The United Nations Security Council on Wednesday adopted a new sanctions resolution against North Korea, ramping up earlier punitive measures following the reclusive country’s fifth and largest nuclear test in September.
The centerpiece of the fresh sanctions is a cap on North Korea’s coal exports that could choke off funding sources for its nuclear and ballistic missile programs if implemented to the full extent.
The resolution set an upper limit on the North’s coal exports at $400.9 million or 7.5 million tons per year, whichever is lower, starting on Jan. 1. The measure is expected to cut the country’s hard currency revenues by at least $700 million annually.
The new resolution is intended to close loopholes in the previous sanctions resolution adopted by the Security Council in March in response to Pyongyang’s fourth nuclear test in January and its subsequent rocket launch using ballistic missile technology, both of which are banned under past resolutions.