“Chinese boats wreaking havoc in North Korea waters, study says” –UPI

Chinese squid-fishing vessels in waters near South Korea’s Ulleungdo in September 2016 | ⓒ THE OUTLAW OCEAN PROJECT / VIA KYODO

We have a UPI report that,

“Chinese fishing vessels operating illegally may have hollowed out North Korean waters and likely contributed to an 80 percent decline in local fish stocks, according to a new joint study of Chinese activity in North Korea.”


High levels of Chinese fishing activity in North Korea have also pushed out North Korean fishermen to more dangerous waters. The North Koreans have been moved out north, toward Russia, and may be risking their lives. The study pointed out in recent years Japanese coastal towns have reported the appearance of North Korean “ghost boats” that arrive empty or with human remains.

China seems to be North Korea’s only friend (although there is technology exchange with Iran) but with friends like these…

If anything this makes North Korean even more dependent on the Chinese. This is a pattern I think we are seeing elsewhere–impoverishing local economies by removing local food sources and then offering other forms of economic aid that will result in debt and subservience to China. It is also effecting South Korean and Japanese economies.  More here.

“The scale of the fleet involved in this illegal fishing is about one-third the size of China’s entire distant water fishing fleet,” said Jaeyoon Park, senior data scientist at Global Fishing Watch. “It is the largest known case of illegal fishing perpetrated by vessels originating from one country operating in another nation’s waters.”

It may also mean the the North Korean government will be even more inclined to do something rash and foolish.

If this is in fact a violation of UN sanctions. It might be something the USCG could move against under UN authority, perhaps in cooperation with the Japanese and S. Korean Coast Guards.

Thanks to Sven for bringing this to my attention. 

2 thoughts on ““Chinese boats wreaking havoc in North Korea waters, study says” –UPI

    • Not apparent what kind of aid would be included under the MOU. My presumption is that we are talking about the boats and cutters the US has provided to help monitor their EEZ. Japan and SK don’t need that kind of help. In fact Japan has been providing assistance to both Vietnam and the Philippines in the form of patrol vessels and favorable loans to pay for them.

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