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Thursday, July 25, 2024

Stricter control over fishing boat monitoring systems proposed

By Nguyen Tan

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HCMC – Quang Tri Province’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development has proposed strengthening control over vessel monitoring systems (VMS) following recent connection glitches affecting fishing boats in the province, caused by defaults from equipment providers.

To combat illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development has submitted a proposal to the Fisheries Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. The proposal is aimed at addressing several issues, particularly concerning VMS on fishing vessels.

The department emphasized the need to intensify the assessment of VMS quality before announcing qualified equipment providers to fishermen. They highlighted the importance of ensuring that units installing VMS devices also include a warning system for damaged devices, enabling captains to take proactive measures to fix and report issues to the provincial fisheries sub-department.

In mid-April 2024, many fishing boats from Quang Tri Province equipped with VMS devices from VNPT’s VinaPhone experienced connection glitches due to Thuraya T3 satellite errors. These incidents negatively impacted fishermen’s productivity and exposed them to potential regulatory penalties.

To address the situation, relevant units and localities are requested to guide boat owners and captains to opt for alternative measures if their boats are installed with VMS devices from VinaPhone.

In April 2024, around 1,300 active fishing boats from the central province of Binh Dinh lost connection with device supplier VinaPhone due to satellite errors. This incident also prevented 320 fishing boats with installed devices from starting their journeys because of signal loss.

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