The Hanoitimes - The Ministry of Industry and Trade issued Circular No21/2011/TT-BTC on May 20, regulating the temporary import and re-export of foodstuffs through border provinces. Traders seeking a licence to conduct such activities shall pay a deposit of VND2 billion (US$95,238) to the province in which their warehouse or freight yard is located to ensure compliance with food hygiene and environmental regulations.
The regulation also sets conditions for warehouses or freight yards to include a minimum capacity for 100 40-foot containers and a minimum area of 1,500sq.m, fenced off by a solid palisade, with sufficient electrical supplies and specialised food storage equipment.
Circular No 21 provides that the traders shall reduce or halt temporary imports upon order of authorised agencies. A failure to complete customs requirements would require traders to re-export cargo back to the exporting country. Traders who failed to execute cargo clearance at harbors or border-gates would also be forced to halt temporary import and re-export of frozen foodstuffs for six months, with repeated breach to result in a withdrawal of the licence.
Circular No 21 takes effect on July 3.