Secretive state that once sold narcotics for hard currency sees domestic drug use spiral but can't admit the problem.
While old-style rhetoric continues, Pyongyang in practice plays up comparative advantages in cheap labor and coal.
Even the modest political relaxation of reform-era China appears unlikely to occur in North Korea.
Confidence about North Korea's economy appears to breed indifference about drawing aid and support from abroad.
Farmers better prepared to meet food needs than during 1990s famine, while neighbors ready to aid Pyongyang.
Reports emanating from North Korea indicate an expected economic transformation has at best been postponed, at worst, cancelled entirely
North Korea, with little to sell to the world, is unlikely to follow Iran's path out of isolation.
Farmers' response to rules allowing them to keep more of harvest could spur output growth seen in late-1970s China.
Pyongyang needs cash and Seoul wants to reassure South Koreans that ties are stable, a North Korea expert says.