The North Korean Collection at the National Library of Australia is the largest collection of North Korean materials in the Korean language in Australia and the Southern Hemisphere. The collection numbers some 1,500 volumes of monographs, 90 serial titles and 3 newspaper titles.
The collection covers all subject areas, and the strengths of the collection lie in the subject fields of the social sciences, especially political science, economic conditions and policy, and literature.
Another great strength of the National Library's North Korean collection is a wide range of rich North Korean periodicals. The size of its North Korean periodical collection ranks among the top five in the world, alongside such institutions as the U.S. Library of Congress and Harvard University Library.
The National Library has maintained exchange relations with North Korea since 1973. For many years this exchange was almost only source of North Korean publications obtained by the Library. Apart from some materials purchased via Hong Kong. From 1994 to 2003 receipts from North Korea were interrupted due to the rapid worsening of the North Korean economy in the 1990s. However, since 2003 the National Library has been able to acquire North Korean publications directly from P'yongyang.