|Illustrative image. — VNA/VNS Photo|
HCM CITY — Coastal localities in the Mekong Delta continue making efforts to better prevent and control illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing ahead of the fourth fact-finding trip by a European Commission (EC) delegation this October.
The EC issued a “yellow card” warning for Việt Nam in terms of IUU fishing in 2017. It will be followed by a "green card" if the problem is resolved. Meanwhile, a “red card” may lead to a ban on aquatic exports to the EU.
Kiên Giang Province has the largest fishing fleet in the country with 9,845 fishing boats with the length of six metres or more, including nearly 4,000 offshore-fishing vessels with the length of at least 15 metres.
From the beginning of the 2020 - 2025 term, the Kiên Giang provincial Party Committee issued a resolution to strengthen leadership in IUU prevention and control. As a result, after half a term implementing the resolution, the number of fishing vessels violating the law has gradually decreased.
According to Kiên Giang Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the unit has currently completed registration procedures for 1,820 fishing vessels and the installation of vessel monitoring equipment for all the fishing vessels. The department has supervised the loading and unloading of 16,850 tonnes of seafood through local ports, certified the origin of seafood for 12 businesses, and issued 102 certificates of origin of seafood which are exported to the European market.
The provincial border guard posts have focused their personnel and vehicles on enhancing IUU prevention and control.
The border guards coordinated with other forces such as the navy, coast guard, police, and army to patrol the waters, and to prevent, detect and handle violations related to IUU fishing.
Lieutenant Colonel Dương Văn Hơn, Commander of the Border Guard Command of Dương Đông Port Border Gate, said that the unit established more than ten teams and four checkpoints to support each other in inspecting and supervising fishing vessels.
They also increased communication works, giving out leaflets and letters calling on people to fight against IUU fishing.
In the southernmost province of Cà Mau, the Rạch Gốc Border Guard Station assigned staff on duty all the time to supervise fishing vessels. All vessels with the length of over 15 metres must install journey monitoring equipment.
Hồ Song Toàn, Vice Chairman of the People's Committee of Trần Văn Thời District said that the committee had directed specialised agencies to daily update IUU data.
The district was completing a database on vessels which have their fishing licences expired or those are unused.
It continued to coordinate closely with agencies in propagating and disseminating the Fisheries Law and regulations on IUU prevention and control so that fishermen have better awareness of the issue.
Meanwhile, Tiền Giang Province has established an inspection team to combat IUU fishing.
The province continues to implement the inter-sectoral coordination mechanism between ministries, central departments and branches and the People's Committees of 28 coastal localities in exchanging and processing information to prevent and put an end to violations of Vietnamese fishing vessels in foreign waters.
Deputy Director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Cà Mau Province Châu Công Bằng said that the province paid much attention to overseeing the operation of private fishing ports including the exit/entry of fishing vessels to the ports and the loading/unloading of seafood products at the ports. — VNS