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Saturday, February 27th, 2021

Treasury Department sanctions 56 shipping companies, vessels for engaging in trade with North Korea

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The Treasury Department announced a sanctions package on Friday that targets 27 entities and 28 vessels tied to North Korea, China, Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and four additional countries violating earlier U.S. sanctions by engaging in trade with North Korea.

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) also issued a global shipping advisory on Friday that warns of “significant sanctions risks” for trading companies and vessels that continue to ship items to or from North Korea.

“Treasury is aggressively targeting all illicit avenues used by North Korea to evade sanctions, including taking decisive action to block the vessels, shipping companies and entities across the globe that work on North Korea’s behalf,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said. “This will significantly hinder the Kim regime’s capacity to conduct evasive maritime activities that facilitate illicit coal and fuel transports, and erode its abilities to ship goods through international waters.”

Friday’s sanctions are consistent with the North Korea Sanctions Policy and Enhancement Act of 2016 and the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act of 2017. North Korea has been known to falsify and conceal identifying information on North Korean vessels and to engage in ship-to-ship transfers in an effort to skirt U.S. sanctions.

“The president has made it clear to companies worldwide that if they choose to help fund North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, they will not do business with the United States,” Mnuchin said.