November 20, 2017 14:01

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Specialized inspection of the agriculture to be too broad, and lack the HS codes

09:00 | 08/09/2017

VCN- The specialized management and inspection of the agriculture still exist mostly in quarantine, food safety inspection, and quality control.

specialized inspection of the agriculture to be too broad and lack the hs codes
The Customs officers in the Hai Phong port Region II are inspecting the import and export goods. Photo: Q.Hung.

List of goods without the HS code

According to the statistics of the General Department of Customs in the field of plant quarantine, in 2016, there were more than 400,000 import and export declarations belong to quarantine. Of which, 49 declarations were found to be in violation, accounting for 0.01% of the total number of declarations belong to be examined.

According to the Ministry of Finance (the General Department of Customs) – the standing agency implementing the national single window mechanism and the specialized inspection, for food safety inspection of the import and export goods the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development issued the list of goods subject to food safety inspection prior to the customs clearance with the HS code in Decision No. 4069/QD-BNN-QLCL dated August 14th, 2015. However, some goods groups do not still detail their names and HS codes. Specifically, raw milk, products containing honey, beeswax, pollen, royal jelly, tools, materials, and a package of food… List of goods subject to inspection prior to the customs clearance is also very broad.

Regarding quarantine, the list of goods subject to quarantine of animals and the list of goods subject to quarantine of aquatic products prior to the customs clearance was issued in accordance with Circular No. 25/2016/TT-BNNPTNT. However, these lists have not detailed the names and have not had the HS codes, so, this leads to a very wide range of quarantine goods. Examples: Meat products, dairy products...

For quality control, the list of goods group 2 under the management of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is stipulated in Circular 50/2009/ TT-BNNPTNT dated 18th August 2009 and Circular 50/2010/TT-BNNPTNT dated 30th August 2010. However, the list of goods subject to quality inspection prior to the customs clearance is too large, cover almost the goods under the management of this Ministry.

In addition, the list has not detailed the name of the goods and not attached the HS code under the list of the export-import goods. Many goods must be inspected, but there have not stipulated the inspection procedures, and progress, the technical standards or regulations. This makes difficult for both the companies and the Customs to enforce.

Overlap in safety inspection and quarantine

In addition to the list of goods subject to inspection is too large, there are many items on the list of goods subject to quarantine and on the list of goods subject to food safety.

Specifically, yogurt, milk powder, cheese, wheat flour... have to be quarantined according to regulations of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, which is subject to food safety inspection as regulated by the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

Many items have been both quarantined and inspected the food safety by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, such as meat and meat products, milk, dairy products, food of plant origin that has not been processed deeply...

To overcome this situation, the Ministry of Finance requests the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to coordinate with the specialized management Ministries (the Health Ministry and the Industry and Trade Ministry) to review the list of goods belong to quarantine and the list of goods belong to food safety inspection prior to the customs clearance in the direction: Apply only one form of pre-clearance inspection, reduce the list of goods subject to special inspection for the goods that have been processed deeply.

In case of high-risk items, 2 types of inspection must be carried out, it needs to unify one clue unit/agency. Avoiding that the enterprises have to go to two agencies to test for the same import goods

For the inadequacies that the list of goods subject to food safety inspection, quarantine and quality control is too wide, the Ministry of Finance said that the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development should issue a list of goods subject to food safety inspection soon, according to the regulation, 2 lists of goods have to been specified: The goods subject to pre-customs clearance (high risk) and the goods belong to inspection prior to transportation and consumption (low risk). With the list of goods subject to pre-customs clearance, it is necessary to issue the goods names in detail and the HS codes fully.

In addition, the Ministry of Finance proposes to change fundamentally the management and inspection methods of food safety for the import goods in the direction of management based on assessing the risk level of the export-import goods and legal compliance level of the enterprises, applying the AEO mode. Transfer the time of inspection to the post-clearance inspection, except for cases where the import goods would be a high risk of food safety. At the same time, apply widely the international practice, promote the mutual recognition agreement.

The Ministry of Finance proposes that the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development take the lead in studying and recommending amendments and supplements to the regulations on the specialized management and inspection for the import-export goods in the Law on Plant Protection and Quarantine, the Law on Animal Health under the application of risk management method based on the risk level of goods and the legal compliance level of enterprises.

In Decision 2026/QD-TTg, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development was tasked to amend and supplement 49 legal documents on the specialized management and inspection for the import and export goods. According to the review of the Ministry of Finance by August 20th, 2017, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development amended and supplemented 41/49 documents. However, two documents have been issued to replace the old ones but failed to meet the requirements (list of goods without the HS code), in particular: Circular No. 25/2016/TT-BNNPTNT issued the list of aquatic products subject to quarantine in replacement of Decision 45/2006/QD-BNN; Circular 26/2016/TT-BNNPTNT promulgated the list of aquatic products subject to quarantine in replacement of Circular No. 32/2012/TT-BNNPTNT. At present, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is amending the 8 remaining documents, including 6 legal documents and 2 lists of goods.

By Ngoc Linh/ Binh Minh