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Cablegate: Exbs Equipment Handover to Gvn Highlights Export Control

VZCZCXRO1502
RR RUEHHM
DE RUEHHI #0607 1440555
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 230555Z MAY 08
FM AMEMBASSY HANOI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7880
INFO RUEHHM/AMCONSUL HO CHI MINH 4761
RUEHBK/AMEMBASSY BANGKOK 6361

UNCLAS HANOI 000607

SIPDIS

BANGKOK FOR EXBS ADVISOR BILL COMLEY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETTC KSTC PARM PREL VM
SUBJECT: EXBS EQUIPMENT HANDOVER TO GVN HIGHLIGHTS EXPORT CONTROL
COOPERATION


1. Summary: At a May 21 ceremony, the Ambassador presented USD 1.2
million of EXBS-funded, export control-related equipment to the GVN.
In his remarks, the Ambassador highlighted our successful
cooperation in this area and encouraged the GVN to continue
strengthening its export control regime. GVN officials stressed
that improving export control is a top priority for GVN Customs and
that EXBS-provided equipment and training is helping the GVN to
achieve this objective. The handover ceremony received prominent
national press coverage. End Summary.

Export Control: an Area of Robust Cooperation
---------------------------------------------

2. During the equipment handover ceremony, the Ambassador presented
Export Control and Border Security (EXBS) Program-funded equipment
to Vice Minister of Finance Do Hoang Anh Tuan, General Department of
Customs Director General Le Manh Hung and MOD Border Guard Command
Deputy Chief of Staff Colonel Bui Song Nham. Prior to the ceremony,
the Ambassador met with VM Tuan and DG Hung to underscore the
importance of our cooperation in the area of export control as a
means of countering the spread of WMD. He recognized the Department
of Customs' ("Customs") excellent cooperation in implementing EXBS
Program activities since 2005 and encouraged the GVN to set up a
strong legal-regulatory framework for strategic items to complement
its increasing enforcement capacity. The Ambassador also previewed
the Department of Energy's Megaports proposal for Vietnam and
offered Embassy support in following-up DG Hung's upcoming
TDA-sponsored Customs Modernization orientation visit to the U.S.

Improving Export Control a GVN Priority
---------------------------------------

3. VM Tuan noted that customs issues are one of his most pressing
priorities at the Ministry of Finance. He stated that "Customs' top
duty is to tighten controls over imports and exports in order to
safeguard the Vietnamese population against the threat of weapons of
mass destruction." In light of this, the GVN "highly appreciates"
the EXBS-provided equipment that will enable Customs to perform this
duty.

4. DG Hung noted that Customs needs to improve its capacity to
fight terrorism. He praised the contribution of U.S. Customs and
Border Protection (USCBP) in providing counterterrorism-related
training through EXBS-funded programs and hoped for further training
opportunities in the future.

EXBS Equipment Meets Needs; Improves Implementation
--------------------------------------------- ------

5. Following the meeting, the Ambassador, VM Tuan and DG Hung
joined Colonel Nham and an audience of Customs officials for the
presentation of a package of EXBS-funded equipment valued at USD 1.2
million. The equipment included a mobile x-ray van, two x-ray
scanners, radiation pagers and GPS devices. Six off-road vehicles
will also be delivered to the Border Guard in June. In his remarks,
the Ambassador highlighted our excellent cooperation through the
EXBS Program in the fight against the proliferation of WMD. He
encouraged the GVN to work with the U.S. to ensure that its
strategic trade control system is consistent with international
standards, including strong national laws, national control lists
harmonized with international lists and improved enforcement and
pursuit of violators.

6. DG Hung commented on the effectiveness with which the EXBS
program has been implemented, noting that many GVN officials
involved in a range of activities have learned skills to implement
and enhance border control. He expressed confidence that the new
EXBS equipment will bring practical benefits for securing trade in
the fight against terrorism. He promised to promptly distribute the
equipment to local offices for use as soon as possible.

7. VM Tuan also expressed GVN appreciation for the equipment,
noting that it is a perfect fit with the GVN's objectives and tasks
in the area of customs. Noting that improved control of imports and
exports is one of Customs' top strategic tasks, he said the GVN will
continue to look to the U.S. for assistance in carrying out this
task.

Significant Press Coverage
--------------------------

8. As the result of a press release issued by the Public Affairs
Sections at the Embassy and Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City, the
ceremony received wide coverage in major national newspapers and
internet news outlets on the following day.

MICHALAK

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
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