Korean ambassador to Israel Kim Il-soo took part in the first-ever Korea-Israel Creative Economy Forum last week, lauding the Jewish state for its ingenuity in developing an “economic powerhouse.”

“Israel is very good at generating new and different ideas which evolved into game-changing technologies. In Korea we are very good at manufacturing, and our creativity has helped enhance and grow our manufacturing capacity,” said Kim.

Among the Korean companies with a strong presence in Israel is Samsung, which currently employs more than 50 engineers in its two Israeli facilities. The Israeli sites are the only Samsung research and development centers located outside of South Korea.

“Each company has been growing in different directions, and cooperation will further enhance and grow each economy,” Kim added. “In this case, the results will definitely be greater than the sum of its parts.”

The comments came as Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Ze’ev Elkin signed an agreement with his South Korean counterpart to allow citizens of each nation to travel more easily between the regions.

The agreement will, for the first time, grant tourists out of Israel and South Korea the ability to combine leisure and business travel. No other East Asian government has signed such a deal with the Jewish state.

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