ASEAN, RoK officials discuss COVID-19 cooperation hinh anh 1Illustrative image (Photo: internet)

Hanoi (VNA) - Secretary-General of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Lim Jock Hoi and Foreign Minister of the Republic of Korea (RoK) Kang Kyung-wha had phone talks on June 15 to discuss ways to boost cooperation amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the talks, Minister Kang said the RoK is looking into measures that would allow special entry of businesspeople from ASEAN member states to enable essential economic activities.

Regarding the RoK’s COVID-19 outbreak and its continued quarantine efforts, she called for the ASEAN secretariat to take an active role in uniting the will and capabilities of ASEAN nations to overcome the pandemic.

According to the minister, expanding cooperation with ASEAN in health-related fields will be a key topic for the RoK, in line with its New Southern Policy, a signature initiative being pushed for by President Moon Jae-in's government to deepen ties with Southeast Asian partners.

The ASEAN chief, for his part, agreed that ASEAN and the RoK should continue to work closely together to help boost economies hurt by the disease.

He expressed his thanks for the RoK's 5-million-USD assistance to the bloc’s member countries via a cooperation fund to provide COVID-19 test kits and protective gear./.