NAMPHO, December 23. /TASS/. Deputy North Korean minister of Foodstuffs and Daily Necessities Kim Ji Suk has expressed gratitude to Russia for the assistance Russia rendered to North Korea gratis as he reaffirmed Pyongyang's intention '"to continue the course towards development of friendly relations between North Korea and Russia."
Kim Ji Suk spoke at a ceremonial event held on the occasion of the arrival of a ship at the sea port of Nampho on the Yellow Sea coast which delivered 22,900 tons of wheat from Russia. The North Korean official highly praised a recent visit to Russia paid by a member of the Political Bureau of the Labor Party of North Korea, Choi Ryong-hae, whom North Korean leader Kim Jong- Un sent to Moscow as a special envoy. "The talks held in Moscow gave a new impetus to the development of bilateral relations," Kim Ji Suk said.
He told TASS that after the wheat was unloaded it would be delivered to a wheat processing plant in Pyongyang. Despite a severe draught which hit North Korea in the outgoing year, the grain harvest totaled 5.71 million tons — 50,000 tons up the amount of grain harvested in the previous year, Kim Ji Suk said.
Russia' s Charge d' Affairs in North Korea Igor Sagitov told the ceremony that the wheat Russia delivered to North Korean gratis is "vivid proof of Russia's intention to make its possible contribution for the improvement of the daily life of the North Korean people."
"We hope that such supplies will, to some extent, promote settlement of economic tasks set forth to North Korea," the Russian diplomat said.