Traders purchase fish at Thuan An fishing port in Thue Thien-Hue province (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has approved a plan on implementing some urgent solutions in response to the European Union (EU)’s warning about  illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.

Many solutions have been devised according to the EU’s recommendations. They include aligning the legal framework with regional and international regulations, effectively implementing the amended legal regulations on IUU fishing, and effectively implementing international regulations and management measures through strict punishment.

In addition, Vietnam will address shortcomings in the monitoring system to serve the certification of aquatic products’ origin, improve the fishing boat management system, enhance cooperation with regional countries, and comply with regulations on fisheries data collection and report.

Vietnam was served with a yellow card warning by the EU in September for failing to progress in fighting IUU fishing and it has been offered the opportunity to take measures to rectify the situation within six months.

To this end, the EC has proposed an action plan for the country. The "yellow card" is followed by a "green card" if issues are resolved or a "red card" if they aren’t. A “red card” can lead to a trade ban on fishery products.

[Vietnam won’t tolerate IUU fishing: MARD]

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development plans to organise a national conference with 28 coastal cities and provinces to discuss the IUU issue and provide them with technical guidance to ensure their compliance with IUU fishing regulations.

Vietnam has favourable geographical conditions to develop its seafood industry with its long coastline of over 3,260 km and more than 3,000 islands and islets.

Fisheries is a key sector whose output has been consistently rising in recent years.

The country hopes to become a leading seafood exporter by 2020.

Last year, Vietnam earned 1.219 billion USD from exporting aquatic products to the EU, 357.8 million USD of which was from seafood shipments. The figure hit 1.047 billion USD in the first nine months this year.-VNA