Chinese authorities have banned imports of seafood products from South Korea amid rising tension in the South China Sea, as the country grapples with its own territorial disputes.
The country said in a statement on Wednesday that it had “decided to block the imports” of “fish-eating crab” from the Korean port of Busan, and other products from the South, the official Xinhua news agency said.
South Korea has been one of China’s key trading partners in the region, and has said it will impose a trade embargo on China unless Beijing implements a trade deal.
Chinese media reports earlier this month said China was considering a possible ban on seafood imports from South Korean ports to boost domestic demand for the delicacy.
In recent months, South Korean officials have been pushing Beijing to resolve the row over the disputed Scarborough Shoal in the East China Sea by giving up land it claims as its own.
In the past two years, Beijing has been sending its own vessels to the area in an attempt to resolve territorial disputes between Seoul and Tokyo, but has failed to make headway.
China and South Korea have clashed over the issue of a possible future military zone, with Beijing warning Seoul it will take any measures necessary to protect the island.