Vietnam will further intensify the long-term efforts that it has made over the past more than four years to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing for a sustainable fisheries sector and the lifting of the European Commission's "yellow card" warning on the country.
Stopping IUU fishing has been defined as the responsibility of not only fishermen and fisheries firms, but the whole political system with an aim to increase the prestige of the fisheries sector and Vietnam in the world arena.
Therefore, raising fishermen's awareness of legal fishing has been seen as the first and foremost task, especially when traditional practices have been entrenched in them for generations.
Over the year, the Ministry of National Defence has taken the lead in educating fishermen on sustainable fishing by coordinating with other forces, sectors and localities to popularise related legal regulations to fishermen.
The ministry’s Steering Committee on IUU fishing combat has guided relevant units to continue with the work this year in collaboration with authorised agencies.
Technology solutions have been applied to increase supervision over fishing vessels, while the border guard force has closely supervised the movement of vessels in wharfs. At the same time, the naval and coast guard forces have strengthened patrols in the national waters, both to safeguard national sovereignty and protect fishermen, and to promptly prevent, detect and handle violations of fishing vessels and fishermen.
As part of efforts to combat IUU fishing, the 28 coastal localities have taken prompt measures to implement tasks given by the National Steering Committee for 2022.
The People’s Committee of the localities have assigned the Departments of Agriculture and Rural Development to review all underway measures on the foundation of recommendations of the European Commission. The movement of fishing vessels and catchings have also been tightly controlled, along with measures to ensure the traceability of fisheries products.
Coastal districts intensify educational activities to ensure that all local officials and residents thoroughly understand regulations and laws related to sustainable fisheries development and IUU fishing. The districts will continue to propose mechanisms and measures to support fishermen in adopting new practices and ensuring livelihoods, while accelerating the installation of Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) on all fishing vessels and striving to issue certification of origin for all local fisheries products.