Remove the IUU "yellow card", Vietnam tries not to lose this opportunity

 Remove the IUU "yellow card", Vietnam tries not to lose this opportunity

If the opportunity to remove the IUU "yellow card" is lost this time, it may take another 2-3 years for Vietnam to have the opportunity to remove the "yellow card".

On the afternoon of June 28, Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang chaired an online conference on leading and directing against illegal, undeclared and unregulated fishing ( Anti-IUU fishing ) of European Commission (EC); Prevention of crime, drugs, human trafficking; anti-smuggling, commercial fraud and counterfeiting.

The Deputy Prime Minister emphasized that the biggest goal from now until the EC's inspection team arrives in Vietnam is to not let a single fishing vessel be captured by foreign countries. Photo: VGP/Hai Minh

Reported at the meeting, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said, EC warned "yellow card" IUU, "red card" IUU for 28 countries, of which 14 countries have removed "yellow card". The remaining 14 countries have 5 countries with “red cards”; 9 countries were "yellow card" (including Vietnam).

Being warned of "yellow card" increases the time, effort and cost for the strict management of records when exporting seafood to the EU. Meanwhile, if it is "red card", the EC will ban all seafood exports to this market.

For Vietnam, there are just over 3 months to welcome the fourth EC delegation to inspect and inspect the work against IUU fishing in Vietnam.

In order to remove the "yellow card" soon, the Prime Minister and the National Steering Committee on IUU have taken drastic and powerful steps to perfect the legal framework for strengthening leadership and directing public implementation of actions against IUU.

Localities set up provincial anti-IUU steering committees to strengthen the direction, inspection and review of the responsibilities of relevant organizations and individuals who have not completed their tasks.

Despite many efforts, anti-IUU work has not yet met EU requirements due to limitations such as: Not managing all fleets; Traceability work has progressed recently, the number of EU goods returned is low, but there are still some businesses legalizing their documents.

The forces have strengthened inspection, control and handling of administrative violations, but the rate is still low, and the situation of turning off cruise equipment for more than 10 days.

In particular, the EU side warned that if there are fishing vessels violating foreign waters, it is difficult to remove the "yellow card" for Vietnam.

The fishing in other waters leads to more than 300 fishermen being detained abroad, which not only directly affects the lives of fishermen's families but also degrades the position and prestige of the economy of Vietnam.

More importantly, the whole seafood industry of Vietnam is facing a serious challenge that the seafood export market will be narrowed if the application period of the "yellow card" is prolonged, even the "red card" will continue if it continues violations, and many seafood import markets of Vietnam can apply similar measures as those of the EC.

Through practical inspection by Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang in Ca Mau and Kien Giang in recent days, the fleet is still large while the fishing port infrastructure is still modest, causing difficulties for functional forces in management. fishing vessel; The fishing ground has decreased significantly, so the catches are mainly small fish with low economic value; access to bank capital is still very difficult due to high interest rates, making career change difficult; functional forces are still thin, equipment does not meet task requirements; the status of dismantling the cruise equipment and sending it to another fishing vessel or turning off the cruise equipment, etc.

Faced with the above situation, Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang stressed that the EC's "yellow card" warning for Vietnam's seafood exports is lifted or not depends greatly on the consciousness and responsibility of each government about local rights to the sea and the fishermen involved in fishing.

The upcoming EC inspection team will be the final inspection team of the current European term, so if there is no high determination and great effort, it may take another 2-3 years for Vietnam to have the opportunity to remove IUU "yellow card".

Therefore, the Deputy Prime Minister emphasized that the biggest goal from now until the EC's inspection team arrives in Vietnam is not to let a fishing vessel be captured by foreign countries. This is a very difficult task, but if you can't do it, you have to wait at least 2 more years before you have the opportunity to remove the "yellow card".

Regarding a number of tasks in the coming time, the Deputy Prime Minister assigned the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to focus on amending and supplementing Decree 42 on regulations on penalties for administrative violations in the fisheries sector and Decree 26 detailing a number of articles and measures to implement the Law on Fisheries, striving to be completed this July.

The Deputy Prime Minister asked localities to try to best manage their own fishing vessels; coordinate with functional agencies to prosecute a number of cases to enhance deterrence; strong hand in administrative handling, although this is very painful, but the more lenient, the more difficult it is to remove the yellow card, the seafood export is blocked, the life of the fishermen is therefore even more difficult.

In the long term, localities must take measures to regenerate aquatic resources with the help of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, and at the same time enhance exchange, sharing and learning from each other in this regard. .

Localities must step by step support fishermen to change jobs - a very arduous task due to fishermen's habits and difficulties in accessing credit - but if they don't start working, they will never do it. If there is a change, the Deputy Prime Minister said and affirmed that the Government and ministries and branches will accompany localities in finding sources, including ODA, to support career change.

Previously, on June 26, Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang led a Government delegation to survey the situation of fighting illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing in Ca Mau and Kien Giang provinces. 

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