A national seminar opened in Hai Phong city on May 30 to discuss the application of coastal and marine spatial planning (MSP) in Vietnam, which is regarded as an important step in finding solutions to current issues that are threatening Vietnam’s environmental health and marine future.

Speaking at the event, Dr. Nguyen Van Thanh, Secretary of Hai Phong city’s Party Committee, affirmed that ever-increasing economic development is putting a great deal of pressure on the environment and aquatic resources, which requires MSP for sustainable development.

He said Hai Phong cityprioritises the application of integrated coastal management and marine spatial planning.

For MSP to be successful, Vietnam needs to exert more effort in developing technical guidance and define the legal aspects of this new method in the national system of policies and laws, said Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nguyen Chu Hoi, former Deputy Director General of Vietnam Administration of Seas and Islands under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.

The two-day event is part of the programme “Mangroves for the Future (MFF)” regulated by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in Vietnam and financially supported by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD), Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) and Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA).

MSP is a process that brings together multiple users of the ocean from industry, service sectors and government to society and local communities in a bid to build strategies for sustainable marine resources usage.-VNA