From printing coupons as exchange money to growing ornamental black swans for food, North Korea being forced to innovate to tackle economic problems and Lack of food, recognized by the country’s own leader Qin Jong Un, as the blockade of the pandal border increases, reports suggest.
With the harvesting period drawing to a close, international observers say North Korea’s economic and food situation is alarming, and there are signs that China’s already large humanitarian aid shipments are increasing.
South Korea’s intelligence agency said in a closed-door parliamentary hearing on Thursday that North Korean leader According to South Korean lawmakers, it had issued orders calling for all efforts aimed at protecting every grain of rice and the health of North Korean agriculture.
Still, the spy agency said the harvest could be better than last year due to warmer weather, adding that North Korea is taking steps to reopen its borders with China and Russia in the coming months. .
North Korea has long suffered from food insecurity, with international policy experts saying the economy’s mismanagement coupled with international sanctions imposed on the Asian country for its nuclear weapons. Moreover, natural calamities and now the Covid-19 pandemic have aggravated the situation.
The North Korean leader acknowledged the “stressful” food situation, but also said the economy had improved this year. North Korea this month denied a report by UN investigators that said thousands of the most vulnerable were at risk of starvation.
Officially, the country has not recorded any case of coronavirus. UN agencies said North Korea recently began allowing aid shipments, and figures released by China show slow growth in trade.
shortage of ink and paper for currency
According to several media outlets in North Korea citing unnamed sources, the country’s central bank is printing cash coupons worth around $1 due to a shortage of North Korean won notes.
The Rimjin-Gang, a Japanese news site run by North Korean defectors, reported that the coupons had been running since at least August, as the paper and ink for the official currency were no longer coming from China.
NK News in Seoul said the shortage of won notes could also be exacerbated by the government’s crackdown on the use of foreign currency, particularly the US dollar and Chinese renminbi, which had previously been widely used, which said that this information confirms.
Reuters was unable to confirm the use of the coupon.
This week, North Korean state media promoted the consumption of black goose meat as a valuable food source, saying breeding on a newly developed industrial scale would help improve people’s lives.
“Black swan meat is delicious and has medicinal value,” the ruling party’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper said on Monday (25).
As NK News reports, research into raising ornamental birds for food began in early 2019, and officials asked schools, factories and businesses to grow the food and raise fish and other animals.
“The solution aims to stem the failure of large-scale agriculture to provide adequate food supplies across the country and the latest government restrictions related to Covid-19, which have blocked much of the food and other imports since the beginning of 2020. ” Colin Zwirko wrote correspondent and analyst for NK News.