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Imports stuck at border gates due to new Chinese rules

China's sudden application of the new C/O (certificate of origin) form E has left lots of goods imported from China stuck at northern Lang Son province's border gates since August 20, according to the Lang Son Customs Department.

Check goods area in theTan Thanhborder gate, Lang Son province (


Vy Cong Tuong,Deputy Director of the Lang Son Customs Department, told Hai quan (Customs)newspaper that on August 20, many enterprises implemented customs procedures atthe customs sub-departments at the Huu Nghi and TanThanh border gates with the new form. The new version is inconsistentwith regulations in Circular 36/2010/TT-BCT issued by the Ministry of Industryand Trade (MOIT).

The newform is compatible with a MOIT circular dated July 30 of this year onrules of goods origin in the ASEAN-China Framework Agreement on ComprehensiveEconomic Cooperation, but it doesn't take effect from September12, Tuong said.

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

Nguyen VanDung, a customs agent specialising in customs procedures for enterprisestrading goods at Tan Thanh border gate, said the Chinese sideprovides the new C/O form E and has required Vietnam’s side to accept thisform from August 20. However, it is not accepted at Vietnam’scustoms offices at those border gates.

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

Arepresentative of the Lang Son Customs Department’s branch at Tan Thanhborder gate said China introduced the new form without early notice so thecustoms office has told enterprises to pay full tax for receiving customsclearance and then get a refund later when regulations relating to C/O form Ecome into effect. However, many businesses disagree with this solution.

Accordingto the customs department, the situation is causing difficulties forbusinesses. Imported agricultural products need early customs clearance andalso need refunds according to the special preferential tax with C/O form E.

Tran Bang Toan,Director of the Lang Son Customs Department’s Customs Sub-department atthe Huu Nghi border gate, said China’s sudden change damageslocal import-export businesses because if enterprises do not complete customsprocedures on schedule for imports, they will incur a storage charge and latedelivery fines. 

Do Thanh Tuyen,a representative of HAB Company, said his enterprise specialises in importing aluminumproducts with value at 4-5 billion VND per import. If they pay full taxes forthe imports under the new form, they must pay 400-500 million VND, so they andother firms must wait for guidance from Vietnam’s managementagencies to solve this problem, he said.

Hoang Duy Hiep,a representative of Bach Viet Lang Son Co Ltd, said his companyalso 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 bedamaged and incur daily storage charges of 5-10 million VND in China.Therefore, businesses want the State management agency to come up witha resolution for enterprises.-VNS/VNA


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