China has taken steps to simplify customs procedures in a
bid to enhance revenue accrued from toll processing with North Korea, Radio Free Asia
reported on the 29th. Northeastern Jilin Province is said to be benefiting
substantially thanks to toll processing of items contracted out by Chinese
companies for manufacture in North Korea.
According to the report, a customs office in Hunchun now serves as the hub of toll processing for clothing. It is
believed that the average time for customs processing has been shortened by 57% for
imported products in the last year alone. The province calls it a “tailor-made development strategy” and, they assess,
the scale of the textile industry has expanded as a result.
Last year saw China import US$500m worth of clothing from
North Korea, a 34% increase from 2012, Radio Free Asia further conveyed.
Some analysts attribute the spike in toll processing between
the two countries to North Korea’s enhanced efforts to attract foreign capital
from China amid suspended inter-Korean trade relations. The North Korean authorities have also made moves to
boost the domestic textile sector by increasing wages at state-run mills.