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Korea, North: Economy

Economy Korea, North
Economy - overview:
North Korea, one of the world's most centrally planned and isolated economies, faces desperate economic conditions. Industrial capital stock is nearly beyond repair as a result of years of underinvestment and spare parts shortages. Industrial and power output have declined in parallel. The nation has suffered its tenth year of food shortages because of a lack of arable land; collective farming; weather-related problems, including major drought in 2000; and chronic shortages of fertilizer and fuel. Massive international food aid deliveries have allowed the regime to escape mass starvation since 1995-96, but the population remains the victim of prolonged malnutrition and deteriorating living conditions. Large-scale military spending eats up resources needed for investment and civilian consumption. Recently, the regime has placed emphasis on earning hard currency, developing information technology, addressing power shortages, and attracting foreign aid, but in no way at the expense of relinquishing central control over key national assets or undergoing widespread market-oriented reforms. In 2003, heightened political tensions with key donor countries and general donor fatigue have held down the flow of desperately needed food aid and have threatened fuel aid as well.
GDP:
purchasing power parity - $22.26 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
1% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
purchasing power parity - $1,000 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 30.4%
industry: 32.3%
services: 37.3% (2000 est.)
Population below poverty line:
NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
NA%
Labor force:
9.6 million
Labor force - by occupation:
agricultural 36%, nonagricultural 64%
Unemployment rate:
NA%
Budget:
revenues: $NA
expenditures: $NA, including capital expenditures of $NA
Industries:
military products; machine building, electric power, chemicals; mining (coal, iron ore, magnesite, graphite, copper, zinc, lead, and precious metals), metallurgy; textiles, food processing; tourism
Industrial production growth rate:
NA%
Electricity - production:
30.01 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - production by source:
fossil fuel: 29%
hydro: 71%
other: 0% (2001)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
27.91 billion kWh (2001)
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2001)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2001)
Oil - production:
0 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - consumption:
85,000 bbl/day (2001 est.)
Oil - exports:
NA (2001)
Oil - imports:
NA (2001)
Agriculture - products:
rice, corn, potatoes, soybeans, pulses; cattle, pigs, pork, eggs
Exports:
$842 million f.o.b. (2001 est.)
Exports - commodities:
minerals, metallurgical products, manufactures (including armaments); textiles and fishery products
Exports - partners:
China 23.5%, Japan 19.9%, Costa Rica 12.4%, Brazil 6.5% (2002)
Imports:
$1.314 billion c.i.f. (2001 est.)
Imports - commodities:
petroleum, coking coal, machinery and equipment; textiles, grain
Imports - partners:
China 24.9%, Brazil 12.1%, India 9.2%, Thailand 9.2%, Germany 7.8%, Japan 7.1%, Singapore 4.5%, Qatar 4% (2002)
Debt - external:
$12 billion (1996 est.)
Economic aid - recipient:
$NA; note - nearly $300 million in food aid alone from US, South Korea, Japan, and EU in 2001 plus much additional aid from the UN and non-governmental organizations
Currency:
North Korean won (KPW)
Currency code:
KPW
Exchange rates:
official: North Korean won per US dollar - 150 (December 2002), 2.15 (December 2001), 2.15 (May 1994), 2.13 (May 1992), 2.14 (September 1991), 2.1 (January 1990); market: North Korean won per US dollar - 300-600 (December 2002), 200 (December 2001)
Fiscal year:
calendar year

Also See:

Background & Country Profile
Geography
People
Government
Economy
Communications
Transportation
Military
Transnational Issues & International Disputes
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Source: The CIA World Fact Book 2003

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