Author

Felix Abt is a Swiss serial entrepreneur and expert on doing business in North Korea. He has lived in 9 countries on 3 continents.

From 2002 to 2009, he worked as one of the few Western businessmen in North Korea. He was co-founder and first president of the European Business Association in Pyongyang, a de facto European Chamber of Commerce and the first foreign chamber of commerce. He also co-founded the Pyongyang Business School, imparting market skills in the next generation of leaders.

Previously, Abt worked in Europe, Africa and Asia as a senior executive for multinationals such as F. Hoffmann-La Roche, a global healthcare leader, and the global engineering giant, ABB Group as well as small and medium-sized enterprises. In 2002, ABB appointed him first as resident country director in North Korea. He went on to become a point man for Western investments in the country, representing several multinational corporations and even founding a business of his own.

Abt is currently living with his family in Vietnam, where he is looking after a number of businesses. He is a shareholder in several North Korean joint ventures, and a member of the boards of directors of SMEs of several countries. He is also a columnist at RBC, Russia's leading business magazine.

Recently, Abt has come under fire from critics who claim that his business ties have influenced positive writings on the DPRK. Though it's true the author has a vested interest in North Korea, his investments in the country are small and do not pose a significant barrier to objective authorship. Other scribes have written unfair books, based on rumor and hearsay, labeling North Korea a "hellhole" and "slave state"—and winning them ungrounded accolades. Abt has written this counter-intuitive memoir with the understanding that scant praise and few prizes will come, but that the criticism will be heavy.

What does the press have to say about Felix Abt?

"Point man for Western investments in – of all places – North Korea." TIME magazine, USA

"Doing business on the most difficult ground despite nuclear crisis, economic sanctions and payment transfer obstacles." Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Germany

"Well-known North Korea affairs specialist." Yonhap News Agency, South Korea

"His long experience in business is key to know about the North Korean economy. There are no other people who have experience with North Korea as much as he does." NHK Television, Japan

"Amazing business pioneer in North Korea." www.interview-blog.de

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