International Focus Magazine Vol. 4, #1 - Page 42

global “IUU YELLOW CARD” ONE HARD YEAR FOR VIETNAM TO RESPOND EC’S WARNING Vietnam is strengthening its efforts to remove EC’s “yellow card” warning on its seafood SEAFOOD EXPORT AFFECTED On October 23, 2017, the European Commission (EC) warned of a “yellow card” as Vietnam’s efforts were not tough enough to combat illegal, unreported and unregu- lated (IUU) fishing. According to seafood exporters, the problem concerning the IUU “yellow card” began to show a clear impact on seafood exports. In 2018, seafood exports apparently decreased from 4-20%. Generally, in the first eight months this year, sea- food exports decreased by 25%, only reaching US$252 million. In such a context, squid, octopus and other kinds of seafood leveled off in the first half of this year and continued the downward trend. Exports of bivalve mol- lusks continued to decrease by nearly 10%, with US$55 million. A representative of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) said that toward the end of 2018 seafood exports to the EU would continue to go down, with an estimated turnover for the entire year staying at 3.2 billion USD compared to the set goal of 3.4 billion USD. 42 iF Magazine | January 2019 VARIOUS URGENT SOLUTIONS Vietnam has been active in implementing nine recom- mendations related to the fight against IUU fishing of the EC to ensure responsible and sustainable fisheries, said Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) Nguyen Xuan Cuong. Contents mentioned in the recommendations were in- cluded in the revised Law on Fisheries which will come into effect in 2019. This is a great step. Vietnam has made tremendous efforts to build a sustainable fisheries’ indus- try and has raised the income for local fishermen. MARD also underlined the need to reassess the qual- ity of infrastructure facilities serving sustainable fisheries development such as wharfs, fishing ports and anchor- ages after submitting its recommendations to the Gov- ernment. In addition, MARD will consider applying high tech- nologies and information technology in managing fish- ing ships and fishing grounds in order to ensure a mod- ern fisheries sector.