The Institute for Far Eastern Studies(IFES) whose director is Lee Kwan-sei held a webinar (online seminar) on August 25 under the theme of Stability in the Korean Peninsula: How have China's Interests Evolved? This was in collaboration with the Observer Research Foundation(ORF), a leading think tank in India.
At the webinar, Park Jae Kyu, former minister of Ministry of Unification, made an address. In the address, President Park said "Since December 2019, North Korea has focused on economic development and reinforcement of national defense power through self-rehabilitation, and stabilized its internal system through solidarity of the regime. In the complicated U.S.-North Korea relations and the difficulty and contraction of inter-Korean relations, North Korea is reinforcing pro-China moves, which are strategic steps considering economic cooperation from China. The economic difficulties facing North Korea now may vary in degree, depending on the level of trade resumption and cooperation with China.” President Park also emphasized the need for the development of response strategies in various aspects, considering that the prolonged economic sanctions and COVID-19 situation could lead to significant changes in North Korea as well as inter-Korean relations.
Furthermore, IFES hosted a session of the Korea Global Forum for Peace (KGFP 2020) on September 8 under the theme of evaluation and prospect of the Kim Jong-un regime's ‘frontal breakthrough’ strategy.
In the session of IFES, professor Lim Eul-chul made a presentation on the evaluation and prospect of the economic field of the ‘frontal breakthrough’ strategy, and professor Kim Dong-yeop talked about the diplomatic and military assessment and prospect of the ‘frontal breakthrough’ strategy.
The international community's restraint against North Korea, COVID-19, and natural disasters are expected to make it difficult for the North to carry out the ‘frontal breakthrough’ strategy, and attention was drawn to the comprehensive evaluation that will take place at IFES session.