Taken by our team ‘Mindeulle’ (ASIAPRESS)
In October 2013, an ASIAPRESS reporting partner inside North Korea filmed a local market. According to the footage, the majority of the products sold in the markets are made in China. The food from China consists of ramen noodles, alcohol, beer, snacks, rice, and drinking water. Chinese products have been playing a significant role in the North Korean markets. It is because domestic products have basically disappeared as the economy collapsed.
When the reporter asked for a price, a seller naturally answered what the price was in Chinese RMB. The reporter said that he wanted to pay in North Korean Won since he did not have a small change in RMB. The seller, however, only accepts RMB for payment and to give change. The reporter went to a black market money exchanger and confirmed that merchants at the market do not trust North Korean Won.
Chinese products and currency are playing an important role in the North Korean market. It implies that there is an enormous direct influence from the Chinese economy on North Korea.