Development of North Korea’s Legal Regime Governing Foreign Business Cooperation: A Revisit under the New Socialist Constitution of 1998

Lee, Eric Yong-Joong | January 1, 2000

A primary purpose of this article is to examine the formation of North Korea’s legal regime governing foreign business cooperation and its evolution in the post-Kim Il Sung era. Since initiating its open-door policy in the early 1990s, North Korea has developed the legal framework for external economic cooperation. The Law of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (“DPRK”) on Foreign Investment of 1992 and its 1999 revision has especially represented North Korea’s legal and policy direction towards inducing foreign capital investment, as well as establishing a legal basis for the following laws and regulations in this field. The main focus of this research is on the Foreign Investment Law and its relevant legislation, including the Equity Joint Venture Law, the Contractual Joint Venture Law and the Foreign Enterprises Law. The Law of the DPRK on Joint Venture of 1984, which is the original model of lawmaking in external economic cooperation, will be also examined. A constitutional perspective, meanwhile, is maintained throughout the article. In conclusion, the future of North Korean foreign business laws and their implications in inter- Korean economic cooperation will be discussed.