Chinese official voices over complaints of Chinese traders in Vietnam

VietNamNet Bridge – Mr. Wei Zi Shen, Trade Consul of the Chinese Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City was upset about information on local newspapers which said that Chinese businesses bought odd things in Vietnam, causing impacts to the environment.

vietnam-china, trade relations, border trade

Trucks carrying goods from Vietnam to China via the Tan Thanh border gate.

He said: “I have kept up with Vietnamese newspapers. I’m upset and waiting for the conclusion of the Vietnamese authorities but I have not seen it. The local press only said that Chinese traders buy this and that stuff but they did not say how much they bought and for what purpose and how the impacts on the environment. The articles only mentioned the phenomena without explanation!

I really do not know anyone in China who buys such things and for what purpose. But I believe that if they buy, they have the lucrative market for these things.

I do not support the way of trade of the Chinese traders as mentioned in newspapers. But I think the Vietnam authorities should guide them to obey the law, to register and pay taxes.

Traders are individuals who buy and sell to make a profit so they operate spontaneous. We need to guide and instruct them. And they buy these things for what purpose? I think journalists can ask them about that.

If both Chinese traders and Vietnamese farmers are instructed, it is too good for both! Farmers can sell products, Chinese merchants can buy goods.

In fact, anything if you know how to exploit and exploit under planning will benefit both the buyers and sellers! If the things that Chinese traders buy are well organized, there is no problem at all.

Many Vietnamese who go overseas have found out that China makes good products to sell to rich countries like the U.S., Japan, the EU, and sell cheap and poor quality goods for Vietnam or the goods that are ignored by the rich markets are sold to Vietnam?

Oh not, it's wrong.

China does not do so. China produces goods under orders. It is important how the quality the customers order. These high-quality products ordered by the U.S. and Japan; China can produce all.

I worked with many Chinese enterprises. I asked them why your products sold to Vietnam were criticized for poor quality. They said because the importing companies, traders of Vietnam ordered products of such quality and such price. So, this responsibility belongs to whom?

Another common method of Chinese traders in Vietnam is buying goods in large volumes, at high prices at the beginning to stimulate farmers to produce massively but when the goods is abundant, they force the price down or go away, causing heavy losses for farmers?

First of all I would like to assert that Chinese merchants purchase agricultural, forestry and fishery products of Vietnam is entirely market behavior, totally decided by the market. This also demonstrates that the Chinese market has the demand and the market of Vietnam is capable of providing.

If there are no Chinese traders purchasing raw agricultural products of Vietnam, whether the market for Vietnamese agricultural products is always stable? I believe that it is impossible, except for some special items managed by the state.

Secondly, the commercial act is also the market act. The nature of trade is "exchanging what you have, buying what you need." The basis of trade relations is the principle of voluntariness. If farmers do not see their benefit, they do not want to sell the product so the purchase behavior cannot be realized. If traders scramble to purchase, the farmers are the beneficiaries?

Thirdly, market demand affects production scale and vice versa. Traders and farmers are affected by market rules.

Has anyone mentioned the example that Chinese merchants signed contracts to purchase agricultural products with farmers in Vietnam and then disappeared?

Market fluctuations affect not only benefit of the farmers but also the interests of traders. In trade, no one can guarantee that I just gain, not lose. Of course in the market economy, the farmers are always in a relatively passive position and their interests need to be protected.

I myself am the son of a farmer, so I thoroughly understand the hardness and difficulties of farmers. I sincerely wish Vietnamese farmers to early get out of poverty, to have wealthier life and happiness.

Currently the proportion of import and export between the two countries is severely imbalance. Vietnam’s trade deficit with China is more than its trade surplus to the U.S. and Europe. This severe imbalance is difficult to ensure sustainable trade relationship. What do you think about this problem? Are China's policies adjusted towards sustainable trade relationship?

Vietnam’s trade deficit with China is the truth! Many Vietnamese friends told me about this problem. But frankly, China does not seek a trade surplus from Vietnam. China always hopes and applies practical measures to balance the trade between two parties soon. For this purpose, China has been "prescribed" the items for being imported in large quantities from Vietnam. Perhaps the majority of Vietnamese do not know about this information yet but I know very well. Unfortunately, Vietnam cannot do it.

I often tell Vietnamese friends that we cannot only see the trade deficit figures from China but we need to analyze specific causes and the two sides together find ways to balance the two-way trade.

Actually, the products imported from China into Vietnam are mainly machinery and materials for production. Machinery and raw materials imported from China have not only increased the production capacity of Vietnam but also contributed greatly to Vietnam’s exports to European and American markets. In other words, the trade deficit from China is exchanged with trade surplus to Europe - America because many export items are produced by raw materials from China.

Last April, the Chinese Ministry of Commerce and the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade signed the "Memorandum of bilateral cooperation in the field of trade in agricultural products." This memorandum is expected to help Vietnam increase agricultural exports to the Chinese market, to not only narrow the trade gap but also increase the income of Vietnamese farmers, promoting the modernization of agriculture of Vietnam.

Duy Chien

To be continued…

vietnam-china, trade relations, border trade