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Kaesong industrial park puts in secretariat to oversee administrative operations

September 30, 2013, 9:08 UTC+3
The permanent secretariat is staffed by eight representatives from the South Korean government and five representatives of North Korean central authorities
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Photo EPA/KOREA POOL

Photo EPA/KOREA POOL

SEOUL, September 30 (Itar-Tass) - A joint secretariat to oversee administrative operations began functioning on Monday at the inter-Korean Kaesong Industrial Complex, the South Korean Ministry of Unification reports.

Ministry sources said the permanent secretariat is staffed by eight representatives from the South Korean government and five representatives of North Korean central authorities.

Their task is to assist the joint management committee in running the industrial park that remains so far the only example of economic cooperation between the two Koreas.

In the new joint management committee, South Korea has got equal with North Korea rights in settling the emerging problems, unlike in the past when the complex was run by a North Korean body, Yonhap news agency reports.

An agreement to establish a joint secretariat was reached at talks between the North and the South in mid-August. A landmark agreement was also reached at the talks that called for reopening the Kaesong Industrial Complex, shut down early in April upon the orders from Pyongyang.

The delegations of the two countries also worked out measures aimed at preventing a unilateral closure Kaesong for some non-economic reasons. Seoul saw it as a symbol of rapprochement between the two countries and economic cooperation.

Operations at Kaesong were stopped in early April after Pyongyang citing military and political provocations pulled out all of its 53,000 workers from the complex that is home to 123 South Korean factories. After months of tension and negotiations, the two sides finally reached agreement to restart operations at Kaesong starting September 16. The complex had been shuttered for five months before normalization.

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