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Mystery consignments clog port system   2010-03-16 - Viet Nam News

While space is limited, unknown containers in Tien Sa Port in Da Nang are becoming a burden for the management board.

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Deputy director of Tien Sa Port Nguyen Huu Sia said that many consignments would remain idle for months, occupying large areas, and most of the port’s 160,000sq.m were fully stocked. The port’s management board had to bear the losses due to these space issues.

Workers unload goods at Tien Sa Port in the central city of Da Nang. The mistery consignments, that would remain idle at the port for months, are seen as a threat to the environment of the city.

"It’s difficult to deal with the procedures, let alone the solutions for these case. We haven’t yet found a good way to solve these consignment problems," said Sia.

Head of the Da Nang Customs Department Nguyen Danh Thang last week declared the liquidation of three containers with 48 tonnes of scrap steel that had been abandoned for over eight months. Despite the fact that the department had identified the importer, the company still refused to take the consignment due to a lack of documents.

"That’s not a rare scenario. Even though the rents for the spaces have been paid, the owners don’t want to take the time to clear out the space so that others may use it," Thang said.

In addition to time and economic losses, the consignments can also be seen as a threat to the environment of the city and other industries.

Travellers on cruise ships are welcomed to the mainland these day by tonnes of sand, wood and scrap metal.

Two of the port’s 17ha are completely taken over by huge piles of sand caused by the Government’s ban on sand export last September, and the difficulties caused in transporting them by bad weather including storms.

The consignment of 82,000 tonnes of sand had been there since June last year, and other unknown construction material consignments had created a lot of dust and sediment at the port.

"The sand has damaged the grassy landscape and face of the port, as well as the city," said the General Director of the Da Nang Port, Nguyen Thu.

Besides, hundreds of thousands of tonnes that have gone through preliminary sifting and are heaped into little hills waiting to be exported, the port has another 100,000 tonnes of sand from the Quang Nam Province-based Ky Ha-Chu Lai Investment and Development Company and the Anh Quan Ltd lying idle because export formalities have not been completed.

Although the storage fees of VND180 per tonne per day for sand are cheaper than that for containers, Ky Ha-Chu Lai has paid VND1 billion (US$52,356) since last July, according to Thu.

Da Nang Port authorities are worried about environmental pollution problems and defacing of the port if the current situation persists.

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