HCM City Customs Coping with the decline of import export goods


Customs officers of Saigon port area 1 Customs Branch checked imported goods on February 8, 2023. Photo: T.H
Customs officers of Saigon port area 1 Customs Branch checked imported goods on February 8, 2023. Photo: T.H

Import and export goods plummet

Visiting Cat Lai port in the early days of this February, the reporter noticed that goods transported to the port were very sparse compared to the busy scene before the Lunar New Year. Talking to Customs News, Deputy Manager of Saigon port area 1 Customs Branch Do The Manh said that before Tet, the unit carried out clearance procedures for about 2,000 import declarations daily. However, there were only about 900-1,000 import declarations of goods daily. For exports through Cat Lai port in the first week of February 2023, although it witnessed a reduction, the decrease of exports was lower than imports. According to the Export Cargo Procedures Team statistics, in the first week of February 2023, the number of export declarations through Cat Lai port that carried out clearance procedures varied from more than 400 to 900 declarations. Meanwhile, in the first week of January 2022, this number ranged from over 900 to nearly 1,300 declarations.

According to the analysis of the Export Cargo Procedures Team leader – Saigon port area 1 Customs Branch, among the exported goods through Cat Lai port, the agricultural products which have undergone export procedures decreased slightly. However, it is mainly reduced in other groups, such as furniture and electronics.

Not only goods imported through seaports experienced a sharp decrease, but import and export goods via air also plummeted. Deputy Manager of Tan Son Nhat International Airport Customs Branch Nguyen Thanh Phu said that there has never been a year when goods have fallen so deeply.

Currently, both imports and exports by air at Tan Son Nhat International Airport have dropped significantly. In particular, imported goods were reduced by 50-60%, and some days dropped by more than 70%. For example, statistics from Tan Son Nhat International Airport Customs Branch showed that, in the first week of February 2023, the unit carried out procedures for nearly 1,900 import declarations, a decrease of more than 52.5% compared to the same period in January 2023 (nearly 4,000 declarations); in the same period, in terms of exported goods, the number of declarations decreased by nearly 30% and nearly 70% in value.

The group of import-export goods of foreign-invested enterprises (FDI) was also in the same situation when nearly 4,000 FDI enterprises carrying out import-export procedures through the Investment Customs Branch – HCM City Customs Department, but the volume of import and export goods of these enterprises was currently very low. Deputy Manager of the Investment Customs Branch Hoang Viet Thang said that it was estimated that the number of customs declaration declarations would decrease by more than 50%, pulled the department’s revenue collection in January to only VND 1,500 billion, while the previous month was nearly VND 3,000 billion.

Strong impact on revenue collection

According to HCM City Customs Department, the sharp decrease in import-export turnover from the beginning of the year until now has affected the revenue results of the unit. In January 2023, goods’ total import and export value reached US$ 6.68 billion, dropping 42.26% (equivalent to US$ 4.89 billion) compared to the same period in 2022. In particular, the value of imported goods reached US$ 4.08 billion, reaching 33.65% (equivalent to US$2.07 billion); export value reached US$2.60 billion, declining 52.04% (equivalent to US$2.82 billion).

Due to a sharp drop in turnover, the monthly revenue collection also falls significantly. As a result, in January 2023, the State revenue of HCM City Customs Department achieved VND 8,358.4 billion, reaching 5.73% of the ordinance target (VND 145,800 billion), declining 31.10% over the same period in 2022, equivalent to an absolute reduction of VND 3,773.6 billion. Assessing the reason for the sharp decrease in state revenue collection in January 2023, the leaders of the HCM City Customs Department said that it was the impact of the Lunar New Year holidays of 2023 in 7 days; New Year holiday 2 days…

HCM City Customs Department also forecasted the above result. In the plan of deploying works in 2023, the unit’s leader stated that the world economy in 2023 is forecasted to slow down, increasing the possibility of a recession in the short term; high inflation continues to persist in many countries…

As an economy with a very high openness, Vietnam could not avoid the influence of external fluctuations; macro-economy stabilization faced many challenges, high inflationary pressure, sharp fluctuations in gasoline, oil and input materials prices; traditional significant export and import markets would be narrowed… thus import and export activities would face many difficulties. Besides that, although the fiscal revenue in 2022 of HCM City Customs Department achieved positive results, revenue collection tended to decrease gradually in the months near the year’s end due to the global economy’s influence. Therefore, along with the impact of the Free Trade Agreements, it was forecasted that the state revenue collection in 2023 would continue to be a very difficult year.

From the above fact, right from the beginning of the year, HCM City Customs Department has developed and implemented Plan 09/KH-HQTPHCM to continue implementing the initiative of the Business Community and HCM City Customs Department as a reliable partner and joint hand to develop, with the theme of 2023: “Business Community and the HCM City Customs Department are partners, join hands to break through, accompany and reach out”, with many contents and solutions to facilitate trade; actively exchange and hold dialogue with enterprises to grasp the import-export plan of enterprises and estimate revenue sources for the state budget.


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