South Korean President Moon Jae-In will arrive here on Sunday on his first visit to India during which the two countries are expected to discuss the developments aimed at denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and steps they propose to take to strengthen special strategic partnership.
During his four-day visit, the visiting leader will have wide-ranging talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 10 July on bilateral, regional and global issues. The President will be accompanied by his key ministers, top officials and business honchos during the visit. The South Korean President will also visit Gandhi Smriti and Samsung plant in Noida.
The visit is expected to open new avenues of partnership, particularly in the economic domain. Korean brands like Samsung, Hyundai, LG are household names in India. Seoul is a contributor and partner of the Modi government’s flagship programmes like digital India, Skill India and Make in India. The bilateral trade between the two countries passed $20 billion in 2017.
The long shadow of North Korean denuclearisation, the recent summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and India’s own engagement with North Korea will also figure during the talks between the two sides.
On the sidelines of a recent seminar in New Delhi, Deputy Foreign Minister of South Korea Enna Park welcomed India-North Korea engagement and said India could play an influential role in the peninsula.
Recently India had sent Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh to North Korea. This was the first ministerial- level visit from India to North Korea after a gap of almost 20 years.
South Korean Ambassador to India Amb. Shin Bongkil has welcomed India’s engagement with North Korea, saying New Delhi could help the reclusive country India’s presence in Pyongyang was important.
When it comes to North Korea, New Delhi has always highlighted the threat from nuclear proliferation, particularly its concerns in the context of the proliferation linkages with India’s neighbourhood. India’s relationship with South Korea is a logical extension of ‘Act East Policy’.