Gov't mulls travel exemptions to Ukraine for reconstruction

A building where Samsung Electronics has an office in Kyiv, after it suffered a missile attack from Russia in October [YONHAP]

The Korean government plans to allow businesspeople to enter Ukraine for reconstruction projects by making exceptions to the travel ban on the war-torn country, officials said Sunday.

The decision was part of measures that the government is taking after President Yoon Suk Yeol made a surprise visit to Ukraine earlier in the month and promised a package of security, humanitarian and reconstruction assistance.

Since February last year, the government has been maintaining a country-wide travel ban on Ukraine. But the government plans to exceptionally allow businesspeople to enter the country for the post-war reconstruction programs.

This is not the first time the government is allowing Korean businesses to enter a war-torn country.

In 2007, the government imposed a travel ban on Iraq, but employees from Korean companies have traveled to the country via similar exemptions.

This week, the Korea International Trade Association plans to host a meeting between trade ministry officials and construction, infrastructure and energy companies interested in Ukraine reconstruction projects.

The issue of allowing visits to Ukraine could come up during the meeting set for Tuesday, officials said.

The government is also considering sending a delegation of senior government officials and businesspeople to Ukraine for discussions on reconstruction projects reportedly estimated to exceed $1 trillion.