S.Korea, Costa Rica vow to boost trade, investment

Seoul: South Korean Science Minister Lim Hye-sook (R, sitting) and her Costa Rican counterpart, Paola Vega Castillo, sign a memorandum of understanding on science and technology cooperation at the presidential office in Seoul on Nov. 23, 2021, with South Korean President Moon Jae-in (R, standing) and his Costa Rican counterpart, Carlos Alvarado Quesada (L, standing), in attendance.

Seoul, (Asian independent)┬áThe top trade officials of South Korea and Costa Rica met in Seoul on Wednesday and discussed ways to further boost bilateral trade and investment, Seoul’s industry ministry said.

During the meeting, Seoul’s Trade Minister Yeo Han-koo and Costa Rica’s foreign trade minister, Andres Valenciano Yamuni, checked the implementation of the South Korea-Central America Free Trade Agreement and agreed to work more closely to further facilitate bilateral trade and investment, Yonhap news agency reported, citing the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy.

South Korea and five Central American nations — Costa Rica, El Salvador, Panama, Honduras and Nicaragua — fully implemented their FTA in March 2021.

“The trade agreement has helped boost exchanges and investment between the two nations. It is expected to further help strengthen the bilateral economic ties and support a sustainable economic recovery,” Yeo said.

In 2020, South Korea’s volume of exports to Costa Rica stood at $111.12 million, with imports coming to $156 million, according to government data.

Yeo voiced hope for strengthening ties in the fields of digital, environment, technology and innovation, as the two nations share the goal of achieving inclusive economic development and net-zero emission by 2050.

He also sought Korean companies’ active participation in Costa Rica’s various infrastructure projects, including an electric passenger train construction project, according to the ministry.

On Tuesday, South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his visiting Costa Rican counterpart, Carlos Alvarado Quesada, vowed to work to boost cooperation in the digital and green sectors to spur their post-pandemic economic recovery.