May 25, 2024

Babson: North Korean leadership encouraging foreign investment

Even after Jang purge, polices indicate Pyongyang leadership's pursuit of economic growth

The North Korean leadership is pursuing foreign investment and trade in a variety of ways, through larger projects like special economic zones (SEZs) and smaller-scale policy adjustments, Bradley Babson told NK News.

Babson, a former World Bank official who serves on the Executive Committee of the National Committee for North Korea, addressed some doubts about the status of two SEZs along the North Korea-China border – Hwanggumpyeong and Wihwa Islands – in the aftermath of Jang Song Thaek's purge. Jang’s absence, he said, is not the main issue now that North Korea is increasing foreign investment. Rather, there needs to be "a clear agreement about how to create the underpinnings for successful investment and infrastructure."

Become a member for less than $4 per week.

  • Unlimited access to all of NK News: reporting, investigations, analysis
  • The NK News Daily Update, an email newsletter to keep you in the loop
  • Searchable archive of all content, photo galleries, special columns
  • Contact NK News reporters with tips or requests for reporting
Get unlimited access to all NK News content, including original reporting, investigations, and analyses by our team of DPRK experts.
Subscribe now

All major cards accepted. No commitments – you can cancel any time.