China holds Vietnamese ship in commercial dispute

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A Vietnamese ship with the largest loading capacity in the country has been detained by China following a commercial dispute, VnExpress reported Friday.


To have Vinalines Global released, its owner, the state-owned Vietnam Shipping Lines (Vinalines), has to pay US$800,000 in compensation according to a decision by a Chinese court last Friday, the news website quoted a representative from Vinalines as saying.


If Vinalines fails to pay by Friday, the Chinese court will order the ship sold. It is not known when the 73,350 DWT ship, put into operaton in 2008, was apprehended.


Le Dinh Thanh, director of Vinalines Ho Chi Minh City, which directly manages the ship, said they are currently negotiating with the Chinese company to decrease the amount of compensation.


According to Vinalines, the ship was hired by an Indian company, which failed to pay its fees. So, Vinalines HCMC decided to keep the goods on board, but these belonged to a Chinese company which had already paid the Indian firm for it.


The Chinese court concluded that Vinalines was wrong and had to compensate the goods' owner.


Following the incident, Vinalines has warned its member companies about operating in Chinese waters, VnExpress reported.


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