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North Korea: a country closed in on itself

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North Korea (Choson Minchu-Chui Inmin Konghwa-Guk, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) is a communist republic in the Far East, located in the northern part of the Korean Peninsula.

The country, washed to the east by the Sea of Japan and to the west by the Yellow Sea, bordered to the north by China and Russia and the south by South Korea. The capital is Pyongyang, among other important cities are Sineuiju, Cheongjin, Heungnam, Hamheung and Weonsan.


The territory of North Korea is rich in forests and mountains, about 80% of the country consists of mountains and plateaus, numerous mountain ranges across the country from north-east to south-west, in the northern part are the mountains Changbai, which has the highest mountain in the country, the volcano Baekdu (2,744 metres), which rises along the border with China.

In the middle of the country are the Kaema plateau and the Taebaek mountain range that runs parallel to the east coast and continues in the territory of South Korea. Most of the rivers of North Korea flowing toward the west in the Yellow Sea, the most important is the Amnok (Yalu), which runs along the border with China.

North Korea is a country rich in mineral resources (coal, iron, lead, silver, gold, magnesite, zinc, molybdenum, tungsten) and industrial plants (steel, metallurgy, chemistry, energy and textiles).

Important is fishing (anchovies, tuna and mackerel), agriculture instead plays a economic role of a second plan (rice, corn, wheat, soybean, cotton, potatoes, fruit (apples, pears, peaches) and tobacco), great potential can have the forest, for the time being little exploited.

  • Area: 120,538 sqkm. (Arable 17%, Pastures 1%, Forests and Woodlands 61%, Uncultivated and Unproductive 21%)
  • Population: 23,300,000 (2007 data)
  • State Capital: Pyongyang.
  • Languages: The official language is Korean.
  • Religion: Buddhist 60%, Ceondoist 13%, Confucian, Christian, Indigenous Belives.
  • Currency: North Korea Won (KPW)
  • Time: UTC +9 hours.

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