Vietnamese cashew exporters at risk of being scammed US$7.03 million

Regarding the case of nearly 100 containers of cashew nuts suspected of being scammed when exporting to Italy, the Vietnam Cashew Association (VINACAS), on the evening of March 9, held a press conference on this issue. 

According to Mr. Bach Khanh Nhut, Vice Chairman of the VINACAS, among 100 containers under the initial commitment with buyers in Italy, 36 containers of cashew nuts have been exported by enterprises and lost the original papers. The rest have been timely canceled transactions by enterprises after detecting signs of fraud. Based on the contract, the value of these 36 containers is worth nearly US$7.03 million, or VND162 billion.

According to Mr. Nhut, on March 9, the VINACAS worked with five Vietnamese banks, related enterprises, and shipping lines. However, most of them said that finding the original papers was beyond their abilities. In addition, these units also received apathetic and vague responses from banks in Italy, making the case even more difficult.

“The problem becomes urgent because two or three containers have already arrived at the Italian ports, and the remaining ones will arrive this month. Meanwhile, shipping lines said that they would follow international practices, which are whoever has the original papers will receive the goods, because if the goods are not released, the person with the original papers has enough grounds to sue the shipping company," Mr. Nhut informed.

According to the VINACAS, the unit has and will send documents to the central ministries and diplomatic mission in Italy and the parent shipping company in China, asking for their intervention and influence to help to keep the goods at the ports and not deliver them to whoever comes to receive the goods even though he presents the original documents.

Previously, on March 8, the VINACAS sent an express document to the Vietnamese Embassy in Italy and the Vietnam Trade Office in Italy to ask for assistance in an emergency as 100 containers of cashew nuts for exports of enterprises are at risk of being scammed. The VINACAS said that some Vietnamese cashew processing and exporting enterprises had signed contracts with some Italian cashew importers through the brokerage company Kim Hanh Viet. These shipments have been and are arriving at some Italian ports. However, banks in Italy and Turkey said they only received photocopied papers instead of original ones as usual, as well as having trouble with the information about buyers.