Chinese trade with North Korea dropped 50 percent last month

Jan 13, 2018, 06:46
Chinese trade with North Korea dropped 50 percent last month

After months of soaring tensions, North Korea agreed this week to send athletes to the Winter Olympics in South Korea, in what was seen as a potential sign of a cooling-off period.

A major factor in the turnaround was a recently-exposed Chinese Communist Party secret document that calls for deceptive operations to sustain the Pyongyang regime by providing military and economic aid.

The Nikkei Asian Review reported Wednesday restaurants in the Chinese capital, like the Yuliuguan Korean restaurant, might have been operated as a joint venture between a North Korean entity and a Chinese company.

One source who worked at one of the restaurants said performers could stay as part of a "cultural exchange" agreement between China and North Korea.

The gathering comes as tensions have sharply escalated over North Korea's provocations, which a year ago included its sixth nuclear test and three tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles.

Russian Federation is also expected to be absent along with China, meaning two of North Korea's most important and influential neighbours will be missing when Freeland and Tillerson sit down with other foreign ministers.

A different official, asking not to have the information attributed to them, said that "we did not expect China to attend this meeting".

"I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong-Un", Trump told The Wall Street Journal in an interview.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will co-host the Vancouver Foreign Ministers' Meeting on Security and Stability on the Korean Peninsula on Tuesday to address North Korea's nuclear and ballistic missile programs, according to a statement. "I think you people are surprised", he added.

But academic George Lopez said the potential for the summit should not be underestimated as it brings together key players such as the United States, South Korea and Japan for the first time since the crisis has escalated.

Washington and Pyongyang are in a standoff over North Korea's missile and nuclear programs, which could be used to target the United States and her allies.

Not only does Canada have limited financial ties to North Korea, Clement said, but Canadian banks and other institutions have been closely scrutinizing any transactions with the Asian nation for years.

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