Customs bodies to publicize price and origin of imported cars once a week

By Linh Nga - Jan 30, 2018 | 03:06 PM GMT+7

TheLEADERDue to insufficient information on the imported cars provided by customs departments, Director General of Vietnam Customs Nguyen Van Can has requested the functional bodies under Vietnam Customs and the local customs departments once a week to publicize the information such as price, quantity, type of automobiles imported into Vietnam since 2018.

Customs bodies to publicize price and origin of imported cars once a week
Information on imported cars is still sufficiently provided.

The information will be published at the portal of the Vietnam Customs Information Portal.

In fact, the Vietnam Customs only publicizes the number of automobiles imported into Vietnam, but after 15 to 20 days. Bodies such as the Customs IT and Statistics Department and the Export-Import Duty Department do not publish specific type, price, and quantity of automobiles in each period. 

In 2018, people will be particularly interested in imported automobiles, especially those from ASEAN. Because ASEAN automobiles are entitled to a zero-per cent tariff. Therefore, the weekly publication will help enhance the transparency and the media exploit timely the information on the fluctuating automobile market, said Can.

From 2016 to 2017, automobile imports into Vietnam increased dramatically as the market expanded and the tariffs applied to ASEAN countries, mainly Thailand and Indonesia, fell from 40 per cent to 30 per cent.

From the beginning of 2017, automobiles from India were massively imported into Vietnam with the average pre-clearance prices from VND99 million to over 200 million (US$4,366 to 8,820) per car.

Although the declared price at the import time is low, the actual selling price in the market is very high at over VND400 million (roughly US$17,640) a unit for the cheapest car imported from India, Hyundai i10 Suzuki Ertiga. This raised doubts that enterprises declare low prices for tax evasion or reduction of import tariff, with the help of customs officers.

From the middle of last year, automobile imports from India suddenly dropped sharply. By the end of 2017, India exported a few hundreds of automobiles to Vietnam a month. Meanwhile, Indonesian and Thai were still increasing their imports into Vietnam. Automobile imports from these two markets in 2017 accounted for more than 60 per cent of Vietnam's automobile imports, overwhelming those imported from other major markets such as Germany, England, Korea or Japan.

The sudden change and constant information disturbance made the market extremely sensitive. Information on automobile price increase and decrease has put consumers in price matrix and information crisis.

From the beginning of 2018, automobile imports into Vietnam have strongly dropped, causing consumers to panic and market fluctuations.

It is said that the Government’s Decree No. 116/2017/ND-CP which came in full force and effect on January 01, 2018, is viewed as a “new barrier" to protect domestic automobile industry from the automobiles imported from ASEAN entitled to a zero per cent tariff.

The Decree regulates the conditions for manufacturing, assembly and import of automobiles and trade in automobile warranty and maintenance services.

According to Nikkei Asia, since the Decree was announced in October, the governments of major exporters such as Japan, Thailand and the U.S. have expressed concerns to Vietnam that it would become impossible for them to sell into the country.

Some automakers such as Mitsubishi Motor, Toyota, Honda have halted all production for export to the Vietnamese market.

In order to have accurate information on the quantity and declared prices of imported automobiles, it depends on the information provided by local customs departments such as Hanoi, Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City.

Local departments, however, believe that the information is not publicly available as it relates to the business activities of enterprises and the actual declaration and importation may change within 14 days.

The lack of publicity of the quantity and prices of imported automobiles have led many people to doubt the cooperation between customs officers and enterprises in the valuation of imported automobiles to calculate customs duties.