By Vice Chairperson Cho Kyung-hee with Reporter Kim Jung-mi
Ambassador Olexander Horin of Ukraine in Seoul said: “Our bilateral relations with the Republic of Korea are developing on a positive track. Among other things, Ukraine was included into Northern Economic Cooperation Strategy declared by the new Korean Presidential Committee.”
Speaking at a reception he hosted at Four Seasons Hotel in Seoul on Sept. 11 in celebration of the 27th anniversary of Independence of Ukraine and the 100th anniversary of the National Liberation of the country, Ambassador Horin then stated, “In April 2018, First Vice Prime Minister Stepan Kubiv of Ukraine visited Korea to boost bilateral trade, economic and investment cooperation and on April 24 Deputy Minister Yun Kang-hyeon of Foreign Affairs for Economic Affairs co-chaired the 4th meeting of the Intergovernmental Ukrainian-Korean Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation in Seoul, which was quite visionary for our future economic relations.”
Ambassador Horin’s speech was seconded to by a congratulatory address by the representative of the Korean government, Deputy Minister Yun Kang-hyeon of Foreign Affairs for Economic Affairs.
Yun said in part, “Ukraine is well-known to us as a traditional agricultural powerhouse serving as the world’s breadbasket due to its blessed natural environment of vast terrain and fertile black soil.”
Then he said, “Ukraine, however, is also a leader in space technology and aeronautic that designs and manufactures its own space launch vehicles and has conducted numerous joint projects in this field with Korea, including a satellite launch.”
Deputy Minister Yun had a long string of praises for Ukraine, but this passage must not be passed up. He said, “Moreover, with over 200,000 IT employees, Ukraine is the world's third largest outsourcing hub after India and China. In particular, it is globally competitive in the software sector.” (See excerpts from the speech of Yun toward the end of this report.)
It was one of the very well-attended National Day functions.
Many prominent personalities from Korean society and international community attended the reception, who included Chairman Cho Jeong-sik of the Korea-Ukraine Parliamentary Friendship Association.
Among the ambassadors attending the reception were ambassadors of South Africa, Latvia, the Philippines, Thailand, Turkmenistan, Ghana, the United States, Bulgaria and the Czech Republic—and many more.
There also were distinguished guests from the Korean religious circles who included Ven. Yu Jae-hak, chairman of the World Clean Mind Movement, who owned and headed a large Buddhist temple estate in Yecheon. Ven. Yu was accompanied by Chief Secretary Madam Lee Youn-ok.
From the Korean media came some publishers and editors who included Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik of The Korea Post media with Vice Chairpersons Madam Cho Kyunng-hee.
Excerpts from the speech of Ambassador Horin:
Today we celebrate 27th anniversary of the Independence of Ukraine. However, our statehood is far older than that. Through the ages we had to fight hard to preserve our identity and culture.
21st century brought new challenges, as we are facing military aggression of the Russian Federation – a nuclear armed state, which trampled its partnership commitments and principles of international law.
But our country is emerging stronger from the conflict with new armed forces, economy boosted by modernization reforms and Association agreement with the European Union, and society aware of its goals and existential choice.
Step by step we are cutting the old ropes, which enveloped freedom-loving Ukrainian soul. This includes ongoing process of granting Autocephaly to Ukrainian Orthodox Church by Ecumenical Patriarchate, which gives us hope for higher spiritual unity.
But no man and no nation is an island. It would not be possible to effectively address our challenges without support from friends and international community in general. We appreciate that Republic of Korea joined other nations in supporting the UN General Assembly Resolution called "Territorial integrity of Ukraine", which rebuked Russian annexation of Crimea.
At the same time, Ukraine is a country, which voluntarily dismantled world third biggest nuclear arsenal and made its own denuclearization. That’s why Ukraine is strong supporter of peaceful reconciliation and denuclearization of Korean peninsula.
Our bilateral relations with the Republic of Korea are developing on a positive track.
Among other things, Ukraine was included into Northern Economic Cooperation strategy declared by the new Korean Presidential Committee.
In April 2018, the First Vice Prime Minister Stepan Kubiv visited Korea to boost bilateral trade, economic and investment cooperation.
In April 24, His Excellency Yun Kang-hyeon co-chaired the 4th meeting of the Intergovernmental Ukrainian – Korean Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation in Seoul, which was quite visionary for our future economic relations. Alongside the meeting the 6th Ukrainian – Korean Economic Forum was held jointly with KITA.
A number of leading Korean corporations are proactively extending their presence in Ukraine. There is good rationale behind this. Ukraine’s GDP is growing successfully. Our global economic rankings improved considerably, including Ease of Doing Business, Innovation Index and Logistics Performance. In 2017 Ukrainian IT sector grew by 20%, agricultural production – by 17%. But it’s not only “Grains and Brains”, as Energy, Manufacturing and Infrastructure sectors also look very attractive for investors.
To further enhance our ties with the Republic of Korea we strongly expect that Korean side will approve the abolishment of visa-regime for Ukrainian citizens. Removal of artificial barriers between our societies is a good step to develop further our bilateral cooperation.
I am also pleased to note active participation of Ukrainian artists and athletes in cultural and sporting events taking place in the Republic of Korea. This year’s Winter Games were the culmination of huge preparatory work of the Korean government and demonstrated top level of technological progress in the country. It is worth mentioning that Ukrainian Paralympic team has shown high result, winning the 6th place.
With all these positive developments in mind let`s join our hands in working together for more peaceful and prosperous future.
I also would like to thank each and everyone who put their efforts and good will to make this event memorable.
Excerpts from the congratulatory message of Deputy Foreign Minister Yun:
Ambassador Olexander Horin, Honorable Mr. Cho Jeong-sik, Chairman of the Korea-Ukraine Parliamentary Friendship Association, Excellencies, Ladies and gentlemen,
I am pleased to join you at this meaningful celebration of the 27th anniversary of the Ukraine's independence, and would like to extend my sincerest congratulations on behalf of the Korean government.
Ukraine is well-known to us as a traditional agricultural powerhouse serving as the world’s breadbasket due to its blessed natural environment of vast terrain and fertile black soil.
Ukraine, however, is also a leader in space technology and aeronautic that designs and manufactures its own space launch vehicles and has conducted numerous joint projects in this field with Korea, including a satellite launch.
Moreover, with over 200,000 IT employees, Ukraine is the world's third largest outsourcing hub after India and China. In particular, it is globally competitive in the software sector.
Only a few countries have the advantage of possessing strengths in both traditional and future industries as well as in the manufacturing industry, which leads me to believe in a very bright future for Ukraine.
Since the establishment of diplomatic ties in 1992, our two countries have developed friendly and cooperative relations in various fields. This April, Deputy Prime Minister Kubiv visited Korea, providing an important opportunity for the enhancement of economic cooperation between our two countries.
Furthermore, during the 4th Meeting of the Intergovernmental Korean-Ukrainian Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation which I co-chaired with the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ukraine demonstrated its strength and commitment with regard to its cooperation with Korea.
In particular, our two countries are strengthening future-oriented cooperation in the ICT sector. Established in Kyiv in 2009, the Samsung Electronics R&D center employs approximately 600 Ukrainian IT professionals, making it a model for bilateral IT cooperation.
Last year, various commemorative events were held to mark the 25th anniversary of diplomatic ties between our two countries.
This year, the Chernivtsi Symphony Orchestra held a concert tour in 16 cities of Korea. The arts and literature of Ukraine, represented by the brilliant pianist Vladimir Horowitz and great novelist Nikolai Gogol, have won the hearts of the Korean people.
As we all know, Ukraine has faced tough internal and external challenges in recent years with the on-going war as well economic reform.
I believe Ukraine will be able to overcome these challenges with great patience and reform. And to that end, Korea will
support Ukraine along with the international community so that Ukraine can move towards peace, stability and prosperity as soon as possible.
Once again, in celebration of the Ukraine's Independence Day,
I sincerely express my hope for the everlasting prosperity and bonds of friendship between our two countries. Thank you.