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Smoking non-patriotic cigarettes - Kim Jong Eun believes
According to the Renhap news agency, high-ranking North Korean officials are now prohibited from smoking imported cigarettes. Kim Jong-un himself, being an active smoker, considers his preference for imported cigarettes to local tobacco products unpatriotic. The latter, in his opinion, is of no less quality, and is also not inferior to the competitor in terms of taste.
This decision will be applied only to North Korean officials and will not affect ordinary citizens. However, some analysts believe that it means a refusal to import the relevant products. At the same time, assuring that the ban will not give the expected effect of reducing consumption of foreign tobacco products, since more of this product, as a rule, is sold on the black market.
More than 50% of the population of the DPRK are smokers. This figure, according to the World Health Organization, is the highest in Asia. At the same time, the DPRK exceeds the world average (male smokers aged 15 years) by 15%.
The most popular brands of domestic production are Gohyang, Craven and Yeomyeong. The average price per pack of these cigarettes is 0,4 - 0,5 dollar. Among imported cigarettes, American Marlboro, Japanese MEVIUS and Chinese Jang Baek Sam are in high demand. Their price on the black market reaches 5 - 10 dollars, which is ten times higher than similar cigarettes of local production. However, only in 2013 the DPRK imported tobacco products worth about 65,3 million dollars.