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(LEAD) N. Korea's official paper calls for localization to defend dignity

All News 14:16 May 20, 2020

(ATTN: ADDS details on another report in last 3 paras)

SEOUL, May 20 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's official newspaper Wednesday urged the use of locally made products over imported goods, stressing that localization is key to safeguarding the sovereignty and survival of the communist nation.

North Korea has emphasized localization as part of efforts to build a self-reliant economy amid bleak outlooks for any immediate sanctions lifting due to a stalemate in denuclearization negotiations with the United States.

"Localization is our republic's war to defend dignity to the last death," the Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the North's ruling party, said. "Without one's own and with weak power, it would bow to others and eventually lose its right to autonomy and survival."

"Only with self-reliance and self-sufficiency will we be able to speed up our move toward a socialism victory," the paper added. "We would never realize our vision to become a powerhouse with a way to depend on materials of others."

The paper called reliance on imported goods an "illness," saying that using locally made products would help people become patriotic and committed to the country.

North Korea has intensified its calls for the use of its own products recently since it closed its border with China due to the coronavirus pandemic, which might be disrupting imports from its powerful neighbor.

In a separate report, the paper also urged active sharing of newly developed technologies across all working units, warning against "collective selfishness" prevalent in North Korean society.

"Some units show a tendency to build a boundary and remain unwilling to widely share efficient methods and valuable technologies," it said. "Technologies and experiences confined to their own units will be meaningless from a perspective of national interests.

"What is important when it comes to creating more of our own technology is whether our society can establish such a powerful atmosphere of teaching and learning from one another," it added.


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