POST Online Media Lite Edition


North Korea extends coronavirus national emergency to end of year

Christian Fernsby |
North Korea has extended its coronavirus national emergency to the end of the year in anticipation that the global pandemic will continue, raising concerns among residents that keeping the border with China closed will deal a serious blow to the economy.

Article continues below


“On the 23rd, the Central Party ordered the provincial quarantine command to extend the national emergency quarantine posture through the end of the year,” a senior official in North Pyongan province, who requested anonymity due to fear of reprisal, told RFA’s Korean Service on April 26.

“[They] ordered stronger quarantine measures in response to the prolonged outbreak,” the source said.

The source said that the order was part of follow-up measures after the Politburo of the party convened to discuss the global pandemic April 11.

“The national emergency quarantine posture for the coronavirus has been designated again as a matter of grave concern for the country,” the source said.

“As a result, the resumption of border trade and maritime trade, which has been blocked for months, has been postponed without any promise [of reopening],” the source said.

The decision will add to the hardships already being endured by North Koreans who make their living by trading with China.

Another source who requested anonymity to speak freely, from Ryongchon, North Pyongan, told RFA Monday that his manufacturing business would take a hit.

“My Chinese partner and I agreed to resume our clothing toll manufacturing business around June when the weather gets warmer and the coronavirus situation calms down,” the second source said. Toll manufacturing entails processing raw materials or unfinished goods, mostly for Chinese companies.

“But now with the extension of the national emergency, many foreign currency earning workers are quite disappointed because we don’t know when border trade will resume,” the source added.

The second source told RFA that all eyes are on the border, because so many depend on trade with China to make a living.

“We still need to wait and see about when the Dandong-Sinuiju border crossing will open up. The toll processing business, which brings in raw materials through Sinuiju customs, is likely to resume at the end of this year,” the second source said.

“This crisis has left the border closed for so long, shaking the economy of this country that relies so heavily on imports [from China],” the second source added.

The second source was critical of the party for discussing measures to extend the emergency to prevent the spread of the virus without addressing the economic situation.

“Without [solutions], it raises the question about whether they only think the only urgent matter is protecting themselves from the coronavirus,” said the second source.

“Emergency quarantine commanders in each region are preparing another propaganda campaign aimed at stopping the virus. They fear that the residents’ support of the quarantine project will wane as the project drags on,” the second source said.

“It is good that they are taking [extensive] measures to deal with the coronavirus, but no one knows what the starving people will do when their living difficulties reach their limit due to the long-term border closure.”

RFA asked World Health Organization (WHO) Monday about the status of North Korea regarding confirmed COVID-19 patients. The WHO referred to their official weekly report issued April 17, which states that there are no confirmed cases in North Korea.

North Korean state media maintains that North Korea is coronavirus free, but RFA reported April 17 that North Korean authorities told residents during community lectures that the virus was spreading in three areas of the country, including the capital Pyongyang.

What to read next

North Korea offers to send high-ranking delegation to Olympics
North Korea tied to cyberattacks on banks in 30 countries
North Koreans hit hard by sanctions

APO Group appoints Laila Bastati as chief commercial officer

APO Group, a communications consultancy and press release distribution service, announces the appointment of Laila Bastati as chief commercial officer.


Anglo American underlying EBITDA $10.0 billion
Rolls-Royce underlying operating profit £1.6bn
Repsol income 3.168 billion euros
NVIDIA Q4 revenue $22.1 billion


Investigation of very serious marine casualty, foundering west of Karmøy in Norway

Belgian police dismantles major drug organization
2 dead, 3 missing after Guangzhou bridge collapse
Mine collapse leaves 15 dead in Venezuela
Junior doctors in Wales begin strike amid pay disputes
Lithuania to close two more border checkpoints with Belarus


African Union bans donkey skin trade

Vietnam to send 125,000 laborers abroad
Ukrainian Railways extends restrictions on transportation of fats and oils to Poland via Izov station
Unite: Government's fire and rehire code of conduct a bad joke
Suez Canal revenues drop by 40-50 percent since Gaza war
UK: TRA proposes anti-dumping measures on ceramic tiles be kept

Trending Now

Investigation of very serious marine casualty, foundering west of Karmøy in Norway

Lloyds profit up 57%

NVIDIA Q4 revenue $22.1 billion

APO Group appoints Laila Bastati as chief commercial officer


U.S. to invest billions to replace Chinese cranes at ports

U.S. announces $5.8 billion to clean up nation’s drinking water
Iran says it overtakes Qatar in gas extraction from joint field
Indonesia's new copyright regulation requires platforms to pay press companies for contents
Commission approves joint venture between Orange and MásMóvil in Spain, subject to conditions
Canada: $633 million in funding to improve health care in Manitoba

Today We Recommend

U.S. announces $5.8 billion to clean up nation’s drinking water


Spyware found on EU politicians' phones

Nucor board approves $860 million for Pacific Northwest rebar micro mill

CenterPoint Energy to sell Louisiana, Mississippi natural gas assets for $1.2 billion


Austco Healthcare enters term sheet to acquire Amentco

Maersk unveils cold chain facility in New Zealand’s Golden Triangle
Thales Alenia Space launches Merah Putih-2 satellite, aiding digital expansion in Indonesia
Kapsch TrafficCom implements MLFF tolling system on vital French highways
Electric and hybrid Kalmar straddle carriers to enhance sustainability at Hutchison Ports ECT Rotterdam
Neinor Homes posts highest margins


TerraPay appoints Ruben Salazar Genovez as president

Personetics names Udi Ziv as new CEO
Lingotto appoints Pam Chan to launch Mosaic
Fogmaker International appoints Johan Bjerstedt as new sales and marketing manager
Africa Finance Corporation appoints Emeka Emuwa as chairman
IGT Solutions announces CEO succession plan


Eurozone current account surplus up in December

Saudi Arabia's GDP hits $1.07trn in nominal terms
Bahrain attracts record $1.7 billion in investments
Trade between China and Brazil continues rise
China keeps medium term lending facility at 2.5%
U.S. consumer sentiment inches higher in February


Lloyds profit up 57%

Celanese 2023 GAAP diluted earnings per share $18.00
Bausch + Lomb Q4 loss $54 million
Wolverine World Wide Q4 net loss $91.2 million
HSBC slips to Q4 loss
Rio Tinto profit after tax fell 19 percent


Micromanaging is the worst enemy of efficiency and teamwork

Niger set to monetize massive gas reserves through Saharan natural gas pipeline
Putting the brakes on EV folly that choked the market
Oil discovery in Kavango Basin may mean huge benefits for Namibians
Cape Town and Dubai battle over Africa's energy future
Is America going to lose its superpower status?


Hong Kong suspends import of poultry meat and products from Ostrowski District of Wielkopolskie Region, Poland

Duck meat exports from Brazil grow 18.9% in 2023
Romania’s wheat import from Ukraine hits 1m tons
Zambia announces restrictions on maize exports
WTO says EU was right against U.S. in ripe olives dispute
Hong Kong suspends import of poultry meat and products from areas in Canada and Poland


Hiring 'problem directors' can knock up to 64% off firm's value

Problematic 'zombie leadership' lives on in many cases
Younger workers have significantly lower productivity than older
Employees who experienced burnout valued jobs with training opportunities less
Moderate performance goals let workers adapt to turbulent marketplaces, research suggests
Employment quotas are bad thing


Linde unit to pay $25.5 mln over claims it defrauded U.S. healthcare programs

FINRA fines Morgan Stanley $1.6 million for municipal securities violations and related failures
Eli Lilly to offer low cost insulin, donate to clinics in Minnesota settlement
Google to pay $350 million to settle shareholders' data privacy lawsuit
California AG announces $150 million multistate agreement with Hikma Pharmaceuticals for its role in opioid epidemic
North Carolina secures $13.5m agreement with First National Bank of Pennsylvania to resolve redlining claims



Visitors to be welcomed back on Farne Islands

Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski Dresden opens
306 Room Tempo by Hilton Nashville Downtown hotel opens
Tickets on sale now for Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2024
Best Western SeaWorld San Antonio hotel opens in Texas
Gigantic statue of Constantine goes on display in Rome


Sikorsky S-76D helicopter, for perfect business travel above roads

Porsche Taycan, improved in almost everything
New Ford Explorer is all about exploring
Chevrolet 2025 Equinox is new and refreshed
F-150 Lightning Switchgear soon available to public
Mercedes-AMG SL 63 S E Performance, most powerful SL of all time


Vacheron Constantin, watches for life and more

Schüller kitchens, where functionality marries design
Marc Kaufman Furs, from glory days of Wild West to fashion empire
Kelaghayi scarf, powerful women's fashion symbol from Azerbaijan
Tiffany reimagined their necklace collections in bold style
How to make room coherent with pieces that don't really fit together


Epikore Epikore, luxurious loudspeakers you should have

Retro radios with soul for your car
Balanced Audio Technology power amplifier REX 500, 500 watts of solid state
Marantz TT-15S1 turntable, excellent materials and sound
Samsung Galaxy S24, smartphone focused on photography
Best dash cams for your peace of mind


Terahertz biosensor detects skin cancer with remarkable accuracy

WuXi Advanced Therapies receives FDA approval to manufacture Iovance's AMTAGVI (lifileucel) for advanced melanoma
Problems with sleep can trigger range of psychiatric disorders
FDA approves Xolair as first and only medicine for children and adults with one or more food allergies
Record storms in California lead to surging deadly fungal infections
New study finds little-known toxic crop chemical in four out of five people tested


Birds have been adapting to human activity for millennia

Anthropologists' research unveils monumental early stone plaza in Andes
European Space Agency satellite ERS-2 will reenter Earth’s atmosphere this week
Colorado is home to America's newest national park
Hubble views massive star forming
Greenland's ice sheet is melting and being replaced by vegetation