Kaesong industrial complex
Kaesong industrial complex

Impossible to reopen Kaesong complex, says S Korea

ANI | Updated: Oct 25, 2018 18:11 IST

Seoul [South Korea], Oct 25 (ANI): South Korea has no plans to restart the Kaesong industrial complex until international sanctions on North Korea are lifted, officials said on Thursday.
The officials of Cheong Wa Dae, the South Korean presidential office, made the comments in response to media reports stating that North Korea has decided to take back its decision to confiscate South Korean assets in the joint industrial complex. Pyongyang also said it would return the seized South Korean assets at Mount Kumgang resort, the reports claimed.
However, South Korean officials have dismissed these reports, saying such plans were "not true at all," Yonhap News Agency reported.
The Kaesong industrial park, jointly run by the two Koreas, was shut down in 2016 when the previous Park Geun-hye's government ordered the closing down of its businesses and recalled their workers from the complex after the sanctions by Seoul were imposed on Pyongyang over the latter's fourth nuclear test in that year.
The industrial complex, during its peak operation, was home to over 120 South Korean firms employing about 50,000 North Korean workers. There have been numerous proposals to open the joint industrial park but to no avail.
Inter-Korean relations have dramatically improved this year following South Korean President Moon Jae-in's meetings with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in the past few months. The two Korean leaders have met thrice - in April, May, and September - agreeing to cease hostilities against each other, strengthening inter-Korean cooperation and achieving complete denuclearisation in the Korean Peninsula.
Although North Korea has repeatedly asserted that it took several steps to achieve denuclearisation, such as shutting down of a key nuclear reactor site at Punggye-ri, where the development of ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons took place, other countries, particularly the United States have demanded a proper and concrete proof to support the claims.
Moon has consistently called for good economic ties with North Korea. However, officials have maintained that they would not provide financial assistance to the reclusive nation unless the international sanctions were lifted. (ANI)