Compensation for central sea pollution to be completed by yearend

Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh has asked related ministries and localities to concentrate on paying compensation by Taiwanese steel company Formosa for citizens affected in a case of sea environment pollution in the north central region by the end of this year.

Many fishing boats have to stop going out to sea after Formosa polluted the north central waters (Photo: SGGP)

The environmental disaster was caused by the Taiwanese company who discharged wastewater into the sea, killing fish en masses in April this year.

The deputy PM required the ministries and localities to transparently and publicly give compensation to beneficiaries and consider it as their key mission this year.

Mr. Binh has tasked the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to complete a project to determine damage and compensation levels, ensure welfare and support affected citizens to resume production in Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue.

The project will cover job transfer, livelihood, coral and sea grass growing and sea environment recovery in the four provinces.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade has been asked to immediately implement necessary measures to consume inventory seafood meeting food safety standards, work with the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to handle consignments uncontaminated but out of date.

In addition, the ministry should take the initiative in working with the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to define compensation levels for individuals and establishments with seafood in stock and assist them with 100 percent of electricity cost and interest rate.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment should guide and supervise local authorities to destroy unsafe seafood consignments, install environmental observation systems in the four provinces, regularly and continuously operate them to update and publicize observation results on the media.

The Ministry of Health continues taking seafood samples from the bottom of the waters within 20 nautical miles from the shore for testing and declaring products meeting food safety standards, the deputy PM asked.

The Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs in coordination with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development should build a joint vocational training scheme for local people.

The people’s committees of Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue provinces have been requested to continue rice and financial assistances to citizens.

On November 6, the People’s Committee of Ky Anh district, Ha Tinh province paid nearly VND30 billion (US$1.34 million) in compensation to sea pollution affected locals in Ky Xuan commune after the sea environment disaster.

Of these, VND25.4 billion went to fishing boats and workers aboard and VND4.3 billion to those losing their jobs.

Ky Xuan is the first commune receiving indemnity in the district. Previously, district authorities had done statistics and met local citizens to list households eligible for the compensation and publicly posted the list for locals to be aware of.

By Lam Nguyen, Duong Quang – Translated by Hai Mien

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