Living in North Korea guide for expats

All the information you need to relocate and live in North Korea.

About North Korea

Korea was occupied by Japan from 1910 to 1945, during which there were resistance groups fighting against the occupation, among which was a Guerilla leader known as Kim II-sung, the first leader of North Korea. After the Second World War ended in 1945, the northern part was occupied by the Soviet Union, and the southern part by the U.S. Despite hopes for a unified and independent Korea, the separate states differed too heavily in terms of political, economic, as well as social principles. After the Korean War of the early 1950s, the two Koreas were officially divided.

Sharing northen borders with China and Russia, and surrounded by the Sea of Japan to the east as well as the Yellow Sea and Korean Bay to the west, North Korea is a country covering 120, 540 square kilometres, and mainly composed of mountain ranges, forests, and valleys. Most of the population lives in the lowlands.

North Korea is subject to the four seasons (summer, winter, spring, autumn), and a couple of distinct climates, including a humid continental climate and an oceanic climate. During winter, snow and wind coming from Siberia are quite common, and the summers can get quite humid with plenty of rain. The average temperatures during winter in Pyongyang are -13 and -3 °C (9 °F and 27 °F), and in the summer it goes up to around 29 °C (84 °F) with the lowest temperature averaging 20 °C (68 °F).

North Korea has a tendency to isolate itself from the rest of the world, and has consequently been nicknamed the "hermit kingdom". Although it has many diplomatic ties with many countries, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea is not recognised by many, due to its political system and human right issues. There is no freedom of expression, religion, association, movement, or press in North Korea.

Being an atheist country, religion can only be practiced in secret, as the government views religious activity as a threat. Those who engage in any type of religious activity are severely punished. However, despite being a secular country, folktale still exists in the country. The Paektu Mountain, the highest in North Korea, is sacred for Korean people, and often featured in stories about the Kim lineage. The Korean heritage is also important, and is well-protected. These include historical sites, monuments, objects, and artifacts. Art is produced only to reflect socialism. Music is usually only allowed if it emphasises specific themes and messages such as comradeship.

Quick Information

Currency : Won
Area : 120540 Km2
Population : 22912177
Calling Code : +850
Timezone : Asia/Pyongyang

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