DPRK Energy Sector: Current Status and Scenarios for 2000 and 2005
#98-02 — February 1998
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DPRK Energy Sector:
Current Status and Scenarios for 2000 and 2005
By Dr. David F. Von Hippel
and Dr. Peter Hayes
Copyright (c) 1997-98 by Nautilus of America d/b/a
The Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development
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Prepared for the Conference:
“Economic Integration of the Korean Peninsula”
Washington, DC, September 5 and 6, 1997
The Institute for International Economics
This paper has been published in “Economic Integration of the Korean Peninsula,” Special Report 10 of the Institute for International Economics (IIE), January 1998, pp. 77-111.
Introduction and Background
The actions, postures, and circumstances of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (the DPRK or North Korea) have been the focus of significant world attention over the past four years. The much-publicized problems regarding North Korea include concerns about nuclear proliferation, economic decline, ever-present security issues, energy shortages, floods, and most recently, food shortages. All of these problems have their roots in both recent and more distant Korean and world history — roots that are both deep and tangled. Various bilateral and multilateral approaches have been fashioned or proposed over the last few years to attempt to address the problems of the DPRK. The Korean Peninsula Development Organization (KEDO), for example, was created to address the politically linked problems of nuclear proliferation, electricity-sector development, and more broadly, engagement of the DPRK in cooperative projects of concern to the nations of Northeast Asia.
The goal of this paper is to provide a brief overview of the recent and current status of the DPRK energy sector, as well as some of the factors that will influence the development (or continued decline) of the sector over the next eight years and beyond. The energy sector in the DPRK has been a particular focus of the authors’ research and analytical work over the past several years.