several projects. The government of South Korea supports that of Senegal to carry out the Plan for an Emerging Senegal (PES) whose major objective is to make Senegal an emerging country by 2035. The cooperation efforts are oriented towards the implementation of the Country Partnership Strategy of the Republic of Korea for the Republic of Senegal from 2016 to 2020. Thereby the priority sectors of South Korea in Senegal are rural development, agriculture, fishing, transport, construction, water management and health.
Beyond this cooperation, Korean companies are not left behind in the PES process. Their activities in Senegal promote industrial development, the expansion of trade, create jobs for young Senegalese but on the other hand they allow Koreans to export their products to others horizons. Thus, in the fishing sector, South Korea is the second largest customer of Senegal after the Ivory Coast. What justifies it is that there is a presence of more than 16 companies in this area compared to other business sectors. Moreover, through this sector, companies transform fishery raw materials into finished products in Senegal and export them to other countries. Besides, in the electronic field, Samsung electronics and LG electronics have shown their leadership, without forgetting the services of Kia motors and Hyundai motors in the automobile. The manufacture of wigs and wicks of Senegal is made by Korean companies in particular Nina, Linda and Unibella companies. In the field of infrastructure, agriculture and transport, Koreans are proving their expertise in order to make the PES effective and efficient. Furthermore, given that Senegal is facing drug shortages, Koreans are ready to embark on the pharmaceutical industry for a great adventure.