During the latest inter-Korean summit in September, Kim announced that he had agreed to visit Seoul "in the near future," while the South Korean president later said that the visit was expected to take place this year. In early November, the president confirmed that Kim would pay a return visit to Seoul soon.
"Not only is it possible within the year, it's necessary," Cho was quoted as saying by the Yonhap News Agency on Friday.
"Past experience tells me that a visit before the year's end would be impossible. But the three previous (inter-Korean) summits have completely changed the situation. The leaders agree that they should keep preparations practical," the unification minister added.
This year, Moon and Kim already held three summits — in April, May and September — that helped to ease tensions between the two Koreas. Kim's visit is set to become the first such visit of a North Korean leader to South Korea since the division.