Commented by Somphone Phasavath
BUSINESS AND INVESTMENT DIALOGUE
Session 2.: Implementation of the GMS Cross-Border Transport Agreement:
Possible Roles for the Private Sector
On Sunday 30-Mar-2008 at Done Chanh Palace.
Statement by Mr. Somphone PHASAVATH, Deputy Managing Director
of LAO FREIGHT FORWARDER CO., LTD.
Distinguished Chairman, Delegates, Guests and All participants
It is a great honour to be given an opportunity to share my comments in this meeting.
My name is Mr. Somphone Phasavath, I am Deputy Managing Director of LAO FREIGHT FORWARDER CO.,
Our company has handled Goods In-Transit for many years.
From 1981 to 1989: We handled goods In-Transit via Danang port of Vietnam.
From 1989 to 2008 : We handled goods In-Transit via Vietnamese ports and Thai ports.
We have organized the Inland Transportation and Customs Clearance from the above mentioned ports to and from Lao PDR with the collaboration of our Thai partners and Vietnamese partners.
In the past, we, Lao Freight Forwarder on behalf of consignee (the owner of cargo) have never paid any cash deposit or Bond Guarantee for the movement of Goods In-Transit via Thai ports and Vietnamese ports.
Our Thai agent and Vietnamese agent have got License from their Authorities concerned in their home country to perform the services of Transportation of Goods In-Transit.
From 2005 until now, Lao Freight Forwarder has handled many shipments for Inland Transportation of goods In-Transit by land from Bangkok, Thailand to Hanoi, Vietnam and vice versa from Hanoi, Vietnam to Bangkok, Thailand via the 2nd Mekong Bridge Mukdaharn-Savannakhet, Road No.:9. We have handled Transit customs formality and customs clearance at Savannakhet and at Densavanh and transloading containers by our 35-ton crane from Thai trucks to Vietnamese trucks at our yard KM.8 at Savannakhet. We have not put any cash deposit or bond guarantee to Lao Customs, Lao Customs officer at entry gate at Savannakhet just checked the condition of the seal only on the container, they did not open the container for checking cargo inside.
Transit formality via Lao PDR, documents to attach with transit goods as below:
1. Letter of Authorization from the shipper authorize Lao Freight Forwarder to act on their behalf in Lao territory for making Lao Transit customs formality and transit customs clearance at Savannakhet and Densavanh.
2. Commercial Invoice/Packing list.
3. Copy of Export Customs Declaration of Exporting country.
4. Lao Customs Declaration Form No…………(Prepared by Lao Freight).
Lao Freight Forwarder sign a Contract with Lao Customs Department on Guaranteeing of Goods In-Transit via Lao PDR for one year.
When the In-transit goods reach Savannakhet, our company arrange Lao Transit Customs Declaration. It takes around one hour to one and half hour for customs formality at the entry gate check point. Then the truck with transit goods can move to the trans-loading yard of our company. Trans-loading time will be around thirty minutes for one container. After the trans-loading is completed, the customs endorse on the Customs Declaration Form, then the truck can leave to the Densavanh border. Lao Customs at entry gate Savannakhet do not have any customs officer to escort the Transit Truck from Savannakhet to Densavanh. When the truck arrives Densavanh border, Lao Freight Forwarder’s staff arrange the customs clearance in submitting all documents which was already approved at Savannakhet to the Customs, the Customs officer at Densavanh just check the document and check the seal on container, then let truck with container pass Lao territory to Laobao border Vietnam check point. At Densavanh, it takes only about half to one hour for proceeding customs declaration. The trial transportation of inland Transit goods were well organized (we noticed).
Based on the above trial transportation which we handled before, we believe that Lao PDR can smoothly serve for GMS CBTA and EWEC movements of goods In-Transit by land.
My private concern and comments are as below:
1. Most of Freight Forwarding Companies in Laos are of small size, they have a few old trucks and trailers only. These trucks and trailers are not in good conditions therefore they are not able to be driven in neighbouring countries. So, there will be only foreign trucks and trailers that travel along new Lao road and bridges through Lao PDR. These new road and bridges need to be maintained time by time, in case the Lao government collects road and bridge fee too low, then there will not be enough money for the maintenance of the road and bridges.
2. Is it possible to share the transportation services between GMS and EWEC Countries, I mean that in Lao territory, we may use Lao Tractor heads to pull the chassis with containers of goods from the gate of entry until gate of exit of LAO PDR, then Vietnamese tractor heads pull the chassis with container of goods to final destination in Vietnam. The profit should be shared proportionally among contractor parties based on road distance.
3. Guaranteeing Transit Goods:
The Freight Forwarder’s agent in each transit country should make the Guarantee with the Customs authorities in the transit country.
4. For Documentation of goods In-Transit:
It should be one format for all GMS & EWEC country, if possible should be online and in English language.
5. Transparency matter: All fees to be collected by the host and transit country should be on the table at the gate of entry and exit gate and shown to the public. So, the forwarding and shipping company can easily arrange payment properly.
These are my private opinions and comments in regards to the transport of transit goods.
Thank you very much.
15 Dec 2010 10:35 am