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Korea eyes emerging markets to boost trade

Jan. 6, 2011 - 18:38 By 황장진
Korea must look for new opportunities in newly emerging markets, such as Africa and South America, to continue expanding its exports, while also seeking to establish a stronger presence in the $9 trillion global public procurement market, a local trade agency said Thursday.

The announcement came as the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) launched a global market forum at a Seoul hotel, offering country- and industry-specific sessions on how to start new businesses in the emerging markets, including China and India, as well as global software and government procurement markets.

The two-day forum comes as KOTRA is set to host next week its annual trade promotion event, Buy Korea Week, where hundreds of traders from around the world will come to Korea for a chance to meet up with local suppliers and importers.

“The global market forum will offer valuable information to our businesspeople on countries in Africa, which is not available anywhere else as it only comes from years of KOTRA’s own experience in the countries,” KOTRA president Cho Hwan-eik told reporters.
KOTRA president Cho Hwan-eik  (Yonhap News)

Some 1,500 people are expected to attend the forum as more than 300 people have already signed up for the Africa forum alone, according to KOTRA.

Korea is seeking to increase its trade volume to over $1 trillion for the first time in its history this year.

“It is not a goal that will come easily unless we work very hard and ceaselessly from the very beginning of the year,” Cho said of the reason for holding the annual forum and trade promotion week in early January instead of in March when they were usually held. (Yonhap News)