According to Yonhap:
The number of North Korean visitors to China increased drastically since then-North Korean leader Kim Jong-il’s tour of the North’s biggest communist ally early last year, Chinese government data shows.
The data on the entry of foreigners obtained Sunday by Yonhap News Agency showed that 152,000 North Koreans entered China in 2011, a sharp rise from 116,000 the previous year. Out of the total, 114,000 were businessmen and laborers.
The comparable figures were 116,000 in 2010, 103,000 in 2009, 101,000 in 2008, 113,000 in 2007 and 110,000 in 2006.
The sharp rise is attributed to the visit to China by late North Korean leader Kim Jong-il in May last year, apparently to enhance bilateral economic cooperation.
The Beijing government said at the time that Kim was invited “so he could have the chance to grasp the developments in China and make the most of them for the development of North Korea.”
The number of North Korean visitors to China will likely increase further this year as China has received 88,000 North Koreans for the first six months this year alone.
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N. Korean visitors to China rise drastically since last year: data