Bac Lieu (VNA) – The Mekong Delta province of Bac Lieu has adopted a wide range of measures to raise awareness and legal understanding among local fishermen about preventing and fighting illegal fishing .
The provincial fisheries industry has witnessed strong development over recent years, contributing significantly to increasing incomes for fishermen. But legal violations in fishing activities remain common.
According to Tran Xi Khuol, Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Fisheries, fishing has been considered a key economic sector of Bac Lieu for many years.
But problems linger, such as illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, especially fishing without permits, a lack of safety equipment on fishing vessels, and fishing reports not being submitted in line with regulations.
Though patrols have been carried out regularly, violations have not been handled thoroughly, Khuol said.
The main cause of the situation is that fishermen do not fully understand the 2017 Law on Fisheries, he believed.
Local authorities have promoted communications activities to raise public awareness about the law, relevant legal documents, and technical measures, helping local fishermen comply with the law and contributing to preserving, managing, and utilising aquatic resources sustainably.
The provincial People’s Committee has so far organised 18 programmes on legal matters for 1,086 ship owners and fishermen.
The province has also supported local fishermen in building large-capacity vessels and upgrading equipment and logistics services, while creating favourable conditions for them to maintain operations in traditional fishing grounds.
Bac Lieu has 1,142 registered fishing boats, including 485 with a minimum length of 15 metres.
As of October 8, 2020, it had issued 720 fishing permits under the 2017 Law on Fisheries, including 453 offshore fishing permits and 267 onshore fishing permits. It also has 350 fishing vessels equipped with cruise control devices, or 72.2 percent of the total.
In the first nine months of 2020, nearly 1,200 vessels and three shipbuilding yards were inspected, with 11 administrative violations detected./.