Vietnamese seafood exporters scammed in payment fraud schemes

By VnExpress   January 13, 2017 | 11:48 pm PT
Industry group VASEP has asked its members to stay vigilant against potential letter-of-credit scams that could cost them thousands of dollars.

The Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) has issued a warning to alert its members to possible payment scams.

The warning came after Vinh Hoan, a major seafood producer in the Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap, reportedly became the latest victim of professional scammers.

The exporter entered into an agreement with Cairo-based Al-Reda Group in 2015 to deliver seafood shipments worth a total of $58,800 through a letter of credit.

Since it successfully delivered the shipments, Vinh Hoan has not been able to collect the money from the buyer, who allegedly faked documents to convince banks that the seller has failed to ship goods.

In its warning, VASEP blacklisted Al-Reda Group.

“Members should be cautious in entering into contracts with this company as well as with other foreign partners to avoid such payment risks,” said VASEP.

It is not immediately clear what legal support the association will offer to its scammed members.

A few Vietnamese seafood exporters are facing the possibility of losing hundreds of thousands of dollars in a similar scheme linked to a Quebec-based importer and a bank based New Zealand. VASEP suspected that the buyer may have colluded with the bank. 

Official figures showed that Vietnamese exporters lost around $8 billion due to payment fraud in 2015.

Although letters of credit are considered to be the best payment option for many traders, local exporters have been advised to take extra caution with new buyers from overseas.

Related news:

Vietnam’s seafood industry feels the pinch after mass fish deaths

U.S. detects banned substances in Vietnamese seafood exports

go to top