Last updated
Korean transcription(s)
   Chosŏn'gŭl 순천시
   McCune-Reischauer Sunch'ŏn-si
   Revised Romanization Suncheon-si
DPRK2006 Pyongnam-Sunchon.PNG
Map of South Pyongan showing the location of Sunchon
North Korea adm location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Location within North Korea
Coordinates: 39°25′0″N125°56′0″E / 39.41667°N 125.93333°E / 39.41667; 125.93333
Country North Korea
Province South P'yŏngan
Administrative divisions 21 tong, 11 ri
Time zone UTC+9 (Pyongyang Time)

Sunch'ŏn (Korean pronunciation: [sun.tsʰʌn] ) is a city in South Pyongan province, North Korea. It has a population of 297,317, and is home to various manufacturing plants. The city is on the Taedong River.



In 1413, the name of the city became Sunchon, due to a renaming rule in the early Joseon, where 'ju (州)' were changed to 'chon (川)' and became Sunchon-gun. The original name referred to a smooth repelling of invaders. [1]

In 1983, the county was elevated into a city and became Sunchon-si and a number of administrative districts were reorganised. Various other administrative division changes occurred until remaining in its current form from 2003. [1]

In December 1951, the Korean War aerial Battle of Sunch'ŏn was fought near Sunch'ŏn between the Royal Australian Air Force and two North Korean allies – China and the Soviet Union.

Administrative divisions

Sunch'ŏn-si is divided into 21 tong (neighbourhoods) and 11 ri (villages):

  • Chik-dong (직동)
  • Chŭngsan-dong (증산동)
  • Kangan-dong (강안동)
  • Kangp'o-dong (강포동)
  • Kŭmch'ŏn-dong (금천동)
  • Kŭmsan-dong (금산동)
  • Osa-dong (오사동)
  • Ponghwa-dong (봉화동)
  • Pong'u-dong (봉우동)
  • Puhŭng-dong (부흥동)
  • Ryŏnbong-dong (련봉동)
  • Subok-tong (수복동)
  • Sunch'ŏn-dong (순천동)
  • Tongam-dong (동암동)
  • Ŭngbong-dong (응봉동)
  • Yŏkchŏn-dong (역전동)
  • Naedang-ri (내당리)
  • Obong-ri (오봉리)
  • Pukch'ang-ri (북창리)
  • P'ungdŏng-ri (풍덕리)
  • P'yŏng-ri (평리)
  • Ryongbong-ri (룡봉리)
  • Sil-ri (신리)
  • Sindŏng-ri (신덕리)
  • Sŏnam-ri (서남리)
  • Wŏnsang-ri (원상리)
  • Ryŏnp'o-dong (련포동)
  • Saedŏk-dong (새덕동)
  • Saemaŭl-dong (새마을동)
  • Sŏksu-dong (석수동)
  • Ryongji-ri (룡지리)
  • Ryongak-tong (룡악동)


Electricity generation

The city has a thermal power station, the Sunchon Thermal Power Plant, which has an estimated installed capacity of 20 MW, [2] although in 2009, it generated only on average 10 MW over the year. [3] For the 80 day campaign of the 8th Congress of the Workers' Party of Korea, it was reported that the generation equipment at this power station had been overhauled and restored to its original state. [4] A campaign was waged to keep generation capacity at the maximum. [5]

Cement industry

Sunchon has a developed industry. The Sunchon Cement Complex has the capability to produce millions of tons of cement each year for use within North Korea but also exported to other countries. The plant has participated in major construction projects, such as the plan for 10,000 flats in Pyongyang in 2021. [6] It has direct access to the Sunchon Limestone mine and the Sunchon Gypsum mine. [7]

Chemical industry

The city has a Vinylon factory, and other chemical factories producing carbide, methanol and various chemical fertilisers. One of the most important pharmaceutical companies of North Korea, the Sunchon Pharmaceutical factory produces penicillin, streptomycin and rifampicin. [1]


Due to a lack of an irrigation system, before liberation, Sunchon was only suitable for millets. This was extensively developed after liberation and the city now plants beans, corn, rice and barley. Various fruits and vegetables are also grown and a range of animals are raised. [1]


Sunch'ŏn Station is on the P'yŏngra and Manp'o lines of the Korean State Railway. Taegon Line and various other industrial lines pass through the city.

The city is on multiple important roads to Pyongyang, Kanggye, Pyongsong and Hamhung. [1]


The city has various primary schools, secondary schools, vocational schools and universities. Other facilities include a library, a hospital and a sanatorium. [1]

Sister cities

See also

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pyongyang</span> Capital and largest city of North Korea

Pyongyang is the capital and largest city of North Korea, where it is sometimes labeled as the "Capital of the Revolution". Pyongyang is located on the Taedong River about 109 km (68 mi) upstream from its mouth on the Yellow Sea. According to the 2008 population census, it has a population of 3,255,288. Pyongyang is a directly administered city with a status equal to that of the North Korean provinces.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Nampo</span> Special city in North Korea

Nampo, also spelled Namp'o, is a city in North Korea which is the country's fourth-largest by population. The city is an important seaport in the country as it lies on the northern shore of the Taedong River, 15 km east of the river's mouth. Formerly known as Chinnamp'o, it was a provincial-level "Directly Governed City" ("Chikhalsi") from 1980 to 2004, and was designated a "Special City" in 2010. Nampo is approximately 50 km southwest of Pyongyang, at the mouth of the Taedong River. Since North Korean independence, the city has developed a wide range of industry and has seen significant recent redevelopment.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Chongjin</span> Capital city of North Hamgyong Province, North Korea

Chŏngjin is the capital of North Korea's North Hamgyong Province (함경북도) and the country's third-largest city. It is sometimes called The City of Iron.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Kanggye</span> Municipal City in Chagang Province, North Korea

Kanggye is the provincial capital of Chagang, North Korea and has a population of 251,971. Because of its strategic importance, derived from its topography, it has been of military interest from the time of the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pyongsong</span> Municipal City in South Pyŏngan, North Korea

Pyongsong is a city in North Korea, the capital city of South Pyongan province in western North Korea. The city is located about 32 kilometres northeast of Pyongyang, and was formally established in December 1969. It has a population of 284,386.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Arch of Triumph (Pyongyang)</span> Monument in Pyongyang, North Korea

The Arch of Triumph is a triumphal arch in Pyongyang, North Korea. It was built to commemorate the Korean resistance to Japan from 1925 to 1945. It is the second tallest triumphal arch in the world, after Monumento a la Revolución in Mexico, standing 60 m (197 ft) high and 50 m (164 ft) wide.

The Battle of Sunchon was an air battle fought near the city of Sunchon, North Korea on 1 December 1951, during the Korean War. Up to 14 Gloster Meteor jets of the RAAF's No. 77 Squadron were attacked by at least 20 MiG-15s of the Soviet Union's 176th Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment. The MiGs carried Chinese air force markings, as the USSR was not officially a combatant in the Korean War. Its experience in the battle led to No. 77 Squadron's being redeployed to ground attack duties.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Huichon</span> City in Chagang Province, North Korea

Hŭich'ŏn is a city in the southern part of Chagang Province, North Korea. The population is 168,180.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Chonchon County</span> County in Chagang Province, North Korea

Chŏnch'ŏn County is a kun, or county, in central Chagang province, North Korea. Originally part of Kanggye county, it was made a separate county in 1949.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pyongchon-guyok</span> District of Pyongyang, North Korea

P'yŏngch'ŏn-guyŏk is one of the 18 guyŏk of P'yŏngyang, North Korea. It is bordered by the Taedong River in the south and the Pothonggang Canal in the north and Potong River in the west, and to the east by Chung-guyŏk, from which it is separated by the yard area of P'yŏngyang railway station.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Potonggang-guyok</span> Guyŏk of Pyongyang in Pyŏngyang-Chikhalsi, North Korea

Potonggang-guyok is one of the 18 districts, or guyok, of Pyongyang, North Korea. It is most famous as the location of the Ryugyong Hotel. It is named after the Pothong River, which serves as the district's border on all sides. It is bordered to the north by Hyongjesan-guyok, to the east by Sosong and Moranbong-guyoks, to the south by Pyongchon and Chung-guyoks, and to the west by Mangyongdae-guyok. The district was established by the Pyongyang City People's Committee in October 1960.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Propaganda in North Korea</span> Information dissemination by the North Korean government

Propaganda is widely used and produced by the government of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. Most propaganda is based on the Juche ideology and on the promotion of the Workers' Party of Korea.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pukchang County</span> County in South Pyŏngan, North Korea

Pukch'ang County is a kun (county) in South P'yŏngan province, North Korea.

The automotive industry in North Korea is a branch of the national economy, with much lower production than the automotive industry in South Korea. In North Korea motor vehicle production is focused on military and industrial goals, including construction; few private citizens own cars.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Energy in North Korea</span> Overview of the production, consumption, import and export of energy and electricity in North Korea

Energy in North Korea describes energy and electricity production, consumption and import in North Korea.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pyongdok Line</span> Railway line in North Korea

The P'yŏngdŏk Line is an electrified standard-gauge trunk line of the Korean State Railway in North Korea running from Taedonggang Station in P'yŏngyang, where it connects to the P'yŏngbu, P'yŏngnam, P'yŏngra and P'yŏngŭi Lines, to Kujang, where it connects to the Manp'o and Ch'ŏngnyŏn P'arwŏn Lines. The total length of the line is 192.3 km (119.5 mi).

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Kim Chong-t'ae Electric Locomotive Works</span>

The Kim Chong-t'ae Electric Locomotive Works (Korean: 김종태전기기관차연합기업소) in P'yŏngyang is North Korea's largest manufacturer of railway equipment. Established in November 1945 in Sŏsŏng-guyŏk, P'yŏngyang near the P'yŏngyang Railway University and the Korean State Railway's West P'yŏngyang Station, the factory manufactures and overhauls electric and diesel locomotives, passenger cars, streetcars and subway trainsets. It is subordinate to the North Korean Ministry of Railways.

Mining in North Korea is important to the country's economy. North Korea is naturally abundant in metals such as magnesite, zinc, tungsten, and iron; with magnesite resources of 6 billion tonnes, particularly in the North and South Hamgyong Province and Chagang Province. However, often these cannot be mined due to the acute shortage of electricity in the country, as well as the lack of proper tools to mine these materials and an antiquated industrial base. Coal, iron ore, limestone, and magnesite deposits are larger than other mineral commodities. Mining joint ventures with other countries include China, Canada, Egypt, and South Korea.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Taean Heavy Machine Complex</span> Machinery factory in Taean-dong, Taean-guyŏk, Nampo Special City, North Korea

The Taean Machine Complex is machinery factory in Taean-dong, Taean-guyŏk, Namp'o Special City, North Korea producing a wide array of electric machinery for industrial and household use.

The Pyongyang Trolleybus Factory (PTBF) is an automotive industry company in North Korea and is the largest trolleybus manufacturer in the DPRK. During its existence, it has also manufactured vans, refrigerated trucks and buses although its main product are the Chollima branded trolleybuses. It has continuously manufactured trolleybuses since 1960, when it built the first trolleybus in the DPRK, a Jinghua BK561 clone.


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 "북한지역정보넷". Retrieved 2021-09-17.
  2. "Pyongyang's Perpetual Power Problems". 38 North. 2014-11-25. Retrieved 2021-09-17.
  3. "Carbon Trade". Naenara . Archived from the original on 2014-07-09.
  4. "《조선의 오늘》". Retrieved 2021-09-17.
  5. "Progress Made in Power Industrial Sector of DPRK". 2021-04-01. Retrieved 2021-09-17.
  6. "Increased Cement Production in Sunchon Cement Complex". Archived from the original on 2021-09-17. Retrieved 2021-09-17.
  7. "North Korea's Cement Industry: More Than Meets the Eye | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea". 38 North. 2021-05-14. Retrieved 2021-09-17.
  8. "Agreements Signed between DPRK and Ecuador". KCNA. 27 April 2008. Archived from the original on 8 September 2017.

Further reading

39°25′0″N125°56′0″E / 39.41667°N 125.93333°E / 39.41667; 125.93333