Joint Statement of the 2010 Korea-Australia Dialogue

The 2010 Korea-Australia Dialogue was held from May 26 to 27 2010 at the Shilla Hotel, Seoul, Korea. The Dialogue, co-organized by the Korea Foundation, the Korea-Australia Foundation and the Australia-Korea Foundation, and co-hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of the Republic of Korea and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Australia, brought together 14 distinguished policymakers, scholars and experts from each side. Mr HAN Sung Joo, former ROK Minister for Foreign Affairs, led the South Korean delegation, while Mr Robert Ray, former Australian Minister for Defence, led the Australian delegation. A list of other participants is attached. Under the overarching theme of "Expanding Cooperation in the 2010s", Dialogue participants engaged in in-depth and fruitful discussions on ways to further strengthen the bilateral relationship between Korea and Australia — including foreign and security policies, trade and economic links and cultural and people-to-people exchanges. Participants agreed to the following:

The participants of both sides acknowledged that the Korea-Australia relationship has seen unprecedented progress in recent times, based on shared values, common interests and strong friendship between leaders of Korea and Australia and within the common framework of each country's alliances with the United States, as well as cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region and in multilateral institutions, including the United Nations. To take full advantage of this increased momentum, both sides undertook to make every effort to build on the progress that has been made and to produce concrete outcomes — not only at the bilateral level, but also at the regional and global level.

With regard to the security environment, the participants agreed to enhance further bilateral cooperation based on the two countries' alliance relationships with the United States, including through joint military exercises and joint research and technology development in defense industries. They acknowledged the importance in this regard of the Joint Statement on Enhanced Global and Security Cooperation issued by the Korean President and the Australian Prime Minister in March 2009, which provides a comprehensive framework for strengthening cooperation on security issues.

Concerning the Cheonan incident, both sides affirmed that North Korea continues to pose a serious threat to peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region. They acknowledged that the participation of Australian experts in the international investigation into the sinking of the Cheonan was a highly encouraging development in terms of institutionalizing bilateral cooperation between Korea and Australia. Furthermore, both sides fully endorsed the scientific and objective result of the investigation by the international joint civilian-military investigation group, and stressed that the relevant experts from both countries should take a proactive approach to explaining the outcome of the investigation to the international community.

The participants shared the view that Korea and Australia should work together to enhance further the cooperative relationship in the fields of traditional and non-traditional regional security issues, such as cyber-security and disaster relief and rescue.

The participants concurred that in order to play a leading role in promoting our shared values and resolving regional issues, Korea and Australia should make further efforts to institutionalize the cooperative bilateral relationship, in particular through consultations in multilateral institutions, including the United Nations. Both parties undertook to continue discussion on concrete ways to cooperate in multilateral settings in the near future.

The participants agreed that Korea and Australia should continue to cooperate on the development of various regional cooperation initiatives in the Asia-Pacific region including the Asia Pacific community proposal, and EAS+2 and ASEAN+8 groupings. Furthermore, with respect to encouraging China to accept greater responsibility as a major stakeholder in the region, both sides shared the view that as middle-power countries, Korea and Australia should cooperate and collaborate in conveying to China messages representing the views of the regional and international community. They also agreed that there is significant potential for both countries to contribute further to peace and stability in Afghanistan.

Both sides took note of the remarkable growth that Korea and Australia had achieved in the field of economic and trade ties, and agreed that they should strengthen further economic ties and expand bilateral economic opportunities, by concluding the Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement currently under negotiation.

Both sides agreed that Korea and Australia should not only expand bilateral trade but also diversify the bilateral economic relationship in various fields, including services, investment, and energy. Participants identified a number of areas for diversifying economic cooperation, stressing that both countries should work together, inter alia, to lower institutional barriers in order to achieve substantial economic cooperation:

  • Information technology of Korea and biotechnology of Australia;
  • Exploration and development of energy resources, including LNG;
  • Renewable energy resources, including solar and wind power;
  • Establishment of a financial hub through the opening of the Korean capital market;
  • Investment in energy and mineral resources in Australia;
  • Investment and participation of Korea in building infrastructure in Australia.

Participants underscored the importance of ongoing close bilateral cooperation to achieve substantial progress in the WTO negotiations and to strengthen and institutionalize the G-20 as the premier forum for international economic cooperation.

With respect to cultural and people-to-people exchanges, participants pointed out the relatively low level of mutual understanding and awareness of each country, and agreed to work together to expand the foundation for bilateral people-to-people exchanges in a wide range of fields. To expand people-to-people exchanges between Korea and Australia, participants proposed the following:

  • Promotion of Korean Studies in Australia and Australian Studies in Korea and expansion of government support for Korean and Australian Studies Centers in both countries;
  • Promotion of student exchange programs and establishment of joint degree programs in universities, and enhancement of institutional cooperation including cooperation between research institutes;
  • Establishment of joint scholarship programs sponsored by the Korea-Australia Foundation and the Australia-Korea Foundation;
  • Development of joint internship programs in close cooperation between Korean and Australian corporations;
  • Expansion of expert exchange programs including journalist exchanges, and establishment of cooperation at the level of media companies;
  • Promotion of Korean culture and tourism marketing in Australia; and
  • Promotion of exchanges between the Korean and Australian legislatures, particularly exchanges between young members of the Australian Parliament and Korean National Assembly.


Korea (14)

In alphabetical order except for Co-Chair

HAN Sung Joo
Co-Chair, Korea-Australia Dialogue 2010
Chairman, Bidding Committee for the 2022 World Cup Korea
Professor Emeritus, Korea University
Former Minister for Foreign Affairs
Former Korean Ambassador to the United States
CHOI Jong-moon
Director-General, South Asian and Pacific Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MOFAT)
KANG Tae Young
Vice President, POSCO Research Institute
KIM Kyungsoo
Director-General, International Economic Affairs Bureau, MOFAT
KIM Sung-yup
Acting President, Korea Foundation
LEE Chung Min
Dean, Graduate School of International Studies, Yonsei University
Ambassador for International Security Affairs and Global Issues, MOFAT
LEE Hee-Beom
Chairman and CEO, STX Energy•STX Heavy Industries
Former Chairman & CEO, Korea International Trade Association
Former Minister, Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy
Former President, Seoul National University of Technology
LEE Hyoung-Keun
President, KIA Motors Corporation
MOON Kyounghee
Professor, Department of International Relations, Changwon National University
PARK Se-yong
Chairman, Korea-Australia Foundation
Former Chairman of Hyundai Steels
Former President of Hyundai Corporation
Former President of Hyundai Merchant Marine Co. Ltd.
SEO Jung Soo
Professor, Department of International Commerce, Keimyung University
SHIN Heon Cheol
Vice Chairman, SK Energy
SON Hyunduck
Politics Editor, Maeil Business Newspaper
YUN Byung-Se
Visiting Professor, GSIS, Sogang University
Senior Advisor, Kim and Chang Law Office
Former Deputy National Security Advisor to the President
Former Deputy Foreign Minister

Australia (14)

In alphabetical order except for Co-Chair

Robert Ray
Co-Chair, Korea-Australia Dialogue 2010
Chairman, Australian Political Exchange Council
Former Minister for Defence, Former Minister for Immigration
Kaye Basford
Professor of Biometry and Head of the School of Land, Crop and Food Sciences, University of Queensland
Arch Bevis
Labor Member of the House of Representatives
Chair, Joint Defence Sub-Committee, Parliament of Australia
Chair, Joint Intelligence and Security Committee, Parliament of Australia
Rowan Callick
Asia-Pacific Editor, The Australian
Ian Chubb
Vice Chancellor and President, Australian National University
John Denton
Board Member, Business Council of Australia
Partner and CEO, Corrs Chambers Westgarth
Australian Member, Advisory Council for the Seoul G20 Business Summit
John Fisher
Assistant Secretary, Indonesia, Regional Issues and East Timor Branch, South-East Asia Division, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)
Graham Fletcher
First Assistant Secretary, North Asia Division, DFAT
Sam Gerovich
Australian Ambassador to the Republic of Korea
David Palmer
Chair, Australia Korea Foundation
Managing Director, Meat and Livestock Australia
Belinda Robinson
Chief Executive, Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA)
Erica Smyth
Chair, Toro Energy Ltd.
Former GM External Affairs, Woodside Petroleum
Russell Trood
Liberal Senator for Queensland
Chair, Senate References Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade
Former Director, Centre for the Study of Australia-Asia Relations, Griffith University
John Walker
Chairman, Macquarie Group of Companies, Korea
President, Australia Korea Business Council
Last Updated: 29 January 2013