Press release

Vietnam leads globe in national commitment to sustainable fishing on World Oceans Day

November 30, 2015

In the first ever agreement between the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and a nation state, the Ministry of Fisheries of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the MSC will announce on World Oceans Day (Wednesday 8 June 2005) a joint commitment to promote sustainable fishing in the country.

A Memorandum of Understanding signed by Luong Le Phuong, Vice Minister of Fisheries and the MSC, describes the intention to explore and encourage sustainable fishing practices and MSC certification throughout Vietnam over the coming three years.

Vietnam is the only country to so far make a public commitment of this type, and the move represents a milestone in the MSC’s efforts to reverse the global trend of over-fishing and the degradation of the marine environment.

What the MSC says

“Vietnam is setting an example that we hope others will follow,” said Rupert Howes, Chief Executive of the MSC. “This agreement represents the start of a process that could will bring real environmental and commercial benefits. With leadership and commitment we could see fishing practices transformed, and we are delighted to partner Vietnam in this ground-breaking alliance.“

Pilot projects

The initial outcome of the agreement will be two pilot projects to encourage the commercial Ben Tre clam fishery, followed by the Phu Quoc anchovy fishery, to seek assessment against the MSC’s environmental standard for sustainable and well-managed fisheries. The projects will feature:
· A series of expert workshops and stakeholder engagement initiatives intended to explore the potential of the fishery for the pre-assessment phase of certification;
· Assistance to the fishery in seeking funds to cover the costs of the pre- and full- assessments, which will be undertaken in the future under a separate contract with an independent certification body.

It is hoped that successful outreach to the two pilot fisheries will result in more Vietnamese fisheries coming forward for MSC pre-assessment, potentially including the tuna, lobster and squid fisheries.

What the Center for Marinelife Conservation and Community Development says

“We support the MSC in their work to assist Vietnamese fisheries become more sustainable, and to further the development of the associated communities,” said Ms Nguyen Thu Hue, Director, Center for Marinelife Conservation and Community Development.

The MSC is the only internationally recognised, independent, third-party fishery certification programme that leads to a seafood eco-label widely backed by commercial, governmental and conservation organisations. Globally, there are now 12 fisheries certified to the MSC’s environmental standard, and these supply fish for more than 250 MSC-labelled seafood products sold in 24 countries. A further 17 fisheries are in the full-assessment stage and an estimated 20 are in confidential pre-assessment.  Taken together, the fisheries engaged in the programme represent four percent of the world’s edible wild fish catch.

Further information

For any media inquiries please contact media@msc.ogr.

Key facts about MSC

 

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