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October 20, 2016, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm

U.S. – South Korea: Economic & Political Relations Signature Luncheon

Franklin University, Ross Auditorium

201 S. Grant Avenue Columbus, OH 43215

Speaker: Youjin Oh, Vanna Chan

In 2013, the United States and South Korea celebrated 60 years of allegiance. The expansive relationship that exists between the two nations is based on common values and interests of democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. The two countries cooperate on the basis of combatting regional and global threats, in addition to strengthening their respective economies. Having joined the Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development (OECD) in 1996, South Korea’s economy has continually evolved, making trade and investment important aspects of the U.S. – South Korea relationship. South Korea is now the sixth-largest goods trading partner with the United States. The nation’s trillion-dollar economy has benefited from U.S. firms investing abroad, and South Korea, in return, has made significant investments in the Unites States. There are large-scale flows of manufactured goods, agricultural products, services, and technology between the two democratic nations.

On March 15, 2012, the Korea – U.S. Free Trade Agreement was signed and implemented, with the goal of increasing exports by billion of dollars annually for both countries, in addition to creating new export-related jobs. In recent years, the alliance between the United States and South Korea has expanded into a comprehensive global partnership, and South Korea’s role as a regional and global leader has continued to mature, as is exemplified in their hosting the 2010 G20 Summit. Additionally, cultural and social ties between the peoples of the United States and South Korea continues to grow. South Korea, on a per capita basis, sends the highest number of students to the United States to study of any industrialized country.

This program is made possible by the World Affairs Councils of America and the Korean Economic Institute.

Youjin Oh

Second Secretary for Economic Affairs

South Korean Embassy, Washington, D.C.

Ms. Youjin Oh joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in August, 2007 and was appointed as Second Secretary for Economic Affairs at the Embassy of the Republic of Korea on Aug 17, 2015. Her past work experience includes North Korean Nuclear Policy Division, Protocol Division, International Security Affairs Division, and ASEAN Cooperation Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Seoul. She holds a BA in International Relations from Seoul National University and a MA in Public Administration from the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) and also finished coursework for a Ph.D. in international affairs at Peking University.

Vanna Chan

Diplomat at Ministry of Foreign Affairs

U.S. Department of State’s Office of Korean Affairs

Ms. Vanna Chan is the South Korea Desk Officer at the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Korean Affairs where she covers inter-Korean relations, Korean politics, human rights, and consular issues. Ms. Chan joined the U.S. Foreign Service in 2009. She previously served as a Consular Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina; as a Political-Economic Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Vilnius, Lithuania; and as a Political Military Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan. She has a B.A. from the University of Minnesota, and master’s degrees from Columbia University and the Institut d’Études Politiques (Sciences Po). Ms. Chan is from Minnesota.