President’s Korea visit opens new horizons


A major outcome of the visit is the proposed funding of a solar power project on La Digue by Korean firm KC Cottrell.

Renewable energy projects for La Digue was the focus of talks Mr Michel and his delegation had with Tae Young Lee, the president and chief executive of the company, which is a leading environmental technology company of South Korea. The company has done a fact finding mission to Seychelles following Mr Michel’s visit in 2009 to Korea, and has proposed a pilot project for the sustainable energy for La Digue including solar power and electric vehicles.

The company has also offered to do a feasibility study for the introduction of solar powered energy for government housing and hotel sectors in Seychelles.

The Minister for Environment and Energy Dr Rolph Payet was part of the delegation, and his ministry will be signing a memorandum of understanding with the company for several studies and sourcing of appropriate investments for the project.

The delegation also included Seychelles Ambassador to China Philippe Le Gall.
Korea plans to cut emission in the eastern Asian nation by 30% by 2020.

Mr Michel and his delegation attended the opening ceremony of the Yeosu Expo 2012 at the invitation of Korean President Lee Myung-Bak.

At the Expo visit Mr Michel represented the Indian Ocean Commission, as the Seychelles Presidency of the IOC provides an opportunity to advocate the concerns of Small Islands Developing States at the international gathering.

Seychelles was elected a member of the steering committee of Yeosu 2012 during the first meeting of the College of Commissioners representing the 101 countries and nine multinationals that took part in the event which attracted an estimated 10 million visitors.

Seychelles’ pavilion showcases our country’s uniqueness: its natural beauty and amazing flora and fauna, smoothly inviting visitors to understand the fragility of the archipelago and the challenges it has to face, to preserve its human and environmental balance.

The opening of the Yeosu Expo 2012 turned out to be a dazzling spectacle of lights, water dances as well as Korean traditional and modern choreography on the Yeosu waterfront.

It followed a banquet hosted by President Lee Myung-Bak.
Mr Michel has described the expo as an outstanding exhibition of marine biodiversity as well as an opportunity for all nations to gather ideas and technology to preserve and protect the marine environment.

“As low lying small island developing states, we are not only vulnerable to sea level rise but also aware of the importance of sustainable coastal tourism, responsible management of marine resources, and the protection of ecosystems and biodiversity.

“I am very proud of Seychelles’ presence at this international exposition as our islands are at the forefront of the fight against climate change, as well as advocates for the development of a sustainable blue economy,” he said.

Mr Michel also visited Korea’s eco-capital, Suncheon City, at the invitation of its Mayor, Cho Choong-Hoon.

He got a traditional Korean welcome at the city, which is famed for the world’s 5th largest wetlands and reed fields, as well as a strict land development policy in favour of protecting the natural beauty of the bay and its surrounding area.

“We have had the opportunity to explore avenues of cooperation between Suncheon and Seychelles, in our common effort to develop ourselves as the eco-capitals of our respective regions. We could develop this through a twinning programme, as well as technical and cultural exchanges,” said Mr Michel.

Mayor Choong-Hoon congratulated Seychelles on its environmental conservation successes and the excellent tourism reputation it has in the world.

We have here published a more pictures marking the important visit.

A dazzling fireworks display during the opening of Yeosu Expo 2012   President Michel and his delegation at the opening of the Seychelles’ pavilion

A partial view of the Indian Ocean joint pavilion at Yeosu Expo

BIE secretary general Vicente Loscertales and Minister Rolph Payet 

Julie Kim, STB regional manager for Korea, describes the ancient trees of Sunam monastery

President Michel is welcome at Suncheon City by its Mayor Cho Choong-Hoon

President Michel with director general Song Woong-yeob walking through Expo grounds 2     President views Expo from the Sky Tower

Project manager Taeil Kang, President Michel and KC Cotrell President and chief executive Tae You 

The Seychelles pavilion Sunam

Visit to the site where Suncheon Expo 2013 will take place