Statistics by local authorities show that the number of trucks waiting to transport fruits and other farm produce for export to China has reduced to about 1,000 in Lang Son Province. In Quang Ninh Province, Mong Cai Border Gate did customs clearance procedures for 169 container trucks of dragon fruit, mango, jackfruit and banana weighing 3,524 tons and 290 containers of 10,046 tons of cassava powder, 165 containers with 1,586 tons of fresh seafood in the first half of March.
To boost the growth momentum, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development proposed the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Industry and Trade to closely work with the agriculture ministry and the people’s committees of border provinces to intensify activities to assist border trade and facilitate customs clearance to prevent cargo congestion at border gates. In addition they should support trade promotion activities for agro-aqua-forestry products, develop domestic market and solve difficulties for food and farm produce retailing and trading fields.
In addition, ministries should strengthen state management in trade, market management and goods supply and circulation; be determined to handle trade frauds, profiteering or price rigging to prevent them from confusing producers and consumers; guide localities to balance goods supply and demand in order not to transport too much goods to the border area causing congestion at border gates.
According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s office, all border gates recognized by Vietnam and China in the main border line and frontier entranceways have resumed operation. Provinces with large amount of export goods such as Quang Ninh, Lang Son and Lao Cai have established a process in which each border gate arranges a quarantine area for Vietnamese drivers. Accordingly, the Vietnamese drivers drive cargo trucks into the quarantine area in the border gate, drivers of the management board of the border gate will drive the vehicles to the other side of the border to deliver goods to Chinese traders. Afterwards, they come back to the quarantine area, disinfect and sterilize the vehicles before handing over them back to the Vietnamese drivers. Drivers and porters will continue staying in the quarantine ward in the border gate.
The ministry noted that customs clearance ability at border gates is still limited with a shortage of human resource attending in the process of exporting and importing goods. So customs clearance procedure for goods trading has been resumed but the progress is much slower than before to meet Covid-19 prevention regulations.
In the western and southwestern border lines, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia have applied tight measures to limit or even ban residents from traveling across the border. This has resulted in cargo congestion in some border gates.
On the same day, the Minister of Industry and Trade sent a document to the Prime Minister about the halt of implementing Announcement 121 from the Government Office, in which the Ministry of Industry and Trade is required to stop rice export until the end of May, 2020. In the document, the ministry proposed to continue exporting rice until the end of May to have more time to re-estimate the real output of the winter spring crop, signed export contracts and the volume of rice in stock of businesses.
After the Announcement was made, deputy director general of the General Department of Vietnam Customs Mai Xuan Thanh signed an urgent dispatch requiring customs agencies in provinces and cities to halt receiving customs clearance registration for all rice export consignments from March 24. Consignments registered to do custom clearance before March 24 are handled as normal.