first_img US dollar and Chinese reminbi plummet against North Korean won once again AvatarDaily NKQuestions or comments about this article? Contact us at [email protected] North Korea Market Price Update: June 8, 2021 (Rice and USD Exchange Rate Only) North Korea’s ambitious home-building project in Pyongyang,after grinding to a halt in certain areas since Kim Jong Eun took power, hasreportedly been handed over to private entities to complete. This means thestate has given up on finishing its “Pyongyang 100,000 Homes Project,” ineffect acting as proof to its failure to come lay the proper economic plansrequired for its completion.A source in Pyongyang told the Daily NK on September 25th,“Construction on the 100,000 homes that had become an eyesore in the area hasbeen resumed by individuals.” He added, “The authorities have given peoplewho have the money permission to buy their own raw materials and continue onwith construction. The housing project began in 2009 under the command of thenleader Kim Jong Il. With the goal of completing the project by 2012,construction began in 13 districts simultaneously, including Mangyongdae,Ryongsong, Morangbong, Potong River, Sadong, and Nakrang. In the initialstages, this project was seen as the opening to the era of a “strong andprosperous state in 2012,” a slogan touted by Kim Jong Il, who died in 2011.However, as struggles continued in securing raw material,signs of uncertainty emerged in the early stages of construction. Followingdirect orders from Kim Jong Il, the area surrounding Mansudae [ChangjeonStreet] within the central district received priority in construction, andother districts on the outskirts, such as Sadong and Nakrang, that did notinvolve the interests of high-level officials came to a halt.The source in the capital explained, “In the end, the statedetermined it is unable of completing it, so it’s telling people to do whateverthey want with it,” adding that “to encourage people with money to getinvolved, they have allowed the owners to keep 50 percent of the income, afterpaying the rest to state coffers.”“During this process, the authorities have emphasized ownerswill have to procure their own cement and any other material,” he elaborated.“Despite this, the fact that people will have the right to officially sell theunits has piqued the interest of the donju [the new affluent middle class] .”With such orders from above, some areas have picked up againin construction thanks to the participation of those with money. According toDaily NK’s source, some places have even revised plans for a 10-story buildingto a 20-floor structure in order to make more money off the project.“In areas like Hadong District, construction has reopenedsince late July, and material is being brought in endlessly,” he said. “Sincethe state isn’t doing it, company heads or affluent owners are paying workersto make up for the lack of manpower.”The privatization of this project indicates Pyongyang islosing its foothold in running its planned economy, as capitalist traitscontinue to rapidly emerge. Individuals owning shops in marketplaces anddepartment stores are in this same vein.Not only that, considering the North had planned tohighlight this project as a “great achievement of Kim Jong Eun,” the fact thatit gave up and went against a commitment it had made to its people could laterchallenge unity under Kim’s leadership.“The people there didn’t believe it when they were toldconstruction for their homes will restart, and only after seeing it actuallyhappen were they relieved,” the source asserted. “Some welcome the decisionsaying private companies with money will be better than the state.Others have criticized the move, making comments such as,“The son [Kim Jong Eun] has abandoned the work of his father [Kim Jong Il],”and “Perhaps he’s worried there will be another collapse and has pulled out ofit.” The vast majority have also questioned the decision saying, “It is hard tounderstand how ‘scientifically-constructed homes’ are considered important,while the ‘100,000 units’ are abandoned.”The source also reported that people have bashed the state’sdecision to claim 50 percent of the profits from the project, and explainedthat many have voiced concerns, stating, “Construction companies not only needto make profits, they also need to pay the state 50 percent, so it is highlyunlikely they will use good construction material.” This is also leading themto believe “the homes may come with ridiculous price tags.”These worries are compounded by other anxieties that “oncethese private homes are nicely built, Party cadres will no doubt try to claimgood places for free,” and lamentation that, “in the end, nice homes will neverend up coming to us.” State Abandons 100,000 Homes Project SHARE NewsEconomy News center_img News Facebook Twitter By Daily NK – 2014.09.27 3:17am There are signs that North Korea is running into serious difficulties with its corn harvest RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR News last_img