Container lines slapped with strict new pricing rules in Vietnam

Container lines slapped with strict new pricing rules in Vietnam

Shippers in Vietnam are celebrating a decree by Hanoi that forces all containerlines to publicise all of their charges including surcharges, in a unprecedented transparency move that could see rates tumble in what has traditionally been an expensive place to ship from.

Local shippers have hit out in recent months over a series of new surcharges. However, Hanoi’s demand to get lines to publicise all of their charges has kicked off a storm of protest with local media reporting CMA CGM, MSC and APL have already made their objections known to the Ministry of Transport.

Last year the Vietnam Textile and Garment Association accused foreign shipping lines of issuing unreasonable surcharges. Foreign lines account for around 90% of all boxes imported and exported from the Southeast Asian nation. On routes to the US and Europe, the figure stands at 100%.

A report from the Ministry of Finance showed that of the VND77.12trn ($3.52bn) that boxlines made in 2013-2014, more than VND26trn ($1.18bn) came from surcharges.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.

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