Jorge Costa Oliveira, Portuguese secretary of state for internationalization affairs, wound up a five-day official visit to Korea on June 15, designed to cement bilateral ties between the two countries. His latest visit is the second following an official visit last November.
In Korea, Secretary Jorge Costa Oliveira had meetings with Korea Foreign Ministry officials and Korean business leaders to discuss ways of promoting bilateral relationships. He was accompanied by a multi-sector entrepreneurial delegation, composed of six companies from home textiles, luxe ceramics and pharmaceutical sectors.
The delegation participated in B2B meetings as well as joint initiatives with Korean economic and business organizations, including the Korea International Trade Association (KITA). Secretary Jorge Costa Oliveira said his delegation talked about ways of promoting bilateral relationships and joint initiatives to have synergetic effects for both countries during meetings with Korean business organization and company leaders. He had lunch with Korean Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Affairs Lee Tae-ho to exchange opinions on bilateral ties on June 12. In the morning of the same day, the Portuguese delegation met with Vice President Choi Su-gyu of the Korea Federation of SMEs and exchanged views and information, including Portuguese competitiveness poles and clusters as European good practices and how to promote collaboration between SMEs of both countries.
On June 13, Secretary Jorge Costa Oliveira met with Vice Chairman Kim Hyeong-myeong of the Korea Importers Association (KOIMA). During his previous visit, the Portuguese secretary participated in a ceremony to sign an MOU on cooperation between Aicep Portugal Global, Portugal’s Trade & Investment Agency, and KOIMA in Seoul last Nov. 4.
Secretary Jorge Costa Oliveira met with Vice President Back Young-seon of the International Contractors Association of Korea (ICAK). He and his delegates exchanged views on potential cooperation with Korean companies in their countries. Sonia Oliveira, with the CPCI/Portuguese Confederation of Construction and Real Estate, one of the delegates, said his organization is expected to sign an MOU on cooperation with the ICAK. The delegation later had a meeting with infrastructure department directors of Hyundai E&C, including Kang Yeoung-hee and Kim Dong-wook as well as Director Jin Jong-gu of the Global Marketing Department, and touched on potential cooperation between Portuguese companies and Hyundai E&C in third countries. Secretary Jorge Costa Oliveira also met with Vice Chairman Lee Dong-geun of the Korea Chamber of Commerce & Industry.
Secretary Jorge Costa Oliveira delivered an opening speech at a seminar titled “Portugal Maximizing Your Export Potential in South Korea,” which took place at the COEX in Seoul on June 14 in a partnership with the Korea International Trade Association.
A Portuguese wine & food tasting event, hosted by Secretary Jorge Costa Oliveira at Cabo da Roca Cascas Wines Bar in Bongcheon-ro, Seoul, at 7:30 p.m. on June 13, served as an occasion for the Portuguese delegation to promote a networking with Korean counterparts. Bruno Alves with the business department of the Portuguese pharmaceutical company Tecnimede said his delegation exchanged ways of promoting collaboration with Korean counterparts.
White and red wines from the Portuguese wine brand CASCA Wines, and Portuguese foods including codfish food, were served during the event. Kim Oh-sung, an exclusive Korean importer of CASCA Wines, said a wine tasting at last year’s exhibition received a good reception, and orders for CASCA Wines, considered to be good quality at more reasonable prices compared with French wines, have begun to come in by the mouth of word. One month ago, Kim opened the wine cafe bar to promote CASCA Wines varieties. He expressed hope that the Portuguese wine brand will tap the Korean wine import market, which imports an estimated 50 million wine bottles annually.