VCN - The Covid-19 pandemic is spreading in a very complex manner in HCM City and many southern provinces, many localities have applied the highest anti-pandemic measures. To ensure the prevention of the pandemic and secure the force to perform tasks, many Southern Customs units have applied the "three on-spot" scenario.
|Customs officials of Saigon port area 1 Customs Branch perform tasks during social distancing at HCM City. Photo: Thu Hòa|
HCM City - the locality that has experienced the most complicated situation of the pandemic in the country, with 19,405 cases of F0 (as of July 15), many businesses located in industrial parks, export processing zones, high-tech zones where the customs branch is located, have arisen many cases of F0, businesses have to stop operating. Facing this development, leaders of HCM City Customs Department have directed their units and subordinates to seriously implement anti-pandemic measures, promote the effectiveness of the Board of Covid-19 Prevention and Control at the department and the Covid-19 Prevention and Control Team at each unit and branch.
With the number of import and export goods tending to increase at some branches, leaders of units have encouraged customs officials to work overtime to ensure completion of dossier clearance. At the same time, the Customs Branches work with firms operating warehouse and port to help businesses quickly settle payment procedures and taking goods. Cooperate with specialised inspection agencies at the port to help businesses deal with specialised procedures.
Along with that, the HCM City Customs Department has developed scenarios to handle and respond promptly when a case of contact and infection with Sars-Cov2 virus and signs of spreading the disease appear at the workplace; especially, officials residing outside HCM City are encouraged to stay in the unit to ensure the safety for official's health, and to secure the force to serve for cargo clearance. During the time of applying social distancing under Directive 16, HCM City Customs has timely and quickly handled clearance procedures for thousands of import-export shipments, including several imported Covid-19 vaccine shipments.
|Thu Dau Mot Customs Branch arranges a separate area for receiving declaration to ensure pandemic prevention. Photo: Lê Xuyền|
Dong Thap has applied social distancing measures under Directive 16 from 0:00 on July 14, as of the morning of July 15, Dong Thap has 818 cases of F0. Director of Dong Thap Customs Department Nguyen Thanh Toan said during the pandemic outbreak in Dong Thap, there were cases of F1 and F2 in the unit, so all officials in the unit were tested quickly and all of them were safe. Facing the complicated situation of the pandemic, Dong Thap Customs Department has directed border-gate customs units and customs enforcement teams to work and stay at the office 100% of officials to ensure pandemic prevention as well as safety of those working at border gates.
According to Director Nguyen Thanh Toan, at border gates adjacent to Cambodia, the pandemic situation is also complex, so the border gate customs units are implementing anti-pandemic measures at the highest level, overcome the difficulties, proactively perform tasks in all situations. Arranging customs officials to patrol and control at border areas, work with other forces to strictly control immigration, as well as transporting illegal goods and smuggling.
Dong Nai province has implemented social distancing across the province under Directive 16 since 0:00 on July 9. The number of new infections in the area continues to increase rapidly, as of July 15, Dong Nai has 443 cases of F0. Facing the complicated situation of the pandemic, the leadership of Dong Nai Customs Department said it was not excluded the possibility of blockage in residential areas. If an official’s house is located in a blockaded area, the unit's operations would be affected.
To prevent this risk, on July 13, leaders of Dong Nai Customs Department asked the heads of customs branches and leaders of customs enforcement team to be responsible for assigning leaders of the Customs branch, leaders of the Enforcement Team, team leaders under customs branch and customs officials to stay in the unit 24/24h.
All branches have plans to arrange for leaders of the branch, team leaders and officials to stay in the unit and prepare necessary living conditions during their stay. At the Customs branch of Long Binh Export Processing Zone, because there is no official house at the branch office, after working hours, officials must live in the office.
Leaders of Dong Nai Customs Department also asked the office and customs branches under the department to check essential conditions such as kitchens, dormitory, food, food and other conditions to actively prepare for the plan that all customs officials, employees stay at the office and undergo medical isolation when they are requested by authorities.
Binh Duong is one of the key localities in the south where the number of Covid-19 infections is increasing rapidly (as of the morning of July 15, there were 1,887 cases of F0). Besides, adjacent to HCM City and other affected localities, there are a large number of people working in industrial parks, so the potential risk of pandemic outbreaks is huge. Binh Duong Customs Department has made efforts to effectively implement 5K measures of the Ministry of Health and the directions of the Ministry of Finance and the General Department of Vietnam Customs.
Nguyen Thanh Binh, Deputy Director of Binh Duong Customs Department, said that as soon as HCM City plans to apply social distancing under Directive 16, which is forecasted to tighten the movement of people from HCM City and other areas, In neighbouring provinces, on July 8, 2021, the Department promptly directed customs officials who have houses in HCM City and neighboring provinces to arrange accommodation in Binh Duong to serve for their work. Currently, there are 35 customs officials residing at the department and affiliated branches to ensure smooth operation.
Besides that, Binh Duong Customs directs branches to pay attention to support firms, quickly clear import and export goods so that firms can have enough raw materials, supplies, machinery and equipment for production to promote import and export. For a group of businesses affected by Covid-19 pandemic, leaders of the branch actively contact firms to grasp the situation of production, import and export activities each week, having solutions to remove obstacles in customs procedures, as well as prevent the arising of bad debts.
Speaking to Customs News, Deputy Manager of My Phuoc Industrial Park Customs Branch Ngo Thanh Ha said following the direction of the leaders of Binh Duong Customs Department, officials of the branch who lives in HCM City has been arranged to stay and work at the headquarters to both ensure pandemic prevention and ensure cargo clearance for businesses. Through the encouragement of leaders of the department and branch and support from the family, officials have gradually overcome their difficulties to complete the task.
As one of five public officials who work 24/24 at the unit, Deputy manager of Song Than Industrial Park Customs Branch Nguyen Thanh Thien, said food, accommodation and activities at the branch were arranged stably and complied with regulations on Covid-19 pandemic prevention from the evening of July 8. Therefore, although the pandemic situation in the area was developing extremely complicatedly, import and export activities at the unit had remained stable and smooth. Currently, each day, the branch received and processed about 1,100 declarations of firms which were mainly done through the automatic customs system. For businesses that come to run procedures directly at the branch, they would be instructed to measure body temperature, disinfect, and declare health.
The Customs Branches has also strengthened the Business Support Team and the Covid-19 Handling Team to ensure the pandemic prevention and control as well as timely support to handle the problems of firms so as not to obstruct the clearance of import and export goods. At the same time, meetings and exchange professional expertise in small groups; some departments such as bonded warehouse, inspection and exchange and handle work via the internet and phone to limit direct contact with businesses.
By group of reporters/Thanh Thuy