A first, as official Dutch trade mission heads for North Korea

For the first time in history, an official Dutch government mission is heading for North Korea to assess the ‘economic opportunities’ in the country.


The mission is notable because many western countries boycott North Korea because of the political situation and instability in the region, the NRC said.
The mission is made up of civil servants from the economic affairs ministry and representatives of the farming industry. In addition to looking at opportunities for economic alliances, the Netherlands also wants to contribute to increasing food production, farming economist Doeke Faber told Nos television.

Economic reform

Experts expect North Korea will begin the process of economic reform under new leader Kim Jong-un and Faber believes the Netherlands can help in this.
‘You can opt to stay away until there is an acceptable regime but you can also show goodwill and look what we can offer in terms of food provision,’ Faber told Nos. ‘If we can make life easier for the people there, I have no objections.’
The Netherlands has had indirect diplomatic relations with North Korea for 10 years, according to the Volkskrant.

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