China on Friday criticised the economic sanctions imposed by Japan on some Chinese companies for their links with North Korea and warned of consequences if the decision was not withdrawn, media reports said.
Earlier on Friday, the Japanese government had announced the freezing of assets of four Chinese and two Namibian companies as well as one Chinese national and a North Korean, Efe news reported.
"We have urged Japan to stop this," China's foreign ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said in a press conference, warning that Tokyo would have to face consequences if it persisted with the sanctions.
The spokesperson added that Beijing had expressed its "dissatisfaction and strong opposition," to these measures, since "China has always comprehensively implemented UN sanctions in their entirety".
Tokyo's decision involves freezing the assets of those believed to be collaborating with the North Korean regime in exporting coal and sending labour abroad, and is meant to curb capital inflows into the rogue nation in response to its military programme escalation.
As a punishment to those associated with the Pyongyang regime's weapons programmes or raw materials trade, Tokyo had already included five companies and nine individuals from China on the list in late July.
Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said during a press conference on Friday here, that Japan believes it is extremely important to pressurise North Korea, along with the US and South Korea.
The Japanese measures follow similar steps announced by the US this week against companies and individuals from China and Russia for their alleged collaboration with the North Korean regime.
Beijing has opposed the imposition of unilateral sanctions by any country outside the framework of the UN.
The UN Security Council approved new sanctions against North Korea earlier this month, imposed for the rogue state's two intercontinental missile tests in July, which could reduce Pyongyang's annual export revenue by $1 billion.