BEIJING – China opposes the unilateral sanctions imposed by the United States on Chinese companies to economically isolate North Korea, a spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday.
According to the US Treasury Department, the exports and imports of three of these companies with North Korea were worth a total of $650 million and $100 million, respectively, between January 2013-August 2017.
“We firmly oppose the long-arm jurisdiction on Chinese entities and individuals by any country in accordance with their domestic law because it is wrong,” Lu Kang said in a press briefing after learning that the US had imposed sanctions on four China-based companies for maintaining commercial ties with North Korea.
“If any entity or individual is found to be involved in activities violating Chinese laws and regulations or international obligations, we will deal with that in accordance with law and regulations strictly,” Lu said.
He also urged those who wanted to cooperate with his country in a constructive way and had any solid evidence in that regard to share it with China to resolve the issue.
Lu said that China’s position on this issue was very clear to the US and said that, as a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, it has always strictly implemented all sanctions related to North Korea, but it opposes the unilateral ones imposed by some countries.
US President Donald Trump’s administration announced on Tuesday sanctions against North Korean shipping companies and Chinese trading companies in a new attempt to economically isolate Kim Jong-un’s regime to try to end its nuclear development program.
The sanctions came just a day after the US president announced North Korea’s inclusion again on the list of countries that sponsor terrorism, after not being on it for almost a decade.
The idea of imposing the sanctions is to exert maximum economic pressure on North Korea in order to make it difficult for Pyongyang to access important entities in the transport industry, according to US Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin.