ISLAMABAD  - President Asif Ali Zardari will pay an official visit to Seoul from December 3-5 to hold talks with his South Korean counterpart Lee Myung-Bak in a bid to expand bilateral cooperation and enhance trade and economic ties.

President Zardari, who will be accompanied by a business delegation, will discuss ways to boost trade, investment, infrastructure-building and development during the talks, with the Korean entrepreneurs.

The President, who has a hectic schedule during his three-day official stay in the South Korea’s capital, will discuss with his Korean counterpart the whole gamut of bilateral ties between the two countries that mark three decades of diplomatic relations, next year. The two leaders will also discuss ways to significantly enhance their bilateral trade.

The two countries will also ink an agreement and two memoranda of understanding in different areas.

These include an agreement on Grant Aid between Government of the Republic of Korea and the Government of Pakistan (EAD), and two MoUs between Korea Water Resource Corporation (Korea) and Pakistan’s Water and Power Development Authority, and for cooperation in the field of railway between the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs (MLTM) of the Republic of Korea and the Ministry of Railways, Pakistan.

President Zardari, who has meetings scheduled with heads of over a dozen top South Korean companies, will urge the business community to invest in Pakistan, particularly in its energy sector and other sectors of economy.

He will also exhort the Korean investors to bring their capital and technology to Pakistan, establish joint ventures, share their experience and expertise.

The joint ventures will not only help them earn good profits, but also contribute to further strengthening of bilateral trade and economic relations between Pakistan and South Korea.

In the past two decades, Korea has become the 12th largest trading partner of Pakistan with a two-way trade volume of about $1.5 billion in 2011.

Korean companies such as Lotte, Posco, Samsung and LG Electronics are well known in Pakistan, while Daewoo’s Islamabad-Lahore Motorway (M-2) has been a landmark project. The Korean companies are also working on several other projects, including the Lowari tunnel, expansion of Karachi port, besides having stakes in power generation projects of around 3,000MW.

The Republic of Korea has also provided assistance for Pakistan’s economic and social sector development and as a member of the Friends of Democratic Pakistan (FoDP), pledged a $200 million economic assistance package for Pakistan at Tokyo Ministerial Donor Conference in April 2009.