September 27, 2021

Russia-North Korea relations hit a high point and then fell into a deadlock

Russian companies won't significantly invest because North Korea can't give them what they don't already have

Less than two years ago, North Korea’s relationship with Russia reached a perceived “high point,” with Kim Jong Un meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin in Vladivostok. But right now, relations are stalled — and that doesn’t look like it’ll change anytime soon.

For two or three decades now, there has been constant talk of Russia building railways spanning from South Korea to Europe, as well as gaining access to North Korea’s rich deposits of rare earth minerals. But cooperation between the two countries never takes off because, frankly speaking, North Korea can’t offer Russia much of anything that Moscow doesn’t already have.