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Train journey marks 30th anniversary of Asean-Korea

Republic of Korea: Some 200 delegates from the 10 Asean Member States and Korea representing government, business academia, art, media and youth on Wednesday attended the launch of the ‘Asean-Korea Train: Advancing Together’ programme at Seoul Station.
The event heralds a new era in Asean-Korea partnership, with the three-day train trip starting at Seoul and visiting Gyeongju, Busan, Suncheon and Gwangiu over three days.
The launch ceremony was led by Park Young-sun, Minister of Small and Medium Enterprises and Startups and, Dr Pe Myint, Union Minister of Myanmar together with about 40 high-level representatives from Asean countries.
The 200 Asean and Korean participants are making the trip in support of the 2019 Asean-Republic of Korea Commemorative Summit. The programme is hosted by Korea’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and organised by the Asean Korean centre from October 15 to 19.
The “Asean-Korea Train” brings the peoples of Asean and Korea together to celebrate the past 30 years of remarkable partnership and share wishes for another 30 years of greater prosperity and peace.

Representatives of the government of the Republic of Korea, diplomats and participants from Asean and Korea on Wednesday gather at Seoul Station to launch the Asean-Korea cooperation programme.

October 16 marked the 40-day countdown to the Asean-Republic of Korea Commemorative Summit 2019.
During the stops at Gyeongju, Busan, Suncheon Gwangju and Seoul programme participants will take part in economic, cultural and peace celebrations (representing the People, Prosperity and Peace of the New Southern Policy) under the overarching theme of “Advancing Together”.
Artists and performers from the 11 countries will also share their musical talents through various performances during the six-hour train ride.
In the afternoon, participants were welcomed by Joo Nak-young, Mayor of Gyeongju where they visited the ancient city and Bulguksa Temple, one of Korea’s first UNESCO World Heritage sites. The tour was an occasion for Asean and Korea to recognise the importance of regional and global cooperation in protecting and preserving the numerous cultural and natural heritages in both regions.
Later in the evening, participants arrived in Busan, the host city of the Asean-Republic of Korea Commemorative Summit 2019 to celebrate the end of the first day at the “Asean Korea Prosperity Night.”
Oh Keo-don, Mayor of Busan, together with representatives of government, businesses and academia from Busan, joined the celebration and reaffirmed Busan’s commitment to strengthen cooperation with Asean over the next 30 years.
Today on October 17, the Asean-Korea Train will head to Suncheon and Gwangju. ln Suncheon, where the city is celebrating “Visit Suncheon Year,” participants will take part in an ecotour of the Suncheon Bay Wetland Reserve, one of the five largest wetlands in the world.
Also, a student performer from Asean will give a surprise busking performance of Korean and Asean music for all the visitors at the reserve.
In Gwangju, the Asia Culture Centre will welcome the participants with a special exhibition on Asean-Korea which is being held in the lead up to the Asean-Korea Ministerial Meeting on Culture.
Featuring “wish lanterns” as well as water, light, and fabrics that are commonly found in the Asean and Korean cultures, the special exhibition will use media-art technology to express the unity and harmony of Asean and Korea.
On October 18, the Asean-Korea Train will end its three-day journey in Seoul. Representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Asean diplomatic corps will join the final ceremony to congratulate the success of the train journey and welcome the start of a new 30 year-journey of friendship and prosperity. Artists from 11 countries will be joined by baritone Kim Dong-kyu and the Millennium Symphony Orchestra for a special peace wishing concert.
For the grand finale, all the participants will bring their hearts and minds together to wish for lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula and Asia as they sing “Our Hope”.

By Times Reporters
(Latest Update October 17, 2019)

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