US-based delivery company DHL Worldwide Express has launched a new service - DHL Fashion First - aimed at Vietnam's textile, garment and footwear exporters for whom it is essential that export shipments arrive on time.

DHL's director for South Asia and Indochina, Malcolm Rees told Asia Pulse: "In Vietnam, textiles and garment exports are the second-largest hard currency earner behind crude oil, while footwear exports rank third. Last year, the exports from these three sectors grew by 9.6 per cent over 1999, and made up 24 per cent of Vietnam's export total."

Rees added that Fashion First would capitalise on DHL Vietnam's in-the-air clearance facility, truncating customs procedures once the goods arrived on the ground and thus speeding up delivery times.