Koryo Restaurant, a North Korean restaurant in the biggest Vietnamese city of Ho Chi Minh, closed last week, according to the community of South Korean residents in the Southeastern Asian country. The North Korean restaurant opened in 2014 and was employing around 15 North Koreans.

Currently, a notice at the restaurant says that they are temporarily closed for renovations, but one employee of a nearby restaurant said they are permanently closed after the restaurant was sold to a new owner.

It followed the closure of another North Korean restaurant in Vietnam's famous tourist city of Da Nang in February last year as a result of grim sales.

The recently closed restaurant was also said to have suffered a dive in the number of customers at a time the international community is tightening its grip on North Korea's overseas business operations.

Two North Korean restaurants are still in business in Vietnam, both in the capital Hanoi. But they are also struggling to keep afloat amid falling customers in the country, one of North Korea's traditional allies.

Despite its history of close relations with North Korea, Vietnam has joined the international community in condemning North Korea's provocations, including its sixth nuclear test last month and a series of ballistic missile launches.

As part of efforts to implement U.N. Security Council resolutions on North Korea, Vietnam has also expelled the head and vice head of the Vietnamese unit of Tanchon Commercial Bank, a North Korean bank suspected of money laundering and money transferring for North Korea's overseas arms sales. The two executives were blacklisted by the UNSC.

Yonhap Agency - October 2, 2017