India-Korea ties to spur maritime trade, energy, film sectors

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is scheduled to visit South Korea on May 18-19, will sign separate agreements with the Republic of Korea, for cooperation in the fields of maritime transport and logistics, power, and film industries.

 The Dollar Business Bureau South Korea India and South Korea are likely to join hands to boost sea transport, energy and film industries of the two countries.  Prime Minister Narendra Modi who began his five-day tour to Asian countries on Thursday is scheduled to visit South Korea on May 18-19. Modi is expected to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Republic of Korea for cooperation in the fields of maritime transport and logistics. The MoU is aimed at enhancing cooperation through sharing of technologies, information and experiences, training of seafarers and port operation, a government statement said. The new agreement will also facilitate partnerships between the maritime transport and logistics-related companies of the two countries, development and management of domestic and overseas ports, exchange of expertise and research on maritime developments. Besides, India and South Korea will also sign pacts for cooperation in electric power development and new energy industries. An agreement to this effect was approved by the Union Cabinet at a meeting chaired by the Prime Minister on Wednesday. This MoU will provide a framework for establishing contacts between governmental entities and public authorities of both countries in the field of electric power development and new energy industry. The cooperation will also facilitate exchange of knowledge and experience aiming to create opportunities for investment in both the countries. “The MoU is expected to take forward development in the power sector for providing equitable access to reliable electricity supply to consumers through bilateral cooperation,” the government statement said. The agreement will focus on bilateral cooperation in the areas of electric power development, renewable energy, smart grids and power information and technology, transmission and distribution of electric power, energy efficiency and energy storage systems, etc. The move is expected to improve energy security, reliability of supply and facilitate sustainable economic growth, the statement said. During his visit, the prime minister will also sign an agreement on the audio-visual co-production. “Cooperation between the film industries of the two countries will not only promote export of Indian films but will also act as a catalyst towards creating awareness about India and its culture,” the statement added. Producers from both countries can pool in their creative, artistic, technical, financial and marketing resources to make films. Co-productions will provide an opportunity to create and showcase the 'soft power' of India. It will also open avenues for artists and personnel engaged in post-production marketing, adding to the country's GDP. Use of Indian sites in shooting will increase prospects of India as a preferred film shooting destination. It will add inflow of foreign exchange into the country. According to experts, South Korea which has the world’s largest ship building industry can contribute India's manufacturing growth. Apart from being among the largest producers of electronic products and automobile sector, South Korea also leads in e-governance and internet penetration. Experts suggest India to explore ways to curb its trade deficit with South Korea and diversify its export basket. At present, more than 50% of the Indian export to South Korea is naphtha.    

May 14, 2015 | 4:15 pm IST.

The Dollar Business Bureau - May 14, 2015 12:00 IST