The Workers’ Party of Korea has called on the people of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to “open the gate to a thriving nation in 2012”, the year which will mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Comrade Kim Il Sung, the country’s founder.
The call came in the joint New Year editorial published by the country’s main newspapers, which has become the traditional way for the party to set out its goals and priorities for the year ahead.
The editorial’s relative stress on economic questions reflects the achievements made by the Korean people in 2008 in defending their independence and sovereignty in the tense stand-off with US imperialism and its allies in Japan and south Korea. It notes:
“An important task facing us in the economic construction at present is to push the effort to put production on a normal track and [achieve] modernisation in close combination by taking advantage of the socialist planned economy …
“Economic management should be improved to give full play to the advantages of the socialist planned economy. The centralised and unified guidance of the state over economic construction should be strengthened and planning improved.”
Acknowledging that “to relieve scarcity of food is a pressing problem”, the editorial calls for concentrating “all efforts on hitting this year’s target of grain production with extraordinary determination to solve the food problem by our own efforts in any circumstances”.
Equal importance is given to defence and military affairs, with a pledge to give “utmost efforts to building up the country’s military strength in line with the requirements of the prevailing situation and the development of the revolution”.
The editorial notes that the Korean People’s Army “takes an uncompromising stand against those who hurt our sovereignty, dignity and socialist system”.