To relieve container congestion, Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade has requested that China’s Guangxi region reopen its border gates with Vietnam and lengthen customs clearance hours.
Senior trade ministry officials informed Guangxi trade officials Friday that Guangxi’s “zero Covid” actions, which included closing the border and suspending the importation of specific fruits, were needless. The strategy has disrupted the supply chain and harmed bilateral trade development, resulting in significant losses for both firms and people.
To deal with the staff deficit, the ministry suggested that Guangxi hire more drivers and laborers. It was also proposed that fully vaccinated Vietnamese be deployed to work across the border. It wants Guangxi to make shipping by train and ship more convenient, as well as resume importing Vietnamese dragon fruits.
Based on an agreement between the local authorities at the border gates, Guangxi trade officials stated they would extend the time it takes to clear customs. Other proposals will be forwarded to higher authorities. After China tightened its Covid-19 preventative measures, tens of thousands of container trucks have been held at the border for nearly a month.
In Vietnam’s Lang Son Province, 2,945 container trucks were stalled at the border on Friday, down 191 from the day before. As the fruits began to deteriorate, many trucks were forced to turn around and distribute their supplies locally at a loss.
Two of Lang Son’s three primary border gates are functioning at a reduced capacity, while the third remains closed. At the current rate, the container jam will take more than a month to clear.
Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien has written four letters to China’s Ministry of Commerce, China Customs, and the secretaries of the two areas – GuangXi and Yunnan – requesting help in addressing the problems.