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Congratulatory Message

김홍균 주독일대사 사진.jpg

Kim Hong Kyun


Embassy of the Republic of Korea in Germany
Republic of Korea


Good morning, Distinguished Guests and Participants.

I am quite pleased and honored to speak in the Europe-Korea Conference on Science and Technology, EKC 2023. I also offer a warm congratulations on the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Korean Scientists and Engineers Association in Germany, VeKNI.

It is meaningful that this year’s EKC takes place in Munich, Germany as we celebrate the 140th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Korea and Germany. Munich holds particular importance because it is
where Dr. Zae Quan Kim studied, who was the first overseas scientist invited back home in 1967 and helped draw the blueprint for the Miracle on the Han River.


As is illustrated by the story of Dr. Kim from Munich, the remarkable efforts and achievements of Korean scientists and engineers in Europe have contributed to elevating Korea's science and industry to a global level. In this process, the EKC played a pivotal role since its inception in 2008. It has evolved into a platform that facilitates the exchange of ideas and information among governments, academia, and business sectors in both Europe and Korea. Additionally, it has fostered intellectual networks spanning various fields and people-to-people bonds.


The world today is facing a myriad of challenges, including climate change, pandemics, energy crises and digital divide. These collectively threaten global peace and prosperity. Recognising the critical role of science and technology in economies as well as national security and international relations, countries worldwide are striving for technological sovereignty and leadership while at the same time seeking to work together with trusted strategic partners.


Amidst these challenges and opportunities, the Korean government has singled out 12 national strategic technologies to foster and investin, including semiconductors, nuclear energy, hydrogen, and aerospace. It is also directing its focus toward enhancing the strategic nature of national R&D and establishing relevant infrastructure and legal frameworks, with the overarching goal of Korea becoming one of the top five global science and technology powers by 2030.


Furthermore, Korea is actively fostering strategic cooperation with the European Union and major European countries, who share with us universal values including freedom, human rights, and the rule of law. With the European Union, Korea is engaged in various forms of collaboration. These include holding discussions on joining the Horizon Europe program as well as signing bilateral agreements such
as the Green Partnership and Digital Partnership.


At the recent summit meeting in Seoul, President Yoon Suk Yeol and Chancellor Scholz of Germany agreed to strengthen future-oriented cooperative initiatives in high-tech sectors such as hydrogen, semiconductors, biotechnology, and clean energy. In light of these developments, the theme of this year EKC, Innovative Global Cooperation in Academia and Industry, is very
relevant and timely.


At the first World Congress of Korean Scientists and Engineers in July, President Yoon Suk Yeol emphasized the need for solidarity among the global community to advance the well-being and freedom of global citizens. He underscored in particular the value of forging networks, facilitating exchanges, and fostering forms of collaboration with overseas Korean scientists. In doing so, the roles and contributions by the EKC holds more importance and ever. I encourage all of you here today to play a bridging role to enhance scientific and technological exchanges and shared efforts between Korea and Europe. Your expertise and
networks in respective fields are the drivers behind an ever-stronger relationship between Korea and Europe.


I hope that this year EKC will serve as a forum not only for the enrichment of everyones expertise but also for the further consolidation of the networks between Korean and European scientists.


Lastly, I would like to extend my heartfelt appreciation and congratulations once again to the Korean Scientists and Engineers Association in Germany(VeKNI), the Korean Federation of Science and Technology Societies(KOFST), and all the other Korean Scientists and Engineers Associations in Europe for the successful
arrangement of this year’s EKC. Thank you so much.

Dr. Bok Chul Kim

National Research Council of Science and Technology (NST)
Republic of Korea


Dear distinguished guests and participants,

I am pleased to join you today here in Munich celebrating the 2023 Europe-Korea Conference on Science and Technology (EKC 2023). I would like to express my gratitude to the Korean Scientists and Engineers Association in Germany (VeKNI) and the Korean Federation of Science and Technology Societies (KOFST) for hosting the event. This year’s conference is particularly meaningful as Korea and Germany mark 140 years of diplomatic relations.

 The need for sustainable and resilient society has been emphasized as one of major global agenda. Global warming is accelerating; and we are all witnessing the consequences of climate change and its impact on our ecosystem. A global shift towards building a safe and secure environment demonstrates the importance of cross-sector collaboration and beyond, hence the theme of this year’s conference is highly relevant as it encompasses the need for global solidarity based on innovative global cooperation.

Taking on full-scale response to nurture advanced industries, the Korean government designated 12 national strategic technologies as Korea’s future growth to move towards sustainable society. Strengthening international collaboration is one of the main policy measures to secure economic security not only at the national but also at the international level to reinforce alliance with countries that share common values. 

As core innovation actor in Korea, government-funded research institutes (GRIs) are playing central role in attaining national strategic technologies: they have set common goals and research strategies in a combined effort to enhance convergence and collaboration with each other as well as their global partners.

I believe this conference will be a venue for sharing knowledge and exploring opportunities for tighter cooperation; moreover, I hope that our joint efforts through R&D collaboration will contribute to building a more sustainable future.

I add my best wishes for a successful and fruitful conference; and last but not least, my appreciation goes to eight other Korean Scientists and Engineers Associations in Europe for their endless support in encouraging collaboration between Korea and Europe. 


Dr. Bok Chul Kim









National Research Council of Science and Technology (NST)
Republic of Korea