Monday, September 26, 2011

China, Russia Investing In North Korea's Port City, Rason.

In the northeastern tip of North Korea, Chinese and Russian construction crews are racing to build transportation lines to a long-neglected port city that might now become an oasis for foreign investment.

Rason, N. Korea
Chinese workers, living in roadside tents, are widening and paving a 31-mile road whose condition was once so mangled that trucks needed three hours to travel it. Russians, meantime, are finishing a $200 million renovation project on 34-mile stretch of railroad.

Twenty years ago North Korea designated Rason as a special economic zone, but the leadership in Pyongyang, ambivalent about loosening its state-run economy, spent the subsequent 19 years ignoring Rason’s potential. Only this year have North Korean officials delivered a new message, touting Rason as their mini-Singapore — a business-friendly hub with cheap labor, low taxes and a soon-to-arrive Internet connection for foreigners.

Washington Post

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