Border guards patrol Thọ Quang fishing port in Đà Nẵng City. — VNA/VNS Photo
ĐÀ NẴNG — Returning home from a long trip at sea, Đinh Văn Lợi, a shipowner, and his seven crew members from Sơn Trà District, Đà Nẵng, were immediately instructed to make medical declarations, fill in logs for their journey and take COVID-19 tests.
This is now the daily routine for guards at Sơn Trà border point since the COVID-19 pandemic appeared in Việt Nam.
They are working hard to ensure the safety of the city’s ports and prevent COVID-19 from spreading.
As one of the busiest seaports in the central region, Thọ Quang port has always faced a high risk of SARS-CoV-2 spreading from ships returning from other provinces.
Lợi said inspections have been strengthened at Thọ Quang fishing port. All fishermen must comply with regulations on pandemic prevention and control.
Fishermen also feel safer thanks to the regular checks, visits and reminders of the border guards, according to Lợi.
Lieutenant Colonel Văn Đức Trường said facing the complex developments of the COVID-19 pandemic, the border guards have deployed quarantine points at sea, ensuring patrols, checks and control of people and vehicles entering and exiting the port.
Trường told vietnamplus.vn that they must help stabilise fishing and trading activities and successfully implement the 'dual goals' of pandemic prevention and control and economic recovery and development.
The border guards have also transported food and essential items to fishermen when the city implemented social distancing, ensuring that no one was short of food and water.
In early September, border officers and soldiers coordinated with charity organisations to present 100 gifts to fishermen in difficult circumstances.
Border guards at sea also have made contributions to protecting the marine environment protection and helping develop a sea-based economy.
The marine environment is protected in the sea off Cù Lao Chàm Island in Hội An, Quảng Nam Province.
Stationed on the island, border guards have encouraged fishermen to help protect the marine environment by not using plastic bags, applying safe fishing methods to protect seafood resources, coral reefs and releasing sea turtles that get stuck in nets.
Lieutenant Colonel Nguyễn Đình Cường, head of the border point on Cồn Cỏ island, said due to work requirements, many soldiers in the unit have not come home for many months and stayed to ensure security and order on the island.
At present, it is the rainy and storm season. To ensure food for the soldiers and residents on the island, the unit also focuses on promoting the production of crops and livestock and arranges forces to ensure patrols. Rescue work has also been strengthened, according to Cường.
Border guards in central coastal provinces and cities have undertaken strong measures to combat illegal fishing and prevent Vietnamese fishing boats from encroaching on foreign waters.
"As a person who lives through fishing, I am aware that the State's regulations are to protect the fishermen and achieve long-term and sustainable profits. I always strictly follow the regulations on fishing," said Trần Văn Bình, a fisherman in Sơn Trà District.
From 2020, all 565 offshore fishing vessels in Đà Nẵng City have installed monitoring devices.
Fishermen are required to turn the device on during the journey and will be fined if they violate any regulations on fishing.
Fishermen are educated on fishing regulations. — VNA/VNS Photo
According to Colonel Đỗ Văn Đông from Đà Nẵng Border Guard, top priority has been given to educating fishermen and raising their awareness of Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing and related regulations so as to heighten their sense of responsibility and stop them from illegally entering waters of other countries.
The border guards focus on introducing the basics of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, the Law of the Sea of Việt Nam and regulations on combating IUU fishing.
Thanks to such efforts, no fishing vessels in Đà Nẵng City have been fined for violating foreign sea areas.
In Quảng Trị Province, the border guard reported four violations, involving six vessels, in the ten months of the year, with a total of VNĐ160 million (US$7,000) paid in administrative fines.
Colonel Phạm Xuân Diệu, Deputy Chief of Staff of the Việt Nam's Border Guard force, said a synchronous and comprehensive solution is needed in order to reduce and stop the situation of Vietnamese fishing vessels and fishermen violating foreign waters.
He urged for the strong involvement of the Party committees and local authorities as well as the border force in coastal provinces and cities in educating fishermen and raising their awareness of sustainable fishing, protection and development of aquatic resources in association with ensuring national defence and security. — VNS