Despite sanctions, Kim Jong Un’s regime continues to do business
North Korea has become increasingly antagonistic over the past year. The tragic death on June 19th of Otto Warmbier, an American student who was held by North Korea for over a year and who subsequently fell into a fatal coma, was only the latest provocation. North Korea has carried out missile tests about every two weeks since the start of the year. Western sanctions and promises of action from China have failed to rein in its nuclear programme. Less remarked upon but perhaps more surprising is that sanctions have also not had much effect on the North Korean economy. Though measuring the impoverished country’s economy remains educated guesswork at best, most experts agree that it is probably growing at between 1% and 5% a year. What makes it so resilient?
This is an excerpt of an article I wrote for The Economist Explains. Here's a link to the full version