The State Minister for Foreign Affairs, Henry Okello Oryem has hailed the blossoming relations between Uganda and the Republic of Korea that have been on for many years.
“Uganda and the Republic of Korea share so many interests. At a political level, we are satisfied by a number of bilateral agreements that we have signed in the past .Korea has been a strategic partner for Uganda in social economic development through KOICA that has impacted many sectors in Uganda,” Oryem said.
The junior foreign affairs minister was on Wednesday evening speaking as chief guest during as the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Uganda celebrated the country’s armed force day and the national day held at Sheraton Hotel in Kampala.
The armed forces day in South Korea is an annual event celebrated on October,1 to commemorate the service of men and women in the Republic of Korea armed forces.
It is the day that South Korean forces broke through the 38th parallel in 1950 during the Korean War.
Minister Oryem on Wednesday hailed the South Korean military for the sacrifice it made for the country that has seen the East Asian country make great strides in development.
He said that the Republic of Korea and Uganda share a lot of things including participating in several peacekeeping missions.
“Much like the Republic of Korea, Uganda has a proud history of UPDF having participated in several missions on the African continent and the Greatlakes region. We continue to contribute militarily to AMISOM. I commend the Republic of Korea for participating in the peacekeeping mission in South Sudan.”
The minister hailed the South Asian country for the numerous projects it has started in Uganda over the years that he said have impacted Ugandans, noting that these have further bolstered ties between the two friendly countries.
He noted that the ties between Uganda and the Republic of Korea will further be strengthened.
The South Korean Ambassador to Uganda, Park Sung-soo said the two countries will next year celebrate 60 years of diplomatic relations that have seen steady growth of their partnership in various fields, mutual trust and understanding.
“We are aware that there is still room for improvement of our relations. We can take it up a notch,” Sung-soo said.
The Republic of Korea Ambassador also mentioned the visits by the respective heads of state in 2013 and 2016 by Museveni and Park Geun-hye.
He mentioned that the official development assistance by South Korea to Uganda started in 2010 and that within just three years in 2013, the Korean government had taken a step to design Uganda as one of the priority partners.
According to Park Sung-soo, the Korean government has since then focused on what Uganda needs , extending their cooperation through KOICA, the Korea Program on International Agriculture (KOPIA) and the Korea Foundation for International Healthcare (KOFIH) in the areas of rural development, education, and healthcare.
“We will carry on our development cooperation with Uganda in order to support her relentless efforts in enhancing her human capital and economic growth while fully sharing our economic development experience and technical knowledges,” Sung-soo said.
“I pledge that Korea will walk together with Uganda on her journey to a brighter future. I am looking forward to a future partnership that is more durable and sustainable and will be mutually beneficial for both countries.”
The function was attended by several Ugandan minister, senior UPDF officers and other officials from various embassies in Uganda.