Opening a peak period to check and strictly handle all IUU fishing violations

( - On September 20, chairing the meeting of the National Steering Committee on the prevention and combat of illegal, undeclared and unregulated (IUU) fishing to implement the recommendations of the Committee. According to Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh, Vietnam does not allow and will open a peak inspection and strictly handle all violations of IUU fishing.

Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh affirmed that removing the yellow card, absolutely not letting the EC withdraw the "red card" is very urgent - Photo: VGP/Duc Tuan

The meeting is connected online to the commune level of 28 coastal provinces and cities.

There is change but it is still slow

Reporting on the results of anti-IUU fishing, Director General of the General Department of Fisheries Tran Dinh Luan said that the total number of fishing vessels nationwide is 91,716. Up to now, the installation of cruise monitoring equipment (VMS) on fishing vessels has made progress of 95.27%, an increase of more than 5% compared to before.

“Law enforcement forces at sea strengthen patrol, inspection and control; especially in key sea areas,” said Mr. Tran Dinh Luan. From the fourth quarter of 2021 up to now, nearly 80,000 fishing boats have been inspected and controlled.

On September 20, the National Steering Committee on Combating IUU fishing held its sixth meeting under the chairmanship of Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh, Head of the Steering Committee - Photo: VGP/Duc Tuan

Law enforcement forces at sea have deployed many solutions such as maintaining over 30 ships, using unmanned aircraft to patrol and control; making a list of fishing vessels with high risk of violations to monitor and supervise... Localities such as Quang Ngai, Tien Giang, Khanh Hoa have done well, significantly reducing cases of violating fishing vessels; In particular, Phu Yen has not detected any violations since 2021.

Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Phung Duc Tien added that the legal framework and basic policy mechanism are adequate; However, there are still some shortcomings in the implementation process. There is still a situation of fishing vessels violating foreign waters.

Talking about the fishing port inspections and fleet management, Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien said that he had looked at many diaries and found that the logging was sketchy, in some cases almost nothing was recorded. “If there is no log, it is very difficult to trace it back.”

The ship has a VMS installed, but the connection is not continuous and regular, "sometimes it's for equipment, sometimes it's weather". Mr. Phung Duc Tien also assessed that the handling of administrative violations is still inadequate. “The provinces enforce the law unevenly, some provinces make a record, some call to remind, some provinces give fines. Therefore, there is a situation where trains from one province run to another province.” Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien said that the ministry is reviewing, amending and finalizing Decree No. 42/2019/ND-CP, which proposes that the Coast Guard has the power to sanction.

Noting that there is still a situation of fishing vessels violating foreign waters, Lieutenant General Nguyen Trong Binh, Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Vietnam People's Army stated, there should be strong sanctions and strictly handle this behavior. “Going to the sea where there are many fish, where our waters are, where are foreign waters, the talent (captain) knows well. Currently, the fines are not enough of a deterrent. In some countries, it mainly punishes the public, some countries give prison sentences, and fishermen only fines. Lieutenant General Nguyen Trong Binh also wanted the localities to step in more strongly.

The meeting is connected online to the commune level of 28 coastal provinces and cities - Photo: VGP/Duc Tuan

Tell me the time The province has no ships seized by foreign countries, Mr. Le Duc Giang, Vice Chairman of Thanh Hoa Provincial People's Committee shared his experience, the province has requested fishing boats to install cruise equipment and support telecommunications subscribers in 3 months. five. Currently, 100% of fishing boats have installed equipment.

The province also classified for review, ships that are at risk of violations are required to sign a commitment, resolutely not allowing fishing vessels to install unsecured equipment to go to sea; besides regularly monitoring, propagating and encouraging fishermen.

In addition to the results achieved, Vice Chairman of Thanh Hoa People's Committee said that there are some limitations. Although the equipment is installed, there is still a situation where the fishing boat disconnects the equipment or installs it on another vessel. The investment in fishing port infrastructure is still problematic. In addition, there are problems in determining maritime boundaries for the sanctioning of fishing vessels violating foreign waters.

With the same point of view, in order to minimize the situation of fishermen violating, the representative of Phu Yen province said that the central and local governments need to promote policies and solutions to change jobs for fishermen, aiming to develop the model. "feeding the sea", "raising the shore".

Vice Chairman of Khanh Hoa Provincial People's Committee Dinh Van Thieu said that the province also faced some difficulties and obstacles like many provinces, that is, a situation where some fishing boats installed equipment but deliberately disconnected the connection, making the management very difficult. In the coming time, the province proposes to the Central Government to promote fishery center projects.

The opinion is that it is necessary to investigate, handle and completely sanction the intentional acts or organizations and individuals that broker and connect Vietnamese fishing boats and fishermen to illegally exploit seafood in the area. foreign sea.

Immediately establish an interdisciplinary team

Concluding the meeting, Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh affirmed that removing the yellow card, absolutely not allowing the EC to withdraw the "red card" is very urgent, having special significance to the lives of fishermen and the export industry. seafood as well as prestige and national brand in the international arena.

According to the Deputy Prime Minister, the leaders of the Party and State are very interested in this issue and have had many meetings and discussions with senior leaders of the European Union about their commitment, efforts and determination. of Vietnam in combating IUU fishing; request the EC to soon remove the IUU yellow card for Vietnamese seafood products. The Government and the Prime Minister have directions and directives to take measures to solve this problem.

The Deputy Prime Minister said that the results achieved have improved compared to before, such as fleet management gradually getting in order; has allocated quotas for fishing permits in the high seas, inshore and offshore areas. Well deployed VMS system to control ships operating at sea. Law enforcement forces at sea have stepped up patrols to prevent many fishing vessels from violating foreign waters.

However, the results obtained are not satisfactory. The issuance of fishing licenses for the fleet has not met the requirements (96.7% for ships with a length of 15 m or more, for vessels under 15 m, the rate is 46.6%).

The installation of cruise monitoring equipment (VMS) in 2022 is still slow (only increased by 5%). In particular, there is also a situation where fishing vessels violate seafood exploitation in foreign waters. The traceability of seafood still exists.

According to the Deputy Prime Minister, this is a big problem, if it cannot be fixed, not only will the yellow card be removed, but also risk being raised to a "red card" warning.

"The comrades have stated the basic legal provisions fully, the mechanisms and policies on resources have been taken care of," the Deputy Prime Minister said. The implementation stage of the localities, especially at the grassroots level, plays a decisive role. Localities need to urgently direct organizations, establishments, groups and individual fishermen to overcome the shortcomings as soon as possible.

The Deputy Prime Minister requested the establishment of inter-sectoral delegations, at the central level chaired by leaders of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, and at localities by leaders of the provincial People's Committee to inspect specifically and promptly detect , strictly handle violations of regulations on anti-IUU fishing.

The coast guard, border guard, fishery control and local police forces have stepped up patrols, inspection and handling of violations at sea and at fishing ports. At the same time, promote information and propaganda work so that fishermen understand the risks and harms, thereby raising awareness in combating IUU fishing.

In the long term, the Deputy Prime Minister requested ministries, branches and localities to effectively implement the directives of the Government and the Prime Minister, especially the Project on preventing and combating IUU fishing by 2025. promulgated by the Prime Minister, developing the safe and sustainable exploitation, processing and export of Vietnamese aquatic products.


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