Seoul: Pyongyang’s foreign trade has almost stopped due to the Corona pandemic


Seoul: Pyongyang's foreign trade has almost stopped due to the Corona pandemic


Jacky Chen

A bridge on the border between China and North Korea

South Korea announced that its northern neighbor’s trade with the outside world has almost stopped due to restrictions imposed by North Korea on its borders amid the outbreak of the new Corona virus.

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Today, Wednesday, a South Korean Unification Ministry official said, citing Chinese customs data, that the volume of trade exchange between North Korea and China amounted to about 3.27 million dollars during the period between January and February of this year.

“This figure includes the volume of electricity trade, so there were no actual exchanges,” the official said, adding that in January and February, there were no actual exchanges except for electricity exports that do not require any exchange of materials or communication between individuals.

He noted that with the suspension of Pyongyang’s trade exchanges with China and Russia, the prices of imported foodstuffs such as Chinese-made spices and daily necessities rose in North Korea.

North Korea appears to be struggling to secure supplies due to a lack of imports of raw materials and food, while rice prices appear to be relatively stable as North Korea has been able to control them, according to the official.

The official said local markets, known as “jangmadang” in North Korea, appeared to be operating.

He continued, saying: “There were crackdowns against unauthorized commercial activities in the past in North Korea, and they are still continuing until now, and it seems that these campaigns have been tightened more recently in an attempt to prevent the spread of Corona, but as far as we know, their markets have not been closed and have not Individual businesses are banned. ”

North Korea still maintains strict restrictions along its border areas that were imposed early last year to prevent the virus from entering the country.

Source: “Yonhap”

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