Barbados and the Republic of Korea have made some progress in strengthening their relationship, but there are still several areas which need to be exploited.
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart expressed this view recently, when he met with that country???s Ambassador, Wonkun Hwang, during a farewell courtesy call at Ilaro Court.
Mr. Stuart said there was need for more cultural interaction and stated that he was looking forward to both countries deepening their relationship at the cultural level.
He noted that Barbados was trying to develop its cultural industries and had established a Cultural Industry Authority, as legislation to that effect had been put on the statute books.
He added that this island wanted to develop its film industry and would be interested in seeing how it could benefit from South Korea???s expertise.
The Prime Minister said he would also like to see tourists coming from that country and Ambassador Hwang agreed, saying tourism officials here must be more focused on tapping into the South Korean market.
He suggested that Barbados??? Ambassador to Beijing should be used to promote tourism in that part of the world, and Prime Minister Stuart disclosed that plans were in the works to facilitate this exposure.
Mr. Stuart said the Republic of Korea had been very good to Barbados and thanked the envoy for its gift of energy efficient vehicles and equipment. He added that this island, like South Korea, was committed to a green economy.
Ambassador Hwang said the Barbados Government had supported South Korea in a number of areas over the years and expressed the hope that it would continue. He promised to continue promoting bilateral relations between both countries.
The envoy also told the Prime Minister that his country had offered Barbados a number of scholarships but they had not been taken up. Mr. Stuart gave the assurance that he would investigate the matter, especially since Barbados ???attaches very high importance to education???.