Governor Welcomes Korean Ambassador

Montgomery, AL (WSFA)- Governor Bob Riley welcomed the ambassador from South Korea to Montgomery Wednesday.

The two met at the state capitol to discuss free trade. Both say the Alabama - Korean connection could be even stronger.

Alabama already exports $486 million worth of goods to Korea, and Montgomery is home to the Korean car manufacturer, Hyundai's, lone North American plant.

Ambassador Lee Tae-Sik joined Governor Riley for a tour of that plant Wednesday afternoon.

Both men are pleased with the relationship between Korea and Alabama, but during a meeting  at the state capitol both admitted the relationship could be stronger if Congress passes the proposed Korean - United States Fair Trade Agreement.

Governor Riley says it's essential that deal be signed by year's end.

Both men say passing it would expand bilateral trade and investment ties, creating even more economic opportunities in the future.

Korea is the seventh largest export market for goods manufactured in Alabama.