Lt. Gen. Phan Van Giang (centre) congratulates officials of the hydrographic commission and office (Photo: qdnd.vn)

Hanoi (VNA) – The hydrographic commission and office of Vietnam made debut at a ceremony held by the Ministry of National Defence in Hanoi on October 25.

The commission is tasked with advising the defence minister and competent agencies in directing and organising hydrographic activities.

Lt. Gen. Phan Van Giang, Chief of the General Staff of the Vietnam People’s Army and Deputy Defence Minister, said amid the development and integration of the global hydrography, in 2007, the Prime Minister assigned the Defence Ministry as the official representative of Vietnam’s hydrographic sector at the International Hydrographic Organisation (IHO) and the East Asia Hydrographic Commission.

Vietnam became the 84 th IHO member in March 2015. The Defence Ministry issued a decision to establish the Vietnam Hydrographic Commission in August 2016, and this commission decided to set up the hydrographic office of Vietnam the same month.

Giang described Vietnam’s participation in the Convention on the IHO as a highlight of the country’s economic development and international integration.

It is a chance for the domestic hydrographic sector to expand cooperation with its counterparts in the region and around the world, thereby helping to fulfill defence-security tasks and strengthen foreign cooperation and sea and island-related diplomatic activities, he added.

He asked the hydrographic commission and office to upgrade Vietnam’s nautical charts to international standards and regularly update topographical information about seas and islands, so as to help affirm Vietnam’s sovereignty in the East Sea.-VNA