While North Korea is expected to resume trade with China this month, an inside source said that in Ryanggang Province, which faces China, it will be practically difficult to resume until early next year.
A source from Ryanggang Province told Daily NK on the 12th, “Recently, as news of the completion of the quarantine facility in Uiju (North Pyongan Province) has been widely reported, merchants and residents in Doan have high expectations for the resumption of trade. Resumption is virtually non-existent.”
Earlier, the National Intelligence Service reported in a state audit on the 28th of last month that the train service between Sinuiju, North Korea and Dandong, China, which had been cut off due to the prolonged COVID-19 situation, is likely to reopen in November. However, it did not mention the possibility of resuming trade in areas bordering North Korea and China, such as Ryanggang Province.
On the 9th, the Ministry of Unification also reported that it was not confirmed whether the train between North Korea and China actually operated in response to a report by some media in South Korea that two trains moved along the Yalu River railway bridge connecting Sinuiju, North Korea and Dandong, Liaoning Province, China. He said he was keeping an eye on trends.
According to a source, in order to resume trade between North Korea and China in Ryanggang Province, it is necessary to first prepare a quarantine facility that can disinfect materials. First of all, it is necessary to select the location of the quarantine station and proceed with the facility construction.
However, it is said that Ryanggang Province does not have any quarantine facilities for bringing in materials. In this regard, it is said that there was a discussion on the selection of a quarantine site in Ryanggang Province in June and July, but it was virtually canceled due to various problems.
In fact, last June, high-ranking officials from the party’s government agencies, including the Prime Minister (Kim Duk-hoon), visited Hyesan and Samjiyeon to select a quarantine site in Ryanggang Province, and in July, even a high-ranking official of the Central Emergency Response Command made a final visit. In the end, it is explained that the selection of the quarantine site in Yanggang Province was not approved.
The possibility of an increase in North Korean defectors in winter and the cost of construction facilities are being discussed as the background to the decision of the North Korean authorities.
A source said, “Since last July, according to the central instructions, the Provincial Trade Bureau has been working to collect and transport export products (ore, pine nuts, squid, etc.) from companies and merchants to Nampo Port every month. It is not, but trade is proceeding in a circumventive way,” he said.
He continued, “In the case of the Uiju quarantine station, the resumption of trade is being delayed even after the facilities have been completed. How can we resume trade in Ryanggang Province, which is not ready? “The map is taking the position that it will be difficult to resume trade until early next year,” he added.
Source: DailyNK by www.dailynk.com.
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