Chinese customs is set to host two online auctions this week including more than 100,000 bottles of confiscated wines.
Shantou Customs of Guangdong province is auctioning off 82,215 bottles of wines later this week on JD.com, one of China’s biggest online shopping platforms. The wines are expected to fetch a minimum of three million RMB (370,000 GBP).
Photos show that the wines include Bordeaux wines with badly damaged labels. There was no suggestion that the wines themselves were faulty.
On the same platform, Xiamen Customs of Fujian province is auctioning 19,349 bottles of Australian wines. It expects to get a minimum of 1.8m RMB (220,000 GBP).
It is a common practice for Chinese Customs to auction most of its confiscated goods and hand in the profits to the national treasury.
Many of the local customs in cities include Dalian (Liaoning), Huangpu (Guangdong province), Nanning (Guangxi), Ningbo (Zhejiang) and Chengdu (Sichuan) set up online auction channels with either JD.com or Alibaba’s Taobao.com since the end of last year, selling various confiscated products including cars and industrial materials.
The move marks the latest attempt of Chinese customs to make its auctioning process on confiscated products transparent while reducing the costs.
The wines being auctioned by the Shantou Customs were ‘confiscated legally’ by the local authorities, said the official statement.
The photos from the local Customs showed that many of these wines have seriously damaged labels, though no details were disclosed by the local authority about the source of these wines.
Any individual ‘with full capacity for civil conduct’, legal person or organisation willing to pay a 1m deposit can take part in this online auction.
Those interested were given two days beforehand to examine the products, according to the local customs’ online statement.
*The auction page can be found here: http://paimai.jd.com/101551003
Xiamen Customs told local media Xiamen Daily that it has confiscated over 19,000 bottles from a Chinese importer who has fraudulently reported only 1/3 of the actual sales price on these wines in order to avoid paying the full amount of tax.
The managing director of the importer fled to Australia but was recently arrested, said the official.
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