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Korea and Oman discuss trade and energy infrastructure cooperation 2022-10-21

Trade Minister Ahn Duk-geun met with Khalifa bin ali Al Harthy, Undersecretary for Diplomatic Affairs at Oman's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on October 20 and discussed investment, energy infrastructure, renewable energy, green hydrogen cooperation and requested Oman’s support for World EXPO Busan 2030.

Despite the pandemic impact, Korea-Oman trade is recently growing, recording USD 4.5 billion this year as of September, a historic high in five years.

With respect to LNG, Oman is Korea’s fourth largest supplier (9.6 percent) and Korea is Oman’s biggest buyer (44.2 percent), with natural gas taking up 80 percent of their total trade.

Amid recent uncertainties in the global gas market, the two countries agree that stable energy supply chain is key. Based on their existing energy and infrastructure trade relations, bilateral cooperation will expand to new industries like renewable energy and green hydrogen.

Mentioning the Korean companies currently participating in the Duqm oil refinery project and desalination plant project in Oman, Trade Minister Ahn stated that he looked forward to seeing them continue to contribute to local economy and social development policies, such as Oman Vision 2040. He added that a joint Korea-Oman Economic Committee could emerge in the near future to strengthen mutual investment and energy cooperation.

Korea broke the ten-year hiatus in its FTA negotiations with the GCC in January 2022. Korea-GCC FTA will translate into a stronger systemic foundation for Korea-Oman trade and investment.

Recognizing Oman’s Foreign Affairs Ministry’s major role in the World EXPO, Minister Ahn called for Oman to support Busan as host city of the coming event, relaying South Korea’s aspiration to share its solution and global vision for the future.