The second draft of a first-ever law on marine and island resources and environment has been recently released by its drafter, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment’s Vietnam Administration of Seas and Islands, for public comment.
A new offshore fishing boat is launched in Da Nang city__Photo: Tran Le Lam/VNA
The draft law, with 89 articles arranged in 10 chapters, provides for ownership of marine and island resources; state policies on protection of marine and island resources and environment; and strategies, master plans and plans on exploitation and use of marine and island resources.
Worthy of note, the draft law devotes a whole chapter - Chapter III - to specify basic surveys of and scientific researches into marine and island resources and environment, aiming to create grounds for formulating master plans and plans on sustainable development of the marine economy.
Accordingly, the State prioritizes and allocates funds for scientific and technological researches through national key scientific and technological programs on marine and island resources and environment.
The draft law stipulates that foreign organizations and individuals may conduct scientific and technological researches for peaceful purposes in Vietnam’s sea areas, provided they commit to respecting Vietnam’s independence and sovereignty. In addition, they must abide by Vietnamese laws on environmental protection and maritime safety and pay charges and taxes as required by law.
Upon completion of their research activities, foreign researchers must restore the marine environment and pay compensation in accordance with Vietnam’s law for any damage caused to the marine environment and ecosystem. They would also be required to provide observation and measurement data, submit duplicates of collected samples and specimens and report research results to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.
The draft law also deals with some other important issues such as management of uninhabited islands; environmental impact assessment requirements on marine-related projects or works; response to and remedy of marine pollution incidents and restoration of marine and island environment; and submergence and discharge of wastes into the sea.
The Vietnamese version of the draft is available on the ministry’s website at www.monre.gov.vn.-