January 15, 2015 09:30
North Korea is forging ahead with the development of no fewer than 13 economic zones in the provinces this year, the regime's official [North] Korean Central News Agency said Wednesday.
"The Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly proposed establishing 13 economic zones in some of the eight provinces in accordance with the economic development zone regulations adopted in 2013," KCNA quoted Yun Yong-sok of the North's Economic Development Association as saying.
"The people's committees of the concerned provinces drew up the total development plans, including the construction of buildings, roads, and electronics and communication networks," he added.
Free economic zones are planned for Chongjin, Manpo, and Hyesan, industrial zones for Hungnam, Hyondong, and Wiwon, tourist zones in Onsongsom and Sinpyong, export processing zones in Songlim and Waudo, and agricultural zones in Orang and Bukchong, he said.
"We're going to give investment presentations on the development blueprint at expos in foreign countries as well as in Pyongyang and the Rajin-Sonbong zone," he added.
But whether any investors will bite remains to be seen given the capricious nature of the regime.
Cho Bong-hyun of the IBK Institute here said, "It seems that Kim Jong-un is trying to achieve tangible economic development goals with the project."
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