FAO in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea

Programmes in DPR Korea

The Country Programming Framework (CPF) defines the Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) priorities for technical cooperation with the Government of the DPR Korea. The CPF is a framework to guide how FAO can best assist the Government of DPR Korea in meeting its development priorities.

It sets out jointly-agreed medium-term priorities for DPR Korea Government-FAO collaboration in the areas of FAO’s competence, including agriculture, food security, natural resource management and rural livelihoods, mainly through agriculture-based activities. The CPF envisages cooperation between FAO and the DPR Korea Government during 2012-2015 with external assistance from the UN system and other bilateral/multilateral development partners.

Priority Area 1. Strengthening National Food and Nutritional Security

The Government of DPR Korea endeavours to increase national food production and guarantee national food security by attaining self-sufficiency in food supply. Food production in the country has shown trends of slight increase in recent years with increased government inputs. However, food production in DPR Korea is still off-track from governmental targets due to unfavourable climate conditions and lack of input resources, resulting in national food insecurity for many consecutive years. The greatest immediate hindrance to sustainable food security and increased agricultural productivity is the shortage of foreign exchange required to import essential inputs and raw materials for their further domestic manufacture.

FAO strives to increase food production, reduce food loss in production and supply chains, increase production of unprocessed foodstuff with higher nutritional value and improve food processing with higher nutritional value.

Priority Area 2. Improving natural resource management

The Government pays due attention to the issue of protection of land and environment and increases its inputs for sustainable natural resources management and environmental rehabilitation. It initiated national campaign for land and environmental protection and mobilizes entire nation. Major gaps concerning the issue lie in lack of input resources as well as lack of technological capacity.

Research needs to be conducted and institutions need to be strengthened in environmental protection, enforcement and monitoring. A sustainable balance needs to be restored and maintained between agricultural and other land uses, between annual and perennial crops, irrigated and rain-fed agriculture, productive and protective forests.

FAO strives to improve land use, forest management, water use and nature reserve management and bio-diversity conservation.

Priority Area 3. Improved rural livelihoods

DPR Korea rural sector has great needs and potentials to improve rural livelihood. Improvement in rural livelihood can be called a supporting pillar for reducing food and nutritional insecurity both in rural and national scale. The Government of DPR Korea endeavors to improve rural livelihood through intensified and diversified productive operations in rural sector with the principle of establishing science-based processes. Major governmental approaches to improve rural livelihood target at diversified and increased income generation and at improved living conditions in rural communities. FAO strives to diversify and increase rural income resources and improve life environment for rural population.

Priority Area 4. Improved mitigation of the impact of climate change on agriculture and improved disaster management

The DPR Korea is seriously affected by climate change. During the last 100 years, temperature changes have affected rainfall patterns and brought frequent occurrences of extreme weather including floods and droughts, which in turn impacted on socio-economic development and people’s livelihood.

The occurrence of frequent natural disasters, mostly caused by erratic and often extreme climatic conditions have significantly contributed to making agricultural production unstable and, hence, to insufficient food supply and national food insecurity in DPR Korea. Natural disasters have the effect of negative impacts twice on food and agricultural sector since these not only damage the crops in the current year but also the infrastructures and material basis for production in the subsequent years. Their impacts last long and, in many cases, extra budgets are needed for rehabilitation.

Priority Area 5. Improvement in institutional capacity for agricultural research, extension and administration

Major problems to be addressed and gaps to be bridged in development of DPR Korea agriculture and rural sector are of technological character. Hence, technological innovation can serve as a major means in developing DPR Korea agriculture and rural sector.

The Government endeavours to strengthen agricultural research and extension institutions and improve their roles and functions in renovating the sector. Major constraints in the field are lack of knowledge and institutional capacity building to establish and operate modern research and extension service mechanisms in conformity with ever-changing field needs and circumstances. Improvement in administration is key to any success but it is of vital importance for sustainable development of food and agricultural sector where many stakeholders including ministries operate together.

The Government endeavours to improve institutional capacity for agricultural/rural administration through capacity building in different governmental agencies related to the sector. Special attention is directed to planning and statistics.