October 30, 2017 11:51
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has ordered all North Korean workers in China to come home by the end of this year, the website Daily NK reported Sunday citing sources.
China's Commerce Ministry last month ordered the closure of all Chinese-North Korean joint ventures in China within 120 days to comply with UN Security Council sanctions.
That means most North Korean businesses and restaurants in China must close down by Jan. 9. The website said Kim's order came in protest against the move.
There are around 100 North Korean restaurants in China, most of them joint ventures. But there are an estimated 20,000-30,000 North Koreans working in China, only around 2,000 of them restaurant staff, while many other Chinese businesses in the border regions rely on cheap North Korean labor.
Radio Free Asia also reported that North Korean expats in China are returning home. Citing sources in China, RFA said North Korean staff of North Korean trading companies and their families have relied on the establishment of joint ventures with Chinese businesses to get residency permits. But the latest measures make it impossible for them to renew their permits.
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