PEOPLE & EVENTS
Charge d’Affaires and Mrs. Bakhtiyor Ibragimov of the Republic of Uzbekistan hosted a reception at the Millennium Seoul Hilton on Aug. 30, 2013 to celebrate the 22nd anniversary of independence of their country.
Unlike in the previous years, there was a very distinguished guest at this year’s party, namely National Assemblywoman Kim Eul-Dong whose grandfather was the famous Korean independence fighter, General Kim Jwa-jin, who was widely known for his chivalry in his struggle against the Imperial Japanese Army that controlled Korea until 1945 from 1910. Her father was also a very famous person, the noted opposition National Assemblyman Kim Doo-hwan who led the rightwing youths against the Communist political forces in South Korea during the turbulent days of government of the late President Syngman Rhee and the preceding United States Military Government in Korea.
From the government came Deputy Minister Ahn Chong-ghee of Foreign Affairs for Economic Affairs. There were many leading personalities from the business, media and various other segments of Korean society, including Chairman Kim Yun-seek of Shindong Enercom, Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post and President Park Moo-jong of The Korea Times (English daily).
There also was CEO Kim Joong-do of Andre Kim Fashion Company, the son of the famed Korean fashion Maestro Andre Kim, who succeeded the business of his father.
From the Seoul Diplomatic Corps came many ambassadors, charge d’affaires and deputy heads of mission. They included Ambassadors Natallia Zhylevich of Belarus, Petar Andonov of Bulgaria, Bakisher Dulat of Kazakhstan, Duishonkul Chotenov of Kyrgyzstan, Kaman Singh Lama of Nepal and Dusan Bella of the Slovak Republic.
There also were some charge d’affaires and deputy heads of mission who attended the reception on behalf of their ambassadors who were either on leave at home or were had left Korea upon fulfillment of their tenure of office and had not yet been replaced.
Speaking to the guests, Charge Affaires Ibragimov of Uzbekistan said: “From that perspective since its independence Uzbekistan has accomplished a great deal. One of the striking examples of it is the fact that Uzbekistan is among a few countries in the world which, despite the fall-outs of the recent global financial-economic crisis, maintains sustainable growth rates.
“Thanks to a well-calibrated social-economic policy of the Government led by President Islam Karimov along with undertaken comprehensive preventive measures our country has not only withstood against these global challenges but been able to maintain sustainable growth rates - over 8%.” Excerpts from the speech follow:
Let me, first and foremost, extend my sincere appreciation to all guests for joining us today in celebration one of the most cherished holidays of the people of Uzbekistan - Independence Day. This year we are celebrating its 22nd Anniversary.
From the outset of opening a new era in our country we have been fully aware of the fact that the attainment of genuine freedom and sovereignty is not merely gaining independence, but also it is the consolidation of political and economic foundation of the state and gaining respect and a decent standing among the world community. I would like to note with satisfaction that since our independence, the Republic of Korea has always been and remains a reliable partner that renders consistent support in implementing large scale national projects and deep modernization of Uzbekistan’s economy and its social sphere.
Today Korea is among priority trade-economic and investment partners of Uzbekistan. Over the past 10 years the trade turnover between the two countries has increased 4 folds and last year reached $2billion. The aggregate volume of the announced Korean investments into the economy of Uzbekistan exceeded $10billion, including $6billion that have been already drawn.
Over the 21 years of diplomatic relations the parties have also laid a solid legal foundation for bilateral cooperation which today encompasses more than 200 documents that streamline collaboration in different fields which further diversified Uzbek-Korean relations and filled them with practical content of strategic partnership. The intensity of close cooperation can be manifested by the fact that over this period of time there have been twelve summit meetings between the leaders of the two states.
Therefore the Government of Uzbekistan is strongly committed to working closely with the current Administration of Her Excellency Park Geun-hye in further advancing strategic partnership and widening the horizons of mutually beneficial cooperation.
Taking this opportunity, I would also like to mention one important element in our relationship that is the Korean Diaspora in Uzbekistan. They have become an indispensable and active part of our society and making their own contribution to strengthening bilateral relations by serving as a linking bridge between the two friendly nations.
In conclusion to would to state that today the Uzbek-Korean relations have acquired in the full sense matured, meaningful character on the state and governmental levels, in cooperation between economic and commercial structures, banks, companies and firms as well as in humanitarian field and education. I strongly believe that strategic partnership between Tashkent and Seoul, given a myriad of opportunities, will be further coherently advanced in the interests of the two countries and their peoples.