Song Young-moo will conclude a two-day trip to India today. Prior to visiting India, Mr Song spent four days in
Song Young-moo will conclude a two-day trip to India today. Prior to visiting India, Mr Song spent four days in Turkey, where he sought support from Ankara for South Korea’s budding peace process with North Korea.
Song’s trip marks the first visit to India by a South Korean defence minister since 2012 and reflects a broader attempt by the two countries to deepen ties, especially in defence cooperation.
The push to strengthen engagement reflects a worry on both sides about China’s growth and mounting influence in the region. Mr Modi’s Act East Policy, for example, has seen India diversify and rejuvenate its ties with Southeast Asian countries. Seoul has formulated a similar strategy, the New Southern Policy, after a diplomatic row with China.
While the relationship has some way to go, expect ties to improve steadily in the long-term, especially as the two countries develop their respective defence industries. Specifically, watch for increases in joint exercises, mutual investment in defence and cooperation in developing new military technologies.