President Yoon Suk-yeol's recent diplomatic agenda in Madrid involved a flurry of engagements with his counterparts in Europe as well as the Asia Pacific region and business leaders in Spain that also called for greater collaboration for mutual economic growth.
YOON Jung-min reports.
What President Yoon Suk-yeol now about two months in office felt on his first overseas trip to Spain for last week's NATO summit, included the importanceof technological cooperation for future growth, according to his spokesperson Kang In-sun, who discussed the President's thoughts on Sunday.
Having met nearly 30 world leaders during his three-day stay in Madrid, eastern and northern European countries were much interested in expandingcooperation with Seoul on nuclear energy, green technology, semiconductors and electric car batteries fields where they consider South Korea top-notch.
According to his spokesperson, President Yoon also said he got a physical sense of "the reality of international politics" while meeting with world leaders in-person.
Both Yoon and his counterparts were eager to invite each other to their own countries down the road.
Hopes for a greater economic partnership were also echoed in a luncheon with Spanish business people, hosted by the South Korean President in Spain, where he pledged to do more so that more Spanish companies can invest in Korea, particularly in renewable energy and other sectors related to the environment.
"I understand the Spanish business leaders here are already working with Korean companies or intend to do so. I have been emphasizing a private-led economy, and our government is making efforts to create a favorable environment for business investment."
The Spanish business leaders reportedly thanked President Yoon, saying he was the only foreign head of state to meet with them among the world leaders in Madrid for the summit.
And meeting Korean nationals in Spain, President Yoon and First Lady Kim Keon-hee were moved to tears listening to a performance bythe Spanish choirGroup Vocal Millennium, who sang Korean songs, including "Miryang Arirang" and "Our Wish" in perfect Korean.
As for behind-the-scenes stories, the top office on Sundayunveiled photos of the President and the First Lady enjoying their free time in Spain,taking a walk near their hotel and having ice cream.
Yoon Jung-min, Arirang News.