Korea, Britain to open hotline for Brexit consultations


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South Korea and Britain have agreed to establish a diplomatic hotline to share information on London’s preparations for an exit from the European Union, Seoul’s foreign ministry said Thursday.

The two sides had working-level consultations on issues related to Brexit, slated for March 29, in London on Wednesday (local time).

The director general-level session came amid an increased uncertainty over Brexit as British lawmakers voted down Prime Minister Theresa May’s divorce deal with the EU earlier this month.

Britain`s Prime Minister Theresa May (C) smiles as she listens to a question during the weekly Prime Minister`s Questions session in the House of Commons in London on January 23, 2019. – British MPs frustrated with Prime Minister Theresa May`s Brexit strategy are seeking to force a new approach, which could include delaying Britain`s exit from the EU and holding a second referendum. (Yonhap)

Concern has since grown about a possible no-deal Brexit, which would affect South Korea’s economic cooperation not just with Britain but also with the EU.

In the meeting, South Korea especially requested cooperation in efforts for the security of South Koreans traveling there. More than 100 South Korean firms have businesses in Britain as well.

“The British side stressed that its trade ties with South Korea should continue without troubles even after Brexit,” the ministry said. “In addition, they agreed to establish a hotline between (foreign ministry) director generals in charge of the matter to share Brexit-related situations speedily and keep consulting on pre-emptive measures.”

The two sides agreed to have a close coordination for a speedy and mutually beneficial process toward a bilateral free trade agreement, it added. (Yonhap)


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