According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, in the 11 months, Vietnamese tuna’s three major markets were the US, EU and ASEAN.
However, Vietnam faced difficulties due to a “yellow card” issued by the EU as a warning for illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
VASEP General Secretary Truong Dinh Hoe said the warning has worried the seafood sector due to its direct impact on tuna exports.
Hoe said that the VASEP is working with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) to deal with the yellow card for the rest of the six-month punishment.
He noted that in 2018, the US will also apply IUU regulations in fishing, which will not only affect tuna and all seafood caught in Vietnam but aslo seafood products with material imported from elsewhere.
The VASEP representative said that in order to maintain seafood export revenue, efforts to deal with IUU warnings and regain a green card are crucial.
To control origin of seafood materials for export, the MARD has launched a national plan to prevent and minimise IUU fishing. Along with proposing to the Government an offshore fishing project, the ministry has set up a system to control domestic and imported seafood materials and monitor fishing activities.
A fisheries database has also been formed to strengthen capacity in verifying seafood origin, thus stopping illegally exploited seafood from being imported to Vietnam.
The MARD is determined to completely end IUU fishing and fishing violations in foreign waters next year. It also aims for 95% of all seafood’s origin to be determined at port by 2025.