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From Failed Economic Interfaces to Political Levers: Assessing China-South Korea Competition and Cooperation Scenarios on North Korean Special Economic Zones
Region: Asia
Theme: Economics
Location: Korea, North
Published June 11, 2019
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While North Korea has developed Special Economic Zones for several decades now, these zones have attracted little attention from foreign investors, due to a mix of lack of economic reforms in the DPRK, the tense geopolitical situation, and China’s peculiar economic engagement towards North Korea. With the denuclearization process and North-South dialogue moving forward, this situation could change as South Korea’s announced policy of economic engagement with the North could provide Pyongyang the opportunity to play Beijing against Seoul to maximize its interests and attract foreign investment in Special Economic Zones from partners keen to maintain close ties with the DPRK.

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