According to trade information and overseas officials, billions of dollars of Chinese goods subject to tariffs are entering the United States through other Asian countries, thus avoiding tariff measures.

The Wall Street Journal reported on June 27 that Chinese exporters came up with a response when the United States was preparing to impose tariffs on Chinese exports worth $300 billion. This type of operation is called transshipment – Chinese exports are temporarily stopped at the ports of the co-operators, and they are often subjected to minimal processing or modification, and then re-exported as products originating from the ports of the co-operators. 

The US President Donald Trump’s government has been trying to ban this practice because it undermines the US’s plan to impose tariffs on Chinese products. Or the threat of this tariff war is greatly reduced. The new round of tariff items from toys to electronic products will basically cover all Chinese exports to the United States. 

Trade data from Vietnam and Mexico may confirm from the side that such trans-shipment measures do exist. And it has had a huge impact on the flow of goods and capital flows in Southeast Asia.

US Customs and Border Protection: Illegal transshipment has been discovered

In the first five months of this year, electronic products, computers, machinery and other equipment exported from China to Vietnam surged over the same period last year. Such goods exported from Vietnam to the United States have also seen a sharp increase. The Ministry of Industry and Commerce of Vietnam said in a statement that the phenomenon of trade fraud by labeling the origin of goods with the “Made in Vietnam” label is increasing. 

Vietnam Customs said this month that it has instructed its provincial and municipal branches to strengthen inspection and verification of all international goods origin certificates. The regulator said that some companies have been importing Chinese goods, replacing the labels with “Made in Vietnam” and then exporting the goods to the United States, Europe or Japan. 

In addition to Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia are also the focus of the Trump administration. China is transferring exports of steel and furniture through these two countries. The US government has been taking steps to curb this behavior. A spokesperson for the US Customs and Border Protection said it has discovered that Chinese goods have been illegally transshipped in several countries and noted that this has happened in Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines in recent months.

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