SEOUL –February 24, 2013 –Lars Løkke Rasmussen, Chairman of the Council of the Global Green Growth Institute, received the Order of Diplomatic Service Merit (Grand Gwanghwa Medal –1st Rank), one of the highest civilian awards given by the Republic of Korea, by outgoing President Lee Myung-bak at an exclusive ceremony held at the president’s residence on Sunday.
Chairman Rasmussen, who is former Prime Minister of Denmark, received the award for his contribution to GGGI’s transition from a Korean non-profit foundation into an International, treaty-based organization, as well as for his efforts at strengthening cooperation on other green growth-related initiatives between Denmark and Korea.
GGGI was founded in 2010 at the initiative of the Korean government and President Lee. Shortly after, Denmark joined Korea as a partner country to the Institute, opening a regional GGGI office in Copenhagen and becoming the second donor country after Korea to contribute to the GGGI.
Mr. Rasmussen became the organization’s second Chairman in June 2012 and focused on assisting GGGI with becoming one of the first international organizations in East Asia, which occurred in mid-October 2012.
Chairman Rasmussen was Prime Minister of Denmark from 2009 to 2011, during which time Denmark strengthened its ties with Korea and formally signed a “Green Alliance”, the first non-security Alliance Korea has joined with a European nation. The two countries have agreed to cooperate on developing green technologies and sustainable energy sources.
Chairman Rasmussen is currently leader of the opposition party in Danish Parliament and, in conjunction with his position as GGGI Council Chairman, continues to work toward bolstering the alliance and promoting green growth globally.
“It is a great honor to receive the Order of Diplomatic Service Merit,” Mr. Rasmussen said. “It has been a tremendous opportunity to serve as Chair of the Global Green Growth Institute as a new international organization and I deeply appreciate the opportunity to help the GGGI advance its mission.”
Chairman Rasmussen is in Seoul to receive the honor from the president as well as to attend the inauguration of President-elect Park Geun-hye and conduct his duties as GGGI Chair at the organization’s headquarters.
GGGI is an international organization dedicated to developing and diffusing a new paradigm of economic growth – green growth – which simultaneously balances economic performance and environmental sustainability. Headquartered in Seoul and founded in June 2010, GGGI works in long-term partnership with developing and emerging economies through rigorous green growth planning, research and public-private cooperation.