Rep. Royce’s laudable action

On Wednesday, Congressman Ed Royce (R-CA) responded to the Treasury Department’s injunction against U.S. banks doing any business for or with Banco Delta Asia, in Macau, China.  Royce correctly takes the Chinese bank and its North Korean clients to task for engaging in illicit counterfeiting and money laundering activities.

We at the Center congratulate Rep. Royce for his firm stance on this issue as well as his determination to make public some of the seedier aspects of North Korea’s international dealings and how the affect U.S. interests.

The text of the press release is as follows:

Royce Reaction to Treasury Department Announcement on Banco Delta Asia

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Treasury Department finalized its rule against Macau-based Banco Delta Asia, effectively prohibiting U.S. financial institutions from opening or maintaining correspondent accounts for or on behalf the bank and barring it from accessing the U.S. financial system, either directly or indirectly. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), who recently released a study on North Korean counterfeiting of U.S. currency and its implications for the six-party talks, commented on the Treasury Department’s action:

Treasury’s action today should put meaning behind the words of U.S. diplomats who have said that they take North Korea’s illicit activity, including the counterfeiting of U.S. currency, seriously.

We must continue to aggressively track North Korea’s global and robust illicit activity — taking action against other complicit financial institutions as necessary. The danger is that post the February 13th nuclear agreement, and post Banco Delta Asia, North Korea’s illicit activities are downplayed.

Confronting North Korea on its illicit activities bolsters our diplomatic efforts, and makes denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula more likely, not less. Ending its counterfeiting and other criminal activity would sever a key subsidy for North Korea’s weapons of mass destruction program and force North Korea into international norms.

Rep Ed Royce (R-CA) is a senior Member of the House Foreign Affairs and Financial Services Committees. The study, Gangster Regime: How North Korea Counterfeits United States Currency, provides a comprehensive look at the scope of North Korean counterfeiting and its implications for the economic and national security of the United States and provides recommendations for Congress.

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