Rice price climbing

According to the Daily NK:

The price of rice has exceeded 1,000 won in border areas of North Korea, according to sources.

A source from North Hamkyung Province reported to The Daily NK on Sunday that the rice price had reached 1,050 won in Hoiryeong, 1,000 won in Hyesan and 950 won in Shinuiju.

Another source from Hoiryeong reported on Monday morning, “Rice prices have been going up since July, and they continue to rise steeply. Once rice prices go up, other prices follow suit. It is worrisome.”

The pace of the rises is dramatic. On the 1st of this month, the price hit 500 won, on around the 11th, 750 won, and on the 18th, 1,000 won. In just two weeks, then, it has doubled. If it keeps rising at this speed, it will rise to more than 1,200 won, a price which was also recorded in February this year.

Indeed, one South Korean NGO, People for Successful Corean Reunification (PSCORE), said today that the rice price in Musan, North Hamkyung Province has already hit 1,200 won.

Sources unanimously agree that the cause of the rises is the rising value of the Chinese Yuan.

The North Hamkyung Province source said, “In one week, one Yuan grew to be worth 220 won (from 150 won). That is exactly double the value of the won late last month.” It is also exactly the same rate of increase as rice is experiencing.

The source predicted that, “In short order, one Yuan may be worth 300 won.”

“People are suffering from increasing food prices. Even corn is now 500 won (per kilogram),” he added.

Even though the authorities hope to trumpet economic achievements in the September Delegates’ Conference in order to publicize Kim Jong Eun’s succession, it seems that complaints against the third generation succession as well as rising food prices are increasing.

Sources are watching with keen interest whether the authorities are planning to try and ameliorate the skyrocketing prices.

Read the full story below:
Rice Prices Break Through 1,000 Won
Daily NK
Yoo Gwan Hee
7/19/2010

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