Business Chiefs from Korea, China, Japan Urge Increased Trade Cooperation

      May 31, 2010 09:58

      Business leaders from Korea, China and Japan urged their governments to work hard to sign three-way investment agreements, strike a comprehensive trilateral free trade pact and introduce a visa waver program.  

      Some 50 top executives from the Federation of Korean Industries, the Japan Business Federation, and the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade adopted a joint declaration outlining the points at the Second Business Summit on Jeju Island on Sunday.

      They called on their governments to simplify customs procedures and come up with non-discriminatory measures for foreign companies to promote trilateral trade and investment.

      The three-way FTA should not mean just free trade of goods, but include efforts to protect intellectual property rights, recognize professional licenses of each country, and tackle energy and environment issues, they said.

      The business leaders also called for cooperation among the three countries for prompt settlement of the Chiang Mai Initiative Multilateralization (CMIM) system, which is an Asian version of the International Monetary Fund officially launched in March this year.

      CMIM is a network of bilateral swap arrangements among ASEAN+3 countries set up to solve short-term liquidity difficulties in the region.

      The gathering also stressed the need for cooperation on energy and environment issues, standardization and mutual recognition of licenses and certificates in the industrial sector, and development of tourism.

      To promote tourism, they called for an increase in the number of direct flights linking major cities in the three countries, the introduction of a visa waiver program, and the simplification of entry procedures.

      Meanwhile, on Saturday the chairmen of five major Korean conglomerates -- Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, LG Group, Samsung Electronics, STX and POSCO -- met with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and asked for the cooperation of the Chinese government in business projects there. Wen said he would try to create a favorable environment for Korean companies in his country.

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