Following visit, South Korean delegation says renovation needed at Kaesong

Following visit, South Korean delegation says renovation needed at Kaesong

Members of an ROK delegation on Friday said some facilities at the Kaesong Industrial Complex (KIC) will require renovation before the planned establishment of an inter-Korean liaison office at the site.

A task force team for the installation of the liaison office visited the now-shuttered joint industrial park from 0930 to 1630 KST, the Ministry of Unification (MOU) said.

The ROK delegation reportedly “meticulously reviewed” facilities at the KIC, including the Inter-Korean Exchange and Cooperation Consultation Office and accommodation for staff, the KIC support center, and the KT communications center.

“Most of the facilities were externally in good condition,” the MOU said in a written statement, while adding that some would need to be repaired.

“The basement floor of  the Inter-Korean Exchange and Cooperation Consultation Office and its accommodations has been inundated [with water],” the MOU said.

“There is a considerable number of venues that need renovation including part of machinery and equipment in disable state due to flooding, water leak on a wall, and glass breakage.”

The ministry said five DPRK officials, including Hwang Chung Song, director of the DPRK’s Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Country (CPRC), and head of department at the Central Special Zone Development Guidance General Bureau Won Yong Hui led them round the site. 

The visit was the first by South Koreans since the closure of the KIC in 2016 | Photo: Ministry of Unification

Thursday saw the unification ministry announce that a 14-member South Korean delegation would visit the KIC in preparation for the establishment of a joint liaison office.

South Korean Vice Minister of Unification Chun Hae-sung led the group, accompanied by representatives from Hyundai Asan, KT Corp, the Kaesong Industrial District Foundation, and others.

The Moon administration will now “come up with necessary action plans for the swift opening of the South-North joint liaison office and implementing them,” the ministry said in Friday’s statement.

Seoul will also soon decide whether to carry out additional inspection and develop plans to renovate the facilities based on the results of the inspection and consultation with experts, the announcement added.

The two Koreas last week agreed to push ahead with the setting up of the joint liaison office at KIC, though the idea first appeared in April’s Panmunjom Declaration.

Last Friday saw Pyongyang and Seoul agree to establish a liaison office with resident representatives at the KIC “at an early date, and set up practical measures.”

The South Korean task force team’s visit to the KIC today was the first by an ROK delegation to the site since the Park Geun-hye administration’s closure of the complex in February 2016.

Edited by Oliver Hotham

Featured image: Ministry of Unification

Members of an ROK delegation on Friday said some facilities at the Kaesong Industrial Complex (KIC) will require renovation before the planned establishment of an inter-Korean liaison office at the site. A task force team for the installation of the liaison office visited the now-shuttered joint industrial park from 0930 to 1630 KST, the Ministry

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