Treasury Imposes Sanctions on Supporters of North Korea’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation

Action Targets a Company and Four Individuals Facilitating Transactions for Designated North Korean Entity
WASHINGTON – Today the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated one company and four individuals tied to the Government of North Korea’s proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD).  Specifically, OFAC imposed sanctions on Dandong Hongxiang Industrial Development Company Ltd (DHID) for acting for or on behalf of Korea Kwangson Banking Corporation (KKBC), which was previously designated by the United States and the United Nations for providing financial services in support of WMD proliferators.  OFAC also designated Ma Xiaohong, Zhou Jianshu, Hong Jinhua, and Luo Chuanxu for acting for or on behalf of DHID.
These designations were made pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13382, which targets WMD proliferators and their supporters.  As a result of today’s action, any property or interests in property of DHID, Ma Xiaohong, Zhou Jianshu, Hong Jinhua, and Luo Chuanxu in the possession or control of U.S. persons or within the United States are blocked.  Additionally, U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions involving these designated persons.
In a related action, today the U.S. Department of Justice unsealed criminal charges against DHID, Ma Xiaohong, Zhou Jianshu, Hong Jinhua, and Luo Chuanxu for conspiring to evade U.S. economic sanctions and violating OFAC’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferators Sanctions Regulations as well as conspiracy to launder money instruments. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Justice announced the filing of a civil forfeiture action for all funds contained in 25 bank accounts belonging to DHID and its front companies and a request for a restraining order to be sent to China for all of the funds based upon the allegation of the United States that the funds represent property involved in money laundering.
“Today’s action exposes a key illicit network supporting North Korea’s weapons proliferation,” said Adam J. Szubin, acting Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence at the U.S. Department of the Treasury. “DHID and its employees sought to evade U.S. and UN sanctions, facilitating access to the U.S. financial system by a designated entity.  Treasury will take forceful action to pressure North Korea’s proliferation network and to protect the U.S. financial system from abuse.”
OFAC designated China-based DHID for acting for or on behalf of North Korean-based KKBC. Specifically, DHID used an illicit network of front companies, financial facilitators, and trade representatives to facilitate transactions on behalf of KKBC. Ma Xiaohong, Zhou Jianshu, Hong Jinhua, and Luo Chuanxu were designated for acting for or on behalf of DHID.
KKBC was designated by OFAC under E.O. 13382 and the UN pursuant to UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2270 for providing financial services in support of the previously designated entities Tanchon Commercial Bank and the Korea Hyoksin Trading Corporation.  Both of those entities were designated pursuant to E.O. 13382 and UNSCR 1718 for their roles in North Korea’s WMD and missile programs.
This update was provided by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Click here for more:

China aircraft maker to promote new generation planes at air show

BEIJING – The Aviation Industry Corp of China (AVIC) will promote its new generation aircraft at China’s upcoming aerospace trade show, the aircraft manufacturer said Thursday.

The company’s heavy transport aircraft Y-20 and stealth fighter J-31, the major models in the new series, will be demonstrated at the 11th China International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition, which opens on Nov. 1 in the southern port city of Zhuhai, Guangdong Province.

The new planes represent AVIC’s advances toward the fourth generation of aircraft technology, the company said.

In June, the first two Y-20 planes were delivered to the People’s Liberation Army Air Force after nearly a decade of design, manufacture and test flights. With a maximum takeoff weight of around 200 tonnes, the large freighter plane is ideal for transporting cargo and people over long distances in diverse weather conditions.

As a major aerospace and defence company in China, AVIC has developed a series of advanced fighters, helicopters and airborne early warning aircraft, and exported many models.

The six-day air show has been held in Zhuhai every two years since 1996.

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Import growth points to economic stabilization

China’s imports in August rose for the first time in nearly two years while the decline in exports decelerated, signaling that government measures to stabilize growth may have taken effect, experts said on Thursday.

Dollar-denominated imports beat expectations to increase by 1.5 percent year-on-year, reversing a 12.5 percent slump in July.

Exports in dollar terms fell 2.8 percent year-on-year, the slowest pace in four months, according to data from the General Administration of Customs.

Factors including a rebound in commodities prices, improved domestic and overseas demand, and a weaker yuan may have contributed to the better-than-expected trade data in August, experts said.

Guo Yanhong, chief strategist at Founder Securities Co, said that the improved trade data also pointed to the effective government measures to stabilize growth, including expansion of infrastructure projects and strong property sales, which helped lift domestic demand and boost import growth.

Official data showed that China’s iron ore imports jumped 9.3 percent in August from a year earlier, while coal imports rose by 12.4 percent.

“The improvement in imports could last until September but any adjustment in China’s property market could once again weigh on imports,” Guo said.

Zhao Yang, an economist at Nomura Securities Co Ltd, said that the surprising surge in imports in August may be more transient than long-lasting.

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Shanghai wants to be global shipping hub

Shanghai is keen to deepen the reform of becoming a global shipping hub with continuous higher throughput capacity of cargos, upgraded airport construction and comprehensive shipping services in the Yangtze River Delta.

According to the 13th Five-Year Plan on forming Shanghai to be a global shipping center, released today by the municipal government, Shanghai port is expected to remain the leading global pivotal port, with an annual throughput capacity of containers for 42 million TEUs. The annual throughput capacity of passengers’ visits in airports is expected to reach 120 million.

“The under construction of the fourth phase of Yangshan Deep-water Port is an automated terminal project, which will be put in trial production by next year, with an extra 4 million TEUs,” said Zhang Lin, deputy director of the Shanghai Municipal Transportation Commission.

In the cruise industry, Shanghai port is planned to become one of the largest cruise ports in the Asia Pacific region and the home port of more than 12 to 15 cruise ships, with a total number of 1.5 to 2 million visits by tourists.

By the year of 2020, the city aims to become a global shipping hub gathering high-level shipping resources, offering comprehensive shipping services and efficient logistics, and having the capability of resource allocation.

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