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Pres. Moon Jae-in delivers new year’s speech

Posted January. 08, 2020 07:54,   

Updated January. 08, 2020 07:59


South Korean President Moon Jae-in has renewed his invitation for North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to visit Seoul in his new year’s speech. “We will make continued efforts to resume the operation of the Kaesong industrial complex and Mount Kumgang tours despite the global community’s sanctions against Pyongyang. Moon clarified that improving inter-Korean relations is one of his priorities for this year even though the talks between Washington and Pyongyang have reached stalemates ever since Kim announced a new strategic weapon.

"I hope South and North (Korea) will make efforts together so that the conditions for Chairman Kim Jong Un's reciprocal visit can be created at an early date," said Moon in his new year’s speech at Cheong Wa Dae on Tuesday. It is the first time that he directly mentioned Kim’s visit since the new year’s press conference last year.

“We are in desperate need of making efforts for the success of U.S.-North Korea dialogue and exploring realistic ways to promote inter-Korean cooperation as the stalemate in Washington-Pyongyang talks could create regression in relations between the two Koreas,” the president added.

Regarding the slowdown in the South Korean economy last year, Moon promised to enhance exports and investments in facility to boost economic growth, saying, “The government will stabilize the real-estate market, protect end users and control speculation. We will never lose in the war with real-estate speculation.”

In the meantime, the main opposite Liberty Korea Party criticized Moon’s speech. “President Moon lost touch with reality,” said its floor leader Shim Jae-chul. “He is just patting himself.”

Sang-Jun Han alwaysj@donga.com