China-North Korea relations over trade have taken a back seat as China’s imports from North Korea plunged this year. Compared to the same tenure last year, China’s imports from North Korea fell by 92.6% in June 2018 as per the latest figures. This marks the record low level of trade between China and North Korea.
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China’s customs agency also reported that China’s exports of oil to North Korea and other items have also fallen by more than 40% this year. Officials blamed the UN imposed sanctions on North Korea for this miserable and record low level of bilateral trade between China and North Korea.
Despite tectonic shifts in international relations between North Korea and the historic US-North Korea summit the sanctions imposed by the United Nations still stay in effect.
There were tensions around the nuclear programmes of North Korea but there have been big overtures in the recent times and North Korea is expected to denuclearise soon. The historic summit between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump has hailed as being successful and North Korea had agreed to shut down its nuclear programs soon. China had a great role to play in terms of mediating between the US and Kim Jong-Un to agree upon the meeting that held in Singapore.
The US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo visited North Korea earlier this month and clarified that the sanctions will not be quashed until North Korea completely delivers on its promise of the scrapping of its nuclear arsenal.
Almost all the energy and trade supplies are provided to North Korea by China as Pyongyang remains isolated from the global trade. Now China has imposed limits on oil exports and has also banned the purchase of textiles, seafood and coal from North Korea as reported by AP. China’s exports to North Korea has declined for 11 straight months while the imports have plunged for 10 straight months.
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