Beforehand, Head of the Vietnam Customs in HCMC Dinh Ngoc Thang petitioned the municipal People’s Committee to collect port terminal infrastructure fee like the northern port city of Hai Phong.
According to Mr. Thang, the city annually spends state budget in building and expanding roads and service facilities and public utilities at the ports.
Ongoing investment in infrastructure will increase efficiency and allow ports to receive even bigger vessels for export-import activities while the city’s fund must be used for other construction to benefit dwellers.
Accordingly, it is reasonable that exporters and importers should pay for port terminal infrastructure cost to share the city’s financial burden, Mr. Thang said.
According to the Vietnam Seaports Association’s statistics, , container port throughput stood at 6 million TEUs in HCMC in 2018 and it was 2 million TEUs in Hai Phong in 2018. Last year, Hai Phong collected VND1,295 billion (US$ 55 million )
It is scheduled that HCMC will collect more than VND1,925 billion yearly though the fee is half of that in Hai Phong. HCMC will spend the collected port infrastructure fee on build smart city to turn HCMC into a more rewarding place to live in and improve logistic efficiency index.
Deputy Director of the Department of Transport Bui Hoa An shared that the department is considering port infrastructure fee and will report it later.
Party Chief Nhan said all port infrastructure fee will be used to better services and re-finance infrastructure construction around ports emphasizing that if possible, HCMC will collect the fee next year.
He also lauded the customs sector’s impressive budget collection in early months of the year.
Regarding equipment investment for the customs sector, Mr. Nhan said that city authorities will be willing to invest in state-of-the-art devices to improve customs activities. He suggested artificial intelligence application to forecast and identify people’s behaviors to help better surveillance.
Mr. Nhan said the Department of Information and Communications should study the condition and propose solution to push up digitalization and implementation of artificial intelligence.