Thieves target transport containers
HCM CITY (VNS)— The city police reported that 46 cases of goods were stolen while being transported in containers to HCM City since early last year, representing total losses of VND27 billion (US$1.3 million).
Neighbouring provinces including Dong Nai, Binh Duong, Tay Ninh and Tien Giang have also reported huge losses from stolen goods stored in containers.
Representatives of the Viet Nam Cashew Nut Association said that within the last several years, the association had lost 113 tonnes of products, worth over $2 million, excluding small quantities that were not reported.
Both imported and exported goods have been stolen. The Taisin Electricity Cable Viet Nam said that in July all of its goods inside one containers were stolen. Two weeks ago, the company lost goods valued at $190,000.
Authorities said that drivers and assistants often linked up with professional bands of thieves to steal goods, especially when the drivers were unaccompanied by company staff.
In other cases, some people set up their own small transport companies in order to steal goods.
Thieves often stop trucks and then break the containers' hinges or seals, and sometimes destroy the top of containers, according to police.
"Companies and port authorities have used many methods to try to stop it, but it's not enough because the penalties for violations are too low, " Tran Huy Hien, general secretary of the Viet Nam Freight Forwarders Association (VIFFAS) was quoted as saying in the Tin Tuc (News) newspaper.
Many companies have asked ports to install weighing machines for containers and print out documents for them with the corresponding figures.
A representative of the Viet Nam Cashew Nut Association has asked the Transport Ministry to draw up new regulations to manage container-transport companies.
The representative said that if companies discovered their drivers stealing goods, they should provide relevant documents to the police.
Police in HCM City also warned companies that their container seals were often not strong enough to protect goods.
They said that companies often hired different drivers who decided the route themselves, making it easier for them to steal goods.
"If any company loses goods, they should report the loss to us as soon as possible," a police officer said. — VNS