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North Korea

 
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North Korea

Mass Production Campaigns

Parallel to management techniques such as the Ch'ongsan-ni Method and the Taean Work System, which were designed to increase output in the course of more normalized and regularized operations of farms and enterprises, the leadership continuously resorts to exhortations and mass campaigns to motivate the workers to meet output targets. The earliest and the most pervasive mass production campaign was the Ch'llima Movement. Introduced in 1958, and fashioned after China's Great Leap Forward (1958-60), the Ch'llima Movement organized the labor force into work teams and brigades to compete at increasing production. The campaign was aimed not only at industrial and agricultural workers but also at organizations in education, science, sanitation and health, and culture. In addition to work teams, units eligible for Ch'llima citations included entire factories, factory workshops, and such self-contained units as a ship or a railroad station. The "socialist competition" among the industrial sectors, enterprises, farms, and work teams under the Ch'llima Movement frantically sought to complete the Five-Year Plan (1957-60), but instead created chaotic disruptions in the economy. The disruptions made it necessary to set aside 1959 as a "buffer year" to restore balance in the economy.

Although the Ch'llima Movement was replaced in the early 1960s by the Ch'ongsan-ni Method and the Taean Work System, the regime's reliance on some form of mass campaign continued into the early 1990s. Campaigns conducted after the Ch'llima Movement have been narrower in scope and have concentrated on specific time frames for a particular industry or economic sector. Often, the mass production movement takes the form of a "speed battle"-- the "100-day speed battle" being most common. The fact that the leadership has to resort to these campaigns points to the weakness or improper functioning of the regular day-to-day management system, as well as to a lack of incentives for workers to achieve the desired economic results. The leadership frequently resorts to speed battles toward the end of a certain period (such as a month, a year, or a particular economic plan) to reach production targets. The "Speed of the 1990s" is designed to carry out the economic goals of the decade.

Data as of June 1993

North Korea - TABLE OF CONTENTS

  • THE ECONOMY


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