Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon has called the North Korea-U.S. summit a success and vowed to exert utmost efforts with the belief that this may be the final opportunity to establish peace on the Korean Peninsula.

The minister made the remarks in a congratulatory speech he gave at an academic forum held on Thursday to mark the 18th anniversary of the first inter-Korean summit in June 2000.

He said that because the leaders of the two Koreas and the U.S. held respective summit talks, South Korea will from now open a future of prosperity through cooperation, not confrontation.

He added that the North Korea-U.S. summit was the "meeting of a century" that marked a historic milestone of ending the word's last remaining Cold War and heading toward a path of permanent peace.

The minister pledged efforts to strengthen a virtuous cycle where advancement in inter-Korean relations can facilitate denuclearization and peace on the peninsula as well as ties between Pyongyang and Washington.

He said denuclearization and improved North Korea-U.S. ties will then in turn serve to further develop relations between the two Koreas.