North Korean companies are violating international nuclear sanctions and selling coal to Beijing amid the ongoing power crisis in China.
The shortage of coal in China is a result of a reduction in imports and a decrease in domestic production, as Beijing tries to balance its growing energy demand with a desire to curb pollution and reduce carbon emissions, Radio Free Asia reported.
The companies which are smuggling the coal are run by powerful government organisations, Radio Free Asia reported citing a trade official from North Pyongan province in North Korea.
The smuggling came as the coal exports were banned by the United Nations in 2017.
Meanwhile, China is facing an electricity crisis, forcing factories to reduce operations, power consumption, and leading to outright blackouts in some provinces, media reports said.
The immediate cause is that China is still highly dependent on coal, which provides 70 per cent of the country’s power generation, the Foreign Policy magazine reported.
However, the Foreign Policy report noted that the reasons for the crisis can also be traced back to a string of policy missteps and poorly thought-out market interventions after the beginning of the pandemic.