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NK Restricts Equipment Removal From Kaesong

Posted June. 01, 2010 12:18,   


North Korea has banned South Korean companies in the joint inter-Korean industrial complex in Kaesong from taking factory equipment and facilities out, the South Korean Unification Ministry said Monday.

Pyongyang wants to continue to develop the complex, an official at the North`s Central Special Zone Development Guidance General Bureau who visited the complex was quoted as saying Saturday. He said all facilities and equipment there can be taken out only after going through a tax office in the industrial zone.

The North has four conditions before facilities and equipment can be removed, the ministry said. A company must settle all liabilities including wage payments and cannot take out facilities registered as assets.

The removal of leased or malfunctioning facilities will be allowed after submission of written proof or confirmation of the terms of their return. In addition, a company is banned from letting staff go on unpaid leave because of the removal.

This is the first time for the North to require approval from tax as well as customs authorities for the removal of South Korean facilities and equipment from the complex.

Experts say the conditions are aimed at preventing South Korean companies from taking factory equipment and facilities out of the complex unless they are out of order or leased.