Soviet-Empire.com U.S.S.R. and communism historical discussion.
[ Active ]
[ Login ]
Log-in to remove these advertisements.

Car Shopping in Pyongyang

POST REPLY
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 52
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 28 Oct 2009, 18:26
Ideology: None
Pioneer
Post 01 Oct 2014, 01:57
I got a chance to stop by the Pyeonghwa motors showroom while in Pyongyang. These vehicles are seen all over the DPRK and I was curious about sales and service. This was a sales location but there was no activity and it appeared you could purchase parts but the parts room was closed. No key chains. I asked about model year but they did not seem to know what that was. They were just manufactured. I think if you walked in you could get a 2010 or 2014. They all looked the same. We got to sit in the vehicles and the 4wd jeep looked to be the best. I liked the ambulance as this type can be seen all over the country. The quality looked like 1990s ROK vehicles. Cooper tires adorned many of the cars.

Car dealer photos:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/zaruka/sets/72157647809442149/

For a view of the factory entrance near Nampo (taken in 2011) see:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/zaruka/6178241835/
Loz
[+-]
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 11879
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 Dec 2009, 23:17
Philosophized
Post 01 Oct 2014, 11:07
https://www.flickr.com/photos/zaruka/15 ... 809442149/

It says on the sign the car costs around a million NK won? What's the average salary there?
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 6211
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 04 Aug 2004, 20:49
Ideology: Democratic Socialism
Embalmed
Post 01 Oct 2014, 12:04
It appears that, much like the rest of the industrialised (ex, as it was) Communist world, North Korea is producing vehicles on license from Fiat, much like how Lada got properly started as a mass producer of automobiles and how Romania's Dacia marque largely made cars on license from Renault.

How was the licensing issued in this case? I very seriously doubt Fiat went over there and built the Togliatti Works 2.0. Also: I'm deeply confused as to why an esoteric Christian organisation owns practically 2/3 of the North Korean domestic automobile market.

Do you know anything else about the context of this company?

Edit: 1000000 NK Won is about 6100 Euros. Also, it is sometimes quite dodgy to make an assumption about a population based purely on disposable monetary income alone, as there are various other services that people enjoy for next to nothing (public transport and whatever standard of healthcare, subsidised foodstuffs* and housing, for instance) that people elsewhere are expected to pay for themselves. Availability of personal credit and financing options is something I've not heard of in North Korea before - would be interesting to know if the central bank or the dealership extends its loans and financing packages to people who want to get a car - remember, people who "own" a house or a car in the West are just taking out huge loans and don't actually own anything.

*Not totally sure on this.
Image

"Phil Spector is haunting Europe" -Dr. Karl H. Marx
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 4381
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2004, 22:04
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Resident Soviet
Post 01 Oct 2014, 12:45
EPC wrote:
Also, it is sometimes quite dodgy to make an assumption about a population based purely on disposable monetary income alone, as there are various other services that people enjoy for next to nothing (public transport and whatever standard of healthcare, subsidised foodstuffs* and housing, for instance) that people elsewhere are expected to pay for themselves.


Only an intellectually honest person would remember to make a note of this. Otherwise people from the socialist bloc would be considered some of the poorest in the world in their own time, making only $100-$200 a month, whereas in reality most socialist countries sat in the teens and twenties in terms of global living standards, little resource-poor East Germany even beating out some developed Western European countries.
"The thing about capitalism is that it sounds awful on paper and is horrendous in practice. Communism sounds wonderful on paper and when it was put into practice it was done pretty well for what they had to work with." -MiG
Loz
[+-]
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 11879
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 Dec 2009, 23:17
Philosophized
Post 01 Oct 2014, 13:29
Quote:
Edit: 1000000 NK Won is about 6100 Euros. Also, it is sometimes quite dodgy to make an assumption about a population based purely on disposable monetary income alone, as there are various other services that people enjoy for next to nothing (public transport and whatever standard of healthcare, subsidised foodstuffs* and housing, for instance) that people elsewhere are expected to pay for themselves. Availability of personal credit and financing options is something I've not heard of in North Korea before - would be interesting to know if the central bank or the dealership extends its loans and financing packages to people who want to get a car - remember, people who "own" a house or a car in the West are just taking out huge loans and don't actually own anything.

You can buy a semi-decent car for a few months' average salary in England. In Croatia for example you'd need at least 12 average monthly salaries to buy a Dacia or something.


Quote:
Only an intellectually honest person would remember to make a note of this. Otherwise people from the socialist bloc would be considered some of the poorest in the world in their own time, making only $100-$200 a month, whereas in reality most socialist countries sat in the teens and twenties in terms of global living standards, little resource-poor East Germany even beating out some developed Western European countries.

In reality when it came to consumer goods, not to mention cars, the block folks were far worse off. Nowadays even an average E. European can buy a new Dacia for about a year's worth of wages, while 30 years ago you had to save up for several years ( helped by the fact that you had to wait for a chance to get a car, up to almost a decade in the GDR ). And it wasn't much better with other major appliances, even in Yugoslavia until the 70s most people could only dream about buying a TV.

Fun fact: exported Ladas were cheaper in let's say England than in the USSR.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 6211
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 04 Aug 2004, 20:49
Ideology: Democratic Socialism
Embalmed
Post 01 Oct 2014, 13:42
Loz wrote:
You can buy a semi-decent car for a few months' average salary in England. In Croatia for example you'd need at least 12 average monthly salaries to buy a Dacia or something.

If you have no qualms not paying rent/mortgage, bills, food, transport costs and all the rest for that entire time, then yeah. The reality of the matter is that disposable income is pretty tight at the best of times as those items are pretty much a necessity to be able to live a half-decent life.

Here is an overview from the ONS on average UK household spending in 2012. And here it is represented by an infographic:

Image


Many millions live way below these figures, it's not as easy as you think, Loz.
Image

"Phil Spector is haunting Europe" -Dr. Karl H. Marx
Loz
[+-]
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 11879
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 06 Dec 2009, 23:17
Philosophized
Post 01 Oct 2014, 13:48
Quote:
If you have no qualms not paying rent/mortgage, bills, food, transport costs and all the rest for that entire time, then yeah. The reality of the matter is that disposable income is pretty tight at the best of times as those items are pretty much a necessity to be able to live a half-decent life.

It's the same everywhere in the EU, and beyond.

Quote:
Many millions live way below these figures, it's not as easy as you think, Loz.

Yeah, you tell me. I wasn't even trying to make some special point with that, i only made comparisons.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 6211
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 04 Aug 2004, 20:49
Ideology: Democratic Socialism
Embalmed
Post 01 Oct 2014, 14:11
Which is why I brought up the issue of getting a car on credit/finance, as the vast majority of people have no opportunity to get their hands on a brand new car and be able to buy it outright, not only in the UK but across the EU and I guess the USA too. The pressures of a financial commitment to living in a house with heating and adequate food exist in the West and inside the DPRK (although on a different basis, financial pressures of the household must surely exist elsewhere), I don't think anybody here is denying that, a car on credit and expanding a credit option to the citizens of the DPRK might offer at least a short term boost to the flagging economy and necessarily improve industrial output and foreign trade by extension.
This brings up the question if there is a second hand market for cars inside North Korea, indeed even in the former USSR. Afaik, this is the only way anyone in the West can realistically own a car outright, even the more prestige marques.
Image

"Phil Spector is haunting Europe" -Dr. Karl H. Marx
[+-]
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1277
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 29 Sep 2011, 13:51
Party Member
Post 01 Oct 2014, 22:39
I never really cared for owning or even driving a car, neither was I ever particularly interested in automobiles. If driving a car was not the only way of getting around in Nigeria and Lebanon, then I still probably wouldn't know how to drive one. I love riding the public transport. It's easier, safer, cheaper, and doesn't cause the kinds of headaches that come with insuring and maintaining your own car, not to mention the shitstorm of problems and paperwork after an accident. Hell it's even more fun, you get to intermingle with the masses instead of just sitting in traffic for hours. Also good for the environment. It's good all around. Drunk driving is also a public safety hazard. If I could have my way, I'd impose strict regulations on owning and driving cars in developed cities capable of catering to all of the population's transportation needs.
Image


My laws shall act more pleasure than command,
And with my prick I'll govern all the land.
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 6211
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 04 Aug 2004, 20:49
Ideology: Democratic Socialism
Embalmed
Post 02 Oct 2014, 20:25
I share the same sentiment with my fellow poster Yeqon on this, the fact that you can just bumble about somewhere, perhaps have a few drinks and then hop on a bus to go home or somewhere else the bus goes to is great - it removes all responsibility of causing any motor-vehicle caused accident, injury or death and puts that in the hands of someone you'd expect to be highly professional, well paid and disciplined. I remember being in a friend's room at uni a couple of years back, and I confided in her my deep seated fear of getting behind the wheel and directly killing someone for being unable to handle the stress controlling a ton of steel with 150hp or whatever under the bonnet, and she said that she often feels the same whenever she drives anywhere, a recognition of the sheer amount of risk involved. I certainly never want to be able to drive, I drink too much. I am also not obsessed with cars as status symbols - I really couldn't give a frag.

The only problem with public transport is that it goes from A to B via A1 and A2 and maybe not back from B to A via A2 after 21:00, and perhaps only to A1 until 21:30, and also within a set timeframe that can be an irritance if you have to stand about for an hour waiting for a bus to show up. This very issue is covered inside that excellent Alec Nove book "Efficiency Criteria for Nationalised Industry" quite well, and basically acts as confirmation bias for my enduring love of buses and trains. His way of embracing the problem is to see that entire network of transport as a system that has to be in some places "loss-making" and elsewhere either breaking even or turning a profit, as the very fact you can get a worker from the hamlet of Arse-End-on-Sea to the centre of Thrivington is of benefit to the entire economy, as much as getting the worker from the small village Five-Miles-Outwood or the town of Leafy Suburb. Cross-subsidisation is key!
Image

"Phil Spector is haunting Europe" -Dr. Karl H. Marx
Alternative Display:
Mobile view
More Forums: The History Forum. The UK Politics Forum.
© 2000- Soviet-Empire.com. Privacy.