|The southernmost province of Ca Mau is simplifying procedures to allow fishermen to access bank loans to build fishing boats. — File Photo
HCM CITY (VNS) — The southernmost province of Ca Mau is simplifying procedures to allow fishermen to access bank loans to build fishing boats.
"The Government's Decree No 67 says that financial support will be provided to fishermen to upgrade or make new boats. There will also be policies to assist people in aquaculture," Do Chi Sy, head of the provincial Marine Resource Protection and Exploitation Sub-department, was quoted as saying in the Thoi Bao Kinh Te Viet Nam (Viet Nam Economics Times) newspaper.
However, if fishermen want loans, they must provide at least 30 per cent of capital for wooden boats or 10 per cent for steel boats (VND2.5-3 billion or US$120,000- 145,000).
"This is a huge amount of money for fishermen. Therefore, the number of those who want to upgrade or make new boats have fallen from 360 people early this year to around 100," Sy said.
To support the fishermen, the provincial People's Committee has asked the Steering Committee, in co-operation with People's Committees in districts and communes, commercial banks and ship designers, to work together and identify the people who should receive loans.
The provincial People's Committee has approved a total of eight fishermen who have agreed to receive loans from banks.
The provincial Agriculture and Rural Development said Ca Mau was facing two challenges.
The first is a budget to build infrastructure for aquaculture and seafood exploitation following Government Decree 67.
Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh has instructed the ministries of Finance and Planning and Investment to provide a budget for Ca Mau.
In addition, the aftermath of the historical Linda storm in 1997 has still affected fishermen, as many of them have not been able to repay old bank loans and cannot take out new loans.
Only two ship-making enterprises in the province have been able to join the programme.
"Since the programme began, the provincial People's Committee has given guidance and told commercial banks to offer loans to fishermen," Sy said.
"Banks have to give biweekly reports about the loans, and local authorities will try to solve all problems for fishermen so they can have new boats in the shortest time," he added. — VNS