Koreas agree date to re-open Kaesong

North and South Korea have agreed to re-open the Kaesong joint industrial zone next week, officials in Seoul say.

The two sides set a date of 16 September after talks that went through the night, the South’s Unification Ministry said.

Operations at the complex stopped in April when the North withdrew its workers amid political tension.

The zone, just inside North Korea, is home to 123 South Korean factories that employ more than 50,000 North Koreans.

It is the last functioning inter-Korean joint project and a key source of revenue for Pyongyang.

The Unification Ministry also said the two Koreas planned to host a roadshow for foreign investors at the complex in October.

Correspondents say that, as part of the deal, Pyongyang had accepted Seoul’s demand that Kaesong be opened to foreign investors.

The move is seen by the South as a guarantee against the North shutting the complex down again.

Operations at Kaesong were suspended in April when Pyongyang withdrew all North Korean workers from the site.

Tensions between the two Koreas were high following the North’s third nuclear test, but since then the situation has eased.

Last month, the ministry said a five-point accord had been agreed on re-opening the complex but no date was set.

The owners of South Korean businesses at the zone had called for a deal and North Korea said re-opening Kaesong was in both nations’ interests.