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S. Korean envoy sees no specific impact on N. Korea-China trade by U.N. sanctions

All Headlines 17:47 April 05, 2016

BEIJING, April 5 (Yonhap) -- While the U.N. Security Council adopted tightened sanctions on North Korea about a month ago, the new sanctions have so far left no specific impact on bilateral trade between North Korea and China, South Korea's ambassador to China said Tuesday.

North Korea was slapped with tougher U.N. sanctions earlier last month for conducting its fourth nuclear test in January and launching a long-range rocket in February. Winning China's cooperation is the key to ensure the effectiveness of the new sanctions because nearly 90 percent of the North's trade relies on China.

"No specific figures, including changes in North Korea-China trade volumes and (China's) imports volume of (North Korean) coal, have been reported yet," Kim Jang-soo, the South Korean Ambassador to China, told a group of South Korean correspondents in Beijing.

China, North Korea's diplomatic and economic lifeline, has vowed to fully implement new U.N. sanctions against North Korea, but stressed that sanctions should not affect normal trade with its traditional ally.

Kim said China will submit its report about its implementation of the new sanctions on North Korea within 90 days after the sanctions were adopted.

The Chinese report to the U.N. will become the "standard" in assessing whether China is sincerely enforcing the new sanctions on North Korea, Kim said.

The envoy said the South Korean diplomatic missions in Beijing are closely monitoring China's efforts in enforcing the new U.N. sanctions on North Korea.

Many analysts believe that China is unlikely to put crippling sanctions on North Korea because a sudden collapse of the regime could spark a refugee crisis at its border and lead to a pro-U.S. and democratic Korea on its doorstep.

kdh@yna.co.kr
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