SEOUL – North Korea’s economy is estimated to have contracted the most in more than two decades last year as sanctions against Pyongyang intensified, data from South Korea’s central bank showed on Friday.
North Korea’s gross domestic product fell 4.1 percent in 2018, the biggest drop since 1997, the Bank of Korea said in its annual report on the northern neighbor’s economy.
In 2017, the North Korean economy was estimated to have contracted 3.5 percent.
Mining and manufacturing output fell sharply last year, according to the central bank report.
External trade volume was almost halved to $2.84 billion, with exports and imports shrinking 86 percent and 31 percent, respectively, the report said.
The report is based on information from Seoul’s spy agency and other authorities closely studying North Korea.
North Korea does not announce its own official GDP data.