South Korean President Lee Myung-bak will visit Beijing on Aug. 8-9 to attend the opening ceremony of the Olympics set for Friday, the Presidential Office announced on Sunday.
"Lee will be the first South Korean president to attend an offshore opening ceremony of the Olympics. This reflects the upgraded relations between South Korea and China and is expected to help promote bilateral friendship and cooperation," said Presidential Spokesman Lee Dong-kwan at a news briefing.
Lee will also attend a welcoming luncheon hosted by Chinese President Hu Jintao on Friday, the spokesman said.
Lee plans to visit the Olympic village and training centers on Saturday to encourage South Korean athletes participating in the Beijing Olympics, the spokesman said.
During Lee's two-day stay in Beijing, he is also scheduled to hold bilateral summit talks with the leaders of Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Algeria separately on the sidelines of the Olympic ceremony to seek closer cooperation in natural resources, South Korea's Yonhap News Agency reported.