The Mekong Delta province of Long An has made significant achievements in fighting smuggling and trade fraud at border areas.(Source: VNA)

Long An (VNA) - The Mekong Delta province of Long An has made significant achievements in the fight against smuggling and trade fraud at border areas.

Nguyen Van Viet, head of the province’s Market Management Sub-Department, said that 672 smuggling and trade fraud cases were discovered in the first six months of the year, a drop of 424 over the same period last year.

About 1 million packages of smuggled foreign-made cigarettes were found, 300,000 less than the same period last year.

The province collected fines of 5.5 billion VND (over 242,000) for the state budget and prosecuted many cases involving trade and transport of prohibited goods.

The investigation police have decided to start criminal proceedings against many violators.

The number of smuggling cases has fallen, thanks to an increase in fines and court cases.

However, the situation could worsen near the end of the year before the Christmas and Tet (Lunar New Year) seasons.

Tran Van Can, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, has directed the province’s anti-smuggling forces to step up patrols and control smuggling and trade fraud.

Officials, civil servants and soldiers who engage in smuggling and trade fraud must be punished, he said.

The province would raise public awareness about laws on smuggling and trade fraud via the media, and try to create more jobs for people who turn to smuggling to earn an income, he said.

The My Quy Tay Border Gate Economic Area in Duc Hue district near the border with Cambodia has long been seen as a transit point for cigarette smuggling to Ho Chi Minh City.-VNA