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Change of leadership in North Korea threatens economic trouble for all

If Kim Jong Un dies, US and China competition for influence will heat up

| South Korea
Kim Yo Jong, right, helps Kim Jong Un sign a joint statement in Pyongyang in September 2018: North Korean leader's younger sister could be handed over power in the event of an emergency.   © Pyongyang Press Corps Pool/AP

William Pesek is an award-winning Tokyo-based journalist and author of "Japanization: What the World Can Learn from Japan's Lost Decades."

Questions about Kim Jong Un's health have given the U.S and China a rare point of agreement: this is a dreadful moment for instability in the world's most opaque nuclear power.

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