SEJONG, Oct. 5 (Yonhap) -- South Korea and Britain agreed to cooperate on a bilateral free trade deal in order to maintain their strong economic ties even after London exits the European Union, Seoul's finance ministry said Friday.
The agreement came at a meeting in Seoul between South Korean Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon and Britain's International Trade Minister Liam Fox.
South Korea and Britain have been in working-level talks on establishing a new trade deal once London exits the European Union.
Seoul signed a free trade agreement with the EU in 2011, but it will have to strike a fresh arrangement with London once Britain formally leaves the 28-nation bloc in 2019.
Britain is South Korea's second-largest trading partner in Europe, with bilateral trade volume having increased from $8.79 billion in 2011 to $13.52 billion in 2015, according to government data.
South Korea's auto industry has benefited most from the implementation of the FTA with the EU, while Britain's exports of crude oil, vehicles and cosmetics have greatly increased over the past six years.
The British minister promised support for the improvement of inter-Korean relations and the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, according to the ministry.
The two countries will also cooperate on fighting trade protectionism and strengthening the global financial system, it added.