S.Korea to boost Myanmar ties

SEOUL - South Korean President Lee Myung Bak told visiting Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi Tuesday that Seoul wants to help her country create greater economic opportunities for its people.

Aung San Suu Kyi (AFP photo)

"Economic development and democratisation should be realised at the same time," Lee said to the democracy campaigner and former political prisoner, according to the presidential office.

South Korea would try to increase economic cooperation with Myanmar and help it create more work opportunities for young people, Lee was quoted as saying by his spokeswoman.

Suu Kyi expressed her hope that more workers from her country would be able to go to South Korea to find jobs or take part in a South Korean programme that allows young people from developing nations to get job training, the spokeswoman said.

South Korea's quota for trainees from Myanmar was expanded from 3,500 in 2012 to 4,900 this year, the spokeswoman said. About 6,600 people from Myanmar are currently working in South Korea.

The 67-year-old Nobel Peace Prize laureate also met with president-elect Park Geun Hye, who is to be inaugurated next month as South Korea's first female head of state.

In their meeting, Park congratulated Suu Kyi on her election last April to Myanmar's parliament, saying she believes it was "an important first step" for the country's democracy, South Korea's national Yonhap News Agency reported.

Suu Kyi, who arrived in South Korea Monday, also planned to attend Tuesday's opening ceremony of the Special Olympics World Winter Games 2013 in Pyeongchang, speak to the Global Development Summit Wednesday and accept the Gwangju Prize for Human Rights before returning to Myanmar Friday.

Related search: South Korea, Myanmar, economy, cooperation, Suu Kyi, Lee Myung Bak

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