Chinese firm ordered to halt coal trade with N. Korea: state media

February 24, 2016

BEIJING (Yonhap) — A Chinese company in the northeastern border city of Dandong has been ordered by China’s commerce ministry to halt its coal trade with North Korea starting next month, according to a state-run Chinese newspaper Wednesday.

Citing an unnamed Chinese businessman who operates a coal business with North Korea, the state-run Global Times newspaper said the order appeared to be linked to a measure against North Korea’s nuclear test last month.

“A relevant department of the Commerce Ministry and the General Administration of Customs issued the order and, as far as I understand, the Liaoning provincial government received the information,” the newspaper quoted the Chinese businessman as saying.

The report, however, did not identify both the businessman and the Chinese company.

Dandong is a border town near North Korea, where more than 70 percent of bilateral trade is conducted.

Regarding the report, China’s foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said that she was “not aware of the specific situation.”

“We all know that the U.S. Security Council is deliberating a new resolution. As a responsible country, we will strictly follow the resolution,” Hua said.

In Washington on Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks and made progress in negotiations to adopt a U.N. Security Council resolution imposing sanctions on North Korea for its nuclear and missile tests.

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