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on Parliamentary Diplomacy
Invitations are extended to members of other parliaments abroad with a view to promoting inter-parliamentary cooperation and friendship. These include invitations to hold talks between parliamentary leaders, including the Speakers, and arrangements for visits to industrial facilities and historic sites.
The Speaker and Deputy Speakers of the National Assembly occasionally pay visits to those nations deemed by heads of parliaments to require more promotion of parliamentary exchanges and cooperation. Delegations of parliamentary committees also pay visits overseas to conduct research and gather information on issues under the jurisdiction of their respective committees.
As of November 2018, 4 Inter-Parliamentary Councils, 112 Parliamentary Friendship Groups and 1 Korea-China Regular Inter-Parliamentary Exchange are in operation.
The National Assembly establishes parliamentary councils with other parliaments in pursuit of greater national interests and an effective communication channel to cope with urgent tasks. The Councils play a key role in interactions with major countries’ parliaments and in holding joint conferences, which makes them professional diplomatic groups beyond just friendship-forming associations. Four councils have been established with the US, China, Russia and the EU.
A Parliamentary Friendship Group is organized by parliamentarians of the Republic of Korea and another country. Participating in mutual exchange programs and joint activities, members try to enhance their understanding of the other country and seek closer cooperation in politics, economics, society and culture. The 20th National Assembly has formed friendship groups with 111 countries.
The Republic of Korea and China signed the bilateral parliamentary cooperation protocol in 2006 and formed the Regular Inter-Parliamentary Exchange in a bid to enhance friendly relations. The two parliaments have been holding joint meetings on a regular basis.