South Korea has confiscated about 46.5 billion won (US$39.4 million) worth of North Korean goods being smuggled into the country as Chinese brands since Seoul suspended its trade with Pyongyang last year, a lawmaker said Thursday.
South Korea suspended trade with the communist state in May last year after a multinational team of investigators confirmed that the North torpedoed the South Korean warship Cheonan on March 26 near their disputed western maritime border.
"From May last year until August this year, 46.5 billion won worth of North Korean goods have been confiscated as they were being smuggled in as Chinese brands," Rep. Kwon Young-se of the Grand National Party said during a parliamentary audit of the Korea Customs Service.
Kwon said that the North seems to be using Chinese brands to keep selling its products in the South after the inter-Korean business channel was blocked.
Anthracites made up the majority with 45 billion won worth of the commodity being confiscated. Potato starch came next with 900 million won, the lawmaker said.