In particular, US prohibits among other things:

  • Any transactions or dealings with the Government of North Korea or the Workers’ Party of Korea;
  • Direct or indirect exports and imports to or from North Korea of nearly all goods, services, and technology;
  • Vessels that have called at a port in North Korea in the previous 180 days, and vessels that have engaged in an STS transfer with such a vessel in the previous 180 days, from calling at a port in the United States; and
  • Registering a vessel in North Korea, obtaining authorization for a vessel to fly the North Korea flag, and owning, leasing, operating, and insuring any vessel flagged by North Korea.


The United Nations prohibitions include but are not limited to:

  • Owning, leasing, operating, chartering, or providing vessel classification, certification or associated service and insurance or re-insurance, to any DPRK-flagged, owned, controlled, or operated vessel;
  • Providing insurance or re-insurance services to vessels Member states have reasonable grounds to believe were involved in activities or the transport of items prohibited by the relevant resolutions;
  • Providing bunkering or servicing of North Korean vessels suspected of carrying prohibited items;
  • STS transfers to or from North Korean-flagged vessels of any goods or items that are supplied, sold, or transferred to or from North Korea; and
  • Port entry of vessels if designated by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) or if a State has information that provides reasonable grounds believe that vessel is owned, controlled, or operated by persons designated by the UNSC.

The UN prohibits the importation from North Korea of the following:

Coal, Textiles, Seafood, Iron and iron ore,  Lead and lead ore, Copper, Nickel, Zinc, Gold, Silver, Titanium ore, Rare earth metals, Vanadium ore, Statues and monuments, Conventional arms, Food and agricultural products, Machinery, Electrical equipment, Earth and stone, including magnesia and magnesite, Wood, Vessels and Fishing rights.

The UN prohibits the exportation to North Korea of the following goods:

Refined petroleum (beyond 500,000 barrels/year), Crude oil (beyond 4,000,000 barrels/year), Aviation fuel (except fuel required for an aircraft to return to North Korea), Rocket fuel, Condensates and natural gas liquids, Industrial machinery, All transportation vehicles (including motor vehicles, trucks, trains, ships, aircraft, helicopters), Iron, steel, and other metals, Conventional arms, Ballistic missiles, Weapons of mass destruction & component and Luxury goods.