Customers at a supermarket in the Republic of Korea (Photo: AFP/VNA)
Yonhap quoted statistics released by the country’s Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy on November 6th, which showed the bilateral trade with the regional economic bloc stood at USD132.1 billion over the period, and is likely to surpass USD150 billion this year.

The RoK has sought stronger economic relations with ASEAN under President Moon Jae-in's "New Southern Policy" to reduce its heavy reliance on trade with the United States and China, and foster new growth drivers. It set a goal of raising the bilateral trade with ASEAN to over USD200 billion by 2020.

The ASEAN member countries are Vietnam, Indonesia, the Philippines, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore and Thailand, with their combined population estimated at 640 million./.