North Korea is reportedly allowing Chinese motorists to drive to the special economic zone of Rajin-Sonbong so they can look around for investment opportunities there.
A spokesman for Sanjiang International Travel Agency in Hunchun, China on Friday said a group of Chinese motorists will tour Rajin-Sonbong and Duman near the North Korean-Chinese-Russian border under an initiative by the Tourism Bureau of Jilin Province on May 31-June 1. Sanjiang specializes in travels to the lower reaches of the Duman (Tumen) River in North Korea and Russia.
The two-day trip will cost 680 yuan (approximately W115,000) per person.
The Sanjiang staffer said small groups of Chinese motorists have gone to Rajin-Sonbong before, but this is the first large-scale trip organized by the Jilin provincial government and the first time tourists are visiting Duman.
The aim is apparently to lure Chinese investors to Rajin-Sonbong. Early this year, the North agreed with Hunchun city to build a large recreation center and park in its special economic zone.
Back in March 2008, the North allowed South Korean motorists to travel to the scenic Mt. Kumgang resort, but only four months later the tours were suspended after a South Korean tourist was shot dead by a North Korean soldier.