HA NOI — Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung yesterday called on the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) to improve the legal framework and efficiency of state management when it comes to exploiting environmental resources.
|People illegally shift for gold in the Po Ko River in the Central Highlands province of Kon Tum. New laws adopted by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment will attempt to improve the effectiveness of State administration over mining and mineral resources. — VNA/VNS Photo Le Lam
Speaking at yesterday's ceremony to mark the Ministry's 10th founding anniversary in Ha Noi, he recognized MoNRE's contributions to developing the natural resources and environment sector.
The ministry has drafted and submitted to the National Assembly and the Government many policies and laws in seven areas under its State management, especially the laws on Land, Environmental Protection, Minerals and Water Resources, and the Law on the Sea of Viet Nam.
The PM also noted that survey work has been stepped up, efficiently serving the assessment of reserves and effective management, exploitation and use of precious natural resources such as land, water, marine resources and minerals.
The sector's international cooperation activities have also brought in practical results. Calls for international support for Viet Nam's viewpoint on sea and island sovereignty have attracted international aid, increasing resources to cope with climate change and strengthening scientific and technological potential for the sector, he said.
Dung stated that in the new development period,the Party and State have considered the natural resource and environment sector as a critical component of sustainable development.
Therefore, the MoNRE should continue to perfect the legal framework in the sector while improving the quality of natural resources management, hydrometeorological forecast and climate change supervision - all are considered critical tasks for ensuring sustainable development.
He also noted the need to crack down on violations in environmental protection and natural resources exploitation, such as by increasing the frequency of inspections and severity of punishment that violators receive.
Last year, environmental police departments in 22 localities collected fines of VND2.5 billion (US$120,000), and inspectors from the Viet Nam Environmental Administration collected fines of VND1.7 billion ($81,000) after inspecting 51 industrial zones.
At the ceremony, PM Dung presented the Ho Chi Minh Order to the natural resources and environment sector.
On Saturday, Vietnam News Agency reported that illegal sifting for gold continued in central Phu Yen Province's Son Hoa mountainous district, on the two sides of Ba river in Suoi Trai village.
According to Nguyen Ngoc Tien, head of the district's bureau on natural resources and environment, local authorities started cracking down on this gold-sifting spot at the end of July but all of the violators managed to escape before disciplinary actions could be taken.
Cao Minh Hoa, chairman of the district's People's Committee, said that illegal gold-sifting activities have reappeared in the area, although they had been temporarily wiped out recent crackdowns.
If continued, these activities could affect the functioning of Ba Ha River Hydropower Plant, also located in Son Hoa district. — VNS