On 1 October, undergraduate students from Singapore Republic University came to the ASEAN-Korea Centre (AKC) as part of their visits to the leading South Korean corporations and organisations. They learned the objectives and official mandates of the AKC, in which to promote cultural, economic and social exchanges between Korean and the ASEAN countries. They were also briefed about the Centre’s functions and had a discussion session with the officials from the AKC.

Lee Hyuk, Secretary General of ASEAN-Korea Centre, warmly welcomed the students. He described the AKC as the sole inter-governmental organisation in Korea and he was pleased to spend time and opportunities to build sustainable and meaningful partnerships with those who will be leaders of the future. In addition, the Secretary General shared his previous experience as an ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Vietnam. He stated that “the ASEAN-Korea relations have considerably developed over the past decades and it is his incumbent duty and official work responsibility to make efforts to advance the relations towards more strategic international cooperation”.

Ms, Yu Hye Ryong, Deputy Head of Trade and Investment Unit, explained the importance of trade and economic cooperation between Korea and the ASEAN region. There has been an increasing need for new economic growth strategies due to intensive market competition and continuous reduction in domestic consumer spending in major leading economies. Ms. Yu said that “the ASEAN can be an alternative place for investment and trade at this difficult period of time. Many employees at various companies in Korea have come from the ASEAN countries. On top of that, they have also made significant contributions to internationalisation of Korean community. Korea is emerging as a hub for international trade, politics, economic cooperation, and the ASEAN nations can play their strategic part in Korea to initiate win-win strategies that will benefit both Korea and the ASEAN”.

Mr. Phan The Thang, Deputy Director of Information and Data Unit, then had a Q&A session with Ms. Yu. Mr. Thang shared his experience of working at an international organisation in Korea. He said that “Korea has an element of dynamism that other major international cities do not possess, and he can understand why people want to visit Seoul and obtain inspirational senses for art, culture and academic study purposes. The AKC will expand programs on culture, trade and investment, and social interactions between Korea and the ASEAN to construct mutually benefiting environment and international cooperation at the same time”.

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The ASEAN Hall of ASEAN-Korea Centre conducts the youth visit program with the aim of raising the awareness of ASEAN and ASEAN-Korea partnership among youths from primary school to university students level.

Those who would like to visit the Centre may send their inquiries to visit@aseankorea.org or contact the Centre by calling +82-2-2287-1177.