Published: Sun, July 16, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Ellis Neal

Trump Wants China to Pay for Failing to Stop North Korea

Trump Wants China to Pay for Failing to Stop North Korea

A Chinese government official said Thursday that China-North Korea trade was worth $2.6 billion in the first half of 2017, up about 10% over the same period a year ago.

US President Donald Trump claimed in a tweet this month that China-North Korea trade in the first quarter "grew nearly 40 percent".

Trump has sought to persuade China, North Korea's largest economic and trade partner by far, to use its leverage over its rogue neighbor to scale back its missile program - as have American governments for years.

China announced in February the suspension of coal imports from the North, striking a blow at a major source of income for the hermit state.

China is buying less from North Korea as it implements United Nations sanctions aimed at reining in the nuclear ambitions of Kim Jong Un, according to a customs official.

The UN and the USA have attempted to use sanctions for the past decade in an attempt to stem North Korea's nuclear weapons development, but the latest July 4 test, which demonstrated a significant advance in its capabilities, have forced global bodies to reconsider their response going forward. "So much for China working with us - but we had to give it a try!"

The Seoul-financed Korea Institute for National Unification said in a report that since late 2015, the North has been bolstering border controls and installing high-tension electric fencing along the Tumen River that forms the border with China.

But Beijing, as it has in the past, largely resisted Trump's demands.

Geng Shuang, spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, stated during yesterday's routine conference that as a neighbouring country, China only maintains regular economic and trade exchanges with the DPRK for the good of the North Korean people.

"The new figures that the customs bureau have put out today suggest [they] have made an effort, at least on paper", he added.

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