May 19, 2016

    Advertising pops up in North Korea


    "Pyongyang Spirit: A drink you won't forget after drinking once," reads the text of an advertisement for a vodka-like North Korean alcohol.

    Advertising is beginning to emerge in the reclusive country as makers of goods try to pitch products to a rising group of consumers and a wealthy class.

    From whitening toothpaste made from natural ingredients to sea cucumber snacks, more goods are being sold in colourful ways to the growing class of "donju", or "masters of money", who generate wealth in a grey market economy.

    North Korean ads are small and subtly placed, and do not yet compete with the colourful propaganda posters that line the streets of the capital and praise the ruling Workers' Party or leader Kim Jong Un.

    The rudimentary advertisements are usually printed in colour on A4 or A3-sized laminated paper, placed loosely on shop countertops or enlarged and stuck on shop interior walls.

    A separate laminated sheet explaining the history of the product sometimes accompanies the ad.