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Korea, U.S. to discuss space program this week

South Korea and the United States will have talks this week on boosting their cooperation in space exploration, a government ministry said Tuesday, as South Korea is pushing for a lunar exploration project.

The two sides are scheduled to hold the three-day meeting in Seoul and Daejeon, some 160 km south of the capital, starting on Wednesday, according to the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning.

It would be the second working-level Civil Space Dialogue between the allies. The previous session was held in Washington D.C. in July 2014.

They plan to have a wide range of discussions on ways to strengthen partnerships in the space sector, said the ministry.

"In the space exploration field, the two sides will exchange information not only on South Korea's ongoing lunar exploration program but also on the U.S. initiative such as a planned journey to Mars and the International Space Station," it added. "They will explore methods for cooperation as well."

The U.S. apparently seeks South Korea's investment in its space projects and Seoul expects an opportunity to share some of Washington's related technology. South Korea aims to send up a moon orbiter by 2018.

South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and U.S. Ambassador to Seoul Mark Lippert plan to sign an accord to promote bilateral space cooperation in a ceremony to be held here right before the start of the dialogue. (Yonhap)

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