Border smuggling surges at year end

Illicit trades in various kinds of goods are on the rise at many border gates in two northern provinces of Quang Ninh and Lang Son at yearend, according to Sai Gon Giai Phong newspaper’s investigation.

Porters upload contraband goods from a boat in the northern province of Quang Ninh’s Mong Cai District (Photo by Q. Khanh)
Porters upload contraband goods from a boat in the northern province of Quang Ninh’s Mong Cai District (Photo by Q. Khanh)

A man named Thai, who is a middleman to local smugglers in Quang Ninh province, introduced Sai Gon Giai Phong newspaper’s reporters to many places supplying smuggled goods, including cloths, fabric, blankets and home appliances.

“We have everything you need. We can even make fake products of popular brand names in Euro and Japan in around half of a month. All you have to do is give me the samples,” Thai said.

“I can ensure only the central government’s assessment units can detect the fake products,” he said, replying questions about whether consumers and relevant units could recognize the fake goods.

“I have many good suppliers for smuggled restroom furniture, which help you make big bucks. For examples, price of a shower rose is at an average of VND1 million (US$50) in the domestic market, while I offer you a price of VND200,000 for a similar one,” Thai said.

Thai said contraband goods from China were being brought at night to avoid Chinese custom officers. “Smugglers should speak both Chinese and Vietnamese fluently to keep the shipment delivery passing through border gates smoothly,” Thai noticed, adding he can arrange illicit trades from A to Z, including hiring transporters, trading with Chinese suppliers and finding warehouses.

“If buyers want to buy goods in a specific date during the time the Chinese custom enhancing border supervisory, smugglers will ask importers to carry their goods through the border gates. The importers then get permission by bribing custom officers,” Thai disclosed.

He also introduce the reporter to a Chinese supplier named Trieu Hung, who is an owner of a big shop in Dongxing District of China’s Guangxi Province and can speak Vietnamese pretty good. As the reporter said he wanted to be a goods distributor in Hanoi, Hung suggested staying at Guangxi Province for three months at least to survey on the local market.

“There is a market 800 kilometers far from Dongxing District, where traders from ASEAN countries and even the rest of the world can find a huge amount of goods,” he said.

Hung said he was distributing car accessories and plastic toys to around 19 dealers in the port city of Hai Phong, Quang Ninh province and even Hanoi. He is also the main equipment supplier to popular discotheques in the norther provinces.

“If you can ‘take care’ of Vietnam’s custom, I’ll be your main supplier. Otherwise, I’ll help you to transfer goods through Mong Cai border gate,” Hung said, adding he can supply as many as customers need as he owns lots of stores.

Hung said most of traders in Dongxing Province set up warehouses to supply for Vietnamese smugglers specifically.

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