"If the U.S. does not keep its promise made in front of the whole world. and insists on sanctions and pressures on our republic", Mr Kim said, "we may be left with no choice but to consider a new way to safeguard our sovereignty and interests".
Kim met US President Donald Trump to discuss denuclearisation in June 2018 but with few results so far.
This year's speech drew intense attention, coming as U.S.
In what was the first time a North Korean leader met a sitting USA president, the two signed a vaguely phrased agreement to improve ties and work towards denuclearisation. Both countries, however, have been at an impasse about the progress of denuclearization.
The annual New Year's address is a tradition Mr Kim picked up from his grandfather, founder of the communist country, Kim Il-sung.
The North Korean leader "obviously had certain expectations that the United States would take certain steps - however rudimentary they are - after the North blew up a nuclear test site and took other steps".
Seoul and Pyongyang have pursued several reconciliation initiatives in recent months, including projects to upgrade the North's outdated rail infrastructure and reconnect it with the South.
In the 30-minute speech, Kim spent more than 20 minutes highlighting his campaign to create a "self-reliant" economy despite a "harsh economic blockade".
He emphasized that the all the agreements reached during last year's three inter-Korean summits carry "significant meaning" in that they could be regarded as non aggression treaty between the Koreas. He also made a nationalistic call urging for stronger inter-Korean cooperation and said the North is ready to resume operations at a jointly run factory park in the North Korean border town of Kaesong and restart South Korean tours to the North's Diamond Mountain resort.
"If the U.S. responds to our active and preemptive efforts with trustworthy steps and corresponding behavior, (the North-U.S. relations) will move forward at an excellent and fast pace in the process of taking concrete and innovative measures", he said, apparently referring to the measures Pyongyang has taken since the June summit, including dismantling a nuclear and missile testing site.
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Although the North did not conduct nuclear or missile tests previous year, satellite images and leaked information from intelligence officials have pointed to ongoing activity at facilities in the secretive country.
USA officials say those initial steps were not confirmed and can be easily reversed, and have called for strict sanctions enforcement on the impoverished country until full, verifiable disarmament. "He's exuding confidence that his country isn't hung up over the USA, that they can still prosper without Washington".
The North Korean leader called on South Korea to "completely stop" joint military drills with the United States, while remaining keen for dialogue and multilateral negotiations to continue. Washington halted some large-scale military exercises with Seoul, although smaller drills continued.
"Kim is hinting that if things come to worse, North Korea could go back to the economic-nuclear dual path", Cheong Seong-chang, director of unification strategic studies program at the independent Seoul-based think tank Sejong Institute, told ABC News.
Some observers said there was little news to emerge from the address.
In the joint declaration, Kim pledged to work towards the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, while in return, Trump promised to provide certain security guarantees to North Korea.
After months of bitter acrimony and public name-calling between the two leaders, Trump and Kim met in Singapore in June.
But with Kim highlighting the need to turn further attention to economic prosperity in his speech, North Korea is also likely to continue to bring up such economic projects as a main agenda - even more than it did a year ago.
Abe, for his part, has said he is willing to meet Kim, though he has insisted that any summit must lead to a resolution of the regime's abductions of Japanese citizens.
"In sum he wants to portray himself as a real player on the global scene", he added.