News / Asia

    Russia Seeks Investment And Trade In South Korea

    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, left, and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak shake hands before their press conference  in Seoul, South Korea. Medevev is on an official visit to South Korea. Twenty world leaders, including Medvedev, will come togethe
    Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, left, and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak shake hands before their press conference in Seoul, South Korea. Medevev is on an official visit to South Korea. Twenty world leaders, including Medvedev, will come togethe
    James Brooke

    On Russia's coat of arms, the double-headed eagle looks west and east.  Russia's president is now in South Korea, promoting energy sales to Korea and Korean investment in Russia. 

    Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev is promoting a 40-year deal to sell gas to South Korea, and appealing for Korean industrial investment to help diversify Russia's economy.

    Russia's leader said in Seoul his country is interested in the arrival of Korean investors.  He says they bring in modern technologies and introduce a modern culture of production.

    Looking for bricks and mortar investments from Asia, Russians like to cite South Korea's Lotte group, which opened a 300-room luxury hotel in September in downtown Moscow.

    At the same time, Hyundai opened a $500-million auto assembly plant in St. Petersburg.  Supplied by Korean auto parts plants set up nearby, the Hyundai plant has the highest percentage of locally produced content of any foreign carmaker in Russia.

    With Samsung and LG, employing  hundreds of Russian scientists at their research centers in Russia, President Medvedev called for more such 'modernization alliances'.  In Seoul this week, Russians are in talks with Korean companies to build ships, electric transformers, and offshore oil drilling platforms in Vladivostok, Russia's major port on the Pacific.

    Russian expert on Korean affairs Leonid Petrov  now teaches at the University of Sydney.

    ''Regrettably, the eastern part of Russia is still under developed and under-populated," Petrov explains, "and Russia is trying to look at Korea as a potential developer and investor, and competitor to the Chinese developers and investor."

    In the gas deal under negotiation, potentially worth $100-billion, the Korean Gas Corporation would also build a liquefied natural gas plant in Vladivostok.

    The chief operating officer of Gazprom, Russia's state-controlled gas producer, Alexei Miller, tells reporters in Seoul that Russia sees a big future in gas exports to Asia.

    While Europe remains Gazprom's top priority, he said, the volume of Russian gas deliveries to the Asian market could reach the level of gas exports to Europe within a very short period time.

    Last year, South Korea started importing Russian oil through a new Siberian pipeline and Russian liquefied natural gas from Sakhalin Island.  With Russia-Korea trade jumping in the past decade, diplomats from both countries are negotiating a visa-free visitor plan.

    Not all is roses with Korea.

    Last spring, South Korea's embassy in Moscow appealed to Russian authorities to protect the 2,000 South Korean students in Russia.  In two attacks blamed on skinheads, one Korean student was killed and another was injured.

    At the same time, North Korea blocks construction of gas and rail lines that would link South Korea's booming economy with the riches of Russia's Siberia.  For the past two decades, Professor Petrov has watched as Russia and South Korea failed to overcome North Korean opposition to such transit links.

    "The main problem in this region is the black hole of North Korea which is on the way between Russia, China and South Korea.  And you cannot do much about it because you have to decide whether the pipe is going to go through the North Korean territory and then Pyongyanag is going to hijack and shipment any transit of oil and gas or electricity from Russia or China to South Korea and it becomes unpredictable," Petrov said.

    Russia's president touched on the potential instability of North Korea.  Before arriving in Seoul, he told a South Korean newspaper he is "uneasy" that North Korea's nuclear-bomb testing range is slightly more than 100 kilometers from Vladivostok.

    You May Like

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    City could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters

    Turkey Aims New Crackdown at Journalists, Academics, Airline Workers

    Ankara continues targeting people allegedly linked to exiled cleric, who it says led the failed military coup

    Pakistan Ready to Inaugurate Rebuilt Afghan Border Crossing

    Construction of Torkham Gate triggered deadly clashes between Pakistani and Afghan military forces

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora