Foreign Currency is Now the Key to North Korea’s Survival 

Despite being closed off from the world, politically and economically, North Korea cannot survive without foreign currency. This, of course, applies to some degree to all countries in the international trading system. But ever since the 1994-1998 famine – which North Koreans refer to as the ‘Arduous March’ – foreign currency earning in the country has taken on a unique character. Not only has it become the key to the country’s continued survival. But the system itself that depends on it can no longer be considered normal.