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VN exporters seek help after Hanjin bankruptcy

Update: September, 27/2016 - 10:10
Local exporters, freight forwarding firms and seaports are calling for Government support to ease the effects of the bankruptcy filed by South Korea’s Hanjin Shipping Global (HJS), the world’s seventh-largest container carrier. — Photo

HCM CITY – Local exporters, freight forwarding firms and seaports are calling for Government support to ease the effects of the bankruptcy filed by South Korea’s Hanjin Shipping Global (HJS), the world’s seventh-largest container carrier.

Bùi Thị Liên Thủy, director of Hải Bằng Trading and Service Logistics Company, said Vietnamese exporters risk losing their goods shipped by Hanjin while freight forwarding firms could be fined for violating contracts.

Thủy said her company has to offload goods carried by HJS ships at a Singapore port and hire another carrier at a cost of US$3,000 a container to deliver to their customers on time.

Nguyễn Đình Việt, deputy director of Việt Nam Maritime Administration (Vinamarine), said the bankruptcy has affected  business around the world, not just Vietnamese ones, and the Government should help firms offset their losses.

In addition, Vinamarine encourages firms to be active in finding solutions themselves for containers outside Việt Nam.

He added that the Ministry of Transport has asked the Government to establish a team to deal with the effects of the HJS bankruptcy.

According to Vinamarine, Hanjin accounts for over five per cent of Việt Nam’s container shipping industry. The bankruptcy  has badly hurt many Vietnamese companies, especially those exporting seafood, garment and textile products, footwear and furniture to China, South Korea and the US.

Trương Đình Hòe, general secretary of the Việt Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), estimated that about 150 containers of frozen seafood due to reach the US by the end of this month are affected.

The Hanjin Chennai  has been stranded for days off the coast in southern Vietnam as it was refused permission to enter a port in Vung Tau. There are concerns about whether the failed shipping line could pay docking and other fees.

Vietnamese seaports should allow Hanjin ships to dock in Việt Nam as soon as possible to reduce losses, Viet urged.

As many as 733 containers of merchandise on the Hanjin Chennai were scheduled to dock in HCM City on September 2.

There were also reports that some Hanjin ships had been seized in China on behalf of creditors.

Customs statistics show that the South Korean shipping line has run up a debt of about $2.5 million to HCM City-based Sài Gòn Newport Corporation, and more than $200,000 to other ports in the north.

Some said Sài Gòn Newport should ask for help from relevant authorities so that the Hanjin Chennai can dock in HCM City and allow retailers and companies to offload their cargo, while creditors can seize other assets.

HJC accounts for 2.9 per cent of the world’s sea shipping market share, ranking the 7th and biggest shipping firm in South Korea. The carrier has operated 140 vessels on 60 international maritime routes. It carries more than 100 million tonnes of goods a year. — VNS


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