The Russian company InvestStroyTrest opened a cargo and passenger ferry service between the ports of Rajin (North Korea) and Vladivostok, previously passenger vessels from the DPRK did not go to Russia, as reported by Interfax.
The ManGyongBong ferry previously carried passengers and cargo to the Japanese port of Niigata until 2006, however, after the DPRK missile tests, they were banned from entering Japan.
The vessel is able to carry 193 passengers, and up to 1,000 tons of cargo, including 24 TEUs (equivalent to a 20-foot container). At first, it is planned to transport Chinese tourists from Hunchun and Yangtze (China) and Russian tourists to the DPRK by ferry.
According to the schedule, by the end of June the ferry will depart from Rajin every Wednesday, and from Vladivostok every Friday.
Port Rajin belongs to the city of Rason, which is a city in direct subordination to the government of the DPRK. In the city of Rason, there is a special economic zone.
In April, Ukraine launched a direct passenger ferry service between Istanbul and Odessa.