South Korea plans to finish building a new data transfer system at a jointly run factory park in North Korea this week, an official said Monday, a move expected to facilitate travel to and from the industrial complex.
The radio frequency identification system will be up and running at the North's western border city of Kaesong later this month, unification ministry spokesman Kim Eui-do told reporters.
The system would allow South Korean factory managers to visit the park and return home at any time on days they are permitted to cross the border, according to the ministry.
Currently, South Korea has to fax a list of names a day before their trip to the North, which would then allow those on the list to cross the border only during a designated time.
Still, any trip to the North requires the Seoul government's approval as well as the North's consent. The sides still technically remain in a state of war since the 1950-53 Korean War ended in a truce, not a peace treaty.
The sprawling capitalist enclave, the last-remaining symbol of inter-Korean economic cooperation, is home to 120 small South Korean plants that produce garments and other labor-intensive goods. More than 44,600 North Koreans work in the complex.
The project serves as a major legitimate revenue source for the impoverished communist country. (Yonhap News)