Military Forum for Russian and Global Defence Issues


    North Korea Economy and Situation

    Share
    avatar
    Hannibal Barca

    Posts : 1251
    Points : 1265
    Join date : 2013-12-13

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Hannibal Barca on Thu Aug 14, 2014 12:19 am

    Things really changing. Have you noticed North Korea lately?
    avatar
    sepheronx

    Posts : 7113
    Points : 7385
    Join date : 2009-08-06
    Age : 29
    Location : Canada

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  sepheronx on Thu Aug 14, 2014 4:54 am

    Hannibal Barca wrote:Things really changing. Have you noticed North Korea lately?

    Not really, whats up?
    avatar
    Werewolf

    Posts : 5268
    Points : 5473
    Join date : 2012-10-24

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Werewolf on Thu Aug 14, 2014 4:56 am

    sepheronx wrote:
    Hannibal Barca wrote:Things really changing. Have you noticed North Korea lately?

    Not really, whats up?

    They are trying to modernisate their industrial sector with the little they have under the embargoo.
    avatar
    sepheronx

    Posts : 7113
    Points : 7385
    Join date : 2009-08-06
    Age : 29
    Location : Canada

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  sepheronx on Thu Aug 14, 2014 5:00 am

    Werewolf wrote:
    sepheronx wrote:
    Hannibal Barca wrote:Things really changing. Have you noticed North Korea lately?

    Not really, whats up?

    They are trying to modernisate their industrial sector with the little they have under the embargoo.

    One thing I have read, regardless of the naysayers, the Special economic zones in North Korea apparently has brought some money and development. So the big areas for them will be these SEZ's and it will be the deciding factor for NK economy.
    avatar
    Werewolf

    Posts : 5268
    Points : 5473
    Join date : 2012-10-24

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Werewolf on Thu Aug 14, 2014 5:15 am

    The problem is about North Korea, you don't get easy actual facts about the country since you get 99% Anti North Korean Propaganda made by the West the country is isolated by US and everything gets ridiculed and falsified not really great sources when it comes from any american news or any american slave countries.
    avatar
    sepheronx

    Posts : 7113
    Points : 7385
    Join date : 2009-08-06
    Age : 29
    Location : Canada

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  sepheronx on Thu Aug 14, 2014 5:32 am

    Werewolf wrote:The problem is about North Korea, you don't get easy actual facts about the country since you get 99% Anti North Korean Propaganda made by the West the country is isolated by US and everything gets ridiculed and falsified not really great sources when it comes from any american news or any american slave countries.


    I remember reading a AMA on reddit regarding a guy who does tours to Pyongyang from China. It was interesting. he stated that there are burger and pizza places, and there are private owned shops in NK, it is just that due to sanctions, the country is very deprived. There are rich people of course, millionairs in NK. But they run the country.

    Just curious what will NK become once Russia and NK do really start projects together in Rubles? NK will be having a pipeline go through it, as well as a railroad all to S.Korea. This in turn will mean lots of money for NK. Russia also rents out farm land to NK and NK workers so that a lot of food that gets produced, will get it produced at a much cheaper rate for NK, while Russia gets some of that profit.

    NK really needs to get rid of its labor camps and start focusing on agriculture and industrial production, and more freedom to its people, in order to get a better image as well as improve life expectancy in NK. The elites wont allow that though.
    avatar
    Werewolf

    Posts : 5268
    Points : 5473
    Join date : 2012-10-24

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Werewolf on Thu Aug 14, 2014 6:11 am

    The bad picture about NK is mainly driven by US Propaganda same as the "jihadists everywhere". Yes, they have big problems but when you only listen to the US propaganda it sounds like they have only one colour it is grey and everyone is working in labour camps and never see day light and all that nonsense.

    The biggest problem NK and all citizens there suffer from is the santions, which narrows down freedom to what they actually can make money with. That situation cuts you off of owning an own shop unless you want to be one shop that makes just enough profit to survive and be unsecure when anything worse could happen without earning money for harder times or for kids and you get old.

    They are bound to labour camps right now when they want to get their industrial complex running or better to say build it up. Working without partners who provide with fair trade resources and money flowing from trade. So that is the exact problem, being under embargoo is for some countries a desaster for other countries it is just a little bit tougher like Iran, they under sanctions for not doing what US wnats from them but still maintain higher living standard then US thought they would maintain under decade long embargoo.

    As soon the NK gets some partners they can actually prosper and build up an industrial complex and become more independend and maybe face more of political influence towards South Korea and beat the US policy of dividing the same people and the countries from each other, both would benefit from an unification.

    I hope for the good for North Korea and South Korea.
    avatar
    magnumcromagnon

    Posts : 4469
    Points : 4628
    Join date : 2013-12-05
    Location : Pindos ave., Pindosville, Pindosylvania, Pindostan

    egypt thread

    Post  magnumcromagnon on Thu Aug 14, 2014 6:18 am

    sepheronx wrote:
    Werewolf wrote:The problem is about North Korea, you don't get easy actual facts about the country since you get 99% Anti North Korean Propaganda made by the West the country is isolated by US and everything gets ridiculed and falsified not really great sources when it comes from any american news or any american slave countries.


    I remember reading a AMA on reddit regarding a guy who does tours to Pyongyang from China.  It was interesting.  he stated that there are burger and pizza places, and there are private owned shops in NK, it is just that due to sanctions, the country is very deprived.  There are rich people of course, millionairs in NK.  But they run the country.

    Just curious what will NK become once Russia and NK do really start projects together in Rubles?  NK will be having a pipeline go through it, as well as a railroad all to S.Korea.  This in turn will mean lots of money for NK.  Russia also rents out farm land to NK and NK workers so that a lot of food that gets produced, will get it produced at a much cheaper rate for NK, while Russia gets some of that profit.

    NK really needs to get rid of its labor camps and start focusing on agriculture and industrial production, and more freedom to its people, in order to get a better image as well as improve life expectancy in NK.  The elites wont allow that though.

    I remember back in the 90's about non-stop talk about starvation in NK, but the question is how much of it was directly because of NK leadership and how much of it was directly related to sanctions? Because during the same time period (the 90's) 1 million people starved to death in Iraq because of sanctions alone.

    BTW I could definitely see NK being absorbed in to China and becoming an autonomous republic, and becoming the ultimate bargaining chip in Eastern Asia for these reasons:

    1.) The likeliness that democracy in NK would flourish is slim and naive, being absorbed in to SK would be both expensive and dangerous. China's govt. structure is most like NK's govt. structure wise, so the ruling NK leadership are more likely to accept being absorbed in to China so long as they get a good deal such as better overall economic development and more modern military equipment. I could see China bribing Kim Jong Un with $10 billion USD, a massive fleet of sports cars, a massive villa an being under the protection of Chinese military intelligence. China could sponsor a peaceful pan-Korean treaty/deal, where NK destroys its crude nuclear weapons (not thermonuclear, they don't have that tech) and sign the non-proliferation treaty while China will have a sufficient nuclear shield/umbrella for NK, and SK could kick out the U.S. ABM base (much to Russia and China's delight). They could also agree to create a China/NK/SK council where they peaceful cooperate in the economic human development of Korea, and to also promote Pan-Korean peace and respect.

    2.) China has been known to invest billions in to 3rd countries and their infrastructure, the strength of the Renminbi is growing to the point where outsourcing to China may not be so economical, and China could relocate many industries to NK for cheaper labor costs.

    3.) It'll become the ultimate trump card in dealing with the the U.S., S.K., Taiwan and Japan in Eastern Asian geopolitics.
    avatar
    Hannibal Barca

    Posts : 1251
    Points : 1265
    Join date : 2013-12-13

    North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Hannibal Barca on Thu Aug 14, 2014 12:24 pm

    sepheronx wrote:
    Hannibal Barca wrote:Things really changing. Have you noticed North Korea lately?

    Not really, whats up?


    They are improving by leaps and bounds. Of course with Chinese investment.
    I wouldn't be surprised if they will be the richest country in the world in the second part of the century. It will be between them and Mongolia as long as I am concerned.
    avatar
    George1

    Posts : 11586
    Points : 12057
    Join date : 2011-12-22
    Location : Greece

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  George1 on Sat Jan 23, 2016 3:22 am

    Pyongyang: Absence of Chinese Assistance 'Will Strengthen Our Resolve'

    North Korea can do without China's economic assistance, the central committee of the country’s ruling Workers’ Party said Friday.

    TOKYO (Sputnik) — This comes amid mounting pressure on North Korea’s neighbor China to cut economic assistance to the struggling economy after a recent nuclear test.

    "Foreign assistance is a good thing but its absence is equally useful – it will strengthen our resolve," the ruling party was cited in the Rodong Sinmun (Workers' Newspaper), the North Korea's main national daily.

    The government said that way the nation could achieve its dream on its own, using its own resources and technology.

    China reportedly accounts for 90 percent of the reclusive country’s exports. Following reports from Pyongyang on January 6 that it had tested a hydrogen bomb, Washington demanded that Beijing stop buying North Korea’s petroleum products and anthracite.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/politics/20160122/1033562419/china-north-korea.html#ixzz3y1w4ovow
    avatar
    Militarov

    Posts : 5952
    Points : 5987
    Join date : 2015-09-02
    Location : Serbia

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Militarov on Sat Mar 19, 2016 2:42 am

    "GABORONE, Botswana — The Namibian government has confirmed that North Korea built an arms and ammunition factory in the African country and is in the process of executing other contracts for the construction of the country's first military academy, military barracks and a new headquarters for the Ministry of Defense (MoD). The confirmation came a week after the government refuted the recent United Nations Panel of Experts (PoE), which found that Pyongyang has continuously violated UN Security Council sanctions imposed to protest its nuclear weapons program by providing military weapons, training and embarking on military-related construction projects in African countries, including Uganda and Namibia.

    This week, Namibian Deputy Prime Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah confirmed that the North Korean state-owned firm Mansudae Overseas Projects, through its subsidiary Korea Mining Development Trading Corporation (KOMID), had indeed built a small arms and ammunition factory in the capital Windhoek. The arms and ammunition factory was completed in 2005, although the company continued doing business in Namibia until early last year.

    The US Treasury defines KOMID as "North Korea's primary arms dealer and main proliferation channel" for goods and equipment related to ballistic missiles and conventional weapons. Nandi-Ndaitwah said North Korea and Namibia have a long history of military cooperation, which dates back to the struggle for independence. According to the leaked UN report, Namibia also confirmed that KOMID had been contracted to implement several other multibillion-dollar government projects, including the construction of the State House, the National Heroes Acre, the Namibian Defense Force (NDF) Military Museum and the Independence Museum. However, Nandi-Ndaitwah said the Namibian government cooperated with the UN requests for information because there was nothing wrong with contracting the sanctioned North Korean company to build Namibian infrastructure and provide technical training to its armed forces.

    She said the small arms and ammunition factory built by North Korea cannot be seen as a contravention of UN sanctions because all the products it manufactures are not for export but for use by Namibian security agencies. Further, Nandi-Ndaitwah said the UN sanctions are primarily aimed at North Korea's nuclear weapons program and do not prohibit Namibia from having diplomatic or other military relations with Pyongyang.

    However, Namibia's assessment varies with the leaked UN report, which concluded that "the construction of any munitions factory or related military facilities is considered to be services or assistance relating to the provision, manufacture or maintenance of arms and related material and therefore, prohibited under the resolutions." Last year, the UN Panel of Experts on sanctions against North Korea found that the country had provided small arms equipment and counterinsurgency training for Uganda'a police and military special forces in contravention of the UN Security Council sanctions."


    Source: http://www.defensenews.com/story/defense/international/2016/03/17/namibia-north-korean-arms-ammunition-factory/81902650/
    avatar
    Militarov

    Posts : 5952
    Points : 5987
    Join date : 2015-09-02
    Location : Serbia

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Militarov on Wed Mar 30, 2016 12:55 am

    "After a spate of announcements praising its own technological successes, North Korea has warned its citizens to brace for famine. In January, Pyongyang declared it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb. In the following months, the DPRK attempted to prove its ballistic missile capabilities through a series of launches. These actions led to harsh international sanctions.

    Following these militaristic announcements, the North Korean government warned its populace on Monday that they would soon suffer economic hardship and famine. "The road to revolution is long and arduous," reads an editorial in the state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper. "We may have to go on an arduous march, during which we will have to chew the roots of plants once again." The editorial also declared the implementation of a "70-day loyalty campaign."
    "Even if we give up our lives, we should continue to show our loyalty to our leader, Kim Jong-un, until the end of our lives," according to a statement.

    To prepare, every resident of Pyongyang is ordered to provide 2.2 pounds of rice per month to government storage facilities, according to South Korea newspaper Chosun Ilbo. Farmers have been asked to contribute additional rations to the North Korean military. The timing of the announcement, coming mere weeks after the implementation of new sanctions, cannot be overlooked. While the West stressed that sanctions would only affect North Korean officials, skeptics warned of a trickle-down effect.

    "[The sanctions] make the targeted population more desperate and more dependent on government for their basic survival," Jason Ditz wrote for Antiwar.com. "Sanctions are by their nature a very imprecise form of economic warfare, and even the most carefully designed sanctions must necessarily harm a nation’s economy, and by extension do more damage to the most economically vulnerable citizens than it does to the targeted government." To offset those concerns, Western governments pledged to deliver humanitarian aid to Pyongyang. The North Korean government estimates it needs approximately 440,000 tons of food to feed its population this year, but only 17,600 tons have arrived. North Korea suffered a famine in the mid-1990s, in which some 3 million North Koreans perished."


    Source: http://sputniknews.com/asia/20160330/1037173133/north-korea-famine.html#ixzz44KqzU0Wm
    avatar
    d_taddei2

    Posts : 1261
    Points : 1435
    Join date : 2013-05-11
    Location : Scotland UK

    reply

    Post  d_taddei2 on Sat Apr 16, 2016 12:17 am

    if anyone is interested in North Korea in terms of economic and infrastructure, housing etc, give me a shout, i was there for 10 days last year was their for the 70th liberation day, and visited other areas outside of Pyongyang, and even left the country by land over the friendship bridge in Dandong, China, i have loads of pictures and videos, if anyone is interested let me know.

    I travel to more your unusual destinations, and have visited Transnistria, Krygyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan (including Pamir highway), Ukraine a couple of times (2009 and 2015) including Donetsk(start of war), Crimea (2009 and 2015 and a week after becoming part of Russia) Chernobyl twice second time stayed in exclusion for 5 days, Ethiopia (spent time with various tribes and time at active volcano), Somaliland (northern somalia unrecognised country), Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, just to name a few places. Have no plans yet for this yet still undecided lol.
    avatar
    max steel

    Posts : 2945
    Points : 2970
    Join date : 2015-02-12
    Location : South Pole

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  max steel on Sat Apr 16, 2016 12:19 am

    d_taddei2 wrote:if anyone is interested in North Korea in terms of economic and infrastructure, housing etc, give me a shout, i was there for 10 days last year was their for the 70th liberation day, and visited other areas outside of Pyongyang, and even left the country by land over the friendship bridge in Dandong, China, i have loads of pictures and videos, if anyone is interested let me know.

    I travel to more your unusual destinations, and have visited Transnistria, Krygyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan (including Pamir highway), Ukraine a couple of times (2009 and 2015) including Donetsk(start of war), Crimea (2009 and 2015 and a week after becoming part of Russia) Chernobyl twice second time stayed in exclusion for 5 days, Ethiopia (spent time with various tribes and time at active volcano), Somaliland (northern somalia unrecognised country), Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, just to name a few places. Have no plans yet for this yet still undecided lol.

    Bring some Whisky next time yes sir
    avatar
    Werewolf

    Posts : 5268
    Points : 5473
    Join date : 2012-10-24

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Werewolf on Sat Apr 16, 2016 4:43 pm

    d_taddei2 wrote:if anyone is interested in North Korea in terms of economic and infrastructure, housing etc, give me a shout, i was there for 10 days last year was their for the 70th liberation day, and visited other areas outside of Pyongyang, and even left the country by land over the friendship bridge in Dandong, China, i have loads of pictures and videos, if anyone is interested let me know.

    I travel to more your unusual destinations, and have visited Transnistria, Krygyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan (including Pamir highway), Ukraine a couple of times (2009 and 2015) including Donetsk(start of war), Crimea (2009 and 2015 and a week after becoming part of Russia) Chernobyl twice second time stayed in exclusion for 5 days, Ethiopia (spent time with various tribes and time at active volcano), Somaliland (northern somalia unrecognised country), Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, just to name a few places. Have no plans yet for this yet still undecided lol.

    Cool and an expensive hobby you have. Wish i could do that.

    What can you tell us about North Korean common people are they indoctrinated to hate their own south koreans like South Korea is by US?
    avatar
    d_taddei2

    Posts : 1261
    Points : 1435
    Join date : 2013-05-11
    Location : Scotland UK

    reply

    Post  d_taddei2 on Sun Apr 17, 2016 5:55 pm

    Werewolf wrote:
    d_taddei2 wrote:if anyone is interested in North Korea in terms of economic and infrastructure, housing etc, give me a shout, i was there for 10 days last year was their for the 70th liberation day, and visited other areas outside of Pyongyang, and even left the country by land over the friendship bridge in Dandong, China, i have loads of pictures and videos, if anyone is interested let me know.

    I travel to more your unusual destinations, and have visited Transnistria, Krygyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan (including Pamir highway), Ukraine a couple of times (2009 and 2015) including Donetsk(start of war), Crimea (2009 and 2015 and a week after becoming part of Russia) Chernobyl twice second time stayed in exclusion for 5 days, Ethiopia (spent time with various tribes and time at active volcano), Somaliland (northern somalia unrecognised country), Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, just to name a few places. Have no plans yet for this yet still undecided lol.

    Cool and an expensive hobby you have. Wish i could do that.

    What can you tell us about North Korean common people are they indoctrinated to hate their own south koreans like South Korea is by US?

    yeah of course. The North Korea's are a proud race, and i wouldn't neccessarily say that they are brainwashed etc, but they are lest say educated in a North Korean way, but of course like everyone else in the world they do have there own mind and although not 100% fully aware of the outside world they are aware that life is different and people have different rights, customs, etc, and i only met person who was a bit anti South Korean, but this wasn't against the South Korean people but more with South Korean leaders and he did believe that the south could only be united through force, but the rest of the people i met weren't like him. Life is not as bad as the west makes out, i have a couple of threads on here that you might like.

    http://www.russiadefence.net/t4677-north-korean-dprk-trip

    http://www.russiadefence.net/t3372-my-pics-and-vids

    anymore questions or requests please ask
    avatar
    nomadski

    Posts : 244
    Points : 246
    Join date : 2017-01-02

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  nomadski on Sat Aug 05, 2017 6:07 pm


    Sanctioned of the world unite . You have nothing to loose but your sanctions . So lets hope the latest US drafted anti Korea / Russia / Iran sanctions , will be vetoed by Russia and China . Iran can establish open cooperation on technical fields and cooperate with all nations of the world . And import seafood protein and metals from Korea . Europeans can import fuel from Russia . Everyone can continue with life . Americans can play with themselves .


    ATLASCUB

    Posts : 341
    Points : 345
    Join date : 2017-02-13

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  ATLASCUB on Sun Aug 06, 2017 2:53 am

    nomadski wrote:
    Sanctioned of the world unite . You have nothing to loose but your sanctions . So lets hope the latest US drafted anti Korea / Russia / Iran sanctions , will be vetoed by Russia and China . Iran can establish open cooperation on technical fields and  cooperate with all nations of the world  . And import seafood protein and metals from Korea . Europeans can import fuel from Russia . Everyone can continue with life . Americans can play with themselves .


    Surprise!

    https://sputniknews.com/asia/201708051056217992-new-dprk-sanctions-adopted-by-UN/
    avatar
    nomadski

    Posts : 244
    Points : 246
    Join date : 2017-01-02

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  nomadski on Sun Aug 06, 2017 7:10 pm

    @Atlasclub

    Surprise ! Not really . The Russians and Chinese go along with yanks , when it comes to their esoteric understanding and standards they apply , to whom can and can not possess nukes . Rules , that I may add , make no sense at all . And should be ignored by and large , by the world public . Perhaps they go along with some UNSC resolutions . In order not to aggravate the yanks . Or in hope of some benefit , or private deal .

    The way I think about nukes . Is straightforward . In the absence of world peace . And ongoing and devastating and unstoppable conventional wars . Nukes have historically proven to be weapons of peace . That is if and only if they are possesed by both sides to a conflict . Or possession by smaller nation , safeguards against genocide by much stronger conventional weapon state .We can therefore say that , in tense situations , providing possession by both sides , that they are weapons of peace .

    But who should possess them ? Any nation facing a war of annihilation by any other nation , should through purchase or manufacture obtain them . In order to keep the peace . The only exceptions are , nations that do not face annihilation . Or nations that are engaged in civil wars that leads to genocide . By using these weapons internally , like Saddam . Or facing off an external force , trying to stop the genocide .

    Therefore Hitler , engaged in mass genocide of the Jews , and Usraelis engaged in mass expulsion of Palestinians and Saddam engaged in mass murder of Kurds , should not have them .

    But North Koreans defending territory against Yank aggression and mass murder , should have them . So should Iranians , who have not invaded anyone , yet have been threatened to be nuked by : yanks , French , English , Usraelis , and Pakis !

    Iran and North Korea and any nation facing nuclear or conventional war of annihilation by another nuke power or very strongly armed conventional weapon nation , should have nukes . Korea to keep nukes . World peace . Yanks go play with themselves .

    What about Korea hitting a US base now ? The reaction could be either ignore it and then negotiate . Accepting a defeat of the sanctions and their policy . Or it could be military retaliation of various sorts . Before such action . One must decide if it is the only option left . That is , do the sanctions mean an economic collapse in the near or foreseeable future ? Also the question must be asked , if Korea has enough nukes ? And do Americans know this ?

    Trump foolishly said that they had more nukes ! But in reality only ten warheads need to hit their target to ensure total destruction . You do not need hundreds . If all your missiles got through . Korea needs an atmospheric test on TV . So political pressure builds on white house . Also displaying a credible minimum number of IBM , can help drive the message home . Sanctions can be broken . Once the " world powers " learn that Korea will not yield . And Korea can break the sanctions together with friendly nations . There is every chance .

    But if people are hungry . And there is starting to be chaos on the street . No choice . Hit the base .




    yavar

    Posts : 243
    Points : 249
    Join date : 2017-03-02

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  yavar on Sun Sep 03, 2017 11:23 am

    North korea H-Bomb miniaturized weaponized missile warhead کره شمالی بمب کوچک هیدروژنی کلاهک موشک


    avatar
    Dima

    Posts : 1062
    Points : 1075
    Join date : 2012-03-22

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Dima on Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:51 am

    With large educated class its no wonder that DPR Korea can become a good production house.

    avatar
    Dima

    Posts : 1062
    Points : 1075
    Join date : 2012-03-22

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Dima on Sun Jun 10, 2018 11:58 am


    Dr.Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Singapore




    Welcomed Chairman Kim Jong Un, who has just arrived in Singapore.
    https://twitter.com/VivianBala/status/1005710197661360128
    avatar
    Dima

    Posts : 1062
    Points : 1075
    Join date : 2012-03-22

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Dima on Thu Jun 14, 2018 9:39 am

    https://www.business-standard.com/article/economy-policy/trump-kim-meet-the-carrots-us-offers-north-will-define-the-deal-s-success-118061200656_1.html

    Trump-Kim meet: The carrots US offers North will define the deal's success

    The quest now is to either turn North Korea into 'not a nuisance' like Burma, or a relatively friendly state like Vietnam
    Abhijit Iyer-Mitra
    Last Updated at June 12, 2018 15:11 IST

    If the US chooses eventually to reward North Korea’s good behaviour, there can be no better candidate than it for shifting production out of China, combining disciplined workforce with very low wages

    The first grainy images to come out of the historic Kim-Trump summit indicate that while nothing concrete has been reached, there are 4 focus areas: First, establishment of regular bilateral relations, possibly formal; second, establishing a stable peace in the Korean peninsula; third, working towards complete denuclearisation of the peninsula; and fourth, help retrieve the remains of the US war dead.


    As such, this would seem unremarkable, yet it holds great potential. What one must remember here is, you do not go from enmity to friendship overnight. Remember that the US-China rapprochement also began with the Chinese side ceding nothing and real cooperation taking years to mature. It is important, therefore, to understand the positives, negatives and limitations of any North Korean-US rapprochement.

    The first issue here is legitimacy. While several commentators have made the case that the prime Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) goal is to get recognition from the US, the reality is the North Koreans see this more as a circuit breaker, where bilateral problems can be isolated and sorted out, without infecting North-South relations.

    What is surprising is that anyone who has been to North Korea and talked to citizens of DPRK (with and without minders) are told just this. Yet, a vast amount of international literature on the subject (from people who have never been to North Korea) presumes that shaking hands with a US president lends credibility to the North Korean leadership, a leadership that does not have a credibility deficit. In many ways this is not dissimilar to the position India takes on Kashmir with Pakistan – that bilateral issues must be sorted out bilaterally, and it makes eminent sense, as it prevents superpower agendas from infecting a bilateral problem.

    What this summit has achieved is that it has broken the taboo of formally engaging with North Korea. In so doing it has removed China’s monopoly over interpreting and taking the blame for North Korean’s actions. From this point on, should a crisis erupt, the US and North Korean leadership can communicate directly rather than through intermediaries with their own agendas.

    This brings us to the question of what we tangibly do get from here; the promise towards denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula, being the most important. The problem here is America’s track record of regime change & instigating insurgencies. Kim Jong Un, of course, will be fully aware of what happened to Gaddafi, Milosevic and Saddam Hussein, the important link being that none of them had nuclear weapons. As such, one must be realistic – the US has a severe credibility crisis and this must be seen as Libya in reverse. Here, the US is first committing to tentative security guarantees, to produce North Korean good behaviour (not to forget DPRK previously demolished its nuclear test sites and has committed to destroying its missile engine testing site). The first step will be to suspend joint exercises with South Korea. This is not the price of this agreement, this is the price the US has to pay for its misadventures since a regime change.

    Economics, on the other hand, is something that was not spoken about but has great potential. People tend to forget that till 1979 North Korea had the second-highest per capita income in Asia, next only to Japan. DPRK is not a third-world country, it is a de-industrialised state where residual work ethics and core competencies remain. If America chooses to reward DPRK’s good behaviour, there is no better candidate for shifting production out of China (something India failed at abysmally) combining a disciplined workforce with very low wages. Given the campaign against sweatshops, this may be a political thorn, but given rising Chinese wages, an economic necessity. The question is, will this rapprochement work the way the outreach to China and Vietnam did, or will it ossify like the aborted outreach to Cuba?

    This is where this 4-point agreement makes eminent sense. The 4 points it seems deliberately leave out the US carrot (economics) and sticks (human rights) in order to balance 4 responsibilities. That is, should DPRK not escalate tensions in the region, provide assistance in retrieving the corpses of US war dead and make the right noises on denuclearisation, the US will provide diplomatic recognition and economic benefits over time while holding the human rights lobby in check. This further course of action, of course, generates reciprocal duties from the North Koreans. For example, any serious violation of human rights like the deliberate starvation of Hamgyong province in an act of collective punishment cannot be repeated. However, all things remaining normal, the US will balance its ties with DPRK the way it does with other egregious human rights violators like Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan to name a few. From a US point of view, getting DPRK up to that level may in fact be a significant improvement from the current situation.

    Ultimately, however, it is the carrots the US provides, that will determine the success of this deal, given that the state DPRK is in leaves no sticks to dish out. The only way from here is up. The worst equilibrium one can expect is that which the US has reached with Pakistan: strained but still working, with some carrots in order to maintain leverage. Turning the DPRK into an ally against China, as this interesting article argues, might be a bridge too far, but incentivising it enough not to participate in Chinese attempts at keeping the region off balance will still be a major positive. As analogies go, North Korea was a blackmail state like Pakistan; the quest now is to either turn it into “not a nuisance” like Burma, or a relatively friendly state like Vietnam. Even if this agreement does the bare minimum in getting a few years of calm in the peninsula and loosening china’s monopoly, it will be an unqualified success.

    Sponsored content

    Re: North Korea Economy and Situation

    Post  Sponsored content


      Current date/time is Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:46 pm