KOTRA was established in 1962 to bolster the Korean economy through trade. It has since traveled alongside Korea on its journey of economic growth.
In the 1960s and 70s, KOTRA developed overseas markets and in doing so served as a driving force in increasing Korea’s exports. In the 1980s, near the end of the Cold War, KOTRA led efforts to achieve economic diplomacy in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. During the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s, as a national investment promotion agency, KOTRA attracted foreign investment to Korea and helped steer the nation out of the economic downturn.
Today, with 111 Korea Business Centers in 76 countries worldwide, KOTRA serves as a vessel through which foreign companies can conveniently cooperate with Korean companies.
Last year, Korea ranked seventh for total exports. Trade rose ten-thousand-fold from $100 million in 1951 to $1 trillion in just 60 years.
As Korea strives to lead the $1 trillion trade era, KOTRA is supporting the globalization of Korean SMEs so they can become reliable partners for businesses overseas. Through its investment promotion agency Invest Korea, KOTRA supports foreign companies as they establish and successfully run businesses here.
Poised to celebrate its 50th anniversary next year, KOTRA is realigning its role in this era of trade and preparing for the next 50 years. As its new captain, I assure you that KOTRA will endeavor as a national trade-investment promotion organization to better provide practical support for both domestic and foreign companies.