At present, Hai Phong has approximately 1,300 shipping companies with 7,107 tractors. However, the process of granting business licences for container shipping is quite slow, only a few container transport companies care about shipping permit-granting procedures and they mainly follow the advice of the Department of Transport. In July 2013, the Department granted licenses to 46 companies with 662 containers, or less than 10 per cent of total containers in the city.
Giving explanations to this reality, Mr Dam Xuan Luy, Director of Hai Phong Transport Department, said the State management over transporting vehicles was quite good before 2000 because circulation permits were required. In 2000, the Prime Minister however issued a decision on revocation of all licences contrary to the Law on Enterprises (84 licences), including permits granted to freight transporting means. Since then, operations of automobiles in general and container trucks in particular in the country are imposed to no legal tools, specifically this type of business.
He said this was also partly resulted from ineffective coordination of the Department of Transport and Hai Phong Road Freight Transport Association in surveying the reality and informing container transport firms of freight transport licensing. The Department of Transport finds it difficult to impose fines on transport firms without container transport permits because the Decree No. 34/2010/ND-CP on fines on administrative violations only specifies fines on unlicensed transport firms, not transport means. But, in fact, if authorities want to inspect, examine and fine transport companies for not having transport business certificates, they must perform at the head offices of such companies. This is an infeasible work, even likely to cause misunderstanding or complaints about bureaucracy.
The Clause 4, Article 18 of Decree No. 93/2012/ND-CP specifies that means for passenger transport on fixed routes, passenger transport under contracts, or passenger transport by taxi, cargo container transport must be affixed with insignias. Means for tourist transport must be affixed with signboards. However, to date, the circular guiding and providing sample insignias for container vehicles has not been issued by the Ministry of Transport. Without sufficient legal foundation, traffic policemen and traffic inspectors find it hard to check this kind of transport means.
Seeing those difficulties, the Hai Phong Department of Transport has introduced some measures to effectively issue container transport licences. It will also inform of all concerned entities in the city of legal documents on transportation, especially container transport. The department will strengthen coordination with the Hai Phong Road Freight Transport Association to guide container transport firms to complete procedures for container transport permits.