Making news

EC to review yellow card against Vietnamese fisheries in early 2019

The European Commission (EC) has taken note of Vietnam’s efforts in addressing illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and its inspectors will return to Vietnam in January next year to review progress in addressing its ‘yellow card’ warning.

The information was released by Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development on June 26. The ministry said it has just received response from the EC on the outcomes of its field inspection in Vietnam from May 15-24.

The agriculture ministry said despite considerable achievements, Vietnam still struggles with IUU issue, especially in controlling fishing activities and origin of fishing catches.

Currently, the country has some 110,000 active fishing vessels, with around 33,000 of them operating in offshore areas, but only 3,000 of them are equipped with Movimar satellite geo-positioning devices.

Vietnam authorities have admitted that the country lacks the budget to fit all fishing vessels with proper tracking equipment. Vietnam authorities also said that despite the country’s integration of EC’s recommendations into its 2017 fisheries law as well as other legal documents, regulations are lacking at local level.

The EC issued the "yellow card" against Vietnamese aquaculture products on October 23 last year.

The "yellow card" is followed by a "green card" if IUU issue is resolved or a "red card" if it isn’t. A “red card” can lead to a complete trade ban on fishery products.

EC also offered Vietnam nine recommendations included revision of the legal framework to ensure compliance with international and regional rules applicable to the conservation and management of fisheries resources, ensuring the effective implementation and enforcement of the country’s revised laws, and strengthening the effective implementation of international rules and management measures.