China-North Korea relations

How did Hong Kong become North Korea’s No 2 trading partner?

North Korean soldiers march near loading machinery at the port of Rajin. Photo: Reuters

In 2012, Hong Kong became North Korea’s No 2 trading partner with two-way trade reaching US$111 million (HK$861 million), rising 457 per cent from the year before, according to data from a South Korean trade organisation.

Wednesday, 9 October, 2013, 12:54pm 1 comment

North Korean defectors claim they were forced to manufacture goods for China

North Korean soldiers stand guard behind national flags of China and North Korea near the North Korean town of Sinuiju, opposite the Chinese border city of Dandong. Photo: Reuters

A survey among North Korean refugees indicates that the regime is forcing women in labour camps to produce goods for the Chinese market, including wigs and artificial eyelashes.

3 Jul 2013 - 6:35pm

How they see it

North Korean envoy Choe Ryong Hae (left) meets with the Communist Party of China Standing Committee member Liu Yunshan. Photo: AP

Seoul's message is clear: the North should first demonstrate its commitment to denuclearisation through deeds, not words. Following the North Korean envoy's visit to China, expectations began to rise that the six-party talks (involving the two Koreas, China, the United States, Japan and Russia and aimed at ending the North's nuclear weapons programme) might restart.

2 Jun 2013 - 3:59am

Beijing urged to take lead in managing six-party nuclear talks with North Korea

Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) meets with Choe Ryong-hae, the special envoy of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Photo: Xinhua

China should play an active role in managing the six-party talks on North Korea's nuclear programme, which could resume after Pyongyang sent a special envoy to Beijing, analysts say.

26 May 2013 - 6:50am 1 comment

Pyongyang offers steps to restart stalled six-party talks

President Xi Jinping greets North Korean Vice Marshal Choe Ryong Hae in Beijing. Photo: AP

A North Korean envoy made it clear to President Xi Jinping yesterday that Pyongyang is willing to take steps to rejoin long-stalled six-party talks on its nuclear weapons programme, according to mainland media.

25 May 2013 - 5:33am 1 comment

North Korea pledges ‘positive steps’ for peace

 President Xi Jinping (right) greets North Korean Vice Marshal Choe Ryong-hae in Beijing, on Friday. Photo: AP

A North Korean envoy told China’s president on Friday that his reclusive country was willing to take “positive actions” to ensure peace and stability on the Korean peninsula, as China steps up diplomatic efforts to bring Pyongyang back to talks.

24 May 2013 - 9:17pm

North Korea ready to accept China's peace effort

North Korean envoy Choe Ryong-hae meets Standing Committee member Liu Yunshan. Photo: Xinhua

A special North Korean envoy said in Beijing yesterday that Pyongyang would accept China's suggestion that it restart talks with relevant parties to restore a peaceful environment on the Korean peninsula, China Central Television said last night.

24 May 2013 - 7:23pm 1 comment

Kim Jong-un's envoy arrives in Beijing to mend strained ties

Choe Ryong-hae (right) departs Pyongyang yesterday as a special envoy for Kim Jong-un.Photo: AP

A special envoy of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un held talks with top officials in Beijing yesterday, in the first such encounter since China joined the United States and other nations in imposing sanctions on Pyongyang over its ambitious nuclear weapons programme.

23 May 2013 - 7:41am

Understanding the origins of war can pave a path to peace for North Korea

North Korean (centre) and South Korean soldiers at the truce village of Panmunjom in the demilitarized zone dividing the two Koreas, in Paju. Photo: Reuters

As North Korea maintains its belligerence, the world is caught in a dilemma. Ignoring it as just another round of empty threats would run the risk of North Korea test-firing missiles with longer range and greater precision. It would also strengthen the regime's rhetoric for testing more deadly nuclear devices. Having another round of six-party talks without a game-changing solution is unlikely to end this farcical merry-go-round.

6 May 2013 - 2:55am

A changing North Korea will prove a headache for China

Pyongyang is changing. Photo: AP

It is not an unknown unknown but, of all the world's known unknowns, the future of North Korea is perhaps the hardest to predict and hence presents China with unknown difficulties ahead.

21 Apr 2013 - 4:56am 1 comment

Premier Li Keqiang warns North Korea: Halt 'provocations'

US Secretary of State John Kerry with President Xi. Photo: AFP

Premier Li Keqiang warned Pyongyang to stop being provocative as China and the US renewed their commitment to ridding the Korean Peninsula of nuclear weapons.

14 Apr 2013 - 6:16am 1 comment

Kerry looks to press China on N Korea

John Kerry leaves for China on Saturday. Photo: AP

US Secretary of State John Kerry heads to Beijing on Saturday seeking China’s help to rein in a belligerent North Korea and provide a foundation for Seoul to lower soaring tensions with Pyongyang.

13 Apr 2013 - 10:28am

Business as usual along North Korean border with China

The mountainous border region between Sanhe, Jilin and North Korea at the time of the Ching Ming festival. Photo: Amanda Siu

While the rest of the world worries whether nuclear war is about to break out, many living near the border of China and North Korea are happily getting on with their lives. At least that's the view of a Hong Kong businesswoman who recently returned from the area.

13 Apr 2013 - 2:55am

China's limited influence over North Korea

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un. Photo: Reuters

North Korea has been causing crises since the end of the Korean war 60 years ago. Northeast Asia hoped a cycle of provocation and demands would end with young dictator Kim Jong-un taking power, but he has proven even more antagonistic than his late father and grandfather.

12 Apr 2013 - 3:12am 1 comment

China's caution to Kim is no empty threat

China's caution to Kim is no empty threat

After nearly a month of belligerent bluster from North Korea, China appears to have had enough, ending its silence about North Korea's brinkmanship and suddenly roaring its disapproval of its ally's reckless threats. China's exceptional tough talk does not necessarily mean that it intends to abandon Kim Jong-un's regime; but, at the very least, it does suggest that a radical shift in China's policy towards North Korea might no longer be unthinkable.

12 Apr 2013 - 3:12am 2 comments