Charge d’Affaires Luis Pablo Ossio Bustillos of the Plurinational State of Bolivia in Seoul and Madam Bustillos hosted a reception at the Plaza Hotel in Seoul on Aug. 4, 2017 in celebration of the Independence Day of their country.
Many distinguished guests attended the reception from all walks of life as well as the prominent personalities of the international community, the Seoul Diplomatic Corps, in particular.
There also was presentation of songs. A number of wonderful songs were presented by a Bolivian-Korean Vocalist Herrman Byung-soo Kim, which were accorded a warm applause from the guests.
Among the guests in attendance were Director-General Huh Tae-hwan of the Latin America and Caribbean Affairs Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and many other Korean and international guests.
They included: Ambassadors Oscar Gustavo Herrera Gilbert of Ecuador and Milton Alcides Magana Herrera of El Salvador, Charges d’Affaires Luis Pablo Ossio Bustillos of Bolivia and Madam Yadira Hidalgo de Ortiz of Venezuela, Director-General Huh Tae-hwan of the Latin America and Caribbean Affairs Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Minister Counselor
Alireza Namayeshi of Iran, Seoul Metropolitan Councilwoman Kim Kyung-Ja, Seoul Bureau Chief Maeng Ju-seok of ITN News, Chairwoman Ryoo Hyun-mi of the World Association for Food Culture Exchange (WAFCE), Director of Lee Mi-seon of WAFCE and Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post media.
Speaking to the guests at the reception, CDA Ossio Bustillos disclosed that there were very attractive areas in his country where Korean companies are very welcome.
He said: “On the economic front, many Korean companies are interested in investing in Bolivia, including Samsung Engineering, which built a urea-ammonia plant in Cochabamba, Hyundai Development Company, which has built the Banegas Bridge, the longest in the country, as well as Companies such as LG international and Posco Daewoo, who have
shown interest in investing in Bolivia. We are confident that the presence of Korean companies in Bolivia could be a great contribution to their economic development.” (See further details of the speech below)
Excerpts from the speech of CDA Ossio Bustillos:
On behalf of the government of Bolivia, I wish to greet Ambassador Huh Tae Hwan, General Director of Latin America & Caribbean Affairs Bureau from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic, Ambassadors, Heads of Mission, diplomats, Friends of Korea and the Bolivian Community.
During this year, I expect to continue Ambassador Guadalupe Palomeque’s plan of work in order to further strengthen the bilateral relations between Bolivia and Korea. In particular, through cultural exchange and experiences, through what in Bolivia is called the Diplomacy of Peoples, which can be summarized as a set of values and principles, such as reciprocity and complementarity, through which a person interacts with their social context and nature.
It is in this context that, although Bolivia is geographically distant from the Republic of Korea, it can be stated that both countries are getting closer and closer. Among other things, Korean television has reported on Bolivia, showing the world's largest salt desert, located in Uyuni, Potosí, where several factors such as: luminosity (because of its high altitude), sun, water and salt, create a kind of a giant mirror, in whose reflection, cause the impression of reaching the sky. These reports and the experiences of Korean tourists have created a multiplier effect, which increased to almost 13,000 the number of Koreans visiting Bolivia in 2016.
With that background, I would like to remind you that the bilateral relations began in 1965 and we had the visit of President Evo Morales in 2010; so, we hope President Moon Jae-in also visits Bolivia. Therefore, we will work to make this idea possible.
In the near future, we expect that in the second half of this year, the Eighth Bilateral Commission will be held between Bolivia and Korea, in Seoul, at which time we will discuss the Visa Suppression Agreement for Tourists, in order to facilitate the visit of the Korean citizens to our country, in addition to other subjects of mutual interest.
Today Bolivia continues its successful political, social and economic process in which, for the last 11 consecutive years, it has achieved an average growth rate of close to 5% of GDP and in 2017; Bolivia is expected to lead the regional economy.
However, the most relevant and profound changes have taken place in the political and social spheres. The government of President Morales, of indigenous origin, became the elected regime that has given the country the greatest stability, with more than a decade of service to the people and in this framework poverty was reduced from 128 times to 60 times.
Bolivia is today a dignified and sovereign country, where the majority of its population of indigenous origin, women, the elderly, and the GLBTI population, have claimed their rights by one of the most progressive and advanced Constitutions in the world.
In this context, the Government of Bolivia and Korea are important partners for development, through the Korean Cooperation Agency (KOICA). There is also a significant increase in bilateral trade, the promotion of technical cooperation and the exchange of experiences.
On the economic front, many Korean companies are interested in investing in Bolivia, including Samsung Engineering, which built a urea-ammonia plant in Cochabamba, Hyundai Development Company, which has built the Banegas Bridge, the longest in the country, as well as Companies such as LG international and Posco Daewoo, who have shown interest in investing in Bolivia. We are confident that the presence of Korean companies in Bolivia could be a great contribution to their economic development.
In the cultural area, the coming month of October, it is expected the arrival of master Mamani Mamani, whose paintings have been able to observe at the entrance of this Hotel, as well as the musician Pirai Vaca with the support of the Korea Foundation.
In this very general context, I thank all of you for attending this event, especially the Korean artist with a Bolivian heart, Hernán Im, who will remind us with his music, another form of universal communication.
Finally, I wish all those present at the national day commemoration that the second half of the year be successful and achieve all that has been proposed for the rest of the year, in order to facilitate the continuous development of economic, social and cultural activities in benefit of our peoples.