|Local farmers buy seafood at Hai Binh Fishing Port in northern Thanh Hoa Province's Tinh Gia District. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment will focus on finishing a draft law on sea and island resources and environment this year. The law will address shortcomings in State management of sea and island resources and environment. — VNA/VNS Photo Trong Dat
HA NOI (VNS) — Completion of a draft law on sea and island resources and environment will be the main priority of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment's General Department of Sea and Islands this year.
The draft, set to be submitted to the National Assembly in October, addresses several shortcomings in State management of the sea and islands. It would focus on mining, rational use of natural resources and protecting the marine environment, Minister Nguyen Minh Quang told Vietnam News Agency.
With a coastline stretching over 3,200 kilometres and more than 3,000 islands, Viet Nam has three times more sea area than land.
However, the country still lacks a master plan for inspecting the marine environment and its resources and over-exploitation is a constant threat, said Deputy Minister Chu Pham Ngoc Hien.
He added that the law would provide authorised agencies with a mechanism to control environmental pollution in these areas.
To meet the deadline, Quang ordered the department to hold forums and workshops to collect ideas from scientists, experts and policy-makers as well as relevant ministries and sectors.
Work on the draft started in 2008, but it has taken a long time because draft-makers had to thoroughly research the topic and review other laws to avoid overlaps, according to Hien.
The environment ministry also aims to complete a proposal to investigate the geology and minerals situation by the end of the year.
According to Quang, the ministry will also continue prospecting for uranium in central Quang Nam Province's Pa Lua – Pa Rong area and evaluating the potential of bauxite and laterites in the southern region. — VNS