The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development on September 26 ordered relevant agencies and local governments to curb sturgeon smuggling into the country.
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According to Diep Kinh Tan, deputy minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, illegally smuggled fish that is entering the country without being tested by veterinary officials can spread aquatic diseases and harm human health.
In a bid to prevent diseases in aqua products in the domestic market and protect people from unsafe foods, Cao Duc Phat, minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, ordered a close monitoring of smuggled aquatic animals via border crossings, especially fish.
Tran Yen, director of Tay Bac Aquaculture Company, said all sturgeon is being smuggled from China into Vietnam through border gates like Lao Cai, Lang Son, Mong Cai, and Cao Bang in the northern provinces. Chinese fish are sold at very cheap rates of VND100,000 (US$4.8) per kilogram while Vietnamese fish sells for VND160,000 ($7.7).
The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has asked the Ministries of Security, and Industry and Trade to cooperate with street police and market management forces to tighten control of transportation of aquatic animals without any valid certificates of food safety and origin.