North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un has admitted his hermit country is facing food shortages.
Speaking at the plenary meeting of the Workers’ Party of Korea, Kim who blamed the food shortage on last year’s typhoon and floods, said ‘the nation was experiencing a tense food situation,” Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reports.
Already facing strict sanctions from the United Nations, North Korea has cut itself off from the rest of the world, shutting it’s borders to even friendly nation China as Kim claims he’s protecting his nation from the covid-19 pandemic.
Speaking at his party’s meeting, Kim said the conditions and environment that North Korea was facing “have become worse upon entering this year,” even though its economy has, on the whole, shown improvement.
In April, KCNA reported Kim urged people to undertake another “Arduous March,” while addressing a top-level political meeting.
The term “Arduous Mrch” refers to a period of devastating famine in the early 1990s, when North Korea’s economy went downward following the collapse of the Soviet Union, which ended the flow of aid into the country.
As much as 10% of the country’s population, were estimated to have starved to death.
With the use of such term, it could signal that the country could be going through serious food shortages.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has estimated that North Korea is short of about 860,000 tons of food, enough for just over two months of supplies.
In a report released on Monday this week, the FAO said North Korea officially plans to import only about one fifth of the food it needs to cover the gaps in domestic shortages.
The FAO has warned that if the gap in supplies is not covered through imports or aid, North Koreans could experience “a harsh lean period between August and October 2021.”