[Ed. – “Reining in” Little Kim, by cutting off an economic lifeline? Time will tell if it’s real or just a temporary show.]
A fleet of North Korean cargo ships is heading home to the port of Nampo, the majority of it fully laden, after China ordered its trading companies to return coal from the isolated country, shipping data shows.
Following repeated missile tests that drew international criticism, China banned all imports of North Korean coal on Feb. 26, cutting off the country’s most important export product.
To curb coal traffic between the two countries, China’s customs department issued an official order on April 7 telling trading companies to return their North Korean coal cargoes, said three trading sources with direct knowledge of the order. …
Shipping data on Thomson Reuters Eikon, a financial information and analytics platform, shows a dozen cargo ships on their way to North Korea’s main west coast port of Nampo, almost all carrying cargoes from China.