The heatwave in North Korea is expected to be harsh this year and Kim Jong-Un has big plans for the summer.
The North Korean government has reportedly ordered all state agencies, factories and schools to start working at 5am during Sambok, or the three hottest days of Korean summer, which began on 20 July.
“All central agencies in Pyongyang and other offices and schools nationwide have been ordered to follow the sambok schedule,” the Guardian reported while quoting state-owned news agency KCNA. “Because of this, all operations now start at 5am instead of the usual 8, and end at 1pm.”
An anonymous source said the early schedule causes problems for citizens since there’s not enough work at that time and no electricity.
“Even young children need to start getting ready for school at around 4am. Many are unable to get up so they end up skipping one or two hours of class, pulling down the attendance rate,” the source stated, adding, “State-owned restaurants only stay open until lunchtime, and [are] closed in the afternoon and dinner time. State officials who are on business trips to different areas complain since they don’t have anywhere to dine in the evening.”
The harsh measures were more or less expected since this routine was first suggested and implemented under former leader Kim Jong-il. Also, the Hermit Kingdom has been hit by its worst drought in a century, which is affecting the country’s already crippling economy, especially agricultural sector.