China likely will halt crude oil exports to North Korea should Pyongyang conduct its sixth nuclear test, a prominent Chinese expert told The Nikkei, signaling a tougher attitude by Beijing toward its rogue neighbor. A nuclear test or the launch of intercontinental ballistic missiles would violate United Nations Security Council resolutions, and China is certain to respond with additional sanctions, said Zhang Liangui, a professor at the Chinese Communist Party’s Central

Party School and noted authority on North Korea. The option to cut off the North’s crude supply will be put on the table, Zhang said, while stressing that the Chinese government will ultimately decide its course of action. North Korea relies almost entirely on China for oil. The Asian giant shipped about 500,000 tons of crude to the North each year until 2013, according to the Chinese customs agency. READ MORE