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PM Brown discusses sustainable long-term development partnership with South Korean counterpart

Tuesday 2 May 2023 | Written by Matthew Littlewood | Published in National, Politics


PM Brown discusses sustainable long-term  development partnership with South Korean counterpart
Prime Minister Mark Brown and his officials with South Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-soo and his officials. MFAI/23050121

Prime Minister Mark Brown is in South Korea this week, as part of his engagements with the Asian Development Bank.

A spokesperson confirmed that the PM will attend the 56th Annual Meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Board of Governors to be held in Incheon, South Korea from May 3 to May 4.

On May 1, Brown met South Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-soo. PM Brown said he was delighted by the opportunity for the Cook Islands to engage with Korea, to discuss sustainable long-term development partnership on both the bilateral and regional front.

Associate Finance Minister Tingika Elikana is accompanying the PM and will take the Cook Islands chair as Acting Governor during the ADB Meeting when the PM assumes other duties as chair of the Pacific Island Forum during this meeting.

“The annual meeting of the ADB Board of Governors is an opportunity to provide guidance on ADB administrative, financial, and operational directions,” the spokesperson said.

“The meetings provide opportunities for member governments to interact with ADB staff, non-government organisations, media, and representatives of observer countries, international organisations, academia and the private sector. ADB’s annual meetings have become a premier forum for the discussion of economic and social development issues in Asia and the Pacific.”

Recently, PM Brown told Parliament that the country’s estimated net debt levels are expected to be $216 million by the end of the financial year in June, while the country’s net debt to GDP was about 42 per cent.

ADB is the country’s biggest lender.

“By attending the 56th Annual Meeting of the ADB Board of Governors, the Prime Minister will be able to have direct contact with representatives from other nations and organisations to establish innovative ways to build partnerships and collaborations to progress the country’s national priorities,” the spokesperson said.

“By leveraging these opportunities for growth, the nation can better foster its social, economic, and environmental development over the long-term.”