The International Olympic Committee(IOC) has welcomed North Korea's interest in participating in the PyeongChang Olympic Winter Games next month.

IOC spokesperson Mark Adams said in a media briefing on Wednesday that the organization will closely cooperate with the South Korean government and the North's Olympic committee on the matter.

This comes after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on Monday expressed his willingness to hold talks on the North's participation in the games, during his televised New Year's speech.

Adams said Kim's speech will be reviewed as an open manner.

Lee Hee-beom, president of the PyeongChang Olympics' organizing committee said the North Korean leader's remarks were a "positive signal and a New Year's gift" for the sporting event.