South Korea's finance minister asked the International Monetary Fund on Saturday to play an active role in efforts to help North Korea carry out reforms and open up to the outside world, ministry officials said, Yonhap news agency reported.
Finance Minister Kim Dong-yeon made the request when he met with IMF chief Christine Lagarde on the sidelines of an International Monetary and Financial Committee (IMFC) meeting held on the Indonesian resort island of Bali, officials said.
Kim explained to Lagarde that this year's three inter-Korean summits and the first-ever summit between the North and the United States led to dramatic progress in reducing military tensions between the two Koreas and improving the North-U.S. relations.
Kim said he looks forward to the IMF playing more active roles in helping with the North's efforts to reform, open up and join the international community, the officials said.
The North should first join the IMF if it's going to receive support from such organizations as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank.
President Moon Jae-in said during a visit to New York last month that he's confirmed the North has a willingness to seek reform and openness by joining various international organizations, such as the IMF and the World Bank.
Moon also said that support from South Korea alone is not enough to help with the North's economic development and the international community should do more by creating a fund supporting the North's infrastructure development.