China is enforcing tougher custom checks on goods imported from Japan, slowing down operations of Japanese companies in China.
Tianjin Customs officials delivered a statement to Japanese companies last Wednesday notifying the hike in inspection rates.
It is expected Beijing may also increase inspection rates in other ports. Production of finished products will be affected if such measures extend to ports in Shanghai and Guangdong that handle much more cargo than Tianjin.
China imposing such measures is seen as retaliation to Japan's purchase of three of the five disputed Diaoyu islands in the East China Sea.
China and Taiwan also claim sovereignty over the islands. Since early September, there have been reports that customs departments have increased inspection rates as tensions flared over the disputed islands.
The normal inspection rate of imported goods is about 10 percent, but the rate has increased to 50 percent since the anti-Japanese protests escalated.
Delays caused by customs checks of imported goods will likely affect production and may impact global markets in the long run.
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