Vietnam Market Watch: Seafood Firm Registration, Hai Phong Infrastructure Fees, and Gia Lai Investment Incentives

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Regulatory body urges seafood firms to register online

Vietnam’s National Agro Forestry Finishes Quality Assurance Department (NAFIQAD) has encouraged local and seafood producers to apply for e-certificates though the national single window registration system. The single window regulations are on the websites of the Vietnam National Single Window, the General Customs Department and NAFIQAD. Seafood producers can contact the regulatory body’s local representatives to received instructions on how to apply for e-certification.

The move is especially important as seafood business will need to prepare for e-signatures and e-certification of product packages that will be exported to South Korea and China from March 1. In addition, NAFIQAD will stop receiving complaints and appeals over wrong information in paper certification for products sent to China and South Korea. Officials have said that local seafood businesses have been unwilling to use the new e-system but should get used to them as NAFIQAD will stop receiving paper registration in the near term.

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Gia Lai province offers incentives to investors

Gia Lai province officials have offered financial assistance of US$44,000 and administrative reforms to investors wanting to come to the province. The authorities have also implemented reforms to help the business climate such as shortening time to register assets to 14 days; this is further expected to be shortened to 10 days by 2020. Government officials have also told relevant ministries to obey to policies to support local investment projects. Authorities have also approved 61 projects in different sectors worth a total of US$1.1 billion for the 2016-2018 period. In addition, investors have invested in around 12 projects worth around US$880 million; four sectors belong to high-tech agriculture.

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Businesses complain over infrastructure fee at Hai Phong port

Hai Phong port operators have started collecting fees for an infrastructure upgrade which has not gone down well with businesses. Japanese firms have complained that the new infrastructure fees, which is imposed on containers moving through the port, are too pricey and confusing. The fees range from US$11 per 20 cubic foot container for regular goods to up to US$100 per container for goods temporarily imported for re-export.

Businesses have argued that as per international norms, port authorities must first invest in the infrastructure before charging fees. They have also warned that the high port fees could force them to go to ports in Thailand and have urged authorities to review the fees. Officials from the Vietnam Private Sector Forum (VPSF) have also stated that the new fees result in more paperwork which result in 2-3 hour delays. Customs clearance due to the imposition of the fees also now takes half a day longer than before.


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