Donald Trump dangled the carrot of foreign investment in front of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at their nuclear summit, but analysts say few will want to put money into one of the highest-risk business environments in the world. The U.S. president showed Kim a movie of bright lights, high-speed trains and soaring tower blocks - pitching a future that could be possible if Pyongyang gives up its weapons. Optimists say that with mineral wealth, cheap labour, and a helpful geographical location, the North has huge potential. But the history of overseas firms who have tried to set up operations in the isolated, impoverished country is a long and sorry one. Rules that can change on a whim, bills that are never paid, and the threat of expropriation hang over foreigners who step into the wildest of wild east investment destinations. For now, dozens of restrictions apply under the various sanctions regimes imposed on the North over its nuclear ambitions. Joint ventures are banned by the U.N. … [Read more...] about Invest in North Korea: money pit or golden opportunity?
How poor is north korea
Visitors are not allowed to use local currency, except in certain areas - another intrigue regarding the hermit country. Vietnamese Embassy, 1.7 hectares wide Visitors are not allowed to use local currency, except in certain areas - another intrigue regarding the hermit country. >> A Vietnamese perspective from inside North Korea – P4: Visiting North-South border village >> A Vietnamese perspective from inside North Korea – P3: Beer fete >> A Vietnamese perspective from inside North Korea – P2: Immortal leaders >> A Vietnamese perspective from inside North Korea – P1: First images Rather than accept their country’s currency, North Korean stores selling imported items are regulated to only accept ‘strong’ currencies, such as U.S. dollars, euros, Japanese yen, and Chinese yuan. Only two supermarkets licensed to sell goods to foreigners accept domestic currency, with on-site foreign exchange counters available … [Read more...] about A Vietnamese perspective from inside North Korea – P5: The blue, red won
China's top diplomat has praised the leadership of North Korea and vowed closer ties despite an international outcry over the isolated state's recent missile launch. Dai Bingguo, who is China's most senior official on foreign policy, made the comments Sunday in a meeting in Beijing with Kim Yong-Il, a visiting top official with North Korea's ruling Korean Workers' Party. The meeting follows the April 13 launch of what Pyongyang says was a communications satellite, but which the United States has called a disguised ballistic missile test. It said the rocket disintegrated minutes after launch. The United States and other critics have said the launch violated UN restrictions imposed on North Korea. The UN Security Council strongly condemned it and said it would tighten existing sanctions. But Dai had warm words for the leadership of Kim Jong-Un, who took the reins of the poor and isolated state after the December death of his father, longtime supreme leader Kim Jong-Il. Dai told … [Read more...] about China offers praise, friendship for North Korea
North Korea plans to allow farmers to keep more of their produce in an attempt to boost agricultural output, a source with close ties to Pyongyang and Beijing said, in a move that could boost supplies, help cap rising food prices and ease malnutrition. The move to liberalize agriculture under new leader Kim Jong-un, who took office in December 2011 after the death of his father, would reverse a crackdown on private production that started in 2005. It comes amid talk that the youngest Kim to rule the impoverished North is considering reforms to boost the economy. … [Read more...] about North Korea plans agriculture reforms
Whether treating patients with drug-resistant diseases in the slums of Haiti or trying to reverse the hopelessness of the world's poor, optimism is essential, insists World Bank President Jim Yong Kim. "For me optimism is a moral choice," Kim told Reuters on his first trip to Africa, two months into the job as president of the global development lender. … [Read more...] about Optimism is the antidote, says new World Bank chief