In February 2010, some of the curbs on the free market were eased and a senior party official sacked after incidents of unrest.
The first North Korean coins for circulation were minted in 1959 in denominations of 1, 5, and 10 chon.
This tied won does not exist in the form of bank notes.
In normal stores and markets goods are priced in what has been called the 'untied' won or free market rate and regular banknotes can be used here.
The specimen/example set is the least common of the four.
Besides the general circulating coins, there is an abundance of different commemorative coins minted in the name of the DPRK.
Hyperinflation became a very sudden reality, however, and the new coins were never released as planned.
In 2008, 1 and 5 chon coins were also struck when a plan for monetary revaluation began.
The chon notes had stylized art designs while the won denominations were fairly uniform in design featuring a farmer and a worker standing together and holding the symbolic tools.
; symbol: ₩; code: KPW) or Korean People's won is the official currency of North Korea. The won is issued by the Central Bank of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, based in the capital city, Pyongyang.
North Korean won are intended exclusively for North Korean citizens, and the Bank of Trade (무역은행) issued a separate currency (or foreign exchange certificates) for visitors, like many other socialist states.
The coins were finally released into circulation in December 2009 but due to the flawed nature of the revaluation these coins again carry very little value, with especially the 1 and 5 chon being virtually irrelevant.
The first banknotes of "North Korea" were issued in 1945 by the Russian backed provisional government above the 38th parallel.