VMS installation deadline extended once more

The deadline for fishing vessels to install Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) will be extended from November 1 to January 31, 2020, according to U Myint Naing, deputy director at Yangon Region Fishery Department.

This is the third time the deadline has been extended. The Yangon government had previously provided a two-month grace period from September 1 to October 30, to install the equipment, and later extended the period to the end of November.

“Most owners have already signed contracts to install the VMS but some of the equipment has not arrived in Myanmar. To solve that issue, the government has given another extension. If a firm cannot install VMS by the end of January 2020, we will instruct them to cancel that contract and sign a new one with other firms,” U Myint Naing said.

Out of the 3238 fishing vessels in Myanmar, 2579 have been installed with VMS, according to data from Fishery Department. Among the rest, 659 vessels have signed contracts with installation firms, while the remaining have yet to sign contracts.

The department had called for tenders to install VMS in local vessels and six firms won the tender. Vessel owners may contact any one of the six firms for installation.

A new VMS system will cost US$ 800 to US$ 1,000 and the installation fees range from US$ 39 to US$ 50 said U Kyaw Naing, secretary at Myanmar Marine Fisheries Association.

VMS equipment is used in commercial fishing to allow regulatory organisations to track and monitor the activities of fishing vessels to prevent illegal fishing.

The installation of the systems is also required under the European Union’s standards for sustainable fishing.

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Source : Myanmar Times

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