Vietnam has released a white book on illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing (IUU) as part of its efforts to fight illegal fishing following a warning from the European Commission last year.
The commission issued the "yellow card" to Vietnam in October 2017, warning the Pacific country it could ban its seafood exports entirely unless Hanoi did more to tackle illegal fishing.
The publication provides information about Vietnam’s fisheries sector, its regulations and the actual steps that the local government and business community are working to combat illegal fishing activities.
Nguyen Thi Thu Sac, deputy chairwoman of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), as well as the chairwoman of VASEP’s marine product committee and the leader of VASEP IUU Steering Committee, said in the white book, said Vietnam’s government hopes the white book will send a strong message “to the international community, especially the E.U. [European Union] market on the determination of Vietnam government and Vietnam fisheries sector in the fight against IUU fishing both in the immediate and long term,”
In a joint statement, Vietnam’s seafood companies said they support the motto “say no to IUU” by denying catches sourced from illegal fishing vessels and protected species and catches with smaller-than-minimum size limits.
In 2017, the E.U. surpassed the United States to become the top destination for seafood products from Vietnam. Vietnam exported seafood volumes worth USD 1.42 billion (EUR 1.16 billion) to 14 major buyers in the E.U. in 2017, up 22.1 percent from 2016, according to latest customs data.
The 72-page white book is available in Vietnamese and English.