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Central Asia, S. Korea pledge to strengthen youth cooperation

Turkmenistan hosts 16th Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum

Nov. 6, 2023 - 14:16 By Sanjay Kumar
From left: Kazakhstan Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Murat Nurtleu, Kyrgyzstan Foreign Minister Zheenbek Kulubaev, South Korean Foreign Minister Park Jin, Tajikistan Foreign Minister Sirojiddin Muhriddin and Uzbekistan Foreign Minister Baxtiyor Saidov pose for a group photo at the 16th Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. (Embassy of Turkmenistan in Seoul)

Foreign ministers from South Korea, Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan reaffirmed their commitment to enhancing youth cooperation during the 16th Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, the host nation's embassy said Friday.

According to the embassy, the meeting underscored a sustainable future for both Central Asia and South Korea, recognizing the potential of youth in both regions and the need to formulate policies and strategies for future partnerships.

Turkmenistan is celebrating 2023 as the "Year of Youth" and has proposed several initiatives to bolster youth engagement. Turkmenistan's proposal includes creating a comprehensive strategy for international cooperation between Central Asian youth and South Korea.

The strategy encompasses education, science, sports, culture, joint training programs, digital knowledge initiatives, and the establishment of an international student center and an institute for supporting youth innovation.

Attendees see a glimpse of Turkmen's traditional culture showcased during the 16th Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. (Embassy of Turkmenistan in Seoul)

The proposal includes a "Young Talents" program and a road map for intercultural exchanges from 2025 to 2030.

According to the embassy, the Turkmen delegation also stressed expanding Central Asia’s collaboration with the Korea International Cooperation Agency, the Korea Foundation and the Global Green Growth Institute.

Ministers at the forum acknowledged the significance of Korean businesses operating in Central Asia and their involvement in joint projects across various sectors and mutual interests of Central Asian and South Korean populations in science, education, medicine, tourism, environmental protection, industry, agriculture, textiles, high-tech, digitalization, and cultural exchange, the embassy said.

The 17th Korea-Central Asia Cooperation Forum will be held in 2024 in South Korea.