ASEAN – Korea train spotlights friendship and cooperation hinh anh 1The ASEAN-Korea Train (Photo: VNA)

Seoul (VNA) – The ASEAN-Korea Train left Seoul on October 16, carrying 200 passengers from the Republic of Korea (RoK) and ten ASEAN member states to embark on a four-day exchange trip.

The railway tour, themed “Advancing Together”, has been organised by the ASEAN-Korea Centre (AKC) and the RoK Ministry of Foreign Affairs to welcome the upcoming ASEAN-Korea summit in Busan next month, which marks the 30th anniversary of the sides’ dialogue relations.

The train is set to stop at top tourist destinations in the RoK, including Gyeongju, Busan, Suncheon and Gwangju before returning to Seoul.

Cultural activities will take place at each stop, while passengers will take turns to perform on the train during the journey.

Head of the AKC Lee Hyuk said the event reflects their wish for a successful summit in November and for the realisation of prosperous and peaceful ASEAN – Korea cooperation.

He noted that three decades of dialogue partnership has turned the sides into indispensable partner of each other and hoped the ties to thrive further based on mutual trust and friendship.

The number of visitors traveling between the RoK and the ASEAN region surpassed 10 million in 2018. The number of ASEAN students studying in the RoK amounted to 32,574 last year compared with 19,000 recorded in 2017.

Two-way trade reached a record high of 160 billion USD in 2018. The sides have set a goal of increasing the figure to 200 billion USD by 2020.

The RoK has also doubled its government fund dedicated to bolstering cooperation with ASEAN to 14 million USD./.