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Speeches and Contributions

Luncheon Speech at the annual academic conference by the Korea Peace Foundation


Luncheon Speech at the annual academic conference by the Korea Peace Foundation
- US-China Conflicts and Korea’s Choice -

Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
It is good to see you all. I am Unification Minister Kim Yeon Chul.

I would like to extend my congratulations to you on holding the second annual academic conference hosted by the Korea Peace Foundation.

This year, the conference addresses “US-China Conflicts and Korea’s Choice.”
I think it is a very timely topic since competition between the US and China is now going beyond trade and technology and reaching into security and regional strategy.

The conflicts between Washington and Beijing are not a matter of the two countries alone: they have ramifications for the entire world as well as the Korean Peninsula.

I expect that the top experts with us today will offer excellent insights into how the government should proceed.

Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
As you are well aware, the US and China are key countries involved in peace and security on the Korean Peninsula. We must work with them to build common prosperity.

The two countries agree on peaceful resolution of the Korean Peninsula issues and are indispensable partners.

The ROK is now more actively cooperating with the US and China than ever before in order to build truly lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula.

The ROK-China and the ROK-US summits were held in succession last month, and the leaders discussed, at great length, possibilities for cooperation for denuclearization and establishment of peace on the Korean Peninsula.

Chinese President Xi Jinping shared with us the outcome of his visit to North Korea.

US President Donald Trump, along with President Moon Jae-in, managed to bring about the historic Panmunjeom meeting between the leaders of South and North Korea and the US.

The US and China are also continuing to work together in handling the issues of the Korean Peninsula.

On June 29, the leaders of the US and China met each other on the sidelines of the G20 summit and agreed to continue communication and coordination while recognizing each other’s role in the Korean Peninsula issues.

Despite some conflicts of interest between the two countries, they still maintain cooperation to achieve the common objective of complete denuclearization and establishment of permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula.

We need to close off the possibility that a deterioration in Sino-US relations might negatively affect the situation on the Korean Peninsula and resolution of the North Korean nuclear issue.

As it is, I believe that what we do from now on is important. The leaders of the US and North Korea met at Panmunjeom and agreed to resume working-level negotiations.

The government will keep the situation stable and seek to ensure that the upcoming working-level negotiations between Washington and Pyeongyang lead to substantial progress in resolution of the denuclearization issue.

While closely communicating and cooperating with North Korea, the US, China and the international community, it will make sure that all involved countries act constructively.

We have a long and hard way to go. We need the wisdom from all quarters if we expect to keep our balance and move forward amid fierce, strategic competition between major powers.

I believe that this is why today’s conference is all the more meaningful.

I would like to express my deep gratitude to Hong Seok-hyun, chairman of the Korea Peace Foundation, and others involved in arranging this meaningful event. I have no doubt that the afternoon sessions will yield excellent results.

Thank you.