The number of North Korean workers exported to China increased to 100,000 last year.
According to the report “Current Condition and Implication of Entry of North Korean Workers to China” written by the Beijing branch of the Korea International Trade Association (KITA), the number of North Korean workers who entered China (including flight attendants) soared to 93,000 from 54,000 in 2010. The amount has increased sharply by 19.9 percent each year, over two times higher than that of the total foreign entrants to China in the same period.
The reason why North Korean Workers entered China is mostly to obtain foreign money. KITA analyzed that “This means that North Korea is acquiring foreign money through manpower export, which is higher value-added than trade,” adding, “A new type of economic cooperation model is being made between North Korea and China to enhance the competitiveness of Chinese companies, which suffer difficulties owing to a shortage of manpower and the rise of labor costs in China.”
Chinese workers command about 2,500 to 3,000 yuan (US$407 to $488) per month, while North Korean workers only require monthly salaries of 1,500 to 1,600 yuan (US$244 to $261).