List of companies of North Korea

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Location of North Korea

North Korea is a country in East Asia, in the northern part of the Korean Peninsula. Pyongyang is both the nation's capital as well as its largest city. To the north and northwest the country is bordered by China and by Russia along the Amnok (known as the Yalu in China) and Tumen rivers.[1] The country is bordered to the south by South Korea, with the heavily fortified Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) separating the two.

Over time North Korea has gradually distanced itself away from the world communist movement. Juche, an ideology of national self-reliance, was introduced into the constitution as a "creative application of Marxism–Leninism"[2] in 1972.[3][4] The means of production are owned by the state through state-run enterprises and collectivized farms. Most services such as healthcare, education, housing and food production are subsidized or state-funded.[5] From 1994 to 1998, North Korea suffered from a famine that resulted in the deaths of between 0.24 and 3.5 million people, and the country continues to struggle with food production.[6] North Korea follows Songun, or "military-first" policy.[7] It is the country with the highest number of military and paramilitary personnel, with a total of 9,495,000 active, reserve, and paramilitary personnel. Its active duty army of 1.21 million is the fourth largest in the world, after China, the U.S., and India.[8]

Due to the centrally-planned economy of North Korea, there are few companies and they are managed by the government.

Notable firms[edit]

This list includes notable companies with primary headquarters located in the country. The industry and sector follow the Industry Classification Benchmark taxonomy. Organizations which have ceased operations are included and noted as defunct.

     Active firms
     State-owned firms
     Defunct firms

Name Industry Sector Headquarters Founded Notes
Air Koryo Consumer services Travel & leisure Pyongyang 1950 Flag airline
Central Bank of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea Financials Banks Pyongyang 1959 Central bank
Foreign Languages Publishing House Consumer services Media Pyongyang 1949 Publishing
Foreign Trade Bank of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea Financials Banks Pyongyang 2005 Bank
Kim Chong-t'ae Electric Locomotive Works Industrials Industrial transportation Pyongyang 1945 Railways
Korea Computer Center Technology Internet Pyongyang 1990 IT research, internet
Korea Ferrous Metals Export & Import Basic materials Basic resources Pyongyang  ? Steel, mining
Korea General Chemicals Trading Basic materials Chemicals Pyongyang  ? Chemical group, plastics
Korea General Machinery Trading Corporation Industrials General industries Pyongyang  ? Machine tools, hydroelectrics
Korea General Magnesia Clinker Industry Group Basic materials Basic resources Pyongyang  ? Heavy industrial group, non-ferrous metals, mining
Korea General Zinc Industry Group Basic materials Basic resources Pyongyang  ? Non-ferrous metals, mining
Korea Mining and Development Trading Corporation Industrials Defense Pyongyang  ? State-owned arms dealer
Korea Ponghwa General Corporation Consumer goods Personal goods Pyongyang  ? Light industrial group, clothing, rucksacks, bags
Korea Sinhung Trading Corporation Consumer goods Household goods Pyongyang  ? Household appliances and furniture
Korea Sogyong Trading Corporation Consumer goods Tobacco Pyongyang  ? Carpets, tobacco
Korea Unha General Trading Corporation Consumer goods Personal goods Pyongyang  ? Import/export, textiles
Korean Ocean Shipping Agency Industrials Industrial transportation Pyongyang 1956 Shipping, pilotage, logistics
Koryolink Telecommunications Mobile telecommunications Pyongyang 2008 3G provider, part of Veon (Netherlands)
Mansudae Art Studio Consumer services Media Pyongyang 1959 Art studio
Mansudae Overseas Project Group of Companies Industrials Construction & materials Pyongyang 1967 Monuments and memorials, part of Mansudae Art Studio
Noko Jeans Consumer goods Personal goods Pyongyang 2007 First denim jeans production company in North Korea, defunct 2011
Nosotek Technology Computer services Pyongyang 2008 IT joint venture
Okryu-gwan Consumer services Retail Pyongyang 1960 Restaurant in Pyongyang
Pyongyang Consumer services Travel & leisure Pyongyang  ? Restaurant chain
Pyongyang Chewing Gum Factory Consumer goods Food & beverage Pyongyang 2003 Gum
Ryonbong Industrials Industrial transportation Pyongyang  ? Machine/materials export
SEK Studio Consumer services Media Pyongyang 1957 Animation services
Sungri Motor Plant Industrials General industries Tokchon 1950 Motors
SunNet Telecommunications Mobile telecommunications Pyongyang 2002 Mobile network, defunct 2010
Taedonggang Brewing Company Consumer goods Food & beverage Pyongyang 2000 Brewery
Taep'oong International Investment Group of Korea Financials Financial services Pyongyang  ? Investments

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Frank Jacobs (21 February 2012). "Manchurian Trivia" (blog by expert). The New York Times. Retrieved 27 August 2012. 
  2. ^ French 2007, p. 32.
  3. ^ Wikisource:Constitution of North Korea (1972)
  4. ^ Martin 2004, p. 111: "Although it was in that 1955 speech that Kim Il-sung gave full voice to his arguments for juche, he had been talking along similar lines as early as 1948."
  5. ^ Country Profile 2007, pp. 7–8.
  6. ^ "UN: North Korea's policies cause the nation's food shortages". Pajamas Media. 23 October 2009. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  7. ^ H. Hodge (2003). "North Korea’s Military Strategy", Parameters, U.S. Army War College Quarterly.
  8. ^ Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs (April 2007). "Background Note: North Korea". United States Department of State. Retrieved 1 August 2007. 

External links[edit]