South Korea's parliamentary speaker will embark on a 12-day trip to Iran, Pakistan and Myanmar on Wednesday to help enhance bilateral cooperation and support the country's businesses operating there, his office said.
Chung Sye-kyun will first visit Tehran to hold talks with his Iranian counterpart Ali Larijani Friday (Iran time) and attend the inauguration ceremony for President Hassan Rouhani the following day.
During the talks with Larijani, Chung will call for Tehran's support for South Korean businesses tapping into the Iranian market, which has emerged as a crucial investment destination following the lifting of international sanctions under a 2015 nuclear deal, Chung's office said.
The second leg of Chung's trip is Pakistan. From Monday (Pakistan time), Chung will meet with Sardar Ayaz Sadiq and Mian Raza Rabbani, the heads of the lower and upper houses of Pakistan's parliament, respectively, as well as Pakistani President Mamnoon Hussain.
Chung's visit to Myanmar will begin Thursday. He plans to meet Myanmar's State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, President Htin Kyaw and other political leaders.
Seoul has been seeking to improve ties with the Southeast Asian country as its democratic transition from decades of military rule has widened access to its huge natural resources and market potential.
Chung will be accompanied by some lawmakers, including Baek Jae-hyun of the ruling Democratic Party; Kim Dong-cheol, the floor leader of the People's Party; and Choung Byoung-gug of the Bareun Party. (Yonhap)