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China imports 500,000 tons of N. Korean coal in September: report

2017/10/31 11:18

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SEOUL, Oct. 31 (Yonhap) -- China imported 509,000 tons of coal from North Korea last month, raising doubts about its implementation of U.N. sanctions over Pyongyang's nuclear and missile programs, Voice of America (VOA) reported Tuesday.

VOA's Korean Service said China bought US$44 million of coal from the North in September, citing data from the Korea International Trade Association.

In August, the Chinese Commerce Ministry announced a plan to ban the imports of coal and seafood from the country in line with the Aug. 14 U.N. sanctions on North Korea. China would allow any cargo that is already at port to clear customs as usual before the U.N. sanctions came into force on Sept. 5, it added.

Anthony Ruggiero, an expert at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told VOA that China's continuous imports from the North gives rise to doubts about Beijing's overall approach to sanctions against North Korea.