South Korea will strengthen economic cooperation with Turkmenistan with the fourth largest natural gas reserve in the world. On April 6 (local time), Joo Hyung-hwan, the industry and commerce minister of South Korea, agreed on the economic cooperation between the two countries in the 6th Korea-Turkmenistan Economic Joint Committee meeting held in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.
Minister Joo discussed ways to boost trade and investment cooperation between the two countries with Babahev, deputy prime minister of oil and gas and Orazmouradov, minister of foreign trade and economy. Last year, Turkmenistan's trade with South Korea amounted to US$316.6 million (about 410 billion won).
The South Korean government actively requested Turkmenistan to allow Korean companies to participate in the construction of three major core plant projects (about US$11.2 billion) in Turkmenistan.
Turkmenistan is currently going forward with three projects –- a gas-to-liquids (GTL) project (US$3.98 billion), the third Galkynysh gas field development project (US$7 billion), and a lubricant production process modernization project (US$320 million). Under the circumstances, South Korean government is intending to create a success model of bilateral cooperation between two countries by opening doors for Korean companies to receive some orders from Turkmenistan. The GTL project is waiting for the final approval of an EPC (design, procurement and construction) contract by the Turkmenistan government.