Seventy-five years have passed since the agrarian reform was enforced in the DPRK.
Korea’s liberation in August 1945 put an end to the Japanese imperialists’ military occupation which lasted for over four decades. However, feudal production relations still remained in the countryside and landlords with many acres of land were exploiting peasants. The land problem had to be settled to free the peasants who made up the overwhelming majority of the population from exploitation and subordination and rouse them to the struggle for building a new Korea.
Giving priority to the enforcement of agrarian reform over the tasks of the democratic reforms, President
Kim Il Sung paid close attention to solving the land problem in keeping with the specific situation of the country.
The Law on Agrarian Reform was promulgated on March 5, Juche 35 (1946) when the demands of peasants for agrarian reform rose and the conditions were ripe for its enforcement.
It was the fundamental principle of the agrarian reform to make peasants the masters of the land under the slogan “Land to the tillers!” Accordingly, those who possessed more than five hectares of land and rented them out were defined as landlords and their property was confiscated without compensation. As a result, in a little more than 20 days, over one million hectares of land possessed by the Japanese imperialists and their stooges and landlords were confiscated and distributed gratis to over 720 000 poor and hired peasants.
The enforcement of the agrarian reform made the long-cherished desire of peasants, who wanted to do farming to their heart’s content on their own land, come true.
The peasants, who became the masters of the land and the country, sowed seeds in their distributed land and did farm work well only to reap a bumper harvest the following year after national liberation. Therefore, over 14 500 000 sok of rice was produced throughout the country in 1946, or 3.4 million sok more than in the previous year.
Kim Je Won, a peasant in Jaeryong County of South Hwanghae Province, who harvested a bumper crop by making thousands of phyong of land fertile, donated 30 bags of rice to the country. Following in his footsteps, more than 16 000 peasants took part in the patriotic movement to donate rice in the winter of 1946 alone, contributing to the building of the country.
Peasants rendered active assistance to the front while doing farm work despite the enemy’s indiscriminate bombing in the period of the Fatherland Liberation War. In the days of agricultural cooperation for transforming the rural economy into a socialist way after the war, they produced more grains while experiencing the advantages of the collective economy in practice, thus laying the solid material and technological foundations for sustainable development of agriculture.
The Korean agricultural workers are now pushing forward immediate farm operations with great enthusiasm to guarantee a new victory in socialist construction with increased grain production.