South Korea, Japan and the United States plan to ban North Korea’s right to sell or trade fishing rights in its territorial waters under new sanctions to be imposed if the rogue state conducts another nuclear test.
The countries want to include the clause in a United Nations Security Council resolution draft, among other measures such as prohibiting North Korea from exporting its labour.
The draft resolution would be put to a vote if North Korea carries out a fresh nuclear or long-range missile test, an unnamed diplomatic source told Yonhap News Agency on Wednesday.
Such measures would help reduce North Korea’s foreign exchange revenues, part of which is spent on its arms development program.
After the three countries representatives’ met in Tokyo, South Korean diplomat Kim Hong-kyun, said all three parties agreed to take strong punitive action if Pyongyang continues to conduct nuclear tests.
The trade of fishing rights to China and the exportation of its labour overseas are two key foreign currency income sources for Kim Jong-un’s regime.
North Korea is believed to have recently sold the rights to fishing in the waters along the Northern Limit Line, the de facto maritime border between the two Koreas in the Yellow Sea, for about $US75 million ($A100 million), to China.
However, it remains to be seen if China, which as a permanent member of the UN Security Council retains the right to veto, as well as being an ally and the main trade partner of North Korea, would approve such sanctions.