Korea, North People - 2023



26,072,217 (2023 est.)

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noun: Korean(s)

adjective: Korean

Ethnic groups

racially homogeneous; there is a small Chinese community and a few ethnic Japanese



major-language sample(s):
월드 팩트북, 필수적인 기본 정보 제공처 (Korean)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.

Korean audio sample

traditionally Buddhist and Confucian, some Christian and syncretic Chondogyo (Religion of the Heavenly Way)

note: autonomous religious activities now almost nonexistent; government-sponsored religious groups exist to provide illusion of religious freedom

Age structure

0-14 years: 20.24% (male 2,696,287/female 2,580,346)

15-64 years: 69.16% (male 8,992,254/female 9,040,025)

65 years and over: 10.6% (2023 est.) (male 992,424/female 1,770,881)

2023 population pyramid

total dependency ratio: 43.5

youth dependency ratio: 27.2

elderly dependency ratio: 16.3

potential support ratio: 6.1 (2021 est.)

Median age

total: 34.6 years

male: 33.2 years

female: 36.2 years (2020 est.)

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Population growth rate

0.44% (2023 est.)

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Birth rate

14.06 births/1,000 population (2023 est.)

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Death rate

9.66 deaths/1,000 population (2023 est.)

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Net migration rate

-0.04 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2023 est.)

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Population distribution

population concentrated in the plains and lowlands; least populated regions are the mountainous provinces adjacent to the Chinese border; largest concentrations are in the western provinces, particularly the municipal district of Pyongyang, and around Hungnam and Wonsan in the east


urban population: 63.2% of total population (2023)

rate of urbanization: 0.85% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

total population growth rate v. urban population growth rate, 2000-2030

Major urban areas - population

3.158 million PYONGYANG (capital) (2023)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.06 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

15-64 years: 0.99 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.56 male(s)/female

total population: 0.95 male(s)/female (2023 est.)

Maternal mortality ratio

107 deaths/100,000 live births (2020 est.)

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Infant mortality rate

total: 22 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 24.85 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 18.99 deaths/1,000 live births (2023 est.)

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Life expectancy at birth

total population: 71.88 years

male: 67.97 years

female: 76.02 years (2023 est.)

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Total fertility rate

1.89 children born/woman (2023 est.)

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Gross reproduction rate

0.92 (2023 est.)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

70.2% (2017)

Drinking water source

improved: urban: 97.8% of population

rural: 89.1% of population

total: 94.5% of population

unimproved: urban: 2.2% of population

rural: 10.9% of population

total: 5.5% of population (2020 est.)

Current health expenditure


Physicians density

3.68 physicians/1,000 population (2017)

Sanitation facility access

improved: urban: 92.7% of population

rural: 73.1% of population

total: 85.3% of population

unimproved: urban: 7.3% of population

rural: 26.9% of population

total: 14.7% of population (2020 est.)

Obesity - adult prevalence rate

6.8% (2016)

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Alcohol consumption per capita

total: 3.61 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

beer: 0.12 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

wine: 0 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

spirits: 3.48 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

other alcohols: 0 liters of pure alcohol (2019 est.)

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Tobacco use

total: 17.4% (2020 est.)

male: 34.8% (2020 est.)

female: 0% (2020 est.)

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Children under the age of 5 years underweight

9.3% (2017)

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Currently married women (ages 15-49)

69.7% (2023 est.)

Education expenditures



definition: age 15 and over can read and write

total population: 100%

male: 100%

female: 100% (2015)

School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)

total: 11 years

male: 11 years

female: 11 years (2015)

Youth unemployment rate (ages 15-24)

total: 6.1%

male: 5.4%

female: 6.9% (2021 est.)

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NOTE: The information regarding Korea, North on this page is re-published from the 2023 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Korea, North 2023 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Korea, North 2023 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 22 Aug 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.