SEOUL-- South Korea and Uruguay have agreed to jointly push for a trade agreement between South Korea and Mercosur, the Southern Common Market, of which Uruguay is a member, the foreign ministry said Monday.

The agreement was made during the two countries' sixth round of joint economic committee meetings held Friday in Seoul. Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Affairs Yun Kang-hyeon and Deputy Foreign Minister Ariel Bergamino headed the South Korean and Uruguayan sides, respectively.

"Both sides agreed on the necessity of forging a trade agreement between South Korea and Mercosur to come up with an institutional tool to overcome bilateral trade that has been trending down after peaking in 2013," the ministry said.

"The Uruguayan side agreed, in particular, to make active efforts during a Mercosur minister-level meeting in Brasilia in December and (Uruguay's) Mercosur chairmanship in the latter half of next year to open trade negotiations between South Korea and Mercosur," the ministry also said.

The Southern Common Market is composed of four countries: Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Also discussed in the latest joint economic committee meeting was bilateral economic and trade cooperation, as well as collaboration on the efforts to denuclearize North Korea, the ministry noted.

The South Korean side also expressed its local fishing industry's difficulties caused by Uruguay's recent revision of maritime security guidelines, it said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency