S Korea to curb trade deals with DPRK

20:43, May 13, 2010      

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The South Korean government on Thursday urged companies to refrain from signing new contracts with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) or sending industrial resources to the country, reflecting worsening inter- Korean ties in the wake of the naval tragedy, Yonhap News Agency reported.

Seoul's apparent step to discourage further trade relations with Pyongyang, confirmed by the Unification Ministry, could affect as many as 200 South Korean firms that send raw and subsidiary materials to the DPRK.

The joint industrial complex in the DPRK's border town of Kaesong, where about 110 South Korean companies employ about 42, 000 DPRK workers producing labor-intensive goods, will not be affected by the decision.

The preliminary investigation showed a possible torpedo explosion was to blame for the sinking of South Korea's warship Cheonan on March 26 near the disputed sea border with DPRK whick left 46 sailors dead. The formal investigation results are expected to be unveiled by May 20.



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