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According to Yonhap News,
(SEOUL=Yonhap News) President Park Geun-hye pledged Tuesday to support the development and spread of the initiative that helped modernize South Korea's rural economy.
The "Saemaul Movement," or new community movement -- launched by Park's late father, then-President Park Chung-hee in the 1970s -- is credited with serving as a springboard for South Korea's leap forward.
"Now, the Saemaul Movement is being evolved into a common asset of mankind and a paradigm of sustainable development," Park said in a video message for an international forum on the initiative in the southeastern city of Daegu.
Park said South Korea will help provide a universal model for development cooperation that is tailored to the differing contexts of other countries as part of its efforts to contribute to poverty eradication and sustainable development.
South Korea has said it hopes to spread its rapid economic growth know-how, showcased in the Saemaul Movement, as a viable growth policy for developing countries mostly in Southeast Asia and Africa.
South Korea has so far trained some 5,000 people from 93 countries on the Saemaul Movement.
Jeffrey Sachs, director of Columbia University's Earth Institute, praised South Korea's "can do" spirit at the forum and said the Saemaul Movement could provide an impetus to meet the U.N's sustainable development agenda.
In September, the U.N. adopted a new sustainable development agenda and set 2030 as the target year for achieving the goals that call for, among other things, ending poverty, protecting the planet and providing high-quality education.
Park received a big boost as the U.N. held a high-level meeting on the Saemaul Movement in September.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the Saemaul Movement has spread in countries ranging from Asia to Africa "like a forest fire."
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Source: Yonhap News (Nov. 24, 2015)