both countries were very poor then S Korea discovered the joys of capitalism.
Not based on what I read. The North was doing quite well. In fact, lots of Koreans that were in Japan after the war came back to the North (rather than the South). One book that I read dealt with one of those families and how the father regretted that decision for the rest of his life.
I’m only talking economics. The Soviets had an interest in propping up North Korea, and they did so quite well.