MANILA, Philippines, Nov. 12 (Yonhap) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in arrived here Sunday for regional forums hosted by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Moon will attend a Korea-ASEAN summit on Monday with the leaders of all 10 ASEAN member countries. It will be followed the next day by the so-called ASEAN Plus Three summit that will also involve the leaders of China and Japan, according to Seoul's presidential office Cheong Wa Dae.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his wife Kim Jung-sook wave their hands after arriving in Manila, the Philippines on Nov. 12, 2017 for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations forum. (Yonhap)South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his wife Kim Jung-sook wave their hands after arriving in Manila, the Philippines on Nov. 12, 2017 for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations forum. (Yonhap)
It will mark the first time for the South Korean president to take part in the annual talks aimed at promoting cooperation between the Northeast and Southeast Asian countries.
Moon has vowed to greatly improve his country's cooperation with the ASEAN countries both diplomatically and economically.
While on a state visit to Indonesia, an ASEAN member, the South Korean leader unveiled a plan to increase his country's annual trade with ASEAN to more than US$200 billion by 2020.
He also underscored the importance of their support in reining in North Korea's evolving nuclear and missile capabilities, noting each and every one of the 10 ASEAN countries had diplomatic ties with the communist state.
Moon's trip here followed his visit to Vietnam for the annual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit where he stressed the need to maintain maximum pressure on Pyongyang but resolve the North Korean nuclear standoff peacefully in the end.
While in Manila for the ASEAN meeting, the South Korean leader will also hold bilateral talks with the leaders of the Philippines and Singapore.
This week's forum here will include the annual East Asia Summit that will involve all 13 countries in the ASEAN Plus Three meeting and three others -- Australia, New Zealand and Russia.
Moon will head home on Wednesday, ending his four-day visit here.