[Photo] North Korean restaurants in China empty as exit order date looms

Kim Sung Il  |  2017-10-31 16:49
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Last month, China officially notified North Korean companies operating in the country that they must leave within 120 days. Daily NK recently visited a North Korean restaurant called The Okryugwan in downtown Beijing during lunch hour, but found the establishment to be near empty. 

Patronage of North Korean restaurants in China has been declining as the Kim Jong Un regime pushes ahead with nuclear weapons and missile tests. The latest nuclear test in September appears to have been the final straw.

In relation to this, Chinas Ministry of Commerce and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce posted a notice on their website on September 28th stating: In accordance with United Nations Security Council Resolution 2375, Chinese-North Korean joint ventures and foreign-funded enterprises in China must cease operations.   

According to the measure, the relevant companies are required to close down by January 9, 2018. 

There are over 100 North Korean restaurants in China, with most operating as joint ventures with Chinese partners. It appears that North Korea has conceded that the Chinese are intending to stand firm on the decision.

An order was handed down from Kim Jong Un to pull out all overseas laborers and restaurant workers from China by the end of the year, a source close to North Korean affairs said during a telephone call with Daily NK on October 26.

There are also reports that North Korean merchants living in China are heading home. An October 5 Radio Free Asia article quoted a source in China saying that the Chinese authorities will forcefully shut down all joint ventures that have not closed by the beginning of next year. 
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