Durians call on China

Durians call on China

The first shipment by train of Thai durians and mangosteens is due to arrive in China on Friday, said the Department of Agriculture (DA).

Some 18 tonnes of durians and 64 tonnes of magosteens worth 6 million baht are set to reach the rail customs checkpoint at the Dongxing border point in the Guangxi autonomous region in southern China today, said Sermsuk Salakpet, the department director-general.

The produce was transported from Thailand to Vietnam, which was sent on via train to China.

Earlier the Covid-19 pandemic forced the closure of Chinese-Vietnamese border crossings in Guangxi, which caused fruit transport trucks, including those from Thailand, to divert to the Youyi Guan checkpoint.

It was reported the border closure left a tailback stretching 15 kilometres. The delayed transport spoiled the quality of Thai fruit with durians ripening before hitting the shelves.

Ms Sermsuk said the DA and the National Bureau of Agricultural Commodity and Food Standards held talks with the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC) in search of a solution to the border-traffic problem.

The GACC decided to open two more checkpoints for Thai fruit imports -- one at Dongxing opposite Mong Cai of Quang Ninh province in northern Vietnam and the other at Ping Xiang border checkpoint.

The opening of the new border channels will help relieve traffic congestion at the existing Youyi Guan border checkpoint, reports said.

The department chief said up to 70 container loads of Thai fruit were being transported to China by train four times a day from Vietnam.

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