China has refused to approve shipments of massive amounts of Korean cosmetics into the country.
According to industry sources in Beijing on Tuesday, 19 out of the 28 beauty products that failed to receive import approval from China were from Korea, and more than eleven-thousand kilograms of Korean cosmetics were ordered to be returned.
The rejected items include lotions, toothpastes, masks and other popular Korean cosmetics products in China.
Korean cosmetic companies, including AmorePacific and Kolmar Korea, have seen their share prices plunge since July last year, when Seoul formally announced its plans to deploy the U.S.-developed THAAD missile defense system.
However, Korea's ministry of health and welfare says the refusal to import the products was down to problems with the products themselves rather than the THAAD issue.
In other sectors though, Beijing has virtually banned popular Korean entertainers from performing in China and rejected Korean airlines' plan to operate chartered flights to China ahead of the Chinese New Year holiday season that starts at the end of this month.
Lately, reports also say China test-fired some 100 medium-range ballistic missiles last year and the Korean military confirmed that several Chinese military planes entered Korea's air defense identification zone earlier this week.
These moves from China are believed to be a sign of economic retaliation against the deployment of THAAD, which Beijing claims could hurt its regional security interests.
Seoul and Washington say the defense system is aimed at countering threats from North Korea.
Kim Mok-yeon, Arirang News.