Eric Schmidt of Google to visit North Korea?

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According to a new report, Eric Schmidt could be making a visit to North Korea as early as later this month.

The Associated Press news agency has reported that two sources close to the matter have told them of a planned visit to the secretive Asian nation by Google's chairman - led by former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson.

If the trip is officially confirmed, it would mark the first of its kind by a senior executive at the search engine giant.

By visiting North Korea, the Internet giant would be using its huge global influence to generate further online PR by visiting what is widely held as one of the most stringent countries in the world in regards to Internet usage and policies.

Google has been very vocal in regards to a free and open Internet, using the ITU conference in Dubai last month as a platform to make its stance even further known: the firm even created a webpage detailing the risks the potential outcomes of that meeting could pose to the online privacy of Internet users.

By visiting North Korea, the firm would therefore be continuing with Schmidt's desire of providing people across the globe with Internet access.

At present however, North Korea does not do business with any American firms, so in terms of Internet marketing there is very little PPC or SEO value in the move for companies outside of the country.

Furthermore, very few North Koreans actually have any access to the Internet - unlike their South Korean neighbours who have one of the fastest Internet connections in the world.

In fact, the number of those that can actually access the Internet in North Korea is limited to a select few 'elites' as well as a few academics and scientists.

However, with the leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-un, calling for a modern-day "industrial revolution" in a rare New Year's day speech, there is certainly a lot of potential there if the country does finally decide to open up its Internet access to more of the populace.

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