Conditions for issuance of permits for scientific research within Vietnam’s territorial waters

What are the conditions for issuance of permits for scientific research within Vietnam’s territorial waters? - Huu Dang (Binh Thuan, Vietnam)

Conditions for issuance of permits for scientific research within Vietnam’s territorial waters (Internet image)

1. What Vietnamese Seas include?

According to Clause 1, Article 3 of the Law on the Vietnamese Sea 2012, Vietnam Seas includes the internal waters, territorial waters, the contiguous zone, the exclusive economic zones and continental shelf being under Vietnam’s sovereignty, sovereign right and national jurisdiction, being defined under the Vietnam’s law, international treaties on territorial border of which the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is a member and in conformity with The United Nations' Convention on the Law of the Sea in 1982.

2. Conditions for issuance of permits for scientific research within Vietnam’s territorial waters

According to Clause 1, Article 19 of the Law on natural resources and environment of sea and island 2015, issuance of permits for scientific research to foreign organizations and individuals that conduct scientific research within Vietnam’s territorial waters (hereinafter referred to as foreign organizations and individuals)

- Organizations with legal status according to the laws of the country where such organizations are established; international organizations as inter-governmental organizations; individuals fully capable of civil acts according to the laws of the country of which such individuals are nationals;

- Have demands for independent scientific research or cooperation in scientific research with Vietnam; in case scientific research takes place within the territorial waters of Vietnam, cooperation with Vietnam is required at the request of Vietnam;

- Activities of scientific research for peaceful purpose without causing harm to national sovereignty and National defense and security, pollution to sea environment and obstructions to legal activities of organizations and individuals within Vietnam’s territorial waters;

- Have application for permit as prescribed;

3. Obligations of foreign organizations and individuals in Vietnam

Specifically, in Clause 2, Article 20 of the Law on natural resources and environment of sea and island 2015, theforeign organizations and individuals that conduct scientific research within Vietnam’s territorial waters shall have the following obligations:

- Respect independence and sovereignty of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam; only carry out activities of scientific research for peaceful purpose; not allowed to carry out activities other than scientific research activities permitted by competent agencies;

- Comply with regulations on marine security and safety; establish marine safety area surrounding research facilities; marine signals; maintain contact and comply with other regulations on marine;

- Do not cause negative effects to National defense and security and activities of fundamental investigation, scientific research, survey, exploitation and use of natural resources and environment legally carried out in Vietnam’s territorial waters; do not bring into the territorial waters of Vietnam weapons, explosives, toxic chemicals, other means and equipment capable of causing damage to people, natural resources, and sea environment except explosives, toxic chemicals permitted by competent agencies for implementation of activities of scientific research;

- Comply with regulations on environmental protection and remediation, and compensation for damage according to law provisions in case activities of scientific research cause pollution and degradation to sea and island environment and ecosystem;

- Activities of scientific research must be carried out with appropriate manner and vehicles, in accordance with the Laws of Vietnam and relevant international laws;

- Ensure necessary conditions including expenses for at least two scientists appointed to take part in the research by competent state agencies;

- Make immediate notice to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment upon detection of changes during scientific research in comparison with content and time limit prescribed in the permit, and only perform such changes when a written approval from the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment is obtained;

- When activities of scientific research are completed, make the report on preliminary result of research findings to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment;

Within 30 days, unless otherwise as negotiated or except force majeure, complete removal and bring out of the territorial waters of Vietnam vehicles and equipment used for scientific research;

- Within six months since permitted activities of scientific research are completed, make an office report on result of scientific research and provide materials or original specimen to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment;

Thanh Rin

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