The South Korean government had carefully reviewed the request from the representative Hong Joon-pyo, chairman of Grand National Party, following his visit to Gaesong Industrial Complex on September 30. After a thorough review, we decided to implement the following measures to resolve the difficulties South Korean companies face in the complex.
First, the South Korean government will allow the resumption of suspended construction activities in the industrial complex for companies which had received approval prior to the May 24 Measures.
We will first allow seven companies to restart their stalled construction work due to the ban. We will also further consider approving resumption of factory expansion work by other five companies.
Second, the South Korean government will promptly build a fire station and an emergency medical facility in the complex to ensure workers’ safety and to protect the assets of our companies.
As for the fire station, we will soon designate a constructor to begin the construction in November and complete the construction by the end of 2012.
* The agenda for building the fire station was already passed by the South and North Exchange and Cooperation Promotion Council in December 2009. Land purchase and building layout have already been completed.
As to the emergency medical facility, we will introduce and pass the agenda at South and North Exchange and Cooperation Promotion Council as soon as possible. We plan to break ground for the construction early next year and finish the work by the yearend.
Lastly, we will renovate a road linking Gaesong City and GIC and expand shuttle bus service for North Korean commuters living far away form the complex once we conclude negotiations with the North Korean counterpart.
We will have some inter-Korean working-level meetings to ensure convenient and safe transportation of North Korean workers. The South Korean government plans to renovate the 4.5-kilometer road within this year.
The South Korean government decided to repair the road because the infrastructure near the industrial complex contributes to the South Korean companies. A South Korean construction firm will handle the renovation.
We will also increase the number of shuttle buses carrying North Korean workers living far from the complex. The primary purpose of the plan is to solve the labor shortage problem at the complex. We will continue with the plan after consultations with our counterpart in the North.
* The commuter road was built by the North in November, 2005 with the materials and equipment provided by the South. However, the current damage on the road is so severe that renovation is inevitable.
We have operated shuttle bus service within a 20-kilometer radius of the complex. We will extend the radius of the shuttle bus operation up to 40 kilometers to bring in more workers to the complex.
Our government will promote consultations with the North to execute the plans including the road renovation and commuter bus service expansion as soon as possible.
Ministry of Unification