Korea's Public Diplomacy Policy towards Africa: Strategies, Instruments and Its Implications on Economic Linkages with Africa

한국의 대 아프리카 공공외교: 전략과 방안 그리고 경제 연계에 미치는 영향

  • Ochieng, Haggai Kennedy (Hanyang University Department of Social Sciences, Institute for Euro-African Studies) ;
  • Iffat, Tahira (Department of Political Science and International Studies, Hanyang University) ;
  • Kim, Sungsoo (Political Science and International Studies, Hanyang University)
  • 오치엥 하가이 케네디 (한양대학교 연구교수 유로-아프리카 연구 연구소) ;
  • 이팟 타히라 (한양대학교, 정치외교학과) ;
  • 김성수 (한양대학교 정치외교학과)
  • Received : 2020.07.03
  • Published : 2020.09.30


Korea-Africa relations date back to the period of independence of African countries. During this time, the ties between Korea and Africa has passed through stagnation, inconsistencies and weak diplomatic exchanges. Recently, Korea began to refocus its efforts towards Africa in order to revitalize their relations. This paper examines Korea's public diplomacy strategies towards Africa and how its various strategies are working in the interest of Korea as well as Africa. The study shows that Korea's renewed interest in Africa is primarily driven by the security threat from North Korea and the need to diversify its market for industrial goods as well as energy sources. The latter motives override Korea's interest in the continent. These motives are not at variance with those pursued by large powers like the US and China in Africa. Furthermore, the paper shows that Korea is employing a mixture of public diplomacy instruments in Africa with varied outcomes. Economic linkages between Korea and Africa are on an upward trajectory since the late 2000s. In order to build sustainable relations, the paper provides a number suggestions with far-reaching implications on Korea's public diplomacy towards Africa in the future.


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