The National, Thursday 17th November 2011
DURING the Apec sideline in Honolulu, Hawaii, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak held talks with Prime Minister Peter O’Neill on Nov 12.
The main agenda was mainly economic cooperation.
South Korea and Papua New Guinea complement, not compete against each other in international economy.
South Korea has increasing stakes in the development of energy, farming, fishery and other sectors in a mutually beneficial way.
As a nation which has gone through rapid transformation in recent decades, South Korea has deep understanding and experience of other developing nations.
At the moment, bilateral trade volume is modest, yet in increasing trend.
The main items South Korea imports from PNG are copper, timber and coffee.
The activities of South Korean companies in PNG are limited, except for the electricity generation by Kanudi power plant run by Hanjung Power Co, which has supplied 24MW in and around NCD for the past decade.
A South Korean fishing company plans to acquire land in Lae to build a tuna processing factory.
The Pacific Ocean is very important fishing ground for the deep sea fishing industry.
With regard to the LNG development, South Korean companies have been participating in the bidding and in consultation with concerned government bodies and Petromin.
The eco-friendly natural gas consumption has been steadily rising in South Korea, amounting to 14% of the total energy consumption.
The location of PNG is comparatively more favourable than the Middle East, the main provider of LNG to South Korea.
The cassava plantation by Changhae Tapioca Co has gone on for several years, seeking to further expand the farmland.
The two leaders discussed these and other related issues and how South Korean companies can engage themselves at the bright economic development stages of PNG.
The South Korean president has had personal experience with PNG while engaging in the construction of Yonki dam and hydropower plant as part of the Hyundai Construction Co a long time ago.
His personal touch and attention to the enhanced cooperation between the two countries will bear plentiful fruit in the near future.
Ambassador to PNG