North Korea

Thomas Larsen


North Korea functions as a one-party state under a totalitarian family dictatorship, described even as an absolute monarchy with Kim Il-sung and his heirs as its rulers. The current leader of North Korea is Kim Jung Un. In recent years, there has been great emphasis on the Songun or "military-first" philosophy. All references to communism were removed from the North Korean constitution in 2009.


dictatorial command economy

  • 2016 Economic Freedom Score: 2.3 (up 1 point)
  • Economic Freedom Status: Repressed
  • Global Ranking: 178th
  • Regional Ranking: 42nd in the Asia–Pacific Region
  • Notable Successes: None
  • Concerns: Rule of Law, Open Markets, and Regulatory Efficiency
  • Overall Score Change Since 2012: +1.3

North Korean won

  • $15.5 billion
  • 0.9% growth

(Import top/Export bottom)

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Kim Il Sung Birthday Celebration

The celebration of the life of North Korea’s founding father, Kim il Sung, is held every year on April 15. The capital, Pyongyang, sees military parades and parties, while smaller events take place across the country.

National Anthem

Let morning shine on the rivers and mountains of this land,

Three thousand ri1abundant with natural wealth.

This is my beautiful fatherland

With a history of five millennia,

The glory of a wise people

Brought up in a brilliant culture.

Devoting our bodies and minds to this Korea,

Let the Way be obeyed.

Embracing the atmosphere of Baekdu Mountain,

Nest for the spirit of labour,

The firm will, bonded with truth,

Will go forth to all the world.

The country established by the will of the people,

Breasting the raging waves with soaring strength.

Glorifying forever this Korea, limitlessly rich and strong,

Let the Way be shone.

Famous People

Kim Jong-un (Current leader)

Kim ill Sung (former leader)

Nelson Shin (animator)