Policies urged to boost border trade
HA NOI — The import and export of goods via auxiliary border gates and crossings outside economic zones need managing dependent on localities, businesses and commodity categories, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Cam Tu has said.
The trade, also known as cross-border trade, with small volumes worth less than VND2 million (US$96), was an exception in international trade and an incentive for residents living around borderlines, he said.
Trade value via auxiliary border gates and crossings contributed to two-way trade between Viet Nam and neighbouring countries.
For example, the trade value via Viet Nam – China auxiliary border gates and crossings in 2010 was double that of 2009 and it kept increasing by 50 per cent in 2011.
However, so far, Viet Nam has yet to have any measures to manage and supervise traders who have their goods transported via auxiliary border gates and crossings.
Taking advantage of the poor management, foreign traders buy large amounts of Vietnamese farm products and hire local porters to carry them to the other side of the borderline. Moreover, Viet Nam's policy on auxiliary border gates and crossings is not compatible with those of other countries.
For example, China does not recognise the Ban Vuoc auxiliary border gate in northern Lao Cai Province, thus there is no Chinese customs officer, causing blocked goods at the gate.
The province's Customs Department vice head Pham Ngoc Thach said that counter auxiliary border gates in China were opened and closed with different schemes, affecting cross-border goods flow.
According to the ministry, loose management can pave the way to the import of substandard goods to Viet Nam or the export of necessities including sugar and rice.
Tu said that the ministry was planning to improve the relevant legal framework by developing a circular to replace the current Circular 13/2009/TT-BCT dated three years ago.
Accordingly, the new legal document will include the issuance of border-trade codes to collect data about traders whose goods are transported via auxiliary bordergates and crossings. — VNS