Archive for the ‘Pyongyang International Trade Fair’ Category

International Trade Fair held to attract foreign investments

Thursday, December 1st, 2011

Institute for Far Eastern Studies (IFES)

Pyongyang International Trade Fair is held every spring and fall. The exhibition is increasing in size and attracting European and other foreign investments.

Japan-based newspaper, the Choson Sinbo reported on November 22 that during the period of the exhibition, over hundreds of business talks went back and forth between the North Korean and foreign companies and over 50 trade contracts and investment agreements were reportedly signed, with total amount of trade reaching in the millions in USD. At the Seventh Pyongyang Autumn International Trade Fair, held from October 17–20, one contract between a European company was reported to have been over 10 million USD alone.

Initially, the trade fair drew about 100 participating companies with just about 100 trade items. This year, however, roughly 300 companies had participated and over a thousand goods were on display.

It was also reported that “The items presented at the fair represented all sectors of social economic development with machineries, electronic goods, building materials, transportation, chemicals, clothing, food, medical and other consumer goods. In addition to these items, trade items are transitioning from light industry and consumer goods to the state-of-the-art products with CNC technology.”

Recently, multinational companies are exploring ways to enter into the North Korean markets through such international trade fairs.

According to the North Korean press, Chinese companies such as Haier, manufacturer of home appliances, and electronics and television manufacturer Changhong are in attendance at every trade fair held in Pyongyang. This time, particular attention was paid to European companies seeking investment opportunities in North Korea, such as a German paper manufacturing company, French flooring company, and Sweden’s GIA Industries, which is known as a mining equipment supplier.

The trade fair, which used to be held once a year in the spring, is now also being held in the autumn season to meet the increasing interests from multinational companies doing trade in Pyongyang. The scale of the fair has been upgraded as well. Normally the event was held only at the first two floors of the Three-Revolution Exhibition House; but to accommodate for growing size, discussion for building an international exhibition center is currently underway.

In the North Korean analysis, certain factors point to the success of the trade fair: 1) North Korea’s economic revitalization policy that focused on modernization of the people’s economy with large-scale construction projects, as these are gaining attention from overseas companies; and 2) North Korea’s assertive trade goals with economic modernization in mind and the hosting of international trade fairs, which are resulting in long-term trade contracts and an increasing amount of trade.

Additional Information:
1. Previous posts on the Pyongyang International Trade Fair can be found here.

2. Rason (Rajin-Sonbong) also recently held its first international trade fair.


7th Pyongyang Autumn International Trade Fair

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

Pictured above (Google Earth): The location of the Trade Fair in the Three Revolutions Exhibition House, Pyongyang

According to the Pyongyang Times (October 2011):

The 7th Pyongyang Autumn International Trade Fair ran between October 17 and 20 in the Three-Revolution Exhibition House.

The annual event serves as an occasion in bolstering up economic relations and bilateral and multilateral cooperation among the countries on the principle of equality and mutual benefits.

The fair drew more than 260 companies from many countries and regions including the DPRK, China, the Netherlands, Germany, Bulgaria, Malaysia, Switzerland, Sweden, Italy, Austria, Australia, India, the UK, the Czech Republic, Poland and Taiwan.

On display in the trade fair were several thousand kinds of products such as electronic goods, machines, building materials, chemicals, medicines, food and consumer goods.

Over ten additional trading companies of the DPRK participated in the expo. The Korean firms exhibited more goods and ads in their booths.

The Kumgang Motor Joint Venture Company put a variety of vehicles on show, the Kwangmyong Contractual Joint Venture Company displayed stainless steel pipes and couplings and the Kyongnim Trading Company put on different kinds of far infrared rays-anionic treatment apparatuses, which drew the attention of viewers.

Draws also included paper samples of the Gratenau & Hesselbacher Gmbh & Co KG of Germany and textiles of the Anhui Xinhe Textile Co Ltd of China.

The deputy general manager of the Shenyang Huanggu Seeds Co Ltd of China who attended the exhibition for the first time said:

“The exhibition served as an occasion in promoting economic exchange and collaboration among the countries. We will boost economic exchange with the DPRK counterparts.”

During the fair there were a briefing on the investment environment in the DPRK and business talks.

Read more about the trade fair at the Choson Exchange web page.

Here, here, and here are articles in KCNA on the trade fair.


1st Rason International Trade Fair (UPDATED)

Wednesday, October 19th, 2011

UPDATE 6 (2011-10-19): I finally received a list of companies participating in the first Rason International Trade Fair. Below is a picture of the names of participating companies listed on a display at the show and a PDF of their names (in English). I apologize for any typos:

Here is a PDF of the company names in English.

Most are obviously Chinese companies, though there appears to be at least one American company listed in the mix, White Stone Corporation Co., Inc. USA!

UPDATE 5 (2011-8-22): KCTV produced video footage from the fair.

UPDATE 4 (2011-8-25): KCNA announces the closing of the first Rason International Trade Fair:

First Rason International Trade Fair in DPRK Closes

Rason, August 25 (KCNA) — The first Rason International Trade Fair was closed with due ceremony on Thursday.

Present there were Jo Jong Ho, chairman of the Rason City People’s Committee, officials concerned and exhibitors of different countries and regions.

In a speech a speaker referred to the fact that the fair was successfully progressed and an advance was made in conformity in favor of mutual interests in economy, exchange of science and technology and trade through wide-ranging contacts.

Diplomas were awarded to the exhibitors who presented excellent goods at the closing ceremony.

UPDATE 3 (2011-8-25)): KCNA publishes a short article advertising the economic advantages of Rason:

Rason Economic, Trade Zone with Bright Prospect of Development

Pyongyang, August 25 (KCNA) — Rason City, the DPRK, is situated in an important area which can link China’s three northeast provinces and Russia’s Far East region, both full of natural resources, and many Asia-Pacific nations with each other.

Rajin, Sonbong and Ungsang ports in Rason and Chongjin Port adjacent to the area provide good conditions for transit trade for Northeast Asia and other continents.

The sea off the ports does not freeze in winter, so they are not subject to seasonal restriction.

The reconstruction projects of the Rajin-Khasan railway and Rajin Port launched in Juche 97 (2008) will make it possible to reduce the transport distance from Asia to Europe, sharply cutting down the transport fee.

The Rajin-Khasan railway will serve as a transport route between the DPRK and Russia and between Asia-Pacific and European nations.

Rason City has seafood, agricultural product and wild vegetable processing bases operated by Korean trading companies. The city also boasts of many ponds, lakes and bays favorable for fresh-water fish culture and offshore farm.

Its natural and geographical environment is suitable to an international tourist resort. There are sea-bird, seal and other animal sanctuaries in the area with beautiful islets, like Pipha and Sol.

Some foreigners have already launched business in the area and an increasing number of investors are interested in the zone.

Rason City with amazing geographical and economic conditions is likely to greatly contribute to the development and prosperity of Northeast Asian nations.

UPDATE 2 (2011-8-21): The first Rason International Trade Fair opens Monday. Some interesting information below:

Pictured above (Google Earth): The Rason International Trade Fair Exhibition Hall (See in Google Maps here)

Also, a reader sent in this promotional flyer which is full of information on the trade fair:

See images of the flyer here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

Video footage of the trade fair can be seen here.

UPDATE 1 (2011-8-17): The First “Rason International Product Exhibition” to be Held in Rajin-Sonbong Special Economic Zone
Institute for Far Eastern Studies (IFES)

Rajin-Sonbong or “Rason Special Economic Zone” is a co-development project developed by North Korea and China. The Rason SEZ International Product Exhibition is scheduled to take place from August 22nd to 25th — an exhibition targeted to attract foreign investors to the region.

According to the KCNA article released on August 14, “The exhibition will display a wide array of items from various countries including vehicles, pharmaceutical and clothing products.” It was said that the exhibition promises be an important event to encourage cooperation and exchange with various countries in trade, economic and science, and technology sectors.

This event is expected to not only bring Chinese but also European and other foreign companies into the economic zone, pushing investment into the area.

There is also talk of developing Rason into an international tourism zone to attract tourists from China, Russia, and Japan.

After the closing ceremony of the exhibition, visits to Rajin Harbor, Mangyongbong ferry, and the amusement park are scheduled in order to provide sightseeing tours for the participants to the exhibition.

Mangyongbong ferry, well-known in the past for transporting North Koreans living in Japan back to North Korea, is gaining special attention itself as a new tourist attraction. This cargo-passenger ferry is expected to be utilized further for tourism in the near future, including bringing Chinese tourists from Dairen and other harbors in China to Nampo Harbor close to Pyongyang.

In the late 1950s, Mangyongbong ferry began to shuttle North Koreans in Japan from Niigata Harbor to Wonsan Harbor near Pyongyang. From 1984, it was used to transport cargo into Japan, but this was halted in 2006 due to economic sanctions against North Korea which followed in response to North Korea’s missile and nuclear tests.

There are two ferries in North Korea with the name Mangyongbong. The Mangyongbong-92 will be introduced in Rajin Harbor to maximize the demonstration effect. The Mangyongbong, weighing 3,500 tons, is much smaller and older and inadequate to be used as a ferry.

The Mangyongbong-92 was built in 1992 to commemorate the 80th birthday of Kim Il Sung. The ship was built with funds collected from Chongryon (i.e., the General Association of Korean Residents in Japan). It was estimated to cost over 4 billion JPY at the time, weighing about 9,700 ton with a capacity to hold 350 passengers.

On another note, the fourteenth annual Pyongyang Spring International Product Exhibition held this May hosted over 280 companies from 10 countries. 100 Chinese companies participated in the exhibition. Since then, Chinese corporations from Liaoning and Dandong are reported to have placed contract orders worth 800,000 USD.


ORIGINAL POST (2011-8-15):

Pictured above (Google Earth): Rason geographic border (in red) and security perimeter fence (Yellow).

According to KCNA:

First Rason International Trade Fair to Be Held

Pyongyang, August 14 (KCNA) — The first Rason International Trade Fair will be held in the DPRK from August 22 to 25.

Vehicles, medicines, garments, etc. presented by companies of different countries and regions including the DPRK will be displayed at the fair.

The fair will contribute to boosting cooperation and exchange among countries and regions in fields of trade, economy, science and technology.

The DPRK is no stranger to trade fairs. By my calculations, the DPRK has hosted the Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair since 1998 and the Pyongyang Autumn International Trade Fair since 2005. These events, which draw vendors from across the planet, are held at the Three Revolutions Exhibition in Pyongyang.

This is the first trade fair of which I am aware that is being held outside of Pyongyang. The Rajin-Sonbong area was the site of the DPRK’s first experiment with special economic zones. Although it did not generate the expected level of interest, North Korean authorities are hoping that this time around they will be able to capitalize on their proximity to the Chinese market (see here and here).

Additional Information:

1. Previous posts on Rason here.

2. Previous Posts on the Pyongyang International Trade Fair here.

3. The Chinese have been upgrading the road that links the Rason port with the Chinese border.

4. A few days ago I posted a preliminary list of DPRK trade companies published in Foreign Trade magazine. I imagine that more than one of them will have a presence at the trade fair.


Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair 2011 opens

Monday, May 16th, 2011

Pictured above (Google Earth): The location of the Trade Fair
in the Three Revolutions Museum compound, Pyongyang

According to KCNA:

Pyongyang Spring Int’l Trade Fair Opens

Pyongyang, May 16 (KCNA) — The 14th Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair opened at the Three-Revolution Exhibition Monday with due ceremony.

Present there were Vice-Premier Kang Sok Ju, Minister of Foreign Trade Ri Ryong Nam, officials in the field of foreign trade and delegations from several countries and regions.

Diplomatic envoys of several countries and officials of foreign embassies here were also present.

Kim Mun Jong, director of the Korean International Exhibition Corporation, made an opening address to be followed by a congratulatory speech by O Ryong Chol, vice-minister of Foreign Trade.

The speakers said that the fair will provide multi-lateral economic and trade activities and scientific and technological exchanges among several countries and regions, expressing hope that the entrants would gain good success through broad contacts.

The DPRK will further economic and cooperative relations with other countries on the principles of equality and mutual benefits, they said.

After the opening ceremony the attendants looked round exhibits from companies of the DPRK, China, Germany, Malaysia, Mongolia, Syria, Switzerland, Singapore, Britain, Australia, Austria, Italy, Indonesia, France, Poland and Taipei of China.

A reception as regards the opening of the fair was given at Pyongyang Koryo Hotel the same day.

Uriminzokkiri posted a video of the trade fair on You Tube. Watch it here.


DPRK cabinet discusses 4th quarter projects as Chinese participation grows in the Pyongyang International Trade Fair

Monday, November 8th, 2010

Institute for Far Eastern Studies (IFES)
NK Brief No. 10-11-8-1

North Korea held an extended meeting of the entire Cabinet in order to discuss the types of projects to be pursued in the last quarter of the year, and to strategize on how these projects should be implemented.

On October 28, the CHOSUN SHINBO reported on an article in the MINJU CHOSUN, which is under the control of the North Korean Cabinet. According to the article, efforts are being made to strongly construct the foundation upon which exemplars of the ‘military-first’ era will be erected. Production lines and facilities in all realms of the People’s Economy need to come into alignment with CNC, and efforts need to be made toward modernization, environmental protection, and reforestation. In particular, the Cabinet has pledged to decisively improve city management and restore socialism in cities and agricultural villages. Efforts will be focused on restoring socialist principles to economic management and ensuring that the centrally planned national economy is implemented.

The newspaper also reported that the North’s Cabinet held discussions on how to successfully fulfill all the goals set for the third quarter while creating a strategy to meet all of the targets set for the annual People’s Economy. It is unknown exactly when this meeting was held, but Premier Choi Yong-rim and other Cabinet members were all in attendance, as were city and town People’s Committee representatives, committee members from factories and farming communities, economic planners, and managers from critical factories and organizations.

As officials discuss economic reforms, the sixth annual autumn Pyongyang International Trade Fair was held from October 18-21, and it saw a greater Chinese presence than the thirteenth annual spring trade fair held last May. This could be the result of Kim Jong Il’s August visit to China. According to the newspaper, seventeen countries were represented by over 140 companies (48 from North Korea, 93 from abroad) — This was three countries and over twenty companies more than were at the spring fair. India participated for the first time this fall.

An official from the trade fair told the newspaper that the increased participation from Chinese companies was a direct result of Kim Jong Il’s recent visit to China’s northeastern region and the improved economic relations between Pyongyang and Beijing that came out of that visit. From machinery and equipment to steel products, electronic goods and light industrial products, food, pharmaceuticals, traditional herbal medicines and chemical products, over 57,000 products in over 2,300 different categories were on display. This is more than 600 categories of goods not seen last year.

Foreign companies participating in the fair signed contracts with North Korean offices for sales, technology exchanges, joint ventures, and investment opportunities, building on the ‘Introduction and Negotiations on the Investment Environment of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea’ held on October 18.


Pyongyang trade fair begins today

Monday, October 18th, 2010

The Pyongyang International Trade fair is held twice a year: once in the spring and once in the fall.  The Fall 2010 fair begins today.  It is always held at the Three Revolutions Museum in Northern Pyongyang (satellite image here).

According to KCNA:

International Trade Fair to Be Held in Pyongyang 
Pyongyang, October 12 (KCNA) — The 6th Pyongyang Autumn International Trade Fair will be held at the Three-revolution Exhibition from October 18 to 21.

The fair will draw some 140 companies of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and other countries, exhibiting more than 57,000 pieces of 2,300 kinds with electrical machinery, steel goods, electronics products, foodstuffs, daily necessities, medicines, building materials, chemical goods and rolling stocks included.

Commercial consultation and activities for exchange and economic cooperation will also be held during the fair.

According to Ryu Jong On, a section chief of the Korean International Exhibition Corporation, businesses of China, Russia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Syria, Germany, Brazil and other ten countries have already entered their names for the fair.


Kimchaek (Songjin) seeks trade fair

Monday, August 30th, 2010

According to the People’s Daily (PR China):

The local government of Kimchuk, North Korea, may plan a trade fair next year, and all countries will be welcome to participate, said Yi Bok-il, the head of the Kimchuk Municipal People’s Committee of North Korea, after the opening ceremony of the 6th China Yanji Tumen River Area International Fair for Investment & Trade 2010, held Saturday in Yanji, Jilin Province.

Yi told the Global Times that it is the first time that Kimchuk has taken part in such economic activities, and the city aims to promote economic communication with China and other countries in Northeast Asia.

However, experts had reservations about the extent of North Korea’s involvement in the economic development of Northeast Asia.

“Given the uncertainties of North Korea’s domestic political and economic orientation in the future, it is still hard to project an overly optimistic estimate of the country’s contribution to the economic cooperation to the pan-Northeast Asian area,” said Yu Xiao, deputy director of the Center for Northeast Asia Studies at Jilin University.

“It will be a long process and be subject to further observation,” he added.

I believe that “Kimchuck” is “Kimchaek”.  A crew of South Korean and Chinese fishermen are being held there now.

Pyongyang already hosts a  semi-annual trade fair.

Read the full sotry here:
North Korea may host int’l trade fair
People’s Daily


Pyongyang International Trade Fair (Sept 2010)

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

Information can be found on the European Business Association web page.

General information here (PDF).

Registration information here (PDF).


260 companies attend Pyongyang Trade Fair

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

UPDATE: According to Xinhua:

Chinese enterprises did plenty of business at the 13th Pyongyang Spring International Trader Fair, which ended Thursday.

More than 130 Chinese enterprises were represented at the fair, including Aucma of Qingdao, Frestech of Henan, and carmaker Yuan Group of Chongqing.

The Chinese products, especially those of the industrial machine and home appliances, attracted great attention from clients in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Chinese enterprises signed up 240 new clients at the fair, including 123 potential clients, with deals totalling 4.46 million U.S. dollars, according to Luo Lei, deputy director of the Exhibition Department of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade.

The fair was a good opportunity to promote trade and cooperation between the two countries, Luo said.

The 13th Pyongyang Spring International Trader Fair opened Monday, attacting 278 firms from 15 countries, including the DPRK, China, Russia, Vietnam and Thailand.

The spring fair and the Autumn International Trader Fair are held each year in Pyongyang.

ORIGINAL POST: According to Kyodo News:

North Korea opened a four-day international trade fair in Pyongyang on Monday, bringing together about 60 domestic firms and 200 companies from abroad.

Participants were seen looking at medical products, foodstuffs and electronic products, and holding business talks at the site. Computer-controlled numerical machine tools that North Korea manufactured for the first time last year drew particular attention.

The 13th Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair features products from Australia, Austria, China, Cuba, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Mongolia, North Korea, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland and Taiwan, according to the North’s Korean Central News Agency.

North Korean Vice Premier O Su Yong, Foreign Trade Minister Ri Ryong Nam, foreign company delegations and diplomatic missions in Pyongyang took part in the opening ceremony.

Read the full story here:
N. Korea opens int’l trade fair, 260 companies attending
Kyodo News


Pyongyang International Trade Fair opens soon

Monday, May 10th, 2010

According to KCNA:

Pyongyang Spring Int’l Trade Fair to Open

Pyongyang, May 7 (KCNA) — The 13th Pyongyang Spring International Trade Fair will take place at the Three-Revolution Exhibition from May 17 to 20.

It will bring together more than 270 companies of the DPRK, China, Russia, Germany, Mongolia, Brazil, Switzerland, Singapore, Australia, Austria, Italy, Indonesia, Thailand, Cuba, Poland and Taipei of China.

Exhibits will include more than 85,000 products of over 5,000 kinds such as CNC machine tools, electrical machinery and equipment, electronic and light industrial goods, foodstuffs, daily necessities, medicines and vehicles.