Answering questions from Japanese businesses


VCN – Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department answered many questions from Japanese businesses operating in the city at the 20th Dialogue with Japanese Businesses.

Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department regularly holds training courses and dialogues with businesses. Photo: T.H
Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department regularly holds training courses and dialogues with businesses. Photo: T.H
According to HCMC Customs Department, most of the documents in the customs dossier are sent to the Customs agency through the Electronic Data Processing System (VNACCS). However, some paper documents must still be submitted directly in accordance with laws on specialized inspection such as: export and import permits; certificates of specialized inspection results of a number of competent authorities that have not connected with the National Single Window, or in accordance with international law, such as: certificates of origin of goods according to the Rules of Origin of the Free Trade Agreements that Vietnam has signed.

Encouraging businesses to inform trade fraud

According to businesses, some importers importing goods into Vietnam do not have pay tax or pay low tax rates thanks to C/O issued by Japan. In this case, if an importer of full-tax goods submits an application to HCMC Customs Department, will the customs agency support to certify the C/O issuer in Japan?

HCMC customs said Vietnamese laws do not prohibit parallel imports. The application of tax incentives for goods imported from Japan to Vietnam complies with Vietnam’s commitments described in effective free trade agreements (FTA) to which Vietnam and Japan are acceded to such as ASEAN-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership (AJCEP), Vietnam Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (VJEPA) and Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Therefore, if goods imported from Japan to Vietnam satisfy rules of origin in the FTAs mentioned above, they are entitled to tax incentives in accordance with Vietnam’s commitments.

The Customs authority performs verification on origin of imported goods in case there is doubt about the authenticity of the proof of origin or origin fraud of goods in accordance with international practices and Vietnam’s laws, including verification of the C/O issuer of an exporting country. The Customs authority welcomes and encourages businesses to provide information about origin fraud of goods imported into Vietnam. The Customs authority will actively verify and handle origin fraud of imported goods.

Regarding the proposal of enterprises on the disclosure of import and export data in more detail, the HCMC Customs Department said the disclosure of merchandise trade performance is under the General Department of Customs. Currently, the General Department of Customs regularly publishes merchandise trade performance on the web portal at and in the Customs Magazine. In addition, the General Department of Customs also publishes the Customs Yearbook on Foreign Merchandise Trade (bilingual in Vietnamese – English). Enterprises can look up import and export data from the above sources. If businesses want to find out more import-export information that has not been published on the above information sources, they can directly contact the General Department of Customs.

Application of electronic procedures

During the peak period against the Covid-19 pandemic, businesses also had many problems related to import and export procedures. As reflected by businesses, due to the impact of Covid-19, the movement of employees was restricted to minimize the risk of infection. Therefore, they expect the Customs to digitize and further reform procedures by applying complete electronic procedures instead of original documents.

To help businesses during the peak period against the Covid-19 pandemic, the General Department of Customs issued Official Letter 3980/TCHQ-GSQL dated August 11, 2021 allowing customs declarants to submit scanned documents with digital signatures and to submit paper documents within 30 days since the date of opening declarations for documents in the customs dossiers that are required to be presented as paper originals/certified copies upon customs clearance.

For certificates of origin alone, the customs declarant is allowed to submit it within the validity of the certificate during the Covid-19 pandemic according to Circular 47/2020/TT-BTC dated May 27, 2020.

Currently, the General Department of Customs is carrying out the digital transformation of customs procedures, which is expected to be piloted at the end of 2022, and also proposing the Government to request relevant authorities which have not implemented the National Single Window to soon join this mechanism to build a complete digital customs process.

In addition, the HCMC Customs Department also answered questions from businesses on procedures for destroying duty-free goods during the Covid-19 pandemic.

By Le Thu/ Huyen Trang


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