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A lot has been written about the shift of low-end manufacturing out of China, with the principal beneficiaries often quoted as Vietnam, Cambodia, Bangladesh and Indonesia. But the hot destination appears to be North Korea, if this article is anything to go by. With an average factory salary of just $78 per month, even Chinese manufacturers are increasingly looking to place orders with production facilities in the Rason economic zone, located across the border from China. Trade volumes would likely dramatically increase, however, if the country could ship directly to Japan and South Korea – although that remains unlikely given the continuing stand-off over its nuclear weapons programme.

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