North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho, second right, meets with Chinese Foreign MinisterWang Yi at the Mansudae Assembly Hall in Pyongyang, North Korea Wednesday, May 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Jon Chol Jin)

China vows support for North Korean economy amid sanctions

May 03, 2018 - 4:14 am

BEIJING (AP) — China says it fully backs North Korea's efforts to develop its economy following the imposition of United Nations sanctions that have cut trade between them by around 90 percent.

The Foreign Ministry quoted Minister Wang Yi as telling his North Korean counterpart during a visit to Pyongyang on Wednesday that China treasured traditional relations and applauded recent moves to reduce tensions on the Korean Peninsula, further underscoring the recent improvement in ties between the two.

Wang said China was willing to work with Pyongyang to boost "practical economic and trade cooperation" and fully supported the North in "concentrating its strength to carry out economic construction."

China has long been North Korea's main ally and economic partner, hoping to serve as a model of economic opening while maintaining strict authoritarian rule.

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