SEOUL-- North Korea's grain imports from China surged in March from a year earlier, a U.S.-based news agency said Wednesday, citing customs data released by China.

The North imported a total of 4,400 tons of grain from China in March, which represented about a 3,200 percent spike from the same month last year, according to a report by Voice of America (VOA).

The amount was also up from the North's February grain imports from its closest ally, which stood at around 1,275 tons.

Of the imports, wheat flour took up the largest share of 1,788 tons, followed by rice and corn with 956 tons and 882 tons, respectively.

During the January-March period, the North's cumulative grain imports from China came to 6,512 tons, a jump of 4.3 times from the same period a year earlier, the report showed.

The North's fertilizer imports from China also soared 67 percent on-year to 53,863 tons in March. The amount is a sevenfold increase from what was imported in the previous month.

Source: Yonhap News Agency