Closely control fraud in declaring chemicals


Closely control fraud in declaring chemicals

New drugs in the form of juice (synthetic drugs) discovered by Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department.

High demand for precursors

Recently, the export and import of precursors for economic and social development have risen and the demand for precursors in production and business, in the field of veterinary medicine and health care, has tended to increase.

About 1,000 enterprises across the country have carried out procedures for imported and exported precursors in the industrial and medical fields. Enterprises engaged in import-export activities of industrial precursors are mainly in Ho Chi Minh City, Binh Duong, Dong Nai, Ba Ria – Vung Tau, Long An, Tay Ninh, Da Nang, Hanoi, Hai Phong, Bac Ninh, Can Tho.

These are localities where many industrial parks or export processing zones are located.

Enterprises engaged in import-export activities of medical precursors are mainly concentrated in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang across border gates by airport (Tan Son Nhat International Airport, Noi Bai International Airport) and seaports in Ho Chi Minh City port area and Hai Phong port area.

The industrial precursors are imported from countries and territories including Taiwan, Singapore, China, Japan, Korea, Thailand, Germany, France and India.

The precursor is mainly exported from inland to export processing zones. Sources of medical precursors are mainly imported from countries such as France, Spain, UK, Germany and Switzerland.

According to the list of precursors promulgated by the Government (Decree 57/2022/ND-CP), there are 60 types of precursors subject to management and control. Of these, 13 types of precursors are managed by the Ministry of Public Security, 39 types of those are managed by the Ministry of Industry and Trade and eight are managed by the Ministry of Health. These precursors must be granted import and export permits by specialized management agencies when going through customs procedures.

Many offences

According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, through participating in the inter-sectoral inspection team to control lawful drug-related activities led by the Ministry of Public Security and reporting from local customs departments, there are some typical offenses related to the export and import of precursors for drug production.

There are frauds in customs declaration during importing and exporting chemicals that are drug precursors such as failing to declare or falsely declaring goods names, quantities and categories; using fake names and addresses to send and receive goods; and using social networks and technology in trading and illegal transportation of drug precursors.

Falsely declaring goods names and descriptions, factors affecting the identification of goods names such as information on constituents, ingredients, content, functions, and uses, classification, leading to difficulties and confusion in the inspection and identification of goods.

Export processing enterprises, enterprises operating in industrial parks and export processing zones; goods stored in bonded warehouses fail to comply with regulations related to the management and use of precursors, leading to the loss of precursors, creating favorable conditions for subjects to take advantage of trading and exchanging precursors to illegal production and processing of drugs.

In addition, there are also frauds in using the precursor import and export permit such as using fake and invalid permits; the actual quantity of imported and exported precursors higher than the permitted quantity; using the same permit for many imports. Fraud in extracting and illegally transporting precursors such as changing labels attached to packages, bottles containing precursors without labels or failing to use to store chemicals.

There are cases of the transportation of precursors when temporarily imported for re-export, transited and deposited in a bonded warehouse inconsistent with the prescribed route, location, border gate and time.

From the above potential risks, to strictly control the export and import of drug precursors, on March 23, 2023, the General Department of Vietnam Customs issued Official Letter No. 1276/TCHQ-ĐTCBL on strengthen control of import and export of drug precursors by 2023.

The country’s top customs regulator has requested local customs departments to prevent and handle offenses related to the import, export and use of drug precursors, mixtures of chemicals containing precursors, products and preparations containing precursors in the customs control area.

The local customs departments have been required to identify methods and tricks to commit violations in importing, exporting, using and managing precursors; detect loopholes, and propose competent agencies to rectify and overcome shortcomings in the management.

Southeast Asia with a hot spot for drugs as the “Golden Triangle” region produces about 20 tons of methamphetamine per year, 1 billion methamphetamine tablets and more than 3,000 tons of precursors for drug production, 680 tons of opium and 50 tons of heroin, according to the Ministry of Public Security.


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