Shipment of Thai goods to China to be expedited, Lao port developer tells Atirat
The shipment of Thai farm products to China by rail through Laos will be faster in the near future because procedures are being streamlined, the developer of the Thanaleng Dry Port (TDP) told Thai authorities on Monday.
The Lao developer is cooperating with China to clear sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) certification plus the China Certification and Inspection Group (CICC) processes to speed up authorisation for transport of Thai farm products.
A few weeks ago, the Lao investor signed a memorandum of understanding with China on SPS cooperation, TDP managing director Sakhone Philangam told his Thai guests, including Thailand’s Deputy Transport Minister Atirat Ratanasate, who made a working trip to the dry port, which is part of Laos’s first-ever integrated Vientiane Logistics Park (VLP).
Under the MoU, China’s SPS centre will be set up at the TDP.
“Once we have SPS and CCIC facilities at the dry port, all Thai products with SPS and CCIC seals can be shipped directly to any county [in China via the railway],” Sakhone said.
He explained that shipment of Thai durian to China by rail through Laos had been slow so far because the fruit had to be transferred to trucks at the Chinese border crossing in Boten.
The consignment had to be inspected at the truck border crossing to obtain SPS certification before entering China by road.
The process normally takes days to complete, including the time taken to comply with Covid-19 prevention procedures imposed by Beijing.
However, non-agricultural products can be transported directly by rail, the director said.
Open for service since December last year, the dry port and logistics park will set new standards for logistics infrastructure in landlocked Laos. This critical infrastructure will pave the way for a surge in trade between China and Laos, as well as transit trade between China and Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. This in turn will spur a major shift from sea trade to road and rail passage through Laos with the completion of new cross-border railways in the next few years.
On June 26, the Laos-China Railway will debut its first transport service from Thanaleng (the dry port) to China, Sakhone said, citing information from the Laos-China Railway Company Limited.
So far, goods transferred through the dry port have been transited to the Laos-China Railway’s Vientiane Tai Station.
To expedite transport and logistics processes, Sakhone asked Thai authorities to instruct truck drivers to forward the necessary information before entering the dry port, so that as much documentation as possible could be processed prior to the arrival of the trucks.
Thailand’s Atirat said his ministry was pleased to extend support and cooperation for the mutual benefit of both sides.
The logistics park, which is being built on a 382-hectare site, features investment opportunities through five zones.
Vientiane Logistics Park vice-chairman Viengkhone Sitthixay told the Thai officials that the logistics park is part of the Lao Logistics Link project, and the Lao National Logistics Strategy for 2016-2030, which will boost the government’s efforts to transform Laos from a landlocked to a land-linked country.
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