North Korea Leadership Watch

Research and Analysis on the DPRK Leadership

Ministry of Atomic Energy Industry Established

Haeun-2-dong, P'yo'ngch'o'n District, Pyogyang where the offices of the General Department of Atomic Energy are presently located. (Photo: geocoordinates courtesy of the DPRK Digital Atlas; Google image)

Haeun-2-dong, P’yo’ngch’o’n District, Pyogyang where the offices of the General Department of Atomic Energy are presently located. (Photo: geocoordinates courtesy of the DPRK Digital Atlas; Google image)

DPRK reported on 12 April (Friday) that the Supreme People’s Assembly [SPA] Presidium established the Ministry of Atomic Energy Industry on 11 April (Thursday).  According to KCNA the General Department of Atomic Energy was upgraded to a DPRK Cabinet ministry “for the purpose of modernizing the nation’s atomic energy industry and putting it on a solid foundation of latest science and technology so as to increase the production of nuclear materials, improve their quality and further develop the independent nuclear energy industry.”  The establishment of the new ministry is part of the new policy lines adopted at the March 2013 Korean Workers’ Party Central Committee meeting which said the “”self-reliant nuclear power industry should be developed and the work for developing light water reactor be dynamically promoted to actively contribute to easing the strain on the electricity problem of the country.”  The ministry might also be linked to the 1 April 2013 passage of the law “On Consolidating the Position of Nuclear Weapons for Self-Defense” at the 7th session of the 12th SPA.   In publicizing the decision to establish the Ministry of Atomic Energy Industry, there was no announcement about who would be appointed as Minister.

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