Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – The fight against smuggling, trade fraud and counterfeits must be stronger and more drastic with visible results, Permanent Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh directed at a meeting in Hanoi on March 9.

Deputy PM Binh, who is also head of the National Steering Committee on the Prevention and Control of Smuggling, Trade Fraud and Counterfeit Goods (Steering Committee 389), asked the committee, ministries, agencies and localities to point out existing shortcomings and adopt practical and drastic solutions to the effort, including identifying smuggling and fraud tricks, even transfer pricing and tax evasion that result in significant loss of tax revenue to the State budget.

They were also required to strengthen inspection and clearly determine responsibilities of top leaders in each area in case of any violation.

He also stressed the need to review and fine-tune legal regulations and fix overlapping management during the fight.

At the meeting, the Steering Committee 389 reported that ministries, agencies and localities discovered 211,559 violations last year, up 2.55 percent year-on-year and brought to court 1,560 cases involving 1,863 people.

More than 18 trillion VND (786.1 million USD) worth of administrative fines and taxes were added to the State budget, a 33.57 percent increase from 2015.

Vice Chairman of the Hanoi municipal People’s Committee Le Hong Son said the city’s Steering Committee 389 dealt with 23,000 violations and prosecuted 305 cases with 222 violators last year.

In the first two months of this year, the city uncovered 4,984 cases involving in the production and trading of fake and pirated goods and collected 931 billion VND (40.47 million USD) for the State coffers.

Among 29,693 violation cases in Ho Chi Minh City, 3,312 ones concerning the trafficking of illicit and smuggled goods and as many as 3.16 trillion VND (137.4 million USD) in taxes were collected.

According to Son, counterfeit manufacturers and traffickers are using increasingly complicated and sophisticated tricks, including selling Chinese goods labelled as “Made in Vietnam” during the campaign “Vietnamese prioritise Vietnamese goods”.

On smuggling at sea, Commander of the Vietnam Coast Guard Lieut. Gen Nguyen Quang Dam said 46 foreign vessels were caught smuggling petrol to retooled Vietnamese fishing boats which was later sold to offshore fishing vessels.

Director General of the Vietnam Customs Nguyen Van Can, for his part, updated the meeting about the illegal import of cocaine and new kinds of drug into Vietnam via airline and waterway, saying that several shipping firms were found to be involved.-VNA