11/5/14

N. Korea owes S. Korea $961 million by 2037--but what is LiNK doing?

NK News takes on Liberty in North Korea, writing a well-research editorial with sources asking if LiNK has the right priorities, if it is spending its money well, etc.

There's an old joke where an economist walking down the street:
Friend: "Joe, how is your wife."
Joe: "Compared to what?"

LiNK raised a record $1.5 million last year, and since 2010 has spent $1.3 million on its "changing the narrative" campaign.

Is LiNK spending its money well. Well, compared to what?

$724 million: South Korean government loans to NK government, 2000-07, unpaid
$257 million: South Korean government assistance to North Korea during Lee Myung-bak's administration, 2008-13
$199 million: World Food Programme budget for food aid to North Korea, 2013
$150 million: U.N. appeal in 2013
$29.4 million: U.N. appeal for emergency situation in DPRK, 2013
$15.1 million: U.N. humanitarian fund, 2013
$13.3 million: South Korean humanitarian aid to NK in 2014 
$12 million: South Korean humanitarian aid to NK in 2013
$6.8 million: humanitarian aid from South Korean private aid groups, Feb-Dec 2013.
$6.5 million: Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), 2014
$5.6 million: International Red Cross budget, 2014
$3.2 million: WFP emergency aid to North Korea, 2014
$2.1 million: Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), 2014
$1.5 million: Liberty in North Korea budget, 2013
$1 million: World Vision (USA), 2014

If LiNK spent $1.5 million a year until 2037, it still wouldn't spend as much as the international organizations spend on North Korea.

I love the conclusion of one article: "South Korea says the North is required to pay back a total of $961.53 million by 2037."