Still Leaky: Military Supplies Make Their Way from China into North Korea

By William Stroupe

Despite Chinese claims that it is rigorously enforcing recently intensified sanctions on North Korea, military goods still make it into North Korea. The North Korean military owns several entities in China that masquerade as legitimate trading enterprises. These entities disguise military hardware imported to China by private enterprises as innocuous goods not subject to international sanctions. The supplies then flow through customs houses where false papers, or occasionally blank papers (which send a clear message that the goods are to be permitted through), are provided. When necessary, Chinese border officials are easily bribed. Though China has stepped up its border checks and inspections, this means the actual flow of military and dual-use continues unabated.