Lawmaker: Luxury Imports Rising

The quantity of luxury goods imported by the North Korean authorities has risen by 70% since Kim Jong Eun was anointed the successor to Kim Jong Il, one ruling party lawmaker claimed today.

Saenuri Party lawmaker Yoon Sang Hyun, a member of both the National Assembly Foreign Affairs Trade and Unification Committee and its Intelligence Committee, made the claim based on customs statistics and other data, saying that North Korea appears to have imported luxury goods worth as much as $600,000,000 annually since 2010 from China and various countries in Southeast Asia.

Notably, in 2011 North Korea allegedly imported $584,820,000 in luxury products, compared to $446,170,000 the previous year, an increase of 31%.

Conversely, in 2008 North Korea “only” imported goods worth $272,140,000, followed by $322,530,000 in 2009 before Kim Jong Eun was officially announced as the successor the September 2010 Party Delegates’ Conference, causing the amounts to rise considerably.

There greatest increases allegedly occurred in luxury cars, watches, computers and electronic products and wine and liquor.

Yoon asserted, “They rule by dint of gifts and parties; giving gifts and imported goods to Party and military high officials to prevent dissatisfaction and secure their loyalty.”

He went on to criticize, “North Korea spent a total of $584,820,000 on luxury imports last year, enough to buy 1.96 million tons of wheat on the international market. Kim Jong Eun is ignoring the people’s food crisis and is buying a lot more luxury products than his father so as to strengthen his weak power base by giving luxury gifts to the privileged elite in Pyongyang.”