S. Korea and Poland agree to cooperate on nuclear energy on NATO sidelines
Updated: 2022-07-01 17:13:20 KST
The first fruits of President Yoon Suk-yeol's 'sales diplomacy' could be from Poland.
Through bilateral meetings with world leaders in Spain on the NATO sidelines this week, President Yoon has been promoting the country's exports.
Yoon has pledged to make South Korea a "nuclear reactor superpower", and he used the NATO summit to discuss deals with his counterparts to export nuclear power plants.
"First, we will go all-out to win deals to build nuclear power plants in the countries that are about to choose contractors, including Poland and the Czech Republic."
During President Yoon's meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda on Wednesday, Yoon emphasized Seoul's advanced and safe nuclear technology proven through the Barakah project in the United Arab Emirates.
As part of this effort, South Korea's industry minister Lee Chang-yang also met on Thursday with his Polish counterpart.
They signed a deal to form a joint committee and strengthen their cooperation on energy including nuclear power, hydrogen and e-mobility.
Also at that meeting were officials from the two nation's major energy firms.
Nine contracts were signed on nuclear energy between companies from the two countries, including South Korea's KEPCO and Poland's ILF.
Earlier this week, during Lee's meeting with his Czech counterpart, 10 contracts were signed on nuclear energy and hydrogen between companies from the two countries, including the auto giant Hyundai Motor.
One expert on nuclear energy says the projects in Poland and the Czech Republic could bring in billions of dollars to the South Korean economy.
"Should South Korea export nuclear power plants to Europe, it could be deemed as the world's leading country in the field both in name and reality."
South Korea's industry minister plans to have another meeting on Friday local time with Poland's minister for economy with a view to expanding cooperation in various areas including batteries, natural gas, weapons and related infrastructure.
Eum Ji-young, Arirang News.