North Korea Today No. 453 Priority Release May 2, 2012

National Level ‘Homeland Meeting’ to Convene in Early May

The new North Korean leadership will convene ‘Homeland Meeting’ in Pyongyang in early May to come up with measures to tackle the food shortage problem that has recently been getting worse.  Three to four officials from relevant offices in each county and more officials from the cities are converging on the capital city to attend the meeting.  Officials from city parties, county parties and political agencies, not to mention the Ministries and the central agencies, are summoned, making the scale of the conference close to that of the Party Representatives’ Meeting on April 11th.  It is reported that the ‘Homeland Meeting’ will discuss ways to cultivate mountainous areas and abandoned lands for securing farmland and other measures to increase food production. 

Added to the agenda is the farming labor shortage issue.  Farms are suffering from a labor shortage due to the significant death toll among the farmers in breadbasket regions including Hwanghae Province and the high rate of absenteeism among the surviving farmers who are busy seeking grassroots and wild greens to eat in the mountains.  One Central Party official said that the Supreme Chairman of National Defense Committee Kim Jong Un “instructed to convene the meeting in order to find fundamental solutions to increase food production.  It reflects the Party’s determination to resolve the food shortage problem that is increasingly worsening.  North Korean people are gradually warming towards the party leadership, hoping for some real changes to happen this time.”