Seoul-Beijing trade volume came in at $209.6 billion in 2012, making South Korea a far more important partner for China than North Korea, the Chinese online portal Wang Yi claimed Monday.
Citing U.N. trade data, Wang Yi argued that the huge disparity in trade with the two Koreas shows that improving relations with Seoul would be more beneficial for Beijing.
The data showed that South Korea-China trade underwent a 33-fold increase from 1992 to stand at $209.6 billion in 2012. In comparison the figure for Pyongyang-Beijing trade came in at $5.75 billion in 2012. Despite the relatively small figure, North Korea’s trade dependence on China went from 18 percent in 1999 to 85 percent over the same period, while the figure for South Korea stood in the 20-percent range.