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Ukraine and the Republic of Korea
12 December 2019 16:44

1. Recognition of Ukraine: December 30, 1991

2. Establishment of diplomatic relations: February 10, 1992

3. Political relations

The Republic of Korea is one of Ukraine's leading partners in the Northeast Asian region. The country consistently supports the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.

The Republic of Korea supported and voted for the resolutions of the UN General Assembly "Aggression against Ukraine" (03/02/2022), "Humanitarian consequences of aggression against Ukraine" (03/24/2022) and "Territorial integrity of Ukraine: protection of the principles of the UN Charter" (10/12/2022), " Provision of legal remedies and reparations in connection with aggression against Ukraine" (14.11.2022), "Situation with human rights in the temporarily occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, Ukraine" (15.12.2022, 19.12.2023), "Principles of the UN Charter, which are the basis of a comprehensive, just and sustainable peace in Ukraine" (February 23, 2023). On April 7, 2022, the Republic of Korea voted to exclude the Russian Federation from the UN Human Rights Council.

In February 2022, the Government of the Republic of Korea decided to join the international economic sanctions against the Russian Federation by disconnecting Russian banks from the SWIFT financial network and banning the export of dual-purpose strategic materials to the Russian Federation. On April 24, 2023, the Government of the Republic of Korea extended the list of sanctioned products, adding 741 more items (semiconductors, chemicals, steel, cars, machinery, quantum computers, etc.). Thus, export sanctions were extended from 57 to 798 types of products.

Republic of Korea took part in the inaugural Global Peace Summit in Bürgenstock (Switzerland) on June 15-16, 2024, and signed the Joint Communiqué based on the results of the Summit.

Dynamics of visits of high-ranking officials of Ukraine and the Republic of Korea (since 2010)

December 2010 – official visit to the Republic of Korea by the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine;

September 2011 – official visit to Ukraine by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Korea;

March 2012 – working visit the Republic of Korea by the President of Ukraine;

October 2013 – official visit to Ukraine by the Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea;

September 2015 – official visit the Republic of Korea by of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine;

December 2018 – official visit the Republic of Korea by the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine;

May 2023 – visit of the First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska to the Republic of Korea;

July 2023 - official visit of the President of the ROK Yoon Suk Yeol to Ukraine.

Bilateral commissions and committees

1. Intergovernmental Ukrainian-Korean Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation.

2. Joint Ukrainian-Korean Committee on Science and Technology.

3. Joint Ukrainian-Korean Commission on Cooperation in Defence Industry and Logistics.

4. Joint Ukrainian-Korean Committee on Cooperation in the Use of Outer Space for Peaceful Purposes.

4. Trade and economic cooperation

The Republic of Korea is one of Ukraine’s leading trading partners in Asia.

In 2023 the volume of bilateral trade amounted to 759,4 million USD and decreased by 0,28% compared to the previous year. Ukrainian export reached 98,9 million USD (-58,3%). Import to Ukraine from the Republic of Korea reached 660,5 million USD (+26,0%).

Scientific and technical cooperation 

The scientific and technical cooperation between Ukraine and the Republic of Korea is regulated by the Intergovernmental Agreement on Scientific and Technical Cooperation, which was concluded on July 1, 1992 and came into force on May 20, 1994.

The Joint Ukrainian-Korean Committee on Scientific and Technical Cooperation was launched. The last regular meeting of this Committee and the meeting of the Working Group on Space was held in Kyiv. As a result, a protocol was signed, indicating directions for further cooperation.

Cooperation in the use of space for peaceful purposes is regulated by Agreement between the State Space Agency of Ukraine and the Ministry of Science and ICT of the Republic of Korea, signed on 7 December 2011.

Cooperation between the institutes of National Academy of Science of Ukraine and the scientific institutions of the Republic of Korea is carried out within the framework of an interinstitutional agreements, joint participation in international scientific forums.

The main directions of cooperation are: electrical engineering and electronics, semiconductor technology, computer science, optics, sensors, applied physics, power engineering, applied chemistry, polymers, plastics and synthetic materials, biotechnology, radiation medicine.

5Cultural and humanitarian cooperation

Cooperation between Ukraine and the Republic of Korea in the field of culture is regulated by the Agreement on Cultural Cooperation between the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine and the Government of the Republic of Korea (signed in 2004, in force since 2009).

Since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries the cooperation between Ukraine and Korea in this field has grown steadily. In recent years, Ukraine has been well represented in the Republic of Korea in a variety of arts and sports.

In 2017, the Korean Education Center was opened in Kyiv and the Memorandum between the Ministries of education of Ukraine and Korea on cooperation in the field of education was signed.

In recent years, several cultural events have been held in the Republic of Korea. In particular, Special exhibition “Exploring Ukraine through money: from the Kyiv to the Euromaidan” on the occasion of the 30th Anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Ukraine and the Republic of Korea in the Bank of Korea Money Museum, the first in Korea "Ukrainian Bookshelf" under the patronage of the First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska at the Seoul Metropolitan Library, "Ukrainian Bookshelf" in Baedari Library in Pyeongtaek city, workshops and the exhibition “Laces of memory” by the Ukrainian artist Daria Alyoshkina, dedicated to Holodomor-genocide 1932-1933 in Ukraine at the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea, workshop on makinf "Motanka" dolls and "Diduckh", first in Korea the "CinemaAidUkraine" film marathon at the Korean Film Archive, the Ukrainian Pavilion at 14th Gwangju Biennale.

Ukraine also participated in the festivals - "Public Diplomacy Week" (2021? 2023), «European Day Festival» (2022), «Seoul International Book Fair 2022», «Global Youth Diversity Festival» (2021, 2022, 2023), «Itaewon Global Village Festival 2022», “Pyeongtaek International Children’s art Exchange Exhibition” (2022, 2023).

In October 2021, in Hamyang city “The Day of Ukraine” was held as a part of «2021 Hamyang Wild Ginseng Anti-Aging Expo». In September 2023 the Ukrainian Culture Week was organized in Pyeongtaek city. 

An important element of bilateral cooperation is the operation of the department of Ukrainian studies in Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (one of the leading Korean universities), which was opened in 2007 and provides 60 Korean students with opportunity to study Ukrainian language, history and culture.

6. Legal framework

The Communique on the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Ukraine and the Republic of Korea, February 10, 1992 was the starting point in building a legal framework of bilateral relations in various fields.

The legal framework of bilateral relations consists of 2 interstate documents, 26 intergovernmental, and 26 interagency documents.

7. Ukrainian community

There is no public associations or organizations of foreign Ukrainians in the Republic of Korea. As of 2022, there are about 3,600 Ukrainian citizens in the Republic of Korea residing mainly in industrial cities or cities locating well-known universities or research centers, including Seoul, Busan, Daejeon, Daegu and Gwangju.

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