Effectiveness of economic sanctions against North Korea and role of China: Empirical approach

Jina Choi, Hyoshin Kim, Jinhwan Oh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This study explores North Korea’s trade patterns and the effectiveness of economic sanctions imposed on the hermit kingdom. Using a gravity model with a panel dataset of the country’s 92 trading countries from the period of 1999 to 2014, this paper examines North Korea’s trade patterns and compares the model-based estimated bilateral trade flows with actual trade ones. Main findings are: (1) North Korea’s trade has been excessively skewed to China as a result of economic sanctions from the United Nations and international community, largely driven by the United States; (2) The U.S. - North Korea trade would not be seriously affected by the sanctions due to their low estimated trade flows; (3) The latter finding raises further questions over the effectiveness of the current sanctions and asks for active cooperation from China.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-15
Number of pages8
JournalGlobal Business and Finance Review
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 People and Global Business Association.


  • China
  • Economic sanctions
  • Gravity model
  • North Korea
  • Trade patterns


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