N.Korean Economy on Its Knees

  • By Kim Shin-young

    July 28, 2022 10:59

    North Korea's economy shrank another 0.1 percent last year as the impoverished country locked down its border with China for a second year.

    The Bank of Korea here on Wednesday estimated North Korea's GDP at W31.41 trillion last year, much the same as 2003 (US$1=W1,313).

    The North's gross national income was worth W36.30 trillion last year, a mere 1.7 percent of South Korea's and per-capita GNI stood at W1.42 million, 1/28th of South Korea's W40.48 million.


    In 2019 the North's economy grew 0.4 percent, but it plunged to -4.5 percent when the North locked the border with its sole supporter China amid the COVID panic of 2020.

    "North Korea continued to suffer from UN sanctions and its own shutdown of borders," said Lee Kwan-kyo at the BOK. "It's hard to tell how much longer this will continue."

    The North's total trade volume amounted to just US$710 million last year, down 17.3 percent from the previous year. Exports shrank another 8.2 percent to $80 million and imports 18.4 percent to $630 million.

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