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Korea North Facts

Korea North Facts | Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics | Korea North

Korea North Facts |  Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics Korea North Facts |  Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics
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 KOREAN POLITICAL
  Korea North Facts |  Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics  
Background: An independent kingdom for much of its long history, Korea was occupied by Japan in 1905 following the Russo-Japanese War. Five years later, Japan formally annexed the entire peninsula. Following World War II, Korea was split with the northern half coming under Soviet-sponsored Communist domination. After failing in the Korean War (1950-53) to conquer the US-backed Republic of Korea (ROK) in the southern portion by force, North Korea (DPRK), under its founder President KIM Il-so'ng, adopted a policy of ostensible diplomatic and economic "self-reliance" as a check against excessive Soviet or Communist Chinese influence. The DPRK demonized the US as the ultimate threat to its social system through state-funded propaganda, and molded political, economic, and military policies around the core ideological objective of eventual unification of Korea under Pyongyang's control. KIM's son, the current ruler KIM Jong Il, was officially designated as his father's successor in 1980, assuming a growing political and managerial role until the elder KIM's death in 1994. After decades of economic mismanagement and resource misallocation, the DPRK since the mid-1990s has relied heavily on international aid to feed its population while continuing to expend resources to maintain an army of 1 million. North Korea's long-range missile development, as well as its nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons programs and massive conventional armed forces, are of major concern to the international community. In December 2002, following revelations that the DPRK was pursuing a nuclear weapons program based on enriched uranium in violation of a 1994 agreement with the US to freeze and ultimately dismantle its existing plutonium-based program, North Korea expelled monitors from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). In January 2003, it declared its withdrawal from the international Non-Proliferation Treaty. In mid-2003 Pyongyang announced it had completed the reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel rods (to extract weapons-grade plutonium) and was developing a "nuclear deterrent." Since August 2003, North Korea has participated in the Six-Party Talks with China, Japan, Russia, South Korea, and the US designed to resolve the stalemate over its nuclear programs. The fourth round of Six-Party Talks were held in Beijing during July-September 2005. All parties agreed to a Joint Statement of Principles in which, among other things, the six parties unanimously reaffirmed the goal of verifiable denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in a peaceful manner. In the Joint Statement, the DPRK committed to "abandoning all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programs and returning, at an early date, to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and to IAEA safeguards." The Joint Statement also commits the US and other parties to certain actions as the DPRK denuclearizes. The US offered a security assurance, specifying that it had no nuclear weapons on ROK territory and no intention to attack or invade the DPRK with nuclear or other weapons. The US and DPRK will take steps to normalize relations, subject to the DPRK's implementing its denuclearization pledge and resolving other longstanding concerns. While the Joint Statement provides a vision of the end-point of the Six-Party process, much work lies ahead to implement the elements of the agreement.
 
 
Common Name: Korea North Local Official Name: North Korea
Abbreviated Name: Democratic People's Republic of Korea Official Name: Choson-minjujuui-inmin-konghwaguk
Official Script Name: Korea North Local Common Name: DPRK
Former Name: Korea North Territory of: NA
 
Head of State: KIM Jong Il
 
Government Type: authoritarian socialist; one-man dictatorship
 
Independence: 1945 August 15(from Japan)
 
Constitution: adopted 1948; completely revised 27 December 1972, revised again in April 1992, and September 1998
 
National Holiday: Founding of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), 9 September (1948)
 
International Organization Participation: ARF, FAO, G-77, ICAO, ICRM, IFAD, IFRCS, IHO, IMO, IOC, IPU, ISO, ITU, NAM, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO
 
Administrative Divisions: 9 provinces (do, singular and plural) and 4 municipalities (si, singular and plural) provinces: Chagang-do (Chagang), Hamgyong-bukto (North Hamgyong), Hamgyong-namdo (South Hamgyong), Hwanghae-bukto (North Hwanghae), Hwanghae-namdo (South Hwanghae), Kangwon-do (Kangwon), P'yongan-bukto (North P'yongan), P'yongan-namdo (South P'yongan), Yanggang-do (Yanggang) municipalites: Kaesong-si (Kaesong), Najin Sonbong-si (Najin), Namp'o-si (Namp'o), P'yongyang-si (Pyongyang)
 
Dependent Areas: NA
 
Legal System: based on German civil law system with Japanese influences and Communist legal theory; no judicial review of legislative acts; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction
 
Suffrage: 17 years
 
Executive, Legislative and Judicial Branches: Executive Branch: Chief of state: KIM Jong Il (since July 1994); note - on 3 September 2003, rubberstamp Supreme People's Assembly (SPA) reelected KIM Jong Il chairman of the National Defense Commission, a position accorded nation's "highest administrative authority"; SPA reelected KIM Yong Nam president of its Presidium also with responsibility of representing state and receiving diplomatic credentials; SPA appointed PAK Pong Ju premier head of government: Premier PAK Pong Ju (since 3 September 2003); Vice Premiers KWAK Pom Gi (since 5 September 1998), JON Sung Hun (since 3 September 2003), RO Tu Chol (since 3 September 2003) Cabinet: Naegak (cabinet) members, except for Minister of People's Armed Forces, are appointed by SPA Elections: last held in September 2003 (next to be held in September 2008) Election results: KIM Jong Il and KIM Yong Nam were only nominees for positions and ran unopposed Legislative Branch: unicameral Supreme People's Assembly or Ch'oego Inmin Hoeui (687 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve five-year terms) Elections: last held 3 August 2003 (next to be held in August 2008) Election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - NA; ruling party approves a list of candidates who are elected without opposition; some seats are held by minor parties Jidicial Branch: Central Court (judges are elected by the Supreme People's Assembly)
 
Party Leaders: major party - Korean Workers' Party or KWP [KIM Jong Il]; minor parties - Chondoist Chongu Party [RYU Mi Yong] (under KWP control), Social Democratic Party [KIM Yong Dae] (under KWP control)
 
International Disputes: China seeks to stem illegal migration of tens of thousands of North Koreans escaping famine, economic privation, and political oppression; North Korea and China dispute the sovereignty of certain islands in Yalu and Tumen rivers and a section of boundary around Paektu-san (mountain) is indefinite; Military Demarcation Line within the 4-km wide Demilitarized Zone has separated North from South Korea since 1953; periodic maritime disputes with South over the Northern Limit Line; North Korea supports South Korea in rejecting Japan's claim to Liancourt Rocks (Tok-do/Take-shima)
 
Illicit Drugs: for years, from the 1970s into the 2000s, citizens of the Democratic People's Republic of (North) Korea (DPRK), many of them diplomatic employees of the government, were apprehended abroad while trafficking in narcotics, including two in Turkey in December 2004; police investigations in Taiwan and Japan in recent years have linked North Korea to large illicit shipments of heroin and methamphetamine, including an attempt by the North Korean merchant ship Pong Su to deliver 150 kg of heroin to Australia in April 2003 
 
 
 KOREAN GEOGRAPHY
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Location of Korea North: Eastern Asia, northern half of the Korean Peninsula bordering the Korea Bay and the Sea of Japan, between China and South Korea
 
Continent: Asia Land Area Total: 120,540 sq km 
Region: North East Asia Land Area Land: 120,410 sq km
Capitol City: Pyongyang Land Area Water: 130 sq km
      
Latitude: 040 00 N Border Boundary Land: 1,673 km
Longitude: 0127 00 Border Boundary Coastline: 2,495 km 
  
Arable Land: 22.40 % Pastures: 0.00 %
Crops: 3.00 % Woodlands and Forests: 0.00
  
Highest Elevation: 2,744 m Location: Paektu-san
Lowest Elevation: 0 m Location: Sea of Japan
  
Largest City in Korea North: Pyongyang Pyongyang Largest City Population: 3,136,000
  
Threatened Species: 41
 
Environmental Issues: water pollution; inadequate supplies of potable water; water-borne disease; deforestation; soil erosion and degradation
 
Environmental Agreements: party to: Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Environmental Modification, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution signed, but not ratified: Law of the Sea
 
Irrigated Land: 14,600
 
Bordering Countries: China 1,416 km, South Korea 238 km, Russia 19 km
 
Natural Resources: coal, lead, tungsten, zinc, graphite, magnesite, iron ore, copper, gold, pyrites, salt, fluorspar, hydropower
 
Geographical Terrain: mostly hills and mountains separated by deep, narrow valleys; coastal plains wide in west, discontinuous in east
 
Comparative Area of Korea North: slightly smaller than Mississippi
 
Korea North's Geography: strategic location bordering China, South Korea, and Russia; mountainous interior is isolated and sparsely populated
 

 KOREAN CLIMATE
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General Climate: temperate with rainfall concentrated in summer
 
Natural Hazards: late spring droughts often followed by severe flooding; occasional typhoons during the early fall
 
 
 KOREAN ECONOMY
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Economic 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 shortages of spare parts. Industrial and power output have declined in parallel. Despite an increased harvest in 2005 because of more stable weather conditions, fertilizer assistance from South Korea, and an extraordinary mobilization of the population to help with agricultural production, the nation has suffered its 11th year of food shortages because of on-going systemic problems, including a lack of arable land, collective farming practices, and chronic shortages of tractors and fuel. Massive international food aid deliveries have allowed the people of North Korea to escape mass starvation since famine threatened in 1995, but the population continues to suffer from prolonged malnutrition and poor living conditions. Large-scale military spending eats up resources needed for investment and civilian consumption. In 2004, the regime formalized an arrangement whereby private "farmers markets" were allowed to begin selling a wider range of goods. It also permitted some private farming on an experimental basis in an effort to boost agricultural output. In October 2005, the regime reversed some of these policies by forbidding private sales of grains and reinstituting a centralized food rationing system. In December 2005, the regime confirmed that it intended to carry out earlier threats to terminate all international humanitarian assistance operations in the DPRK (calling instead for developmental assistance only) and to restrict the activities of international and non-governmental aid organizations such as the World Food Program. Firm political control remains the Communist government's overriding concern, which will likely inhibit the loosening of economic regulations.
 
 
GDP: $40,000,000,000 USD Currency: North Korean won
GDP per Capita: $1,700 USD Currency Code: KPW
GDP Growth Rate: 1.00 %
  
Currency Exchange Rate History: official: North Korean won per US dollar - 170 (December 2004), 150 (December 2002), 2.15 (December 2001); market: North Korean won per US dollar - 300-600 (December 2002)
  
  
GDP of Agriculture: 30.00 % GDP of Industry: 34.00 %
GDP of Services: 36.00 %  
   
Inflation Rate: 0.00 % Population in Poverty: 0.00 %
Unemployment Rate: 0.00 % Tourism: 130,000.00 visitors each year
   
Consumption by lowest 10%: 0.00 % Budget Revenue in USD: $0 USD
Consumption by upper 10%: 0.00 % Budget Expenditures in USD: $0 USD
   
Electricity Production: 18,750,000,000 kWh Electricity Exports: 0 kWh
Electricity Consumption: 17,430,000,000 kWh Electricity Imports: 0 kWh

Electricity Production by Source:
 
Fossil Fuel Electricity Production: 32.63% Nuclear Electricity Production: 0.00%
Hydro Electricity Production: 67.37% Other Electricity Production: 0.00%
   
Oil Production: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Production: 0 cu m
Oil Consumption: 25,000 barrels per day Natural Gas Consumption: 0 cu m
Oil Exports: 0 barrels per day Natural Gas Exports: 0 cu m
Oil Imports: 22,000 barrels per day Natural Gas Imports: 0 cu m
Proven Oil Reserves: 0 barrels Proven Natural Gas Reserves: 0 cu m
   
External Debt: $12,000,000,000 USD Received in economic aid: $0 USD
  Donated in economic aid: $0 USD
   
Agricultural Products: rice, corn, potatoes, soybeans, pulses; cattle, pigs, pork, eggs
 
Primary 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 Growth Rate: 0.00 %
  
  
Import Amount in USD: $2,819,000,000 USD - petroleum, coking coal, machinery and equipment, textiles, grain
 
Import Partners: China 32.9%, Thailand 10.7%, Japan 4.8%
 
Export Amount in USD: $1,275,000,000 USD - minerals, metallurgical products, manufactures (including armaments), textiles, fishery products
 
Export Partners: China 45.6%, South Korea 20.2%, Japan 12.9%
 
    
GINI Index: 0.00%
 
Labor Force Number of People: 9,600,000
 
Labor Force by Occupations: agricultural 36%, nonagricultural 64%
 
  
 KOREAN COMMUNICATIONS
  Korea North Facts |  Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics  
 
Radio Broadcast Stations: 45 Number of People with Radios: 3,360,000
Television Broadcast Stations: 4 Number of People with Televisions: 1,200,000
Number of People with Mainline Telephones: 980,000 Number of People with Mobile Phones: 0
 
Internet Service Providers: 0 Internet Users: 0
 
Internet Country Code: .kp Newspapers: 199
Two Letter Country Code: KN Weights and Measures:
Phone Country Code: +850 Electricity Voltage: Volts
  
Telephone Systems: General assessment: NA Domestic: NA International: Satellite earth stations - 1 Intelsat (Indian Ocean) and 1 Russian (Indian Ocean region); other international connections through Moscow and Beijing
 
  
 KOREAN TRANSPORTATION
  Korea North Facts |  Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics  

   

Highways: 1,997 km Railways: 5,214 km
Gas And Oil Pipelines: 154 km Waterways: 2,250 km
Airports: 39 Heliports: 0
 
Motor Vehicles: 0 per 1,000 people CO2 Emissions: 252,065,000 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  Per capita CO2 emissions: 11.00 Metric Tons of CO2 per year
  
Merchant Marines: Total: 232 ships (1000 GRT or over) 983,182 GRT/1,370,104 DWT by type: bulk carrier 14, cargo 176, chemical tanker 1, container 4, livestock carrier 3, passenger/cargo 5, petroleum tanker 17, refrigerated cargo 3, roll on/roll off 8, vehicle carrier 1 foreign-owned: 60 (British Virgin Islands 1, China 1, Denmark 1, Egypt 2, Greece 1, India 1, Lebanon 6, Lithuania 1, Marshall Islands 1, Pakistan 3, Romania 11, Russia 1, Singapore 1, Syria 14, Turkey 4, UAE 6, US 3, Yemen 2) registered in other countries: 5 (Belize 2, Mongolia 3)
 
Ports and Harbors: Ch'ongjin, Haeju, Hungnam (Hamhung), Kimch'aek, Kosong, Najin, Namp'o, Sinuiju, Songnim, Sonbong (formerly Unggi), Ungsang, Wonsan
 
  
 KOREAN PEOPLE
  Korea North Facts |  Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics  
 
Population: 23,113,019 people type - nationality Birth Rate: 15.54 births per 1,000 people
Population Density: 188.00 people per sq km Death Rate: 7.13 deaths per 1,000 people
Population Growth: 0.84% per year Fertility Rate per Women: 2.10 babies born per woman
 
Population Male 0-14: 2,788,944 Population Female 0-14: 2,708,331
Population Male 15-64: 7,762,442 Population Female 15-64: 7,955,522
Population Male 65+: 667,792 Population Female 65+: 1,229,988
 
Population 0-14: 23.80% Literacy Rate: 99.00%
Population 15-64: 68.00% Literacy rate of Males: 99.00%
Population 65+: 8.20% Literacy rate of Females: 99.00%
 
Population that is Male: 52.50 % Population that is Female: 47.50%
Life expectancy at birth in years: 71.65 years Infant mortality rate - baby deaths per 1000 births: 23.29 Babies die per 1,000 births
Life expectancy at birth for Males: 68.92 years Life expectancy at birth for Females: 74.51 years
 
Rate of AIDS/HIV infection: 0.00% Number of people living with AIDS or HIV: 0
Number of people who died of AIDS: 0
   
Disease Risk:
 
Diseases:
 
Net Migration Rate per 1,000 people: 0.00
 
Nationality: KOREAN
 
Ethnic Groups: racially homogeneous; there is a small Chinese community and a few ethnic Japanese 
 
  
Primary Language: Korean
 
Other Languages: Korean
 
 
Primary Religion: traditionally Buddhist and Con
 
Other Religions: traditionally Buddhist and Confucianist, some Christian and syncretic Chondogyo (Religion of the Heavenly Way) note: autonomous religious activities now almost nonexistent; government-sponsored religious groups exist to provide illusion of religious free
 
  
 KOREAN MILITARY
  Korea North Facts |  Democratic People's Republic of Korea Information | Korea North Statistics  
  
Branches: North Korean People's Army: Ground Force, Navy, Air Force; civil security forces
 
Manpower Fit to Serve: 17 years
 
Manpower Available: 11,702,534 People
 
Manpower Fit to Serve: 9,664,101 People
 
Amount of Manpower Available each Year: 382,451 People per year
 
Expenditures: $5,000,000,000 USD per year
 
Expenditures as a Percentage of GDP: 0.00
 
 
Note: Phrasebase uses a variety of sources when compiling the facts and information presented above. This information is continually updated throughout the year.
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