HA NOI — Deputies agreed yesterday that water resources not only included surface and ground water found across the country's mainland but also Viet Nam‘s territorial waters at a discussion on the revised water resources law during the third session of the 13th National Assembly.
|Thu Duc Water Plant in HCM City. The country's water resources must be better protected in the process of industrialisation and modernisation. — VNA/VNS Photo Hoang Hai
Deputy Trieu La Pham from Ha Giang Province said including the country's territorial waters in the law was in line with what the NA was attempting to achieve, and would also reaffirm the nation's sovereignty over them.
Pham also suggested that the law should be added to an article related to international co-operation in water resources management between countries.
Deputy Tran Thi Quoc Khanh from Ha Noi said that the draft law should define that water resources management and protection should be the responsibility and task of all political system, organisations and people, aiming to protect water resources during the country's process of industrialisation and modernisation.
Deputies said that the law should include strict penalties for those found guilty of polluting water by illegally discharging waste. Discussions focused on tightening the control of projects from the early stages by conducting feasibility studies with the aim of avoiding negative impacts to the environment and people further down the road.
"Firms should be shut down if they are found to be causing pollution by illegally discharging waste," said Deputy Tran Thi Dung from Dien Bien Province.
Dung added that violators would not only have to pay for the damage but also repair problems and losses caused by water pollution.
Deputies said that water resources plans for provinces and cities directly under the Government should be submitted to local People's Councils before the appropriate authorities' approval.
Deputies also said that the Government should issue priority policies for handling demand for water in mountainous, remote, border and island areas, or areas with difficult socio-economic conditions that did not have access to clean water programmes. The Government should also encourage organisations and individuals to economise water and reuse waste water in a manner that satisfied regulations and standards.
Deputy Nguyen Thanh Hai from Hoa Binh Province said that the law should have regulations to handle violations by water trading companies related to causing water losses.
Deputies yesterday also heard statements and reports on the draft law of national reservation; the revised law of co-operatives; the revised and amendment law of tax management, and the electricity and lawyer laws. — VNS