대북제재의 게임이론적 접근과 북한경제에 미치는 영향 (Economic Sanctions Against North Korea: Theory and Evidence)

145 Pages Posted: 10 Aug 2022

See all articles by Youngseok Park

Youngseok Park

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy

Munsu Kang

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy

Wonho Yeon

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy

Bumhwan Kim

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy

Halin Han

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy

Date Written: December 30, 2021

Abstract

Korean Abstract: 본 연구는 북한이 2013년부터 강행한 핵실험과 탄도 미사일 발사 등에 대해서
국제사회가 무거운 우려와 규탄을 표명하며 채택한 UN 안전보장이사회(UN Security Council, 이하 ‘UN 안보리’)의 대북제재 결의안이 북한경제에 미치는 효과를 분석한다. 본 연구에서 분석하는 대북제재의 분석 대상 기간은 2012년부터 2019년까지다. 이 기간에 UN 안보리는 총 여덟 차례에 걸쳐 북한 경제제재 관련 결의안(resolutions on DPRK)을 채택했다. 2013년에 두 차례(Resolutions 2087, 2094), 2016년에 두 차례(Resolutions 2270, 2321), 2017년에 네 차례(Resolutions 2356, 2371, 2375, 2397) 결의안 채택이 이루어졌다. 특히 2016년부터 부과된 대북제재 결의안은 북한경제 전반에 영향을 미칠 수 있는 포괄적 제재(comprehensive sanctions)가 대폭 강화된 특징이 있다. 한편 2016년 이후에는 북한의 경제적 의존도가 절대적으로 큰 중국이 이전보다 적극적으로 대북제재를 이행함에 따라 대북제재가 북한경제에 미치는 효과를 분석해볼 필요성이 커지고 있다. 국제사회가 북한에 경제제재를 가하며 기대할 수 있는 효과를 파악하기 위해서는 북한의 정치체제(political system)에 대한 엄밀한 이론적 정의가 선행되어야 한다고 판단된다. 따라서 본고는 북한의 정치체제를 정치경제학 이론적으로 분석 및 정의하고, 이를 바탕으로 대북제재에 관한 게임이론 모형을 설정하여 제시한다. 이어서 북한의 정치체제에 대한 정의를 바탕으로 대북제재가 북한경제에 미치는 효과를 위성 야간조도 데이터를 활용하여 분석한다. 위성야간조도 데이터를 활용한 대북제재의 효과 실증분석의 목표는 대폭 강화된 대북제재가 북한의 경제활동 및 자원 배분 방식에 미친 영향을 파악하는 것이다. 따라서 본 연구의 분석 결과는 국제사회가 북한에 가한 경제제재에 대한 북한 정권의 대응으로 해석할 수 있다. 본 연구는 북한 정권에 대한 정보가 극도로 부족한 국제사회에 엄밀한 경제학적 분석을 바탕으로 추출한 정보를 제공함으로써 대북정책에 관한 유용한 정책적 시사점을 제공할 것으로 기대한다.

English Abstract: The United Nations Security Council adopted eight resolutions from 2012 to 2019, in response to the threats posed by North Korea’s tests of ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons. In this study, we first theoretically define North Korea’s political system, and then develop a dynamic game of sanctions against North Korea. Second, using satellite nighttime lights data, we empirically investigate how the ruler (regime) allocates the country’s resources to stay in power as sanctions intensify.

The political system of North Korea is defined as a suryong dictatorship, in which the dictator (supreme leader, or suryong) has the absolute power to dictate the country’s resources, including its people. The theoretical definition of the North Korean political system is based on De Mesquita et al. (2005)’s selectorate theory. In light of the selectorate theory, the North Korean regime successfully divides the country’s residents into two segregated groups, the selectorate (elites) and the non-selectorate. The North Korean regime strictly restricts migration within the country, and takes special care of the capital city, Pyongyang. The regime selectively grants the right to reside in Pyongyang. Moreover, it is well known that the regime prioritizes Pyongyang citizens’ welfare and allocates resources to them first and foremost. Acemoglu et al. (2004) define kleptocracy as a political system where the state is controlled and run for the benefit of an individual, or a small group, who use their power to transfer a large fraction of the society’s resources to themselves. They suggest the divide-and-rule strategy as a method that kleptocratic rulers use to stay in power. The divide-and-rule strategy makes it difficult for residents to obtain enough social coordination for revolution against the kleptocratic ruler. On the basis of the evidence and data, we define North Korea’s suryong dictatorship as a kleptocracy.

We present a game-theoretical model (a dynamic game) of sanctions on kleptocracy. The kleptocratic ruler stays in power by taxing divided groups of citizens and redistributing the revenues. We assume that only the selectorate can initiate a revolution against the ruler, as the citizens of the selectorate are more educated and productive than the citizens of the non-selectorate. The kleptocratic ruler possesses weapons of massive destruction (WMD). A superpower country can impose economic sanctions on the kleptocratic country to deter the ruler from developing WMDs. The model is expected to have results as follows. If the superpower country imposes economic sanctions on the kleptocratic regime, the citizens are incentivized to initiate a revolution against the kleptocratic ruler. Then the ruler will respond with taxing-and-spending (setting tax rates and amount of transfers to each group), so that he can offset the incentives of revolution against himself caused by the sanctions. Therefore, the ruler is expected to transfer a greater fraction of the country’s resources to the selectorate as sanctions intensify.

Next, we empirically test the theoretical hypothesis using satellite nighttime lights data. We use the VIIRS satellite nighttime lights data to proxy for local economic activity in North Korea in the empirical analysis. We find that an additional sanction is associated with an increase in the difference in nighttime lights between the capital city, Pyongyang, and the rest of the country by about 0.4 percent. This implies that the GDP gap between Pyongyang and the rest of the country increases by about 0.12 percent with an additional sanctions event. Manufacturing cities, mining areas, the Chinese border region, and Sinuiju become relatively brighter with an additional sanctions event. The magnitude of the estimate is particularly strong for Sinuiju. Another notable finding is the estimate on the interaction term with the nuclear development facilities areas, which suggests that the ruler diverts resources and electricity from nuclear development activities to other sectors when sanctions increase. In conclusion, the base regression results confirm the theoretical hypothesis.

Note: Downloadable document is in Korean.

Keywords: North Korea, Economic Sanctions, Kleptocracy

Suggested Citation

Park, Youngseok and Kang, Munsu and Yeon, Wonho and Kim, Bumhwan and Han, Halin, 대북제재의 게임이론적 접근과 북한경제에 미치는 영향 (Economic Sanctions Against North Korea: Theory and Evidence) (December 30, 2021). KIEP Research Paper, 연구보고서 21-26, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4185286 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4185286

Youngseok Park (Contact Author)

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy ( email )

[30147] Building C, Sejong National Research Compl
Seoul, 370
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Munsu Kang

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy ( email )

[30147] Building C, Sejong National Research Compl
Seoul, 370
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Wonho Yeon

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy ( email )

[30147] Building C, Sejong National Research Compl
Seoul, 370
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Bumhwan Kim

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy ( email )

[30147] Building C, Sejong National Research Compl
Seoul, 370
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

Halin Han

Korea Institute for International Economic Policy ( email )

[30147] Building C, Sejong National Research Compl
Seoul, 370
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

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