SECRETARIAT [COMPLETED] 2019.10.16 ~ 2019.10.18
On October 16th, which marked the 40-day countdown to the ASEAN-Republic of Korea Commemorative Summit 2019, the “ASEAN-Korea Train” began its 3-day journey with 200 delegates from 10 ASEAN Member States and Korea representing government, business academia, art, media and youth on board.
Hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and organized by the ASEAN-Korea Centre (AKC), the “ASEAN-Korea Train” brought the peoples of ASEAN and Korea together to celebrate the past 30 years of remarkable partnership and share wishes for a new 30 years of greater prosperity and peace.
Over the 3 days, the train visited Gyeongju, Busan, Suncheon, Gwangju and Seoul where the participants took part in economic, cultural and peace celebrations (representing the 3Ps of the New Southern Policy) under the overarching theme of “Advancing Together”. Artists and performers from the 11 countries also shared their musical talents through various performances during the 6-hour train ride.
■ October 16th, Launching a New Era of Shared Prosperity
H.E. Park Young-sun, Minister of SMEs and Startups, H.E. Dr. Pe Myint, Union Minister of Myanmar along with about 40 high-level representatives from both ASEAN and Korea attended the launching ceremony in the morning of October 16th at the Seoul Station to congratulate the take-off of the ASEAN-Korea Train
In the afternoon, H.E. Joo Nak-young, Mayor of Gyeongju welcomed the participants to the ancient city and together visited the Bulguksa Temple, one of Korea’s first UNESCO World Heritage sites. The tour served as an occasion for ASEAN and Korea to recognize 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.” H.E. 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 for the next 30 years.
■ October 17th, Becoming One through Nature and Culture
On October 17th, the ASEAN-Korea Train headed to Suncheon and Gwangju. In Suncheon, where the city is celebrating the “Visit Suncheon Year,” participants took part in an eco-tour of the Suncheon Bay Wetland Reserve, one of the five largest wetlands in the world. Also, a student performer from ASEAN gave a surprise busking performance of Korean and ASEAN music for all the visitors at the reserve to enjoy.
In Gwangju, the Asia Culture Center welcomed the participants with a special exhibition on ASEAN-Korea which was held in the lead up to the ASEAN-Korea Ministerial Meeting on Culture. Featuring “wish lanterns” as well as water, light, and fabric, that are commonly found in the ASEAN and Korean cultures. The special exhibition used media-art technology to express the unity and harmony of ASEAN and Korea.
■ October 18th, Toward a Peaceful and Prosperous Community centered our Peoples
On October 18th, the ASEAN-Korea Train ended its 3-day journey in Seoul. Representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the ASEAN diplomatic corps joined the final ceremony to congratulate the success of the train journey and welcomed the beginning of a new 30 year-journey of friendship and prosperity. Artists from 11 countries were joined by Baritone Kim Dong-kyu and the Millennium Symphony Orchestra for a special peace wishing concert. For the grand finale, all the participants brought their hearts and minds together to wish for lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula and Asia as they sang “Our Hope”.