Prime Minister Narendra Modi reached Seoul early on Thursday morning on a two-day visit intended at establishing the special strategic alliance between South Korea and India and encouraging bilateral trade and cultural ties.
This is the Prime Minister’s second visit to the Republic of Korea after his state visit in May 2015.
Before boarding on the visit the Prime Minister described South Korea as a valued friend with which India shared special strategic partnership initiatives such as ‘Make in India’, ‘Start-Up India’ and ‘Clean India’.
According to a foreign ministry spokesperson, Raveesh Kumar during this visit, the Prime Minister is scheduled to have bilateral and business engagements, uncover a bust of Mahatma Gandhi and accept the Seoul Peace Prize conferred upon him. He will also address the Indian community.
Raveesh Kumar said that this visit will increase India’s special strategic alliance with South Korea and will include a new dimension in ‘Look East Policy’.
Before beginning the visit, the Prime Minister had said in a statement that he was attending the Republic of Korea at the invitation of President Moon Jae-in.
“My visit to the Republic of Korea is reflective of the importance we both attach to our relationship,” he said.
“We regard the Republic of Korea as a valued friend, a nation with which we have a Special Strategic Partnership. As fellow democracies, India and the ROK have shared values and a shared vision for regional and global peace. As fellow market economies, our needs and strengths are complementary,” the Prime Minister said.
Before leaving New Delhi, the Prime Minister also tweeted, “During our talks, President @moonriver365 and I will take forward our conversations from last year on how best to improve the India-ROK partnership. I will also meet business leaders, the Indian community as well as important persons from all walks of life.”
He will have extended conversations with President Moon Jae-in after which some MoUs are assumed to be signed.
Waited for him in the hotel lobby, Indians, presented in large numbers, waived flag and took selfies with the Indian leader.
On his second visit to the country as the Prime Minister, Modi will take the Seoul Peace Prize, which was declared by the Seoul Peace Prize Cultural Foundation in October last year in honour of his dedicated service to international cooperation, global growth, and human development.
“The growing depth and variety in our relationship have been accentuated by the harmony between our ‘Act East’ Policy and ROK’s ‘New Southern’ Policy. Working together, we are firm to take our relationship forward as a ‘future-oriented partnership for People, Prosperity, and Peace’,” he said.
“Our collaboration in the field of science and technology is promising, with our joint research ranging from basic to advanced sciences,” Modi added.
The visit is Prime Minister Modi’s second visit to the Republic of Korea and the second summit gathering with President Moon Jae-in. The South Korean president visited India in July 2018.