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Digital Archive International History Declassified

March 03, 1960

JOURNAL OF SOVIET AMBASSADOR IN THE DPRK A.M. PUZANOV FOR 3-5 MARCH 1960

This document was made possible with support from the ROK Ministry of Unification, Leon Levy Foundation

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    Kim Seong-do reports on the main forms and methods of Party education and the results of agriculture in the last year. Puzanov visits a machinebuilding factory, textile mill, and a cellulose production plant.
    "Journal of Soviet Ambassador in the DPRK A.M. Puzanov for 3-5 March 1960," March 03, 1960, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, AVPRF fond 0102, opis 16, delo 6, p.72-122. Translated for NKIDP by Gary Goldberg. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/116287
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USSR EMBASSY IN THE DPRK [faded USSR   TOP SECRET

MFA stamp:                     Copy Nº 3

Nº 58 0767s

25 March 1960 9 April 1960]

[handwritten:

"to Cdes. [[N. P. Varnov?]] and Samsonov, G. Ye.

9 April 1960 [[illegible signature]]"]

JOURNAL

of Soviet Ambassador in the DPRK A. M. Puzanov for the period

16 February through 24 March 1960

Pyongyang

[…]

3-5 March 1960

On arrival in Sineuiju I had a conversation with Kim Seong-do, deputy chairman of the provincial Party committee (the province of North Pyeong-an), who deals with issues of ideological work (Kim Wa-ryong the chairman of the provincial Party committee, was not in Sineuiju during these days. He was in the district along with Pak Seong-cheol).

Kim Seong-do spoke of the main forms and methods of Party education. He stressed that at the present time the forms of work are being restructured anew. One of the significant differences of the current system of Party education is that a political study group (circle) includes not only KWP members but also non-Party members.

Touching on the content of the materials being studied Kim Seong-do noted that a majority of Party members are engaged in current policy groups and circles and study the most important issues of the Party and government. More educated Party members study the fundamentals of Marxist theory, to which 80 class hours a year are devoted. All materials and textbooks are sent from the KWP CC.

He then told how political study was organized on Saturdays. Kim Seong-do said two groups have been organized in the provincial Party committee: the first group included instructors and deputy chiefs of departments, and the other, chiefs of departments, deputy chairmen, and the chairman of the provincial committee. Chief of departments and instructors of the pedagogical institute have been enlisted to hold classes. The classes are held from 1600 to 2000.

Kim Seong-do noted that such classes of senior officials are held on Saturdays in all enterprises, institutions, and district centers.

Speaking of the results of the past agricultural year Kim Seong-do noted that it is expected to purchase 52-60,000 tons of grain from the 1959 harvest instead of the approximately 80,000 tons purchased from the 1958 harvest. Such a reduction of purchases is explained by the fact that the gross grain harvest was lower than in 1958. In addition, the principle of voluntariness of state purchases was violated when procuring grain from the 1958 harvest.

During the day of 4 March I visited the spinning machinebuilding factory, the rebuilt textile mill, and the cellulose production plant together with Son Chang-rim, the chairman of the provincial people's committee.

The spinning machinebuilding factory. In conversation the director of the factory Ri Un-hak and Party secretary Han Min-ho said that during the years of Japanese rule there was a small repair shop of parts and spare parts for sewing machines on the site of the present factory. After liberation the factory was actually built anew. Until the middle of 1958 the factory produced parts and spare parts for weaver's and spinner's looms for the Pyongyang textile mill. At the suggestion of Kim Il Sung beginning in August 1958 the factory began to develop and produce spinning machines. The technical documentation was produced at the factory by copying Soviet-made P-83 spinning machines. Last year 109 spinning machines and five stranding machines were produced. Last year the "machine from a machine" movement was developed at the factory as well as throughout the entire country, in the course of which 206 various machines were created from the 60 machines on hand. By the end of 1959 the factory had fulfilled its five-year plan for the level of output of industrial production by 170%.

There are 1,930 people at the factory at the present time of which 570 are women. The factory operates three shifts. The average worker skill category is 4.3. Three engineers and 30 technicians work at the factory.

This year in accordance with the decision of the December KWP CC Plenum the number of workers of the factory is supposed to be reduced by 300. According to this year's plan the factory should produce 25 twisting, 30 spinning, and 80 stranding machines, a total of 135. In addition, it is planned to produce 200 tons of various parts and spare parts.

I asked the factory management whether they correspond with Soviet factories which produce similar machines.

The director and the Party organizer replied that they do not have such correspondence.

I recommended that the factory management establish friendly correspondence with the officials of one of the similar Soviet factories for a possible exchange of experience and consultation.

The director and the Party organizer warmly thanked [me] for this suggestion.

The textile mill. I inspected the newly-built textile mill and had a conversation with Kan Chzhe-won [sic], director of the mill, and Son Hong-beom, Chairman of the Party committee. The construction of the mill was begun in September 1958 in accordance with a DPRK Cabinet of Ministers decree concerning the creation of textile production for raw material from reeds and cornstalks. Construction was done by the volunteer construction [narodnaya stroyka] method. By August 1959 construction of a three-story building was finished in which spinning machines and weaving looms have been installed and are operating at the present time. The construction of the three-story building for textile production in the DPRK was first done based on the experience of the Soviet Union and completely justified itself. By May of this year it is expected that construction of a large building for the weaving shop will be finished. Up to 2500 people are engaged in construction at the present time. The 2,180 weaving looms and 60,000 spindles for the mill have already been received in full from the PRC. Consequently construction is somewhat delayed and part of the equipment has been moved to other enterprises. The equipment in operation produces 17-18 tons of yarn daily and 52-53,000 meters of textiles. According to the plan 7,100 tons of yard and 21,000,000 meters of textiles should be produced in 1960. At the present time textiles are being produced from cotton which comes from the PRC and from synthetic fiber which comes from Cheongjin. After the conclusion of construction of the mill, which is set for 1963, an annual production of 60,000,000 meters of suit and other textiles is envisaged.

When inspecting the construction I directed attention to the fact that it would be more advisable not to spread out the front of the construction work along the entire building but to concentrate on narrow sectors in order to immediately install, adjust, and test the equipment as the construction work is finished. The management of the factory completely agreed with the ideas [I] expressed.

The cellulose production plant. The production of cellulose at the plant is organized from reeds and partly from cornstalks and rice straw. The plant produces primarily paper from the cellulose obtained. The plant's annual need for raw material is 72,000 tons. Last year the plant produced about 15,000 tons of cellulose and paper; this year it is expected to produce about 17,000 tons. Reeds are obtained in the lower parts of the Yalu River; in addition, there are special crops of reeds in an area of about 4,500 jeongbo.

At the present time 1,470 people work at the plant. The average wage at the plant is 46 won per month.

When inspecting the plant I directed attention to the extreme shortage of firefighting equipment inasmuch as all the supplies of raw material are being stored on the factory's grounds - reeds, cornstalks, and rice straw, easily flammable materials.

In the evening I gave a report about the decisions of the 4th USSR Supreme Soviet session in the conference room of the provincial Party committee. About 800 senior Party, government, and economic officials were present, and also instructors of institutes and schools. The report was heard with great attention and interests and was interrupted by applause several times.

After the report a long conversation was held with Song Chang-rim, chairman of the provincial people's committee, and Kim Seong-do, deputy chairman of the provincial Party committee.

I was asked such questions: in the Soviet Union, who is given preference when selecting candidates for the post of collective farm chairman and secretary of the Party organization; the forms of monitoring the activity of the administration of an enterprise by the Party organization; concerning the organization of state farms on virgin land; about the forms and methods of Party education in the CPSU.

I gave detailed answers and explanations to the questions posed. With Kim Seong-do's permission I sent him the statute about the organization of commissions to monitor the activity of the administration translated into Korean (the statute was published in issue Nº 13 for 1959 of Partiynaya Zhizn' [Party Life].

[Son Chen Rem] said that a conference devoted to the issues of increasing labor productivity and saving money and material was held in the Cabinet of Ministers after the Supreme People's Assembly session. Senior officials of republic departments, chairmen of provincial Party and people's committees, and directors and secretaries of the Party committees of large enterprises were present at the conference. Kim Il led the conference.

[…]

USSR AMBASSADOR IN THE DPRK

[signature]

(A. PUZANOV)

Five copies printed

1 - Cde. A. A. Gromyko

2 - Cde. Yu. V. Andropov

3 - Cde. DVO, USSR MFA

4 - Cde. I. I. Tugarinov

5 - to file

Nº [208]