Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son held phone talks with his Czech counterpart Jan Lipavsky on Friday, during which the latter pledged to hasten EU agencies to consider Vietnam’s proposal on removal of a penalty on Vietnamese fisheries sector.
Lipavsky said that the Czech Republic considers Vietnam one of the prioritized economic, trade and investment partners in the Asia-Pacific region, the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs recounted in an announcement later on the same day.
He affirmed that the government of the Czech Republic always backs the promotion of ties between Vietnam and the European Union.
As the rotating chair of the Council of the EU in the second half of 2022, the Czech Republic will hasten EU agencies to consider Vietnam’s proposal on removal of a ‘yellow card’ on Vietnamese fisheries sector.
The nation will also call on EU member countries to soon ratify the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA).
Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing remains one of the EU’s concerns for Southeast Asian seafood, including Vietnam.
In October 2017, the EU imposed a ‘yellow card’ punishment on Vietnamese seafood for failing to meet relevant requirements on anti-IUU.
This penalty has shrunk Vietnam’s seafood exports to the EU since 2017.
Over the past four years, the Vietnamese government and relevant ministries have made efforts to tackle the IUU fishing issue.
Although those efforts have been recognized and appreciated by the EU, the ‘yellow card’ warning has not been removed.
For his part, Vietnamese foreign minister Son thanked the Czech Republic for providing 250,800 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Vietnam, helping the country fight the pandemic.
He also expressed gratefulness to the government and Foreign Ministry of the Czech Republic for creating favorable conditions for the Vietnamese community to settle down in the European country, contributing to strengthening the traditional friendship between the two countries.
Son then took the occasion to invite Lipavsky to visit Vietnam at an appropriate time.