November 08, 2013 09:54
President Park Geun-hye on Thursday met with Belgian Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo in Brussels and discussed expanding trade and investment and cooperation in scientific research and development.
Korea hosted a meeting with EU businesses there with Minister of Trade, Industry and Engergy Yoon Sang-jick in charge, where Belgian chemical giant Solvay, Germany's BASF and Siemens, Italy's Versalis and France's LFB announced investments totaling W400 billion (US$1=W1,061).
Park attended a banquet hosted by Belgian King Philippe at Laeken Palace. It was her third visit to Belgium, while King Philippe visited Korea four times when he was crown prince. Park had met King Albert II (Philippe's father) who visited Korea in 1978 when she was first lady following her mother's assassination.
Belgium was Park's third stop on her European trip after France and the U.K. In the U.K. on Tuesday, Britain's Prince Edward told Park that his five-year-old son is an avid fan of Psy's "Gangnam Style" horse-ridng dance, making it clear that the craze has not stopped at the gates of the British royal palace.
There was an awkward moment on Wednesday, when Park tripped while stepping out of her car on arrival at a dinner reception hosted by Lord Mayor of London Roger Gifford. She accidentally stepped on her traditional Korean hanbok while emerging from a Bentley, whose chassis is a little higher than those of normal cars.
Senior presidential press secretary Lee Jung-hyun said she was not hurt.
The mayor and his wife ran to assist Park, but she got up by herself and joked, "Dramatic entry."
After the banquet, Park said goodbye to Gifford and promised to make a "quiet exit."
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