23:27 GMT17 June 2021
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    South Korea Presses for Talks With North Korea on Kaesong Wages

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    South Korea is pushing for talks with a North Korean agency in charge of the Kaesong Industrial Complex next week to resolve an ongoing dispute over wages for the North's workers

    In February, Pyongyang said it would raise the minimum wage for its workers at the complex from $70.35 to $74 per month starting in March ignoring the South's call for government-level dialogue, Yonhap news agency reported on Friday.

    The South's efforts for talks have gained more urgency as its 124 firms will begin to pay the March wages for about 53,000 workers there on April 10.

    "We are pushing to hold dialogue between the committee and the bureau before April 10," unification ministry spokesman Lim Byeong-cheol said at a press briefing.

    The ministry called on the firms not to raise the wage level before any formal agreement.

    The official said his ministry will explore every way to minimize damage for the firms, including financial compensation in case they are forced to leave the Kaesong zone.


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