According to National Agro-Forestry-Fisheries Quality Assurance Department (Nafiqad), the exports were stopped up because commercial name oftra fishin Chinese was labelled as basa, which is different from scientific name Pangasius hypophthalmus printed on packing.
On 21 June 2019, Nafiqadsent an official documentto processing facilities for export to China and Agro-Forestry-Fisheries Quality Assurance Centers and told them about tra fish exports to China being stopped up. As informed, Vietnamese tra fish was stopped up at the customs while being exported to China because commercial name of tra fish in Chinese was labelled as basa, which is different from scientific name Pangasius hypophthalmus printed on packing. The label was used by tradersto fill China’s custom declaration form. “The labelled information was different from the essence of the cargo and certificate of eligibility granted by Vietnam’s competent authorities”, affirmed Nafiqad.
Thus, Nafiqad requests tra fish processing facilities for export to China to review carefully all information printed in the label and packingso that commercial name of tra fish in Chinese is printed exactly and commensurately to scientific name (Pangasius hypophthalmus) and information in the certificate of eligibility granted by local Agro-Forestry-Fisheries Quality Assurance Center. Moreover, Nafiqad’s parties are requested to write exactly commercial name of tra fish in Chinese and scientific name in custom declaration form at China’s Customs.
It is difficult to distinguish tra and basa which are in the family of pangasius and look alike. Traders usually call them both basa because basa was commercialized first and becamefavorite food in markets, but this is not transparent and allowed by importing countries. Quite few numbers of basa are sold in markets due to high production cost, making them non-competitive against tra fish.
China has been recently an emerging market for Vietnamese tra. The country decided to exempt tax on thirty-three seafood items imported from Vietnam at the end of May, including tra fish. This is a strong motive for Vietnam’stra fish companies to enter this market. Around 150 Vietnam’s companies are involved in seafood exports to China with 45 ones exporting tra fish.