However, in response to the mayor of Pusan saying he'd like to co-host the 2020 Summer Olympics with Pyongyang, Unification Minister and alleged Pyongyang-kowtower Chung Dong-young said, according to Reuters, that "communist North Korea and capitalist South Korea are likely to have formed at least an economic union by 2020." He predicted that between now and then there would likely be a lot of progress.
Chung also said North Korea would be ready to accept Seoul's offer of free electricity as a stop-gap until light-water atomic reactors were built after a deal was reached in six-party talks on Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programs.
Reuters says that South Korea's leadership "does not aim for rapid unification, fearful of the German-style cost of unexpectedly welding together different systems," so a 2020 prediction may seem rather bold. He did say he thinks Pyongyang is headed for an economic opening similar to China and Vietnam, citing a few "piecemeal market reforms."
Could it be that the Roh-Chung's plan all along is to ween North Korea off of China so that Seoul can be completely in the driver's seat in terms of controlling North Korea?
He did give further clues of what he's up to:
The vision of the Republic of Korea -- my personal vision as a politician -- is that by 2020 we will be a welfare state, and also at the same time, the South and the North will be able to communicate freely, that we will at least have developed into a joint economic union.Welfare state? I hope that doesn't mean what I think it does.
Chung also brushed aside criticism of Seoul's stance on human rights in the North, including abstention from a UN vote condemning North Korean human rights, saying South Koreans felt pain because of the North's poverty and lack of political freedom, but open criticism would not work.