Seoul central bank: North Korean economy logs 1st growth in 3 years on agricultural boost

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SEOUL, South Korea - The central bank in Seoul says North Korea's economy grew for the first time in three years, thanks to a boost in agricultural production.

The Bank of Korea in South Korea said Sunday that the North's gross domestic product grew 0.8 per cent in 2011.

The bank credits favourable weather and more use of fertilizer in boosting crop production in North Korea. It estimates the North's gross national income at $28 billion - compared to $1 trillion last year for South Korea.

The bank provides annual estimates of the North's economy by analyzing data gathered by South Korean government agencies. Pyongyang has not publicly released detailed economic data for decades.

The United Nations says North Korea continues to face chronic food shortages affecting two-thirds of the population.

Organizations: Seoul central bank, Bank of Korea, United Nations

Geographic location: South Korea, North Korea, SEOUL Pyongyang

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