|Border guards of Quảng Ninh Province disseminate laws to advise fishermen not to catch fish illegally. — VNA/VNS Photo|
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính has called for a 180-day action plan to carry out the European Commission (EC)’s recommendations to fight illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
He chaired a teleconference with 28 coastal provinces and cities on Thursday, calling for concerted efforts to combat IUU and remove the 'yellow card' warning.
At the meeting, ministries, sectors and localities pointed out causes and obstacles, looked into international experience, and proposed solutions to prevent IUU fishing.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) reported that IUU fishing has been reeled in since the European Commission issued a “yellow card” warning five years ago.
Việt Nam’s fight against IUU has recorded lots of positive changes compared to EU’s second inspection in 2019.
Việt Nam has completed a legal framework as well as tracking, fleet management and output monitoring.
Việt Nam has carried out certification and traceability of domestic and imported aquatic products. Law enforcement and administrative penalties have been improved and achieved remarkable results.
However, problems and shortcomings remain, regarding which an EC delegation gave recommendations during their third inspection recently, MARD noted, adding that the EC also highly valued Việt Nam’s strong political resolve, especially the drastic directions delivered by the Government and the PM.
According to MARD, it is necessary to review and adjust some legal provisions. Meanwhile, the control of fishing vessels in and out of the port has not been tightened.
Despite applauding recent efforts, PM Chính said many problems still exist and haven’t been addressed quickly enough.
He noted those problems are caused by not only people’s limited awareness but also a lack of responsibility among some organisations and individuals. This sluggish progress is due to a lack of strong action, attention, inspection and supervision over the issue, as well as long-term solutions, including ensuring livelihoods for fishermen.
"The fight against IUU fishing must be carried out not for the sake of formality but for the sake of the people and Việt Nam’s image as a responsible member of the international community in implementing international commitments, including marine environment protection," he said.
Chính asked for a long-term strategy to prevent IUU fishing, reviewing sea areas and territorial waters, re-assessing fishing and aquaculture activities, and creating sustainable livelihoods for people. — VNS