Thursday, 5 February 2009

Cambodian waste flowing into Vietnam via border

Waste from Cambodia to An Giang province through Vinh Te canal.


VietNamNet Bridge – A huge volume of rubbish from Cambodia is running into Vietnam through border gates in southwestern provinces.

Most of the waste is coming into the country via the provinces of An Giang and Dong Thap. In these localities, dozens of tonnes of waste are transported by water and land each day.

At the Tinh Bien international border gate in An Giang province, we saw lines of trucks with Cambodian registration numbers carrying waste parked near the border-gate check point of Vietnam. Waste mainly comes from Phnom Penh and Ta Keo, goes along National Highway 2 of Cambodia to the border gate.

Vietnamese waste traders receive the waste at the border gate. They even pay in advance to Cambodian partners to collect waste, which includes banned things in Vietnam.

A Vietnamese-Cambodian said that in Thamau, Ta Keo province, Cambodia there is a spacious ground for waste, comprising used electronic products. This kind of waste is transported from Ta Keo to Chau Doc town, An Giang and then is distributed everywhere in Vietnam.

The chief of the An Giang provincial Customs Agency, Nguyen Thanh Tam, said: “Vietnam permits the import of some types of waste. Waste is checked at border gates and only waste that is allowed by the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment can pass.”

A customs officer at the Tinh Bien border gate said on average dozens of tonnes of waste goes through this border gate.

Yet, waste not only comes into Vietnam through the border gate, but on boats, which authorities can’t control. In An Giang, waste is transported from Cambodia to Vietnam along the Vinh Te canal and in Dong Thap province, waste boats run from Prey Veng to So Thuong, Hong Ngu, Tan Hong to HCM City. Some other boats continue to run down the Tien River to other locations.

According to Tien Phong daily, waste from Cambodia includes steel scrap, waste paper, nylon, plastic, glass bottles, used batteries, electronic waste, and pesticide containers, etc.


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