Fishermen use compensation to build offshore fishing ships (Source: VNA)

Thua Thien – Hue (VNA)
– Most fishermen in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue have effectively used their compensation for the marine environmental incident, according to Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Dinh Duc.

Beneficiaries in Phu Vang district and Phu Loc district mainly spent their money on buying fishing tools and upgrading their fishing vessels, Duc said.

Phan Tuoc from Thuan An town, Phu Vang district has three offshore fishing ships. He received 440 million VND (19,360 USD) in compensation. He used the money to pay his employees, repair his ships, and buy fishing tools. During a three-day offshore trip, his first in 2017, he caught five tonnes of fish, including 500 kg of tuna, and earned 150 million VND (6,600 USD).

Tran Ven from Loc Tri commune, Phu Loc district spent 100 million VND (4,400 USD) of his compensation to repair his ship. He plans to use the second batch of compensation to buy more fishing tools to fish for tuna offshore.

According to Nguyen Van Phuong, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, in the second-phase payment of compensation, the province will receive 200 billion VND (8.8 million USD).

The locality urged localities and relevant bodies to complete the payment of the first batch while finalising the list of affected households for the second batch.

As of February 15, 18,114 out of 19,900 affected households have received compensation worth nearly 322 billion VND (14.17 million USD), accounting for over 80 percent of the total compensation of 400 billion VND (17.6 million USD) in the first phase.

Phong Dien district distributed nearly 29 billion VND (1.27 million USD) for 2,046 beneficiaries, Quang Dien district paid over 25 billion VND (1.1 million USD) to 1,329 people; Phu Vang district over 129 billion VND (5.67 million USD) to 7,031 people; Phu Loc over 126 billion VND (5.54 million USD) for 6,156 people; and Huong Tra town over 19 billion VND (836,000 USD) for 1,552 people.

In late June 2016, Taiwan-invested Hung Nghiep Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Limited Company admitted responsibility for the environmental incident, which affected the central provinces of Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue. It pledged 11.5 trillion VND (500 million USD) in compensation.

The Ministry of Finance transferred 3 trillion VND (134 million USD) to the localities in the initial phase. Of the amount, Thua Thien-Hue got 400 billion VND (17.6 million USD), Quang Binh 1.1 trillion VND (48.5 million USD), Ha Tinh one trillion VND (44.1 million USD), and Quang Tri 500 billion VND (22 million USD).-VNA