Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong on August 13 urged all cities and provinces in the south-central coastal region to accelerate action programmes to implement the Law on Fisheries and address the “yellow card” warning of the EC on Vietnamese seafood over illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
At a meeting in Quy Nhon city, Binh Dinh province, the minister also stressed that provisions and regulations in the law must be carried out immediately.
He asked the provincial and municipal People’s Committees to take more drastic measures to make fishermen equip their vessels with long-range position equipment, thoroughly examine the ocean tuna production chain, and establish fisheries unions without violating waters of other countries.
Vietnam has advantages in developing marine economy, Cuong said, adding that the country should make evaluation of its marine resources once in every five years to have a proper development strategy to build a modern sea-based economy.
The Government, ministries and departments have issued two decrees and nine circulars to address the “yellow card”, he noted.
The ministry is coordinating with Kien Giang, Binh Dinh and Quang Ninh provinces to implement the law and finalising other relevant legal documents, the minister said.
He suggested Kien Giang and Binh Dinh, which have the biggest number of vessels with large capacity in the country, pursue responsible exploitation and chain production to accelerate the building of sustainable seafood industry.
Lying in the Gulf of Tokin and home to the world heritage site of Ha Long Bay, Quang Ninh should pay more attention to marine ecological environmental protection and sustainable tourism development, he suggested.
Binh Dinh boasts the largest number of offshore fishing vessels in the country and is one of the leading localities in implementing drastically the Law on Fisheries and deal with the “yellow card”.
The province has taken a number of measures to deal with the “yellow card” such as asking ship owners and captains to sign commitments to not infringe in foreign countries’ water.
Vietnam was given a “yellow card” warning by the EC in September 2017 for failing to progress in IUU fishing. It was offered an opportunity to rectify the situation within six months.
An EC delegation visited Vietnam in May to inspect the outcomes of measures to control IUU fishing. The "yellow card" is followed by a "green card" if the problem is resolved or a "red card" if it isn’t. A “red card” can lead to a trade ban on fishery products.VNA