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Imports stuck at border gates due to new Chinese rules

Update: August, 23/2019 - 07:45


Check goods area in the Tân Thanh border gate, Lạng Sơn Province. Import of goods to Việt Nam is suspended at border gates as China's new C/O form E. — Photo

LẠNG SƠN — China's sudden application of the new C/O (certificate of origin) form E has left lots of goods imported from China stuck at Lạng Sơn Province's border gates since August 20, according to Lạng Sơn Customs Department.

Vy Công Tường, Deputy Director of Lạng Sơn Customs Department, told Hải quan (Customs) newspaper that on August 20, many enterprises implemented customs procedures at the customs sub-departments at the Hữu Nghị and Tân Thanh border gates with the new form. The new version is inconsistent with regulations in Circular 36/2010/TT-BCT issued by the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT).

The new form is compatible with a MOIT circular dated July 30 of this year on rules of goods origin in the ASEAN-China Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Economic Cooperation, but it doesn't take effect from September 12, Tường said.

Therefore, border gate customs offices could not accept the new C/O form E provided by the enterprises, he said.

Nguyễn Văn Dũng, a customs agent specialising in customs procedures for enterprises trading goods at Tân Thanh border gate, said the Chinese side provides the new C/O form E and has required Việt Nam’s side to accept this form from August 20. However, it is not accepted at Việt Nam’s customs offices at those border gates.

"The customs agency has explained that the new form has an appendix of the Circular 12/2019/TT-BCT that is effective on September 12, 2019. Therefore, if enterprises want to receive customs clearance for their goods imports, they should pay taxes and submit C/O form E when Circular 12 comes into effect to get a tax refund for those goods, Dũng said.

A representative of the Lạng Sơn Customs Department’s branch at Tân Thanh border gate said China introduced the new form without early notice so the customs office has told enterprises to pay full tax for receiving customs clearance and then get a refund later when regulations relating to C/O form E come into effect.

However, many businesses disagree with this solution.

According to the customs department, the situation is causing difficulties for businesses. Imported agricultural products need early customs clearance and also need refunds according to the special preferential tax with C/O form E.

Trần Bằng Toàn, Director of the Lạng Sơn Customs Department’s Customs Sub-department at the Hữu Nghị border gate, said China’s sudden change damages local import-export businesses because if enterprises do not complete customs procedures on schedule for imports, they will incur a storage charge and late delivery fines. 

Đỗ Thanh Tuyền, a representative of HAB Company, said his enterprise specialises in importing aluminum products with value at VNĐ4-5 billion per import. If they pay full taxes for the imports under the new form, they must pay VNĐ400-500 million, so they and other firms must wait for guidance from Việt Nam’s management agencies to solve this problem, he said.

Hoàng Duy Hiệp, a representative of Bách Việt Lạng Sơn Co Ltd, said his company also has this problem for two shipments of artificial grass and fruits (pears). If the fruit imports don't get customs clearance soon, the goods will be damaged and incur daily storage charges of VNĐ5-10 million in China. Therefore, businesses want the State management agency to come up with a resolution for enterprises.  VNS

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