VLADIVOSTOK, August 18 (RIA Novosti, Anatoly Ilyukhov) -Konstantin Pulikovsky, the Russian president's envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District, discussed business and trade cooperation with the leadership of North Korea during his August 14-17 visit to the country, a spokesman said Wednesday.
Yevgeny Anoshin said Pulikovsky had held talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, Prime Minister Pak Pin Ju, and the chairman of the country's state planning committee, Kim Kwang Rin.
The envoy visited a major company in Pyongyang, Trest, which is setting up the first joint ventures in North Korea, including firms to refine oil and conduct hydrocarbon exploration. Trest and Russian banking giant Vneshtorgbank are seeking to establish a joint commercial bank, which will conduct financing and investment work in North Korea, the spokesman said.
"Pulikovsky told Kim Jong-il that big Russian business was ready to play a proactive role in developing oil refining and metallurgy in North Korea, setting up joint ventures in other sectors of the economy, such as transportation and the port business," Anoshin said.
According to the spokesman, Pulikovsky had told the North Korean premier that Russia supplied a fifth of the solid fuel used at North Korea's biggest metals plant. The envoy said Russia was ready to supply all the coal the plant needed, which is about 50,000 metric tons a year.