Korean unification could spur growth

Article Excerpt

Several high-profile meetings between North and South Korean leaders over the past year, has raised expectations that a unification of the countries is indeed possible. Real steps in that direction started in June 2000 with the North-South Joint Declaration. It was reaffirmed by the Panmunjom Declaration in April 2018, where the two countries agreed to work towards a peaceful reunification in the future. The economies of the countries differ starkly. South Korea exports $902 billion of goods per year, including electronics, telecoms equipment, and automobiles; North Korea exports total just $7 billion—mainly raw materials such as coal, iron, and copper—and go almost exclusively to China. Unification of the two nations could deliver considerable benefits to both countries. North Korea brings a young workforce and considerable natural resources to the table, while South Korea has an aging workforce and almost no natural resources. South Korea has considerable technical know-how, extensive links in key export markets and access to capital to help rebuild North Korean…

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