PM Hopes The EC Take into Account Vietnam’s IUU Combat Efforts

The Prime Minister requested that the EC make a balanced decision, taking into account Vietnam’s IUU combat efforts
December 07, 2022 | 14:11
PM Pham Minh Chinh (R) receives Giorgio Aliberti, ambassador and head of the European Union Delegation to Vietnam, in Hanoi on December 6. Photo: VOV
PM Pham Minh Chinh (R) receives Giorgio Aliberti, ambassador and head of the European Union Delegation to Vietnam, in Hanoi on December 6. Photo: VOV

While receiving Giorgio Aliberti, ambassador and head of the European Union Delegation to Vietnam, in Hanoi on December 6, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh assured Vietnam is committed to combating illegal unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, VOV reported.

Vietnam is deploying drastic measures to strictly and substantively implement regulations against IUU fishing, including a 180-day action plan to remove the ‘yellow card’ imposed by the European Commission, he said.

The EC has imposed the fishing rules since 2017, a move that has hindered the development of the domestic fishery sector and the country’s seafood processing and export.

Vietnam is a responsible member of the international community, including in the field of protecting the marine environment and marine ecosystems, said the PM.

The Prime Minister requested that the EC make a balanced decision, taking into account Vietnam’s IUU combat efforts, as well as difficulties and differences between Vietnam and the EU in terms of development levels, legislation, fisheries management capacity and fishermen’s livelihood.

Among other issues, Chinh suggested the ambassador and the EU delegation review and put forward measures for cooperation in the fields of environment, climate change response, sustainable development, green transformation, digital transformation, circular economy, renewable energy, science - technology and education - training.

The two sides should continue to closely coordinate to effectively implement the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and at the same time lobby the remaining EU member countries to soon ratify the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA), he said.

The PM called on the EU to encourage businesses to eye high-quality investment projects in Vietnam in the fields of high-tech processing and manufacturing, digital transformation, green transformation, renewable energy, circular economy.

He welcomed ongoing negotiations by the UK, EU and several G7 partners to establish a Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) for Vietnam, and proposed the EU further support Vietnam in accessing financial resources and technology transfer for climate change response, while working closely with development partners to come up with specific commitments for Vietnam, especially in equipment production and renewable energy development.

Ambassador Giorgio Aliberti, for his part, highly appreciated Vietnam’s commitments and proposals, especially the message the Prime Minister delivered at the 2022 Green Economy Forum & Exhibition (GEFE 2022) which was held in Ho Chi Minh City in November by the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham).

Aliberti affirmed that Vietnam is an attractive destination for European investors, especially in the fields of green transformation and renewable energy development.

He briefed his host on preparations for the PM’s coming trip to Europe where he is scheduled to attend an ASEAN – EU summit in Brussels, Belgium. He said he would work closely with relevant parties to realise issues touched upon by the PM.

Exchanging views on regional and international issues of mutual concern, the two sides emphasized the importance of settling disputes by peaceful means on the basis of international law.

PM Hopes EC Takes into Account Vietnam’s IUU Combat Efforts
Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh assures his guest Vietnam is committed to combating illegal unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. Photo: VOV

In 2017, the EC issued a warning against Vietnamese fishery products exported to the EU. The decision had an impact on the country's seafood exports to the EU, which account for 16–17% of the country's annual seafood export value, according to VNA.

Vietnam is intensifying the long-term efforts that it has made over the past more than four years to combat IUU fishing for a sustainable fishery sector and the lifting of the European Commission's "yellow card" warning against the country's seafood products.

Stopping IUU fishing has been defined as the responsibility of not only fishermen and fishery firms, but the whole political system with an aim to increase the prestige of the fishery 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.

As part of efforts to combat IUU fishing, 28 coastal provinces and cities have taken prompt measures to implement tasks given by the national steering committee for 2022.

They intensify educational activities to ensure that all local officials and residents thoroughly understand regulations and laws related to sustainable fisheries development and IUU fishing.

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