Congratulatory Speech at the North Korea Policy Forum
Hosted by the Korea Development Bank and Maekyung Media Group
By Unification Minister Kim Yeon Chul.
It is good to see you all. I am Unification Minister Kim Yeon Chul.
I would like to congratulate you on the 27th North Korea Policy Forum.
I would like to express my deepest gratitude to Chairman Lee
Dong-gull of the Korea Development Bank (KDB), CEO Son Hyun-duck of
Maeil Business Newspaper, and all others involved in arranging this
My thanks also go to lawmakers Park Byeong-seug and Min Byung-doo
for taking time out of their busy schedules to grace this event with
their presence, to the experts for making presentations and engaging
in discussions, and to all participants for joining us today.
Distinguished guests from home and abroad,
Science and technology are key to national development.
South Korea was able to join the ranks of the world’s top ten
economies in just half a century specifically by pursuing development
of science and technology.
North Korea is also well aware of the importance of science and technology.
Since the North shifted its national strategy toward “focusing on
socialist economic construction” last year, North Korean leader Kim
Jong Un has emphasized the importance of the development of
world-class science and technology.
North Korea is
considered as having had strength and potential in some fields for
quite some time already.
Inter-Korean exchange and cooperation in science and technology
going forward will serve as a significant driver of the establishment
of a Korean Peninsula of peace and prosperity.
In particular, knowledge sharing and talent development programs can
be carried out even in the current restricted environment.
If they work together, the South and the North can set a good
example of exchange in science and technology for the entire world.
The North Korean officials who visited Gyeonggi Province last year
took great interest in cooperation in science and technology. They
visited Pangyo Techno Valley and the Gyeonggi Province Center for
If South and North Korea combine their capabilities in
infrastructure and human talents, as well as research and experience,
both will be able to further increase their international
competitiveness in science and technology and realize sustainable
development on the Korean Peninsula. Ultimately, all the residents in
both the South and the North will enjoy the benefits.
I hope that this venue indeed encourages in-depth discussion of how
we can promote and develop inter-Korean cooperation in science and technology.
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
There can be no denying that the inter-Korean relationship is
difficult at the moment. However, there are still some opportunities
If the North responds positively, inter-Korean cooperation can be
carried out even as matters presently stand, and there are many fields
where cooperation can benefit both sides.
I hope that the South and the North become more flexible and bolder
to the extent that they duly implement all of their joint declarations
step by step and achieve sustainable development in inter-Korean relations.
I expect that all of you here will put your minds and wisdom
together for the government’s efforts. I especially ask you to take
continued interest in inter-Korean cooperation in science and technology.
Once again, I sincerely congratulate you on the 27th North Korea
Policy Forum, and I wish every one of you the best of health and happiness.