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Vietnam seizes 'COVID-19 drugs' likely smuggled from China

Vietnam seizes 'COVID-19 drugs' likely smuggled from China

Monday, September 06, 2021, 13:16 GMT+7
Vietnam seizes 'COVID-19 drugs' likely smuggled from China
This supplied photo shows market monitors searching an establishment of SH - XY Construction Technique Trading Co. Ltd. in Binh Duong Province, Vietnam.

Market monitors in Vietnam’s Binh Duong Province have confiscated a large volume of traditional Chinese medicines advertised to be used in COVID-19 treatment, among other medical goods, with signs of being smuggled from China.

The suspicious goods were found during a search of an establishment of SH - XY Construction Technique Trading Co. Ltd., located in the province’s Thuan An City, the Vietnam Directorate of Market Surveillance reported on Sunday.

The items seized include 19,860 Lianhua Qingwen capsules, 460 rapid COVID-19 test kits, 4,600 medical protective devices, 1,600 face shields, 516 antiseptic solution bottles, thousands of face masks, and others.

Most of these products were made in China but they had no required sub labels in Vietnamese and showed signs of being illegally imported from China.

Notably, Lianhua Qingwen has recently been advertised on social media as a traditional Chinese medicine to treat COVID-19 patients.

The establishment’s representative failed to show invoices or other documents proving the legal origin of the goods, whose value was estimated at over VND725 million (US$31,800).

The provincial market surveillance department is investigating the source of these goods to form a foundation for handling the company’s violations.

Last month, market monitors in Ho Chi Minh City, which borders Binh Duong, also seized a large amount of COVID-19 drugs and medical devices, including COVID-19 test kits, disinfectant sprayers, and oxygen cylinders, which were all smuggled from China.

These two cases were discovered amid the rising demand for COVID-19 medication and medical equipment due to the raging coronavirus spread that has caused 524,307 infections and 13,074 deaths in Vietnam since the pandemic hit the country in early 2020, as reported by the Ministry of Health on Sunday evening.

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Vinh Tho / Tuoi Tre News

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