HA NOI (VNS)— Several thousand Vietnamese businesses that currently import agricultural products and materials from foreign countries will have to stop their operations if they do not register quarantine and origin before the end of the year.
Only 13 out of 59 countries and territories exporting products to Viet Nam have completed the registration, according to statistics from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).
Head of the ministry's Plant Protection Department Nguyen Xuan Hong said that Circular 13 stipulates that countries and territories exporting agricultural products and materials that come from plants into Viet Nam have to register plant quarantines in order to manage and control epidemics. The circular took effect in July.
Hong said 11 countries had officially finished their registration while two others - Laos and China - have been allowed to temporarily export to Viet Nam. This leaves a big number of unregistered exporters.
He said the ministry allowed countries with contracts signed before July 1st, 2011 to continue exporting to Viet Nam to help foreign businesses prepare for the application. However, several businesses took advantage of the policy to procrastinate over registering.
He added that there were several thousand businesses working with the unregistered countries in the fields of breeding foods, vegetables and wheat flour.
After one year of implementation of the circular, quarantine agencies checked 1,545 imported samples with an average of 140 ones each month. They discovered 12 samples containing harmful chemicals and plant protective chemicals, mainly in imported fruits and vegetables.
Deputy Minister Nguyen Thi Xuan Thu said government has not implemented check-ups for 46 unregistered countries and territories exporting agricultural products to Viet Nam.
Thu said countries without proper registration would have to stop exporting to Viet Nam.
"We would not be easy on imported goods in Viet Nam, given that our own exported products have been strictly investigated for everything from microorganisms to chemicals," she said.
The ministry asked the Department of Agro-forestry and Aquaculture Quality Management to tell foreign exporters to complete their applications and help businesses exporting to Viet Nam. — VNS