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President Lee Myung-bak said Friday that free trade with foreign countries
offers a good chance for South Korea's agricultural and fisheries sectors to
expand into overseas markets and become more competitive.
The government will also support farmers by relaxing regulations and crafting policies that back increased exports, he said.
"Free trade will serve as a big opportunity to export our agricultural and fisheries products and increase our competitiveness," Lee said during a speech at the National Agricultural Cooperative Federation, known as Nonghyup.
"The existence of a huge market just next to us cannot but be an enormous opportunity," he said. "In China, high-income earners are increasing rapidly. In the case of our quality agricultural products, exports have spiked to a level where supply cannot meet demand."
Lee said South Korea is standing at a turning point where it has to continue its economic success by using the agricultural sector as a future growth engine of the country.