North Korea's economy is increasingly shrinking 4

North Korea's economy is increasingly shrinking 4

North Korea used to be one of the two main industrial countries in Asia, along with Japan, but now the average GDP per capita is only 506 USD per year and 25% of the population is always hungry.> Using branded goods in North Korea

According to data from the CIA World Factbook (USA), North Korea is one of the most `autocratic and least open` countries in the world with many `chronic economic problems`.

The CIA World Factbook estimates average GDP in North Korea in 2011 to be $1,800 a year with growth of 0.8%.

* The economies of North and South Korea are opposites

The main industries in North Korea, according to the CIA World Factbook, are military equipment, machinery, electricity, chemicals, mining, metallurgy, textiles, food processing and tourism.

One of the busiest neighborhoods in Pyongyang with a public tram station.

South Korea’s Unification Ministry said inter-Korean trade in 2011 reached 1.7 billion USD.

>>Photo: Life of North Korean people

Professor Jim Hoare is a lecturer at the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London (UK).

Relations between the two countries increasingly deteriorated when former South Korean President Lee Myung-bak came to power.

In 2011, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) estimated that about a quarter of North Korea’s population (6 million people) did not have enough food to eat.

In March 2012, Pyongyang agreed to partially halt its nuclear and missile program and allow international inspectors to return in exchange for 240,000 tons of food from the US.

Hoare commented that the quality of life of Pyongyang people is relatively different compared to other provinces in the country.

Previously, North Korea’s economy relied mainly on heavy industry.

However, the collapse of the Soviet Union and a series of natural disasters caused the country’s industry to decline since the 80s. The peak was in the 90s, causing the entire economy to almost `collapse`.

North Korea used to provide food to its people.

North Korea's economy is increasingly shrinking

Kaesong Industrial Park – North Korea’s main source of foreign currency earnings.

New Focus International said black market trading (jangmadang) `is the main source of income for the majority of North Koreans`.

The official currency here is the Korean won.

Kaesong Joint Industrial Park – the ultimate symbol of Korea-North Korea cooperation – is an important source of foreign exchange revenue for North Korea.

Thuy Linh (according to CNN)

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