Kuwait celebrates 51st year of nation’s founding
The following is a message by Kuwaiti Ambassador to Korea Muteb Al-Mutoteh on the occasion of the 51st Anniversary of the National Day and the 21st Liberation Day of the State of Kuwait, which falls on Feb. 25 and Feb. 26, respectively. — ED.
I would like to take the opportunity on this delightful occasion to extend my regards and best wishes of the people and government of the State of Kuwait and to the friendly people and government of the Republic of Korea.
Bilateral relations between Kuwait and South Korea have grown and expanded in various fields over the last 33 years since diplomatic relations between the State of Kuwait and the Republic of Korea were officially established in June 1979.
Kuwait has maintained a close relationship with the Republic of Korea on the economic front. In 2011, the volume of bilateral trade reached $16.3 billion, increasing around 36 percent from the year before, proving that South Korea is one of the major trading partners to Kuwait.
Korean companies have succeeded in winning numerous bids worth billions of dollars for the construction of oil infrastructure, which will become the main centers for oil, and for the expansion of the oil ports’ construction field.
These Korean companies have won the bid for a project regarding drilling in Al-Ahmadi governorate worth $2.85 billion and also for expanding the Al-Ahmadi port worth $850 million. In addition back in Kuwait, a number of small-, medium- and large-sized Korean companies are actively participating in key state-run projects in Kuwait.
South Korea, as one of the largest customers of Kuwaiti oil and oil products, imported more than 104 million barrels of crude oil, which makes Kuwait Korea’s 2nd largest crude oil importing country. In addition, Kuwaiti oil tanker companies have ordered Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) to construct oil and gas tankers for Kuwait. Furthermore, the Kuwaiti government and companies have ordered various construction projects through Korean companies such as SK and Hyundai Engineering & Construction.
The economic cooperation between the two countries is mutually beneficial to both countries and generates significant synergies and greatly contributes to the co-prosperity of the two friendly countries.
In 2011, numerous visits between the two countries in various fields also contributed deeply to the development of the bilateral relations.
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Al-Fahad Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah, president of the Olympic Council of Asia, paid an official visit to the Republic of Korea on November 2011.
A delegation from the Kuwait Fire Service Directorate led by General Jassim Al Mansouri arrived here to attend a naming ceremony for the fire fighting boat (MOJAWEB) on March 7, 2011, and a delegation from the Ministry of Justice headed by Acting Attorney General Darrar Al-Assousi presented for the State of Kuwait in the 4th World Summit of Prosecutors General.
Another delegation from the Security Decisions Follow-up Committee visited the Oil and Gas Command, Control and Crises Management Centre in The Republic of South Korea in September 2011 to exchange information about training requirements that complement the ability to build in fields of command and control, and Incident Management and Integrated Emergency Management response within the Oil and Gas Sector.
The State of Kuwait had the honor to participate in the 8th Korea-Middle East Cooperation Forum which was held on Jeju Island in October 2011 and the main theme was “Strengthening the Korea-GCC Relationship in a Time of Change”.
Lastly, the minister of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs of Korea Mr. Kwon Do-youb paid a visit to the State of Kuwait where he met with Kuwaiti Prime Minister and Defense Minister Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah to discuss bilateral issues of mutual concern.