U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke on June 15 hosted a meeting and signed a memorandum of understanding on commercial cooperation with South Korea’s Minister of Knowledge Economy Lee Youn Ho at the Department of Commerce. It was the first meeting between Secretary Locke and Minister Lee.
Secretary Locke and Minister Lee confirmed the importance of further strengthening the U.S.-Korea commercial relationship and continuing to deepen cooperation on trade and investment issues.
Secretary Locke and Minister Lee expressed support for removing barriers to trade, including finding a way forward on the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement and working cooperatively on a successful conclusion to the Doha round of World Trade Organization negotiations. They agreed that the KORUS FTA has the potential to provide significant benefits to manufacturers, service providers, farmers, ranchers, and workers both in the United States and in Korea.
“In 2008, the United States and Korea traded $83 billion in goods, a record,” said Secretary Locke. “Despite the turmoil in the global economy, I believe that, through further mutual efforts to tear down barriers to trade around the world, we can secure a stronger future for American companies and workers.”
Immediately following the meeting, Secretary Locke and Minister Lee signed an MOU on commercial cooperation. The MOU outlines enhanced bilateral cooperation between the department and the ministry in the areas of trade and investment; high technology and strategic trade; and standards and research and development.