HCMC – Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has issued an official letter offering urgent support to exporters apparently victimized by suspected trade fraud in Dubai, which has resulted in the loss of containers of spices and cashew nuts worth over US$520,000.
According to the Vietnam Pepper Association (VPA), its four member companies had shipped containers to the buyer Bab Al Rehab Foodstuff Trading LLC (BARFT), at Office No 1006, Mai Tower, Al Nahda, Dubai, UAE.
However, four containers of pepper, cinnamon, and cashew nuts worth US$400,000 have been moved out of the Jebel Ali Port of the UAE without payment. At the same time, shipping documents for another container of star aniseed valued at over US$126,000 were also missing.
Given the situation, Prime Minister Chinh urgently released an official letter supporting enterprises exporting their produce to the UAE market and ordering ministries to intervene.
Accordingly, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs must join forces with the Ministries of Industry and Trade, Justice, Agriculture-Rural Development, and Transport, and the State Bank of Vietnam to direct the Vietnamese Embassy in the UAE to work with UAE authorities to look into the case of four missing containers of agricultural produce and report the results to the PM by August 5.
According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, trading scams in the Middle East market are on the rise, mainly involving small-scale trading firms. The most common fraud is that foreign businesses require telegraphic transfers or TT payment terms when conducting sale contracts with Vietnamese companies, in which the buyer transfers money to the seller only after receiving goods or issues cheques to the pledged sellers.
Instead, a letter of credit (L/C) or sending representatives to meet the buyer in person to deliver shipping documents and settle payments is recommended. Moreover, to minimize losses, the Ministry of Industry and Trade advised Vietnamese businesses to be cautious when dealing with foreign businesses and negotiating payment conditions carefully to ensure safe trade.