All Report

<Inside N. Korea> Bank Card and ATM Appear in Local Cities. Split Responses; “Convenient” and “Still Can’t Trust the Government.”

“Narae” debit card issued by the Foreign Trade Bank of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. It is used for foreign exchange settlements. Taken by a Chinese tourist in March 2015

 

2017/Jan/6

Following the issuance of bank cards for companies and individuals in local cities from the early 2016, the Central Bank of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea has started to install ATMs from the last fall.  According to ASIAPRESS reporting partners inside North Korea, some residents welcomed the card saying “It is more convenient,” while others showed a concern that “The state would monitor private properties” and “We don’t trust the government.”  (Kang Ji-won/Paek Chang-ryong)

Our reporting partner in Hoeryong City, North Hamgyong Province reported a change of financial system in the mid-December 2016, saying that “Recently, local banks have installed ATMs.  The number of residents using bank cards for money transfer and certain types of payment is on the rise.  At present, “Narae” debit card and “Jonsoung” cash card are issued by local banks in Chongjin City and Hoeryong City.  For the issuance of the card, one has to pay 10,000 Won and write a name, address, a mobile or fixed phone number.”  [Note: 1 USD is equal to around 8120 Won ]
Related article: Rising discontent as control reinforced to prepare the 7th Workers Party Conference in May… Forced labor to the runaways from their work places and coerced savings to banks…

[Note: Narae debit card is issued by the Foreign Trade Bank of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.  There are two types of the card.  One is used only for foreign currencies while the other is for North Korean Won.  Jonsoung cash card is issued by the Central Bank of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.  Aside from them, Golden Delta Bank issues “Sonbong” card for payment.]

Now, how convenient are the bank cards?  The reporting partner explains: “Money transfer and payment can be made between those who have the same cards.  Jonsoung cash card can be used not only in a bank but also at a post office to pay telephone charges.  The fee on the money transfer is one percent, 1000 Won for sending 100,000 Won.  In the past, only big cities like Chongjin had available ATMs; however, branch offices in local cities have installed ATMs since the last autumn.  Hoeryong City has on one ATM as of now, but there will be more of them to meet the demands from the residents.”

Based on the writer’s experiences in North Korea, the entrance cards for particular organizations–such as the Grand People’s Study House and the information center–were changed to the ones with IC  in the mid-2000s.  Since around 2009, IC cards for foreign currency payments have been available in specific retail shops such as Potonggang Department Store in Pyongyang.  However, only affluent people and high-ranking officials could use it.   Nowadays, the new payment system–once limited to foreign currencies–has included North Korea Won and gained popularity among residents in local cities.

In the mid-November 2016, another reporting partner, B, in a different part of North Hamgyong Province reported on the wide use of bank card that “In the past, I needed to transfer money via a post office.  It took time and they charge 10% of the principal as a fee, so I used to use a black market transfer.  The number of people using a bank card is increasing since the commission is only 1%, and they can transfer and pay money on the spot if they go to a bank.”
Related article: <Inside N. Korea> Expansion of the market economy as the driving force behind social transformation–based on sources from inside North Korea.

As a bank card has become a major transaction method, a banker is becoming an increasingly popular occupation.  The reporting partner, B, described the current situation in the North Korean society that “As banks earn commission, they distribute 20 days’ worth of rice to staff out of their own pockets every month.  Although companies earning foreign currencies are still more popular, a number of women favor the banking industry now.”
Next page: Long-held distrust and vigilance: citizens beware of the government

Pages:

1

2

Related post

  1. The reporters for the congress should report only about ‘the developing Pyongyang.’ Ordinary people in Pyongyang earn a living through a business. A woman in the photo is selling Chinese made sausages. Taken by Koo Gwang-ho at Moranbong District on June 2011. (ASIA PRESS) <Interview with inside N.Korea> …
  2. He-Ping Railway, Nanpingzhen: trains to North Korea set off from this point. The mountains in the background of the photo are in North Korea. (August, 2013)ASIAPRESS The Changing Face of the Tuman-g…
  3. The geographic location of the North and South Hwanghae Provinces is shown above. They are among the farthest provinces from the Chinese border. Sariwon and Haeju are the respective provincial capitals of North and South Hwanghae. Why is there a …
  4. A young couple dressed up in a wedding costume drove right up to the park in a black Mercedes to take their wedding picture. They seemed to be children of privileged or high-ranking officials. (Taesong District, Pyongyang. June, 2011. Taken by Gu Gwang-ho (C)ASIAPRESS 〈Photo Report 3〉Widening Gaps &#…
  5. People queue in front of the state-run shop for special rations on the occasion of a national holiday. (Taken by Sim Ui-chu. South Hwanghae Province. September 2008)ASIAPRESS Interview with a Trader from Pyo…
  6. The “Taegori” ladies taking a shortcut by the bikes in an effort to evade the state security.  They are carrying food from a rural place to a city.  In August 2008 in a rural farm at a suburb of Pyongyang. Taken by Chang Jeong-gil (ASIAPRESS) <Inside N. Korea> Expansion of t…
  7. In Hyesan, it looked as if the wire fence was going to be installed along the levee. The building that resembles a white wall is a wooden barrier for monitoring the movement of residents approaching the river. Armed border guards check the identification of local people moving back and forth washing clothes in the river. (Hyegang-dong) ASIAPRESS <PHOTO REPORT>Sino – N.Kor…
  8. A rally calling for President Park Geun-hye to quit.  Buildings behind are blurred out.(Quoted from Korean Central Television on December 3) N. Korean TV pixelates the image…

Pickup

Chongjin, North Hamkyung Province. September, 2013  ASIAPRESS N.Korea Market Survey Reveals Basic Food Price Hike PHOTO1 N.Korea IT Report – PART1: Kids Master Emoticons and Movies with Mobile phones A bottle of domestic "penicillin", made at the Suncheon medical factory. ASIAPRESS Embezzled UN Aid Circulates in N.Korean Underground – End to Free Healthcare, Illegal Abortions Widespread A political assembly held by a KWP regional branch that took place a half year before the purge of Jang Song-thaek. The ranking officials discussed and addressed the people's allegiance and dedications to Kim Jong-un. (Summer/2013/ASIAPRESS) Possible Firing Squad Executions Punish Violators of “Kim Jong-un’s Instructions” This picture is taken from raw video footage captured in Sosong District, Pyongyang in the summer of 2006. Female students are assembled near the Three Revolution Exhibition museum to practice for a military parade in honor of Kim Jong-il's birthday. Each student is wearing a white shoulder-cloth inscribed with a consecutive number. (Lee Jun / Pyongyang / August 2006) ASIAPRESS The Truth Behind N.Korea’s Military Parades A high-rise building to be more than 20 storeys high, currently under construction. The location and size of the windows are inconsistent, and distorted. (Aug/2011/Taken by Gu Gwang-ho) 〈Photo Report- 6 (a)〉 The Government’s Command is for a “Strong and Prosperous Nation” — but Workers Tired Out at Pyongyang Construction Sites to Build 100,000 Apartments

Korean   Japanese

 

Rimjingang_facebook Rimjingang_twitter Rimjingang_YouTube

New Report

  1. [Video Report] Chinese products and currency are playing a vital role in North Korean market 20160204_economy-china_003[1]
  2. <Photo Report> Kotchebi, the Homeless, Under the Kim Jong-un Regime (PART2) Toddler worn out on a street while regime shows off luxury orphanages A boy–apparently, below ten years old–worn out at a market.  He may be extremely hungry or exhausted.  November 2012, in a suburb of Hyesan City, Ryanggang Province.  Taken by an AISAPRESS reporting partner in Ryanggang Province (ASIAPRESS)
  3. <Inside N. Korea>Market Price Since Imposition of New Economic Sanction 201309NK_pyeongseong-cheong-1
  4. <Photo Report> Kotchebi, the Homeless, Under the Kim Jong-un Regime (PART1) A girl and a boy–probably siblings–sleeping on a street A boy roaming around a city with a big cloth bag. The photographer said that, “He may have escaped from a detention center for orphans since his hair is entirely shaved off.”  September 2013, in Pyongsong City, South Pyongan Province.  Taken by ASIAPRESS.
  5. [Video Report] What do the ordinary people eat in North Korea? There are many types of food sold at hawker stalls. (Hawker stalls are individually owned food stalls) settei_edius_001
  6. <New Year’s Report from N.Korea> Kim Jong-un’s Reputation Continues to Fall: Citizens Critical of His “New Year Address.” Women mobilized for “struggle to collect compost” at the very beginning of the year.  Taken by ASIAPRESS.
  7. <Inside N. Korea> Bank Card and ATM Appear in Local Cities. Split Responses; “Convenient” and “Still Can’t Trust the Government.” “Narae” debit card issued by the Foreign Trade Bank of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.  It is used for foreign exchange settlements.  Taken by a Chinese tourist in March 2015
PAGE TOP