Jim Rogers is all in with North Korea

Jim Rogers © Chosun Ilbo

Legendary investor Jim Rogers gave an interesting interview, which strongly promotes investment to North Korea, to the Chosun Ilbo. Ye Olde Chosun invented a new catchphrase for new year, unification is the future,  and began to publish a series of interviews with world-famous thinkers on reunification and this interview is the second of the series. The first one was with Habermas.

Jim Rogers © Chosun Ilbo
Jim Rogers © Chosun Ilbo

I guessed Chosun probably published the interview also in English but surprisingly it didn’t (yet). So I translated the meat (in my purview) of the story:

I think it [reunification] would be within 5 years. […] it will be far earlier than South Korea expects.


North Korea has cheap, skilled labor and natural resources. More to the point, it will have over-a-billion populated China as a neighbor after reunification. China is heavily investing in the northern side of North Korea and Russia is promoting a railway project which connects Rajin port to Siberia. […] The Korean peninsula will become the center of distribution and transportation in North East Asia.


When East and West Germany united, Russia and Poland were faltering. Russian didn’t build a express railway in East Germany as it currently are doing in North Korea. They were struggling to leave East Germany. […] In Korea, it is different. South Korea don’t have to provide so much as West Germany did. Russia and China are already investing in North Korea.


[Answering to what still-divided South Korea would face in a decade,] The population structure of South Korea is becoming like Japan—no women, no youngsters, only old men. A strength to support senior welfare would be deflated in a decade.


If possible, I’d like to invest all my money to North Korea. […] The point is, in order to see North Korea changes its mind, we have to keep investing in it.

Ah, I almost missed this capitalist gem:

[The most promising business] would be mining and agriculture. They will get the spotlight as a new growth engine business right after the unification. Manufacturing is also promising. Above all, there is no labor union so we don’t have to worry about it for a long time after the unification.


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