North Korean incomes improving but far below South Korea - Seoul

2017-12-18 14:25
(iStock)

(iStock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Seoul - North Koreans enjoyed the fastest improvement in their incomes for five years in 2016, Seoul's statistics agency has said - but Southerners are still more than 20 times better off.

Per capita incomes averaged 1.46 million won ($1 340) in the North last year, Statistics Korea said in a statement, up 5%.

It was the fastest expansion since 2011, when incomes rose by more than 7%, a graph issued by Statistics Korea on Friday showed, and came despite the imposition of multiple sets of international sanctions over Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme.

The isolated North is one of the world's most secretive countries and does not release official economic data, not even for GDP growth, leaving observers to compile estimates of their own.

In the capitalist, democratic South, the comparable per-capita income figure was 31.98 million won - nearly 22 times higher.

Other comparisons issued by Statistics Korea also put the South far ahead.

Its electricity production stood a 540.4 billion kilowatt hours in 2016, the agency said - almost 23 times the North's 23.9 billion kilowatt hours.

Mobile phone subscriptions were 14.26 per 100 people in the North, and 122.65 in the hyper-wired South - more than one per person.

South Korea's total trade volume was put at $902bn, almost 140 times the North's $6.5bn.

In July the South's central bank estimated the North's GDP to have grown 3.9% last year - faster that the South's 2.8%, albeit from a much lower base.

It was the North's fastest expansion for 17 years as Pyongyang quietly allows the market to play a greater role in its economy under Kim Jong-Un, even while denying it is carrying out reforms.

"Marketplaces are a key pillar for growth in the North Korea as many people are now relying on such markets for their incomes instead of the country's dysfunctional rationing system," said Hong Min, a senior researcher with the state-run Korea Institute for National Unification.

Statistics Korea put the North's 2016 population at 24.9 million, compared with 51.3 million in the South.

Read more on:    south korea  |  north korea

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.