Specialized inspection reform will boost operational efficiency of Cai Mep Thi Vai Port cluster

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4921 1451 13  0055 6S YARD 5 - Specialized inspection reform will boost operational efficiency of Cai Mep Thi Vai Port cluster
The number of import declarations subject to specialized inspection at Cai Mep-Thi Vai Port Cluster is expected to rise over 20% per year in the next five year. Photo: Cai Mep-Thi Vai Port Cluster

The establishment of a center for specialized inspection will bring great benefits for businesses and specialized management agencies.

Volume of goods soars

According to Decision 1579 of the Prime Minister approving the master plan on development of Vietnam’s seaport system for 2021-2030, Ba Ria-Vung Tau belongs to the 4th Seaport Group comprising of ports in HCM City as a key port. The volume of goods at the port is expected to increase from 461 to 540 million tons and the number of passengers from 1.7 million to 1.8 million.

Cai Mep – Thi Vai Port cluster is the only port group in the South that can receive container vessels with capacity of over 200,000 tons, and is one of 21 major seaports in the world capable of docking vessels with large size.

The number of import declarations subject to specialized inspection in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Customs Department in 2019 was 7,125 and 7,101 in 2020, accounting for 11% of total import declarations. The number of declarations is forecast to increase by over 20% per year within the next five years and reach nearly 20,000 declarations in 2025.

However, the specialized inspection for imports and exports at the port still faces many obstacles, which has increased costs, prolonged customs clearance time and caused difficulties for people, enterprises and Customs as specialized management agencies are appointed by ministries and government agencies and are not located in the same area.

The move for many specialized inspection agencies to carry out the procedures in the current unfavorable conditions of traffic and social distancing has caused great difficulties for businesses. Meanwhile, Ba Ria-Vung Tau Customs Department is only in charge of inspection, analysis and assessment to support the classification of imports and exports with a small quantity.

In 2020, the department tested 170 samples. In the first half of 2021, the department only analyzed 153 samples and sent samples for assessment at the 3rd Customs Department of Goods Verification in HCM City, increasing costs and time.

Breakthrough in reform of specialized inspection procedures

The Resolution of the 13th National Party Congress set out the goal of “focusing on developing Cai Mep-Thi Vai container seaport as an international transshipment port”. Motivated by this goal, Resolution of the 7th Ba Ria-Vung Tau Provincial Party Congress for the 2020-2025 term determined to continue to attract and provide solutions to increase the total volume of goods across the seaport system for 2021-2025 to hit about 375 million tons; port-related operations will contribute to the State budget about VND100,000 billion.

To meet requirements for quick and efficient development of Cai Mep – Thi Vai Port cluster, at a working session with the leader of Ba Ria- Vung Tau province on March 25, 2021 Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc requested to quickly implement customs clearance, establish a centralized specialized inspection center with full equipment for customs clearance.

The Prime Minister also asked the Ministry of Finance to direct the General Department of Vietnam Customs to supplement regulations on border-gate transfer between wharfs at Cai Mep Port.

On October 18, the local government issued Conclusion 171 continuing to implement Resolution 08 on the development of seaport and port logistics services in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Seaport in 2020, with an orientation to 2025. The local government requested to establish the Cai Mep Ha Logistics Center, build goods distribution centers on the logistics corridor between Long Thanh International Airport and Cai Mep – Thi Vai Port cluster.

The local government also requested to strengthen the State management for seaport and reform administrative procedures in the management of the seaport and port logistics services, closely coordinate to develop the seaport and port logistics with national defense and maritme ​​security.

According to the People’s Committee of Ba Ria – Vung Tau province, the province has prepared the infrastructure and land area to build a centralized specialized inspection center, including the Animal Health Diagnostic Center operated by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development with an area of ​​about 10-12 hectares, located at Phuoc Long hamlet, Tan Hoa commune, Phu My town. The province has also planned an area for building specialized inspection centers.

The local government is discussing with the General Department of Vietnam Customs to agree the scale, demand for land use and place for agencies to implement procedures and prepare infrastructure and land area to soon complete in accordance with the plan and operation of the General Department of Vietnam Customs.

The local government has proposed the Ministry of Finance to approve the establishment of the Customs Branch for goods verification at Cai Mep-Thi Vai Port cluster.

According to Vice Chairman of the People’s Committee of Ba Ria-Vung Tau province Le Ngoc Khanh, when implementing the Prime Minister’s Decision 38, the Customs authority was assigned to be the focal point in quality inspection and food safety inspection for imports, the establishment of the Customs Branch for goods verification at Cai Mep-Thi Vai Port cluster and control the quality and inspect food safety.

The establishment of the branch will help reduce procedures, costs, and shorten clearance time in this area. At the same time, it contributes to support the fast and efficient development of Cai Mep – Thi Vai seaport system and Long Thanh International Airport in the near future.

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