US issues joint advisory to alert persons globally to North Korea’s ballistic missile procurement activities

September 2020

The US Department of State’s Bureau of International Security and Non-proliferation, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), and the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) have issued a joint advisory to alert persons globally to North Korea’s ballistic missile procurement activities.

The Advisory sets out in detail the key entities involved in these activities, the types of cargoes that are relevant to North Korea’s ballistic missile programme, examples of the deceptive practices used by those acting on behalf of North Korea to procure the necessary goods, and the steps that those in the shipping industry and commerce can take to minimise the risk of unwittingly providing the means by which prohibited goods end up in North Korea. 

The Advisory references the key mitigation steps that are recommended by the US authorities, as set out in the Sanctions Advisory for the Maritime Industry, Energy and Metals Sectors, and Related Communities dated 14 May 2020, on which this Club circular commented.

The US operates an extensive sanctions programme targeting North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, and has been actively enforcing those sanctions for a number of years, resulting in the designation of a large number of companies and individuals worldwide. The United Nations and European Union similarly operate sanctions programmes against North Korea. Breach of those sanctions could adversely impact Club cover. Members are advised to review the contents of the latest US Advisory with a view to ensuring that their compliance programmes are able to protect against the risk of a breach of these sanctions.