June 09, 2023

North Korea’s trade with China in Q4 hits three-year pandemic high

Strong imports in December help push quarterly trade to $370M, indicating less concern about COVID and inbound goods

North Korea capped off last year with its strongest quarter of trade with China since 2019, customs data shows, signaling less anxiety about inbound goods despite mass COVID-19 caseloads just across the country’s northern border. 

According to China’s General Administration of Customs (GAC), North Korea imported roughly $120 million worth of goods from China in Dec. 2022, while exports remained around $20 million. The figures put the country’s fourth-quarter trade volume at $370 million, or nearly 100 times higher than the same period in 2020 when the pandemic gripped the global economy.