North Korean debt to Sweden reaches record high USD 302 million in 2019

STOCKHOLM: North Korea’s debt to Sweden in 2019 has reached its highest level of 2.8 billion Swedish kronas (USD 302 million, local media reported on Saturday, citing Stefan Karlsson, the chief analyst of the Swedish National Export Credits Guarantee Board (EKN.

Sveriges Radio reported that a part of Pyongyang’s debt comprised a payment for 1,000 cars delivered by Sweden’s Volvo auto manufacturer to North Korea back in the 1970s and mining equipment supplied by Atlas Copco industrial company.

According to Karlsson, initially the debt accounted for about 600 million kronas, but it has increased significantly over the past 45 years, with interest added.

Karlsson also pointed out that Sweden had received no payments from North Korea since the 1980s, adding that it was unlikely that the debt would be paid soon in the view of the country’s current economic situation. Currently, North Korea is Sweden’s major debtor.