Norks are buying huge quantities of grain from China

China’s shipments of corn and wheat to North Korea surged as the nation in the center of a global nuclear standoff struggled with drought at home.

Corn exports increased 4,586 percent in August from a year earlier to 14,057 metric tons, accounting for 97 percent of the total, according to customs data published on Tuesday. Wheat shipments climbed 5,405 percent from a year earlier to 6,001 tons, making North Korea the biggest buyer after Hong Kong, according to the data.

The volumes compared with 21,006 tons of corn and 2,382 tons of wheat in July. North Korean demand for corn imports more typically peaks in September, seasonality analysis shows.
Chinese customs data also showed rice shipments to North Korea rose 15 percent in August from a year earlier to 7,399 tons. Exports were 10,476 tons in July. Total exports from China to North Korea rose 25.3 percent in the year to August compared with the same period in 2016, to $2.28 billion.
Other reports indicate that North Korean troops are starving and have been told to steal corn from the fields. Parents of troops have been making special trips to bring them food.

South Korea would be wise to build up defensive positions around food storage areas in anticipation of attacks by hungry North Korean troops.


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