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Digital Archive International History Declassified

December 20, 1965

CABLE FROM LI QIANG TO PREMIER ZHOU ENLAI

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    A report on Li Qiang’s discussions with Ri Ju-yeon on war materials, exchange of rice with British pounds, and business opportunities in Hong Kong.
    "Cable from Li Qiang to Premier Zhou Enlai," December 20, 1965, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 106-01477-02, 11-12. Obtained by Shen Zhihua and translated by Jeffrey Wang and Charles Kraus. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/116557
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[To] Premier Zhou [Enlai]:

Vice Premier Ri Ju-yeon [Ri Ju Yon] discussed three issues during our banquet. [They] are reported as follows:

(1) Regarding the issue of war materials. The Central Committee [of the Korean Workers’ Party] and the Premier [Kim Il Sung] are all very satisfied and express their thanks. They are also in agreement with the document drafted by China, but they do not want to include the 3 million U.S. dollars [in the document]. [The 3 million U.S. dollars] will be considered a loan and repaid after three years. [Ri] hopes that Vice Premier [Li] Xiannian comes [to North Korea]. He can be received at any time.

(2) The [North] Koreans have some rice and they want to purchase British pounds with it. However, they cannot sell off their rice and they would like China’s assistance [on this matter]. They do not have much left for this year. [It is] mainly during next autumn’s harvest that they will have 50,000 tons, perhaps even 100,000 tons, to sell. From the looks of it, they want to sell it to us because, apart from Japan, they cannot purchase free foreign exchanges from anywhere else.

(3) Because the British do not allow the [North] Koreans to go to Hong Kong, [the North Koreans] ask that China help [North] Korea to do business in Hong Kong.

Please instruct [us] on how to handle the first issue. We will report to you again after we study the second and third issue.

Li Qiang

20 December 1965