|Mr. Nguyen Huu Vuong, Deputy Director of Lang Son Customs Department|
In your opinion, what is the purpose of developing this process?
Implementing Resolution No. 111/NQ-CP of the Government dated September 23, 2021 on the implementation of the Pilot Project on importing herbal ingredients through Chi Ma bilateral border gate, the People’s Committee of Lang Son province issued Plan No. 220/KH-UBND dated October 22, 2021, which assigned Lang Son Customs to develop a draft of the General Process for implementation.
Accordingly, Lang Son Customs held a meeting to collect opinions from relevant authorities at Chi Ma border gate area. After receiving the opinions of competent authorities, Lang Son Customs has urgently developed a draft process and sent it to the participating agencies and forces for comments on the content of the project.
The draft process is developed to ensure quality control of imported herbal ingredients, combat smuggling, trade fraud and counterfeit goods, and preventing the spread of COVID-19 when importing through international border gates; clearly define responsibilities of relevant agencies and units; promptly solve difficulties and problems, facilitate enterprises in the process of carrying out procedures for importing herbal ingredients through Chi Ma border gate; ensure compliance with the provisions of the law on imported herbal ingredients and the Government’s Resolution No. 111/NQ-CP.
In order to implement this process, what requirements must be met by competent agencies? And who will be governed by this process?
According to this process, the departments and agencies of Lang Son province must fully ensure the conditions of facilities, infrastructure and equipment. In particular, agencies and competent forces would establish a coordination mechanism to ensure the quality control of imported herbal ingredients; combat smuggling, counterfeit goods, low-quality goods and trade fraud as well as ensure favourable conditions for pandemic prevention when importing herbal ingredients through Chi Ma border gate.
Organizations and individuals carrying out imports of herbal ingredients, drivers transporting herbal ingredients through the border gate, enterprises operating warehouses, yards and locations at Chi Ma border gate; Lang Son Department of Health and agencies and state management units at Chi Ma border gate would be the subjects in this process.
Can you explain more clearly the steps implemented in the pilot process of importing herbal ingredients through Chi Ma border gate?
To effectively carry out the pilot project, a draft process is being developed in five steps.
Step 1 (Control means of transport on entry at the border gate): Enterprises shall declare the information to Customs, Border Guard, and Health Quarantine authorities about means of transport and detailed information about import goods following customs procedures, vehicle operators, and cargo yards. After that, the customs authority receives the registration information and allows the Chinese vehicles to enter the cargo yard. At the same time, the Border Defence force receives declaration information and monitors vehicles and vehicle operators entering the cargo yard; Health Quarantine agency inspects and disinfects vehicles. Finally, the warehousing enterprise guides Chinese vehicles to the warehouse.
Step 2 (Monitoring means of transport of goods at warehouses, yards, and locations): Importing enterprises present the list of goods to Customs authority in order to carry out loading and unloading of goods at the warehouse. After that, the customs authority receives the information and supervises the goods at the warehouse; carries out the prescribed procedures. The Border Defence force regulates vehicles, supervises vehicles and vehicle operators. Finally, the warehouse enterprise cooperates with the import enterprise to load and unload goods in the warehouse.
Step 3 (Implement registration for quarantine and testing): Importing enterprises register with the Quarantine and medical testing agency to carry out quarantine and testing procedures for herbal ingredients, continue to carry out customs procedures complying with the process. Next, the Plant Quarantine Station receives registration information of enterprises and performs the functions and duties of the management sector. Finally, the testing center informs enterprises of the time to take samples and send them for testing.
Step 4 (Checking, supervising and taking samples): Importing enterprises present the goods to the Quarantine agency, the testing center to take samples and send them to a laboratory. The customs authority shall coordinate with the quarantine and testing force in taking samples, and supervising the collection and sending of samples. Accordingly, the Plant Quarantine Station and the Testing Center inspect samples and issue certificates complying with the regulations. In case the shipment of herbal ingredients is violated, the importer shall be notified; report to the Administration of Traditional Medicine and Pharmacy for handling in accordance with the regulations.
Step 5 (Processing results of quarantine and testing): Importing enterprises present the results of quarantine and testing to the Customs authority to compare with the customs dossiers for cargo clearance; Customs authorities check and compare the results with customs dossiers, if the results are appropriate, the customs authority will supervise goods from warehouses, yards to Vietnamese vehicles until they pass through gate 2 (contiguous inland); in case of non-conformity, they will coordinate with competent authorities to handle in accordance with regulations. The Border Defence force compares vehicles and vehicle operators and coordinates with Customs authority to allow vehicles to carry goods through the customs supervision area.
With this process, how will inspection, monitoring and sampling take place, sir?
According to the requirements of Resolution No. 111/NQ-CP of the Government and to ensure the quality control of imported herbal ingredients, the Quality Control of Food, Drug and Cosmetics Center under the Department of Health of Lang Son province coordinated with Customs authorities and enterprise importing herbal ingredient to take samples, ensuring that 100% of imported herbal ingredients are sampled and tested to determine the name and quality of goods within six months of the first year of implementation.
After six months of piloting the import of herbal ingredients, depending on the actual situation, the number of test samples can be adjusted appropriately.
Thus, in order to ensure that the testing takes place closely, the Quality Control of Food, Drug and Cosmetics Center must arrange machinery and equipment to meet all conditions, perform the inspection and testing of the quality of imported herbal ingredients through Chi Ma border gate in accordance with current regulations.