Archive for the Dandong Category

Report: China-North Korea bridge opening postponed indefinitely [The Hankyoreh / 한겨레|Sweet & Sour Socialism Essential Archives]

Posted in China, Dandong, DPR Korea, Liaoning Province, Pyongyang, Sinuiju on February 23, 2015 by Zuo Shou / 左手

Article references an Oct. 31, 2014 article in China’s Global Times, however I cannot track down this article independently of its excerpts in The Hankyoreh. – Zuo Shou


By Seong Yeon-cheol, Beijing correspondent

~ No construction has been observed in site around Shinuiju…~

Chinese state media reported on Oct. 31 that the opening of the New Yalu River Bridge, which would link China and North [sic ]Korea, has been postponed indefinitely.

“The New Yalu River Bridge had initially been scheduled to open on Oct. 30, but the opening has been delayed indefinitely,” China’s Global Times reported.

“A survey of the bridge location showed that the south side of the bridge – Shinuiju in [DPR] Korea – remained undeveloped, without any sign of roads or customs facilities. Even worse, [DPR] Korea has not even done any of the basic construction work,” the newspaper said…

…The Global Times also criticized the [DPR] Koreans for not making a serious effort to move forward with construction. “[DPR] Korea is completely absorbed in construction projects in Pyongyang and other major cities, without making any mention of the New Yalu River Bridge,” the paper said…

…Construction began on the New Yalu River Bridge on Dec. 31, 2010. The structure is intended to replace the Yalu River Bridge, which was built in 1937. The current Yalu River Bridge supports both railroad tracks and a road. However, the older bridge is limited in the amount of traffic it can handle, since it can only support trucks with a capacity of 20 tons and below.

Located 10km west of the old bridge, near the mouth of the river, the New Yalu River Bridge is 3,026m long and will carry four lanes of traffic moving in both directions.

“When the New Yalu River Bridge is completed, it will be able to handle 80% of the trade moving between [DPR] Korea and China, which will resolve a logistical logjam. It will also position Dandong to become the biggest base inside China for trade with [DPR] Korea,” the metropolitan government [sic] of Dandong has said…

Excerpted and edited by Zuo Shou

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China adjusts to influx of cheap North Korean labor [The Hankyoreh / 한겨레]

Posted in China, Dandong, DPR Korea, Labor, Pyongyang, Shanghai, Singapore, Taiwan on September 22, 2012 by Zuo Shou / 左手

North Korean workers come to China as part of broad economic cooperation between two countries

By Song Kyung-hwa, staff reporter in Dandong

Sept. 13, 2012

In Dandong, where the inflow of North Korean labor is most active, there is a factory operated by a Singaporean company. The company makes men’s suits for export to Europe and used to operate a factory in Pyongyang. Due to problems with the electricity supply, they moved the factory to China where the situation is more stable. In this factory in Dandong, 400 factory workers in their 20s and 30s are North Korean. They work in the factory and live in a nearby company dormitory.

A Taiwanese businessman who used to operate a factory in Shanghai also has plans to move his operations to Dandong. His company has completed construction of facilities and plans to hire around 100 North Korean workers.

Another factory that produces sports apparel for export which used to be in Shandong province moved to a city close to the North Korea-China border. The factory was set up in Tumen and North Korean workers were dispatched for the first time last May. There are 300 North Korean women who work in this factory. A vinyl production factory about a kilometer away also employs North Korean women.

The activities of these North Korean workers are restricted. They live in dormitories or facilities provided by the factories. For lunch, they have been seen going in groups of 20 or 30 from the dormitory to the cafeteria, a 3-minute walk. Mr. Wang, a Han Chinese, 59, who works in a factory nearby said, “About two months ago, I began to notice young North Korean women in their 20s going to get water in groups of two or more. I only know which factory they are in, but I know nothing about their private lives. And the other companies or factories don’t know about them either.”

Some workers have come on one-month or three-month short-term training visas to set up under an official contract between the city and the North Korean government and extend their stay. They are dispatched with a male supervisor who is in charge of keeping an eye on them. It is said that the North Korean government would like to send more supervisors to watch over the female workers, but the factories have refused to allow them, which has been a source of some conflict.

The supply and demand of North Korean labor follows market fluctuations. It depends on the region, but the average wage of a Chinese factory worker is around 2000 to 3000 Yuan a month (between 355,000 and 535,000 won or US$315 to US$475). Meanwhile, the average wage of a North Korean worker is around 1500 Yuan a month (around 267,000 won or US$234). Because North Korean workers do not have the freedom to change workplaces, there is no reason to worry about a sudden outflow of labor.

North Koreans take the opportunity to work in China because wages are higher there than at the Kaesong Industrial Complex, the industrial complex set up by South Korea just north of the DMZ. The average minimum wage set at Kaesong last month is US$67 (about 76,000 won) and last year the monthly wage of a North Korean worker there was around US$110 (around 124,000 won)

Not all of that money goes to the factory workers. There are differences among regions and factories, but on average, the individual worker receives around 150 to 200 Yuan at the end of the month. On average, around 600 Yuan is provided for the individual worker. There are factories where this is then pooled together and redistributed to senior and ordinary workers. The rest of the money goes to the North Korean government. At times the money is used for insurance or a fund for common expenses.

It is estimated that more than 20,000 North Korean women are working in textile or food processing factories in the North Korea-China border region. There are also some North Korean workers who are in more skilled fields like IT or animation. Counting the undocumented workers, the number is much larger. An official from KOTRA’s (Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency) Shenyang office said on Sept. 12 that it has been confirmed recently that since Kim Jong-un took power, North Korea has agreed with the different Chinese border cities to dispatch 120 thousand workers, the largest number ever.

Chinese businessmen are watching closely the next move by North Korea as more and more young Chinese workers seek white-collar work instead of physical labor. Securing a work force that is secure and well managed is a great advantage. It costs between 400 and 500 Yuan to cover the expense of one worker including accommodation and meals. But the cheap labor makes up for this. And it is for this reason, more and more Chinese businesses prefer to hire North Korean workers…

[Excerpted by Zuo Shou]

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Authorities launch relief operation in flood-hit NE China [Xinhua]

Posted in China, Dalian, Dandong, Liaoning Province, Natural disaster on August 5, 2012 by Zuo Shou / 左手

BEIJING, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) — China has launched relief operation in northeastern province of Liaoning and northern province of Hebei where millions of people were affected by floods caused by Typhoon Damrey.

The National Commission for Disaster Reduction and the Ministry of Civil Affairs sent two teams to the flood-hit regions to direct relief work, according to a ministry statement on Sunday.

Nearly 1.46 million people of 43 counties and urban districts in 10 cities of Liaoning were affected by heavy rains and floods, which left one dead and five missing, according to the statement.

More than 10,000 houses collapsed and about 17,000 houses were damaged, forcing 138,000 people to evacuate. Nearly 70,000 hectares of crops were also damaged, with direct economic losses reaching 2.36 billion yuan (370.4 million U.S. dollars).

In Hebei, about 2.33 million people were affected by the disaster, including one dead, one missing and 151,000 people who were relocated. About 9,400 houses were destructed in the flooding.

Article link here

China opens trials on soccer corruption scandals [Xinhua]

Posted in China, Corruption, Dandong, Liaoning Province, Shanghai on January 10, 2012 by Zuo Shou / 左手

TIELING, Liaoning Province, Dec. 19 (Xinhua) — A former Chinese soccer official and a club official who were arrested on bribe-taking and match-fixing charges stood trial Monday morning at a local court in northeast China, said a statement released by the Supreme People’s Court.

Zhang Jianqiang, ex-director of the Chinese Football Association (CFA) referee committee, was accused of taking 2.38 million yuan (376,000 U.S. dollars) in bribes from eight soccer clubs and two local football administrative centers between April 1997 and October 2009. In return, he chose referees or asked referees to throw favor to one side or the other, according to the Tieling municipal procuratorate.

It also accused Zhang of asking Lu Jun, the country’s “golden whistle” who officiated at 2002 World Cup, to favor the Shanghai Shenhua team in its Nov 9, 2003 match and of accepting the club’s 700,000 yuan (110,585 U.S. dollars) in bribes, and he later split the money with Lu.

The procuratorate said that after Zhang’s case had been discovered, he returned 2.6 million yuan.

Li Zhimin, former board of directors of Shaaxi Guoli soccer club, was accused of accepting 2.5 million yuan bribery [sic] from Sichuan Guancheng club and Shanghai Shenhua club and helping their teams to maintain their league positions or win championships, the procuratorate said. Li returned all the illicit money.

The procuratorate regarded that Zhang’s deeds have constituted the crime of bribery and non-state staff bribery; Li’s practice has committed the crime of non-state staff bribery.

The court said it would not announce the verdict immediately. Under China’s law, taking bribes as state staff face much tougher penalties compared with those who are not civil servants. Officials taking bribes could be sentenced to death with most serious offences, while the heaviest punishment to non-state staff involving bribery is five years plus set jail terms.

Zhang and Li are just two of dozens of defendants involved in corruption and match fixing scandals to stand trial this week at the Intermediate People’s Court of Tieling City in Liaoning.

A notice posted outside Tieling Intermediate People’s Court last week said that former general manager of Shaanxi soccer club Wang Po, and ex-deputy director of the Chinese Football Administrative Center Yang Yiming, would be put on trial this Tuesday and Wednesday.

Several top referees, including Lu Jun, will stand trial at the Intermediate People’s Court of Dandong, a border city in Liaoning.

However, the “bigger fish” involved in corruption scandals, former CFA vice-president Nan Yong and his predecessor Xie Yalong, are not on the defendants list at this round of trial sessions.

China’s professional soccer leagues have been plagued with allegations of gambling, match fixing and corrupt referees for years. In order to clean up the game, a nationwide crackdown on gambling and match fixing was launched in March 2009, as a high-profile committee was set up by 12 ministry-level bodies.

Since then, a batch of officials, referees and players have been detained for their involvement in corruption and match fixing.

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Sino-DPRK trade zone ‘going well’ [China Daily]

Posted in Beijing, China, Dandong, DPR Korea, Hu Jintao, Jilin Province, Liaoning Province, Pyongyang, Shanghai, Sino-Korean Friendship on October 4, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Zhu Chengpei and Li Xiaokun (China Daily)

Sept. 28, 2011

Development on Chinese side set to provide support for the DPRK

DANDONG, Liaoning – A detailed plan is expected to come out at the end of the year for the joint development of a trade zone in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) along the border, a senior official in the border city of Dandong told China Daily on Tuesday.

An economic zone on the Chinese side of the border has been established to provide support to the zone in the DPRK, and all work is progressing smoothly, Dai Yulin, Party secretary of Dandong, said.

The latest development was announced as DPRK Prime Minister Choe Yong-rim met President Hu Jintao in Beijing on the second day of his five-day visit to China.

The trip is widely expected to focus on economic reform in the DPRK.

Beijing and Pyongyang agreed in June to establish two development zones along their border. Both zones are located in the DPRK. One is on the Gold Flat and Granville islands near Dandong, Liaoning province, while the other is near Yanbian, Jilin province.

A joint China-DPRK management committee for the development of Gold Flat and Granville islands has been formalized, Dai said.

“Both sides are working hard to speed up cooperation.”

The Dandong government has earmarked 10 square kilometers for a State-level economic zone on the Chinese side, adjacent to Gold Flat, to support the plan, Dai said.

The Chinese zone will house industries from trade to logistics and provide supplies for infrastructure, energy and basic necessities.

“The opening up of the DPRK has provided an historic opportunity for Dandong,” Dai said.

In light of the projects the city government on Tuesday invited 72 experts to establish a think tank to help and promote the city’s development.

“The progress signals that economic cooperation between China and the DPRK has entered a key phase,” said Liu Youfa, vice-president of the China Institute of International Studies.

Liu said Pyongyang is committed to pushing forward with the plan. “No country can survive today without economic exchanges with other countries.”

Choe, accompanied by a slew of high-ranking business officials, is scheduled to visit several companies and factories in the commercial hub of Shanghai and the wealthy eastern province of Jiangsu.

Media reports said Choe is likely to visit Nanjing and Yangzhou in Jiangsu to “express the DPRK’s stance on reform and opening up to China”.

Ouyang Yuanhua contributed to this story.

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Typhoon Muifa – LIVE REPORT [China Daily]

Posted in China, Dandong, Heilongjiang Province, Jilin Province, Liaoning Province, Natural disaster, Shanghai on August 8, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

This article link is being regularly updated – Zuo Shou

Typhoon Muifa – LIVE REPORT link:

Last update: August 8, 2:15pm

“Welcome to our live coverage of typhoon Muifa. Here we will bring you the latest news, information and storm tracking updates as it moves North towards the provinces of Liaoning, Jilin and Heilongjiang. The storm brushed along China’s east coast but avoided a direct hit on Shanghai and Shandong as it veered north. More than 610,000 residents were evacuated as the strong wind and rain destroyed homes and brought down power lines with direct economic losses estimated 1.87 billion yuan…

1:56 pm

Here is the latest computer model from Weather Underground. The trajectory shows the eye of the storm passing through Dandong in Liaoning later today.”

Joint Sino-Korean Special Economic Trade zone to boost DPRK economy [China Daily]

Posted in China, Dandong, DPR Korea, Sino-Korean Friendship, Special Economic Zones on July 17, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Bao Chang, Zhu Chengpei and Ding Qingfen (China Daily)
Updated: 2011-06-25

DANDONG, Liaoning – A free-trade area and a tax-free zone will be set up as part of the first special economic zone straddling the mainland and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), a Chinese government official told China Daily.

Dai Yulin, secretary of the Dandong committee of the Communist Party of China, said the area will help boost foreign direct investment, turning the zone into a hot investment destination.

In early June, China and the DPRK agreed to build three special economic zones to enhance China-DPRK economic and trade cooperation and promote economic relations with the rest of the world.

A free-trade area of 20,000 sq m will be established on Hwanggumpyong Island, an undeveloped DPRK island adjacent to China’s border city of Dandong, Liaoning province, where a tax-free zone of 10 sq km will be set up.

“Hwanggumpyong Island and Dandong city will become the hot ground for investors worldwide, as vast business opportunities exist on the island, DPRK’s first open zone where international trade projects related to the DPRK will be developed,” Dai said.

He said both domestic and foreign investors have shown great interest in joining the economic zone.

“Projects in sectors of marine engineering, special steel, colored steel and car audio will soon settle in Hwanggumpyong Island and Dandong city,” he said.

Those economic zones will be followed by development of the Rason and Wihwa Island economic zones.

According to Li Wei, an economist from Standard Chartered Shanghai, establishing these zones will have a positive impact on the economies of both the DPRK and China’s northeast region.

“Prosperity in the DPRK will help stabilize the economic and political situation in the Asia-Pacific region,” he said.

Companies are also expressing their interest in the DPRK.

“We can grasp more investing opportunities in both the Hwanggumpyong zone and the DPRK, as more business laws and market regulations are set up to complement the international economic environment in the DPRK, which is still in its infancy in terms of attracting foreign investment,” said a permanent delegate at China Aerospace Beijing Changfeng Co Ltd’s Pyongyang office, who declined to be named.

The DPRK announced it would open up to the outside and promote local economic growth after leader Kim Jong-il visited China from May 20 to 26, signaling Pyongyang’s approach to studying China’s development and attracting more Chinese investment.

“Pyongyang is now increasing its efforts to develop the economy. Kim’s visit helped promote the construction of the highway connecting China’s Hunchun city and Najin in the DPRK and a new bridge across the Yalu River, projects which can help attract more Chinese investment to the DPRK,” said Hu Mingyuan, an assistant research scholar with the Center for Northeast Asian Studies, a research institution in Jilin province.

“We expect to see details about rules and regulations tailored for the special economic zone and the free trade zone. A stable investment environment is the most important thing,” said Zhang Xiaoji, senior researcher at the Development Research Center of the State Council.

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