June 19, 2012 12:18
President Lee Myung-bak met with his Mexican counterpart Felipe Calderon on Monday on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Los Cabos, Mexico. They agreed to resume bilateral free trade negotiations, which have been on hold since 2008.
Lee was quoted by presidential spokesman Park Jeong-ha as saying, "Mexico plays a leading role in the Pacific Alliance as a leader of Latin America. I hope the two countries will resume free trade talks as soon as possible." Calderon said talks should resume before he visits Korea in September.
The Pacific Alliance is an economic bloc formed by Mexico, Chile, Colombia and Peru in June. The four nations have a combined GDP of US$2 trillion.
Lee also asked Calderon to give more opportunities to Korean companies in public bidding in Mexico even before the FTA talks are concluded. Mexico prevents non-FTA partners from participating in public projects.
Prior to the summit, the foreign ministers of the two countries signed a nuclear cooperation agreement that clears the way for Korea to export a Korean-type nuclear power plant to Mexico.
Meanwhile, Lee in a keynote speech at the B20 Business Summit the same day said Europe should have more proactive discussions about how to reform the eurozone and reach a conclusion as soon as possible.
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