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Thousands of fishermen to get free accident insurance

Update: February, 04/2012 - 10:13

HA NOI—More than 3,000 offshore fishermen in Da Nang will now receive free accident insurance due to a new policy designed to boost the city's fishing industry.

Ho Pho, Deputy director of the city's Agriculture and Rural Development Department said it would be targeting fishermen who work on boats with a capacity of at least 50CV (metric horsepower), including those coming from other provinces.

Pho said the city would contribute VND64,000 (US$3) per person to provide one year of insurance coverage of up to VND20 million ($950) for those who risk injury or death at sea. Boat owners can choose to buy insurance for the crew in its entirety or for each fisherman individually.

Fishermen will also be offered free training classes and other forms of technical support, he said.

"This policy aims to lighten the fisherman's burden in order to encourage him to stay with his career."

In 2007, there were more than 2,000 fishing boats in Da Nang, but by late 2011 that figure had decreased to 1,700, 300 of which were offshore boats with a capacity of more than 50CV.

Deputy director Pho said fishing activities contribute to developing the city's sea economy and protecting the country's sovereignty.

Ngo Le Huu, a boat owner in the city, said the policy would provide a solid foundation for fishermen in this difficult time when the cost of fuel is rising.

He plans to register so that his fishermen can receive the free insurance.

Hoang Dinh Yen, deputy head of the Aqua Exploiting and Protection Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said the ministry encouraged localities to implement this support policy and would also help fishermen pay to insure their boats.

There are currently 13,000 offshore fishing boats nationwide, mainly located in central provinces. —VNS

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