The beginning of Korea-Russia economic relations go back 130 years, however, for most of the last century, the relationship between Korea and Russia has been curtailed due to historical events. It was not until the early 1990s that South Korea and Russia established new diplomatic ties and resumed normal economic interaction.
Over the last 20 years, South Korean and Russian economic relations have vitalized rapidly. Russia is currently South Korea’s tenth trading partner, and is becoming increasingly important as an importer of automobiles and an exporter of energy resources. As large-scale direct investments of Korean companies into Russia have increased since the mid-2000s, the fields of economic cooperation between the two nations have become more diverse.
There is a strong synergy between South Korea, with its powerful manufacturing industry, and Russia, which has abundant natural resources. Another possible factor accelerating economic relations between the two nations is the Russian government’s pursuit to develop the Far East, and the Korean government’s goal of a tighter connection with the Eurasian continent. If North Korea’s peaceful participation is made possible, the economic relations of Korea and Russia will progress even more rapidly.