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Vietnam, China seek way out for congestion at border gates
Phi Khanh 10:37, 2021/12/30
Measures are being devised by two countries’ authorities to remove truck congestion at the Vietnam-China border.

The authorities of Vietnam and China are urgently seeking solutions for removing congestion at Vietnam-China border crossings.

 Thousands of trucks still lie stranded at border gates in Tan Thanh border gate, Lang Son Province. Photo: VNA

In the latest move, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Minh Vu had a phone conversation with Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs of China Wu Jianghao on December 27 to discuss measures to accelerate customs clearance at the Vietnam-China border gates.

More than 4,000 trucks carrying fruits have been stuck at Vietnam’s northern border gates after China tightened Covid-19 safety measures. 

At the phone conversation, the two sides agreed that cargo congestion has been causing great damage to people and businesses of the two countries, affecting bilateral trade cooperation as well as regional supply and production chains.

The two sides shared the difficulties in realizing the dual goal of containing the Covid-19 pandemic and promoting economic-trade recovery. 

They both affirmed the importance of early resumption of border trade activities for the socio-economic development of the localities of the two sides, as well as contributing to maintaining stable production and supply chains, especially ensuring legitimate interests for businesses and people of the two countries.

In the spirit of cooperation and overcoming difficulties, the two sides agreed to maintain close communication and actively urge the relevant authorities of the two countries to find solutions and handle the congestion problem.

The two countries will continue strengthening cooperation in disease prevention and control at the Vietnam-China border gate areas.

Previously, Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh at a meeting on December 26 asked local businesses to stop sending trucks to the border gates. He also requested ministries and sectors actively work with the Chinese side to clear the congestion as soon as possible.

A report from the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) revealed as of December 25, there remain 1,555 trucks in Quang Ninh and 4,204 in Lang Son pending customs clearance from the Chinese sides.

“80% of those trucks are carrying farm produce and fruits that are likely to perish in case of having to wait further for customs clearance,” Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien said at a meeting.

The Deputy Prime Minister requested local authorities to continue working with the Chinese side to find a solution for the congestion issues, including an expansion of customs clearance time from eight to 12 hours per day.

Data from the General Department of Customs of Vietnam showed that in the first 11 months of this year, the Chinese market imported goods worth $98.5 billion from Vietnam, an increase of 32% against the same period last year.

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