Gyeonggi-do International Peace Forum explores direction of local government diplomacy in success of New Northern Policy – Gyeonggi Province Governor: ‘Eurasian cooperation is the key discovering a new growth engine and peace in the Korean Peninsula’

Createdd 2021-05-09 Hit 153


○ On May 7, the ‘3rd Gyeonggi-do International Peace Forum was held on the subject of ‘New Northern Policy and local government public diplomacy.’
– Experts who participated in the forum: “Securing a dedicated team and organization is essential for the success of the New Northern Policy.”
○ In his commemorative speech, Gyeonggi Province Governor Lee Jaemyeong said, “Eurasian cooperation through the New Northern Policy is the key to discovering new growth engines and peace on the Korean Peninsula. Efforts will be made to develop detailed plans at the local government level.”

A consensus was formed at the ‘3rd Gyeonggi-do International Peace Forum, held at the Pangyo Global R&D Center on May 7, that local governments should take the lead in ensuring the effectiveness of public diplomacy for the success of the New Northern Policy.

The forum, held on the subject of ‘New Northern Policy and local government public diplomacy,’ was attended by 10 Korean and international experts including Gyeonggi Vice Governor for Peace Lee Jae-gang, Kraskino Forum Director Jeong In-jo, Sungkonghoe University Chancellor Kim Gi-seok, and University of Washington Chair-Professor Yong-Chool Ha.

Yong-Chool Ha gave a keynote speech on ‘Value-oriented diplomacy and the direction of the Northern Policy,’ which was followed by a presentation and discussion on ‘Achievements and limitations of the Northern Policy,’ and ‘Public diplomacy of local governments and the New Northern Policy.’

The forum participants agreed that there needs to be diplomatic reformation based on the successes and failures of the Northern Policy in order for the New Northern Policy to succeed.

University of Washington Chair-Professor Yong-Chool Ha said, “Asia should move away from closed or exploitative characteristics, and propose a model that leads to communal life in the history of global civilization.” He added, “I hope that South Korea’s Northern Policy starts anew with the macroscopic perspective of the Northeast Asian community.”

Wi Sung-rak, a former ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the Russian Federation, said, “The July 7th Declaration of the Roh Tae-woo administration widened the diplomatic horizon to Russia and China, away from a Western-focused reliance on the US and Japan. However, it also tended to isolate North Korea, driving North Korea to pursue survival through nuclear development.” He added, “We need to revive the denuclearization and peace process on the Korean Peninsula based on this past experience in which North Korea’s isolation lead to its nuclear development.”

Marina Kukla, a professor at the Far Eastern Federal University in Russia, said, “We need to emphasize economic gains rather than political factors.” She added, “A Russia-Korea investment fund needs to be established to achieve large-scale investment projects, and we need to improve communication channels to realize tangible results and overcome differences between institutions in the two countries.”

Lee Seong-wu, a researcher at the Gyeonggi Research Institute, said, “We need to consider a new Gyeonggi-style public diplomacy model which reflects new policy demands such as the development of an in-bound model, online diplomacy, and public diplomacy policy.” He emphasized, “We need to build a work allocation system in each field, and establish a public diplomacy policy cooperation network together with the central government and NGOs.”

Seong Won-yong, a professor at Incheon National University, said, “The success of the Northern Policy depends on a clear future vision and meticulous national strategy.” He asserted, “We need to operate an exclusive agency such as the Northern Development Corporation, and hire professional personnel to increase the efficiency of policy execution.”

The participants placed particular emphasis on securing skilled personnel and organizations that are exclusively responsible for the Northern Policy, and creating a framework in which various agents can cooperate with one another and with local governments at the center of cooperation.

Yoon Yeong-mi, Director of Korea Orphan & Essential Drug Center (KOEDC), said “Sustainable exchange needs to take place based on the principle of mutual respect such as localization strategy instead of one-directional aid and support.” She went on to suggest an exclusive organization or multilateral consultative body as alternatives.

Kim Chang-jin, a professor at Sungkonghoe University, said, “Gyeonggi-do will be able to actively promote the Northern Diplomacy by utilizing its conditions such as its position in the capital region and as an urban-rural complex region, the Pangyo High-Tech Complex, and so on. The Eastern Economic Forum and the Korea-Russia Regional Cooperation Forum need the active participation of Gyeonggi-do and the provincial assembly.”

Gyeonggi Province Governor Lee Jaemyeong also participated in the event through a video recording of his commemorative speech in which he said, “The New Northern Policy that connects the Korean Peninsula and the Eurasian continent will be a great force that will help us extend our potential from being trapped in an island state to the greater continent.”

He continued, “Although we are facing very difficult situations such as the discontinuation of North American and South-North Korean relations, US-China rivalry, and the COVID-19 pandemic, efforts for peace and prosperity must continue.”