President Moon Jae-in asked his German counterpart to support his Trade Minister's bid for WTO chief.
In their 20 minute conversation on Thursday, the South Korean leader emphasized Yoo Myung-hee has the vision and capacity to develop and restore trust in the global body.
According to the nation's top office, Angela Merkel agreed Yoo is qualified for the job and has the expertise.
The minister is competing with candidates from Nigeria, Kenya, Saudi Arabia, and Britain.
The duo also exchanged views on stepping up cooperation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, including increased bilateral human exchanges.
It was the first direct contact between the two leaders since their summit in October 2018, on the sidelines of the Asia-Europe Meeting in Brussels.