South Korea agreed Thursday to provide financial support worth up to US$2.5 billion to Uzbekistan, including $500 million in official Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) loans, the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae said.
The pledge came as part of the economic cooperation agreements signed shortly after a bilateral summit between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his Uzbek counterpart, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, who is currently visiting Seoul.
Under the agreement, South Korea will provide $500 million in EDCF loans to Uzbekistan over three years starting 2018.
Seoul will also provide up to $2 billion in project financing through its state-run Export-Import Bank of Korea for major infrastructure or construction projects in the Central Asian country, according to Cheong Wa Dae.
"The two agreements are expected to help enhance our companies' advance to Uzbekistan, as well as their participation in Uzbekistan's new economic, social and infrastructure development projects," it said in a press release.
In a separate agreement, South Korea also agreed to support Uzbekistan's entry into the World Trade Organization, which the presidential office said would contribute to boosting the countries' bilateral cooperation and trade.
Documents signed Thursday include a joint declaration by the countries' leaders, in which they reaffirmed their efforts to further develop South Korea-Uzbekistan relations.
The joint declaration also outlined efforts to enhance their economic and trade cooperation, as well as to expand exchanges in various areas, such as culture, Cheong Wa Dae said.
Uzbekistan also confirmed its support for South Korea's foreign policies, including the New North Policy aimed at greatly enhancing its ties with Russia and other Eurasian countries.
Moreover, the joint declaration included Mirziyoyev's invitation for Moon to visit his country in 2018, according to Cheong Wa Dae.
The Uzbek president arrived here Wednesday on a four-day state visit that marks his first trip to South Korea. The Uzbek president is later scheduled to attend a state dinner hosted by Moon and his wife. He will leave Saturday.
Hwi Won firstname.lastname@example.org
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