“An airport is a symbol of a nation’s power and its level of international exchanges… With the opening of the second terminal, Incheon Airport now has the ability to service 72 million passengers annually. It has grown to become the world’s fifth-most sought international gateway airport and has completed preparations for its second leap forward… Incheon Airport must become a hub not only in East Asia, but for the world… The Korean government will proactively support the airport so that it will be able to service 100 million passengers annually by 2023.” – Moon Jae-in, The Guardian, 12 January 2018.
“I think President Trump deserves big credit for bringing about the inter-Korean talks, and I want to show my gratitude… It could be the result of US-led sanctions and pressure.” – Moon Jae-in, The Guardian, 10 January 2018.
“This initial round of talks is for the improvement of relations between North and South Korea… Our task going forward is to draw North Korea to talks aimed at the denuclearisation of the North. That is our basic stance, and that will never be given up… We cannot say talks are the sole answer. If North Korea engages in provocations again or does not show sincerity in resolving this issue, the international community will continue applying strong pressure and sanctions.” – Moon Jae-in, The Guardian, 10 January 2018.
“I’m open to any form of meeting, including a summit under right conditions… Having said that, the purpose of it shouldn’t be talks for the sake of talks.” – Moon Jae-in, Deustche Welle, 10 January 2018.
“It is only the beginning… Yesterday was the first step and I think we had a good start… Bringing North Korea to talks for denuclearization is the next step we must take.” – Moon Jae-in, Deustche Welle, 10 January 2018.
“If the money can be used for good causes in a way to help resolve the comfort women issue, and if Japan, the victims and civic groups agree to the idea, I think it would be desirable as wel… We will have more time to consult with Japan, victims and civic groups on that matter.” – Moon Jae-in, The Japan Times, 10 January 2018.
“This issue cannot be resolved through a give-and-take deal between governments struck over the victims’ head… A wrong knot has to be untied. Japan should accept the truth, make a heartfelt apology to victims.” – Moon Jae-in, Pulse.ng, 10 January 2018.
“The fact that there was an official agreement between Korea and Japan cannot be denied. It is also important to deal with Korea’s relationship with Japan carefully.” – Moon Jae-in, Pulse.ng, 10 January 2018.
“Even if we don’t find it sufficiently satisfactory, we must choose the best option available realistically… [The comfort women issue] will not be resolved simply by demanding renegotiation.” – Moon Jae-in, The Asashi Shimbun, 10 January 2018.
“If Japan acknowledges the truth, offers heartfelt apologies to the victimized women and works with the international community to prevent a recurrence based on a lesson it learned, the women then will forgive Japan… That is a complete solution.” – Moon Jae-in, The Asashi Shimbun, 10 January 2018.
“Khaldoon [Executive Affairs Authority of Abu Dhabi, Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak Abu Dhabi] has been playing a decisive role in terms of deepening bilateral cooperation across various areas, including the nuclear power plant project in Barakah… As we’ve done over the past few years, the Korean government has a resolute stance to further develop the Korea-UAE strategic partnership, based on trust.” – Moon Jae-in, Korea.net, 10 January 2018.
“I won’t stand too weak in front of North Korea only to gain a dialogue opportunity like we did in the past… I’ll pursue both dialogue and peace with North Korea.” – Moon Jae-in, Business Times, 8 January 2018.
“I will strive to make the Pyeongchang Olympics the ‘Peace Olympics’ and furthermore to peacefully resolve the North Korean nuclear issue so that this can be a year when peace is cultivated on the Korean Peninsula,”“For the past two years, lines of communication between North and South Korea were completely severed, which left us with no way to deal with an unexpected crisis situation. But now the communication channel has been restored; North Korea will attend the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics through inter-Korean dialogue; and I also intend to create an opportunity for developing inter-Korean relations.” – Moon Jae-in, The Hankyoreh, 6 January 2018.
“President Trump also expressed his full support for inter-Korean dialogue and agreed to delay the military exercises until after the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics. On top of that, he promised to send a high-ranking delegation, including his own family members to Pyeongchang. This is because he not only wishes the success of the Pyeongchang Olympics but also supports inter-Korean dialogue and believes that, if this goes well, it could create the conditions for dialogue between North Korea and the US.” – Moon Jae-in, The Hankyoreh, 6 January 2018.
“I will strive to make the Pyeongchang Olympics the ‘Peace Olympics’ and furthermore to peacefully resolve the North Korean nuclear issue so that this can be a year when peace is cultivated on the Korean Peninsula.” – Moon Jae-in, The Hankyoreh, 6 January 2018.
“I believe it would greatly help ensure the success of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games if you [Donald Trump] could express an intention to delay joint South Korea-U.S. military exercises during the Olympics in case the North does not make any more provocations.” – Moon Jae-in, Yahoo News, 4 January 2018.
“I hope the Unification Ministry and the Ministry of Culture and Sports will swiftly come up with follow-up measures to quickly restore South-North Korean dialogue and realize the North Korean delegation’s participation in the PyeongChang Olympics.” – Moon Jae-in, Yonhap News, 2 January 2018.
“I view chairman Kim Jong-un’s remarks about sending a North Korean delegation to the PyeongChang Olympics and holding government-level dialogue as a response to our proposal to turn the PyeongChang Olympic Games into a groundbreaking chance to improve South-North relations and establish peace.” – Moon Jae-in, Yonhap News, 2 January 2018.
“I appreciate and welcome the North’s positive response to our proposal that the Pyeongchang Olympics should be used as a turning point in improving South-North relations and promoting peace.” – Moon Jae-in, New York Times, 2 January 2018.
“The improvement of relations between North and South Korea cannot go separately with resolving North Korea’s nuclear program, so the foreign ministry should coordinate closely with allies and the international community regarding this.” – Moon Jae-in, Reuters, 2 January 2018.
“We all have prevailed well over many difficulties in the past year. The whole nation came together with one single mind to create a properly functioning country and took a big first step forward.” – Moon Jae-in, The Korea Herald, 1 January 2018.
“We made progress in the economy as well. The country achieved the milestone of US$1 trillion in trade once again and regained annual economic growth of over 3 percent. These accomplishments are all the more precious because they were made in the face of political turmoil and security challenges attributable to North Korea’s repeated provocations.” – Moon Jae-in, The Korea Herald, 1 January 2018.
“Fellow Koreans, now the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games are only a month away. They are the first Olympics to be held in Korea in 30 years since the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul. Let us show more love and support for PyeongChang. Your strong interest and full support will make the Olympics a great success.” – Moon Jae-in, The Korea Herald, 1 January 2018.
“The negotiations over the ‘comfort women’ issue between Seoul and Tokyo violated universal principles established by the international community in settling historic issues, and above all it was a political agreement that excluded the directly-related party and citizens.” – Moon Jae-in, Korea, 29 December 2017.
“We need to face the history when it is painful enough to avoid. Cure, reconciliation and future can begin when facing up to the painful history.” – Moon Jae-in, Huffington Post, 28 December 2017.
“It has been confirmed that the 2015 comfort women negotiation between South Korea had serious flaws, both in process and content.” – Moon Jae-in, ABC, 28 December 2017.
“Despite the burden of the past agreement being a formal promise between governments that was ratified by the leaders of both countries, I, as president and with the Korean people, once again firmly state that this agreement does not resolve the issue over comfort women.” – Moon Jae-in, Time, 28 December 2017.
“I’m grateful that you followed in the footsteps of your father as deputy PM and foreign minister of Vietnam [talking to the Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh], helping to deepen relations between Seoul and Hanoi. With the past 25 years of experience under our belts, I hope to build a forward-looking, cooperative relationship with Vietnam in the 25 years ahead.” – Moon Jae-in, Korea, 22 December 2017.
“We have secured a promise from President Trump to do his utmost to make the PyeongChang Olympic Games safe, and more strongly, we have been given an assurance that the U.S. will guarantee security during the PyeongChang Winter Olympics.” – Moon Jae-in, Korea Times, 22 December 2017.
“The government firmly believes the labor sector is a partner in state management, … And one of its goals is to realize a society where labor is respected. But it cannot be achieved only through government efforts; if the labor sector joins us, we can achieve a lot more.” – Moon Jae-in, Korea Times, 21 December 2017.
“Without compromise among the three parties, sustainable development is impossible [urging the unions to join the government’s labor reform] … We’ll try to resume the halted tripartite talks system. I don’t mind the form of the talks as long as all related parties can communicate and build solidarity.” – Moon Jae-in, Korea Times, 21 December 2017.