Korea sees huge potential in Zim
Mukudzei Chingwere Herald Reporter
The Republic of Korea sees huge potential for economic cooperation with Zimbabwe, and is hopeful businesses from the Asian economic giant will take advantage of cordial government-to-government relations and set up or grow their businesses in the country, Korean Ambassador to Zimbabwe Jae Kyung Park said yesterday.
He said this when he paid a courtesy call on Vice President Dr Constantino Chiwenga in Harare.
Korea, one of the five biggest economies in Asia, is seeking to deepen economic collaboration with Harare on the back of President Mnangagwa’s mantra, ‘Zimbabwe is open for business’, which has excited many investors.
Collaboration between the two countries took a step forward last year when ZimTrade and the Korean Trade Agency signed a Memorandum of Understanding to upscale trade.
In an interview after his meeting with VP Chiwenga yesterday, Ambassador Park said several Korean companies were looking at investing in Zimbabwe through partnerships and that Zimbabwe has several minerals such as lithium, which are highly sought after by Korean companies.
“We had a really fruitful, deep and really insightful discussion on many things. You cannot believe how many issues we touched upon; of course the key issues were economic cooperation,” said Ambassador Park.
“We will have the Africa-Korea leaders meeting next year in Seoul, at the same time the agricultural cooperation and mining sector cooperation and health sector cooperation and tourism, the people-to-people exchanges.
“I heard next year in April in Bulawayo, there will be an international trade fair, which is held every year regularly.
“The Kotra and ZimTrade are discussing how to encourage Korean companies to join the Bulawayo fair and at the same time, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and our counterpart in Korea are discussing another comprehensive framework or MoU to promote trade and investment.”
Ambassador Park said the discussion was ongoing and is hopeful that by year end, they will reach an agreement on that MoU, which will tentatively be signed later this year or early next year.
“The government-to-government cooperation will definitely pave a better way for business-to-business cooperation between the two countries.
“I myself have a meeting with the Kia people from Korea and the regional office in Dubai and local agencies in Zimbabwe to promote their activities,” he said.
The Ambassador said he will also continue to talk to Samsung and LG, some of the big companies in Korea.