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Pyeongyang to go mobile in October

JoonAng Ilbo, 24 May 2002

North Korea will launch a mobile telecommunications service in Pyongyang and the Rajin-Sonbong free-trade area in October, the North’s state tourism bureau’s Web site (www.dprknta.com) said Friday.

The tourism authority, citing an official at the North’s Ministry of Post and Telecom, said North East Asia Telephone and Telecom would start experimenting with the cellular service starting in August.

The firm is a joint venture between the Ministry of Post and Telecom and Loxley Pacific of Thailand, the first foreign investor in the North’s telecom sector.

The official said if tests go well Pyeongyang and Rason, the short name for the free-trade area, would be the first in the country to have cellular service. The firm has already built and tested antenna bases in Pyeongyang. The testing has reportedly gone well.

The North adopted GSM wireless technology platform for its cellular network. The same technology is used in Europe and China.