- Korea-South Africa Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak held a bilateral summit meeting with South African President Jacob Zuma on March 27. They praised the progress that has been made in bilateral cooperation since the establishment of diplomatic ties in 1992. As 2012 marks the 20th anniversary of these ties with various commemorative events scheduled throughout the year, President Lee and President Zuma agreed to work together to encourage more exchanges between their two countries. Energy resources also figured in the agenda, with both leaders pledging to support companies active either in the electrical power industry or in the development of mineral resources such as coal, chrome, and rare earth minerals.
- Korea-Italy Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak met with the leader of Italy, Prime Minister Mario Monti, where they discussed economic cooperation as well as the ongoing North Korea issue. The prime minister condemned the North’s plans and voiced his full support for South Korea’s stance on the issue. President Lee said that his government is fully prepared to extend active support to the North if they are willing to cancel their plans. They also agreed to expand investment and human exchanges between their two countries. In 2011 a free trade agreement went into effect between Korea and the European Union, which the two leaders agreed would help their two countries work closely together.
- Korea-UAE Summit (March 2012)
President Lee had a summit talk on March 26 with the leader of the United Arab Emirates, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, to exchange thoughts on measures for expanding cooperation between the two countries. They both agreed that the strategic alliance between the two countries has developed greatly. They also discussed measures to expand their cooperation in various fields including green growth, hygiene, and education, as well as nuclear power, energy, and construction. In addition, the two countries showed their satisfaction with the nuclear power plant construction project which Korea is currently conducting in the UAE and agreed that they will support and help each other for the continuing development of both nations.
- Korea-Russia Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak met with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on March 26 at Cheong Wa Dae for a discussion of key issues on the agenda of the 2012 Seoul Nuclear Security Summit (NSS), as well as a shared look at the progress of Korea-Russia bilateral relations. The president expressed his gratitude for Russia’s efforts to implement measures that align with the aims of the NSS, including safe disposal of nuclear waste and the conversion of highly enriched uranium (HEU) to less enriched versions. President Medvedev in turn lauded Korea for the role that it is playing in realizing the vision of the international community for a “world free of nuclear weapons,” expressing his confidence of the success of the summit. The two leaders also evaluated the substantive progress that has been made in cooperation between their two countries, citing an over USD 20 billion bilateral trade volume in 2011 as well as joint efforts for natural resource development.
- Korea-Turkey Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak held a summit talk with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Turkey on March 26 at Cheong Wa Dae to discuss detailed cooperative measures for developing the strategic alliance between the two countries which had been established in February last year. They both attended a signing ceremony for an FTA joint declaration. Earlier in March the two countries had previously discussed the basic composition of the FTA which includes a basic agreement and a goods trade agreement. They talked about mutual cooperation in the infrastructure and construction sectors and also agreed to expand cultural exchanges to meet Turkey’s increased interest in Hallyu, or the Korean wave.
- Korea-China Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak held a one-on-one meeting on March 26 with Chinese President Hu Jintao to discuss several issues of shared concern, including the current state of affairs on the Korean Peninsula as well as plans for a more effective economic and political partnership. The two leaders agreed to work together to strengthen mutual cooperation and expand strategic cooperation through events that are being held throughout the year to commemorate the 20th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations. They also agreed on broadening political dialogue and reaching a bilateral trade volume of USD 300 billion by 2015. The two leaders also reaffirmed the progress that has been made in FTA talks between the two countries, with a conclusion on key issues expected in May.
- Korea-Chile Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak had a summit talk with President Sebastián Piñera of Chile on March 26, broaching the topic of further consolidating opportunities for cooperation in various fields. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations with Chile in 1962, the bilateral friendship has deepened despite the geographical distance, instead finding common ground in the values of democracy and the market economy. Seven years ago, Chile was the first country with which Korea signed a free trade pact, which has strengthened amity in various sectors. The two parties agreed to further advance the level of cooperation in celebration of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties. They also assented to boost exchanges in renewable energy and the environment and extend support for collaboration between corporations of the two countries.
- Korea-Kazakhstan Summit (March 2012)
President Lee Myung-bak had a meeting with President Nursultan Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan on March 26, the first day of the Seoul Nuclear Security Summit. The two leaders discussed ways to increase bilateral relations between the two countries while exchanging views on mutual concerns, including global nuclear security. They expressed their contentment with the progress of their strategic partnership, which has solidified through a series of annual bilateral talks held since 2008. Marking the 20th anniversary of bilateral ties between the two nations, the two leaders evaluated the expansion of the scope of cooperation beyond trade and economy into the sectors of health care and medical and science technologies, along with exchanges of cultural and human resources.
- Korea- U.S. Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak held a summit with President Barack Obama on Sunday, March 25, the day before the Nuclear Security Summit. The two leaders discussed North Korea’s plan to launch a rocket next month, agreeing that it was a violation of UN resolutions. They also discussed the free trade agreement between their two countries which went into effect on March 15, and reaffirmed the importance of their alliance. Other topics discussed during their meeting included their uncertainty of the global economy and regional issues in the Middle East, including Iran.
- Korea-Jordan Summit (March 2012)
- President Lee Myung-bak held bilateral talks with Jordan’s King Abdullah II on March 25 on the sidelines of the Seoul Nuclear Security Summit. The two leaders stated their approval of the reinforcement of bilateral economic cooperation and pledged continued support and interest in further advancement in a variety fields including development experience sharing, and projects in the sectors of nuclear reactor and combined cycle power plants. Marking the 50th anniversary of the diplomatic relations, the two sides agreed to further foster mutual understanding and bilateral exchanges through hosting celebratory ceremonies and cultural events.