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S. Korea watching N.K. economy over negative effects of coronavirus outbreaks in China

All News 14:40 February 20, 2020

SEOUL, Feb. 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea is watching North Korea's economy amid reports that prices in the impoverished nation have risen after Pyongyang shut down the borders with China to prevent the coronavirus from entering the country, an official said Thursday.

"We are aware of media reports citing some sources that the prices of rice and other certain commodities have risen in North Korea, but I think we need more time to assess the overall prices," a unification ministry official said.

Pyongyang has tightened its borders with China since late January in an effort to prevent the new deadly coronavirus from spreading into the country. China accounts for around 90 percent of the North's external trade.

North Korea has not reported any case of COVID-19 infection in the country so far.

S. Korea watching N.K. economy over negative effects of coronavirus outbreaks in China - 1

julesyi@yna.co.kr
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