According to the Hong Kong media, the 9 detained Terrex vehicles in Hong Kong has been relocated to a container in Kwai Chung yesterday (Jan 26), and is ready to be shipped back to Singapore.
Media photos show that a crane and several container trucks were seen driving into the Terrex storage area at River Trade Terminal before one Terrex vehicle wrapped with a grey sheet was seen transporting out onto a container truck. The vehicles were detained on 23 Nov 2016, after the shipment was transport out from Kaohsiung Taiwan.
Hong Kong’s Custom Chief Tang Yun-kwong said on Wednesday (Jan 25) that shipping company, APL, could collect the vehicles anytime once they obtained the right papers from the Trade and Industry Department. However, APL has been singled out as likely to be facing criminal prosecution and the Hong Kong Custom was quick to deny that the Singapore government is not responsible as it is not a consignee of the vehicles:
“No, we are a Hong Kong law enforcement agency. The authority of the Hong Kong Customs and Excise Department is based on Hong Kong law. No other institutions have been involved. In the investigation process, we did not detect any role of the Singapore government in the possible breach of the licensing requirement. So the Singapore government from the very beginning has not been the subject of investigation.”
The Singapore government did not receive its “formal reason” for the detention, but was quick to accept Hong Kong’s return without pressing further. China slipped out of the negotiation with Hong Kong’s denial, but has strongly signaled that the military exercise with Taiwan could no longer be tolerated in the future. However, China-Singapore relations did not turn for the better as Singapore refuses to acknowledge the One-China policy.