March 1, 2023

OFAC takes steps to cut off revenue to North Korean government

The Office of Foreign Assets Control of the US Department of the Treasury has sanctioned three entities and two individuals for their actions on behalf of, and in support of, the government of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Chilsong Trading Corporation and Korea Paekho Trading Corporation were designated pursuant to Executive Order 13687 for being controlled by, or serving as agencies or instrumentalities of, the government of the DPRK or the Workers’ Party of North Korea.  According to OFAC, these companies generate funds for the DPRK through art and construction projects in Africa and the middle east, and by working on behalf of and being subordinate to the DPRK Ministry of People’s Armed Forces, which was designated by OFAC and by the United Nations in 2017.  The third entity designated by OFAC today is Congo Aconde SARL, a Democratic Republic of the Congo company, deemed to be a front company for Korea Paekho Trading Corporation.

The designated individuals are DPRK citizens Hwang Kil Su and Pak Hwa Song; they have been designated pursuant to Executive Order 13180 for engaging in commercial activity that generates revenue for the North Korean government or the Workers’ Party.  Hwang and Pak established Congo Aconde in the DRC, and oversaw the company’s involvement in the construction of statuary in the DRC, and opening US-dollar accounts in West African banks.

As a result of these designations, all property and interests in property of the designees within the United States or within the possession or control of a US person are blocked, and US persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions involving the designated persons.

Chilsong, Paekho, Pak and Hwang were previously designated by the European Union for supporting the DPRK’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs, and for taking measures to evade sanctions.

US Dept of the Treasury press release