N.K. leader calls for more imports

Wow…if this is true it means that Kim Jong Il has learned the failure of import substitution policies and the value of comparative advantage.  Now if we could just convince the rest of the world’sleaders…

Korea Herald
Kim Ji-hyun

North Korea’s reclusive leader, Kim Jong-il, has ordered his communist government to open up to more imported goods that cannot be produced domestically, sources said yesterday.

Kim said that for the sake of economic efficiency, it is “necessary to import more of the goods that are too costly to be manufactured domestically.” The comments were included in this year’s fall issue of a scholastic gazette published by Kim Il-sung University, the only comprehensive university in the country.

Underscoring Kim’s words, the gazette said “reforming the light-industry market is essential to stay in sync with changing internal and external conditions.” The products the North hopes to import consist mostly of those manufactured by the light-industry sector.

Underwear was cited as an example of a commodity that should be imported.

The paper also said North Korea must try to manufacture and export more value-added products such as silk and ginseng goods.

To finance the higher import demand, the paper kept in line with Kim’s logic calling for North Korea to exchange its natural resources for raw materials needed to manufacture value-added goods it would sell.

The proceeds can then be used to purchase foreign goods, the paper said.


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