The Vietnam Coast Guard (VCG) High Command held bilateral meetings with the Indonesian Coast Guard (Bakamla) and the National Committee for Maritime Security of Cambodia in Hanoi on December 9, People’s Army Newspaper reported.
|Major General Le Quang Dao (right) and Vice Admiral Aan Kurnia at the meeting. Source: PANO
The event was co-chaired by Major General Le Quang Dao, Chief of the Vietnam Coast Guard Command and Vice Admiral Aan Kurnia, Commander of the Indonesian Coast Guard.
At the exchange, leaders of the two forces agreed that the Vietnamese and Indonesian coast guard forces have maintained a good cooperative relationship. In December 2021, the two sides signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in maritime security cooperation between the Vietnamese and Indonesian coast guard forces in an online form. This is an important milestone opening up a deeper and more comprehensive cooperation chapter in the relationship between the two forces.
With the aim of promoting bilateral cooperation, the two sides have regularly exchanged information related to arising issues at sea and actively participated in bilateral and multilateral meetings. From June 7 to 9, 2022, the Vietnam Coast Guard sent officers to attend the 11th online maritime security tabletop drill, co-organized by Australia and the Indonesian Coast Guard. From July 13 to 16, 2022, the Vietnam Coast Guard’s personnel took part in the 14th round of negotiations on exclusive economic zone demarcation in Indonesia.
|At the meeting between representatives of the Vietnam Coast Guard (VCG) High Command and the Indonesian Coast Guard (Bakamla). Photo: baotintuc.vn
The two sides also sent officials to the 12th Maritime Law Enforcement Dialogue organized by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime in the Philippines from June 28 to July 2, 2022. Most recently, representatives of the Vietnam Coast Guard joined the Meeting of Heads of ASEAN Coast Guard and Maritime Law Enforcement Agencies in Bali, Indonesia from November 22 to 23, 2022, hosted by the Indonesian Coast Guard.
At the meeting, the two sides expressed their wish to continue promoting international cooperation in a practical and effective manner to enhance maritime security and safety in the region on the basis of equality and mutual benefits, contributing to preserving peace, stability, friendship, cooperation, and development in waters in the region.
Regarding the direction of cooperation in the coming time, leaders of the two coast guard forces agreed to continue maintaining regular exchanges to promptly share information about law enforcement at sea, especially the situation of fishing vessels violating regulations on illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
They also consented that the two sides should actively participate in multilateral conferences and seminars to which both forces are members. As planned, in 2023, the two sides will hold the second bilateral meeting in Indonesia.
Regarding key cooperation activities between the two forces in the coming time, the Vietnam Coast Guard suggested that the two sides should focus on visits and exchanges of their coast guard ships. This is a cooperation content in the Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in maritime security and safety between the Vietnamese and the Indonesian coast guard forces.
Earlier, the VCG and the Bakamla signed a letter of intent on enhancing cooperation between the two sides.
|Major General Le Quang Dao handing a souvenir to Vice Admiral Kruoch Kimthon. Source: PANO
During the meeting with Cambodian delegation, Major General Le Quang Dao expressed his delight at the continuous consolidation and development of the cooperative relationship between the Vietnam Coast Guard and the Cambodia National Committee for Maritime Security over the past years.
The two sides have implemented cooperation activities and delegation exchanges at all levels according to the “Protocol on the hotline communication mechanism” signed in 2017. Through the hotline communication channel, the two sides have exchanged the situation of security, order, and safety in the waters adjacent to the two countries and fishermen’s fishing activities in historical waters.
They have also shared and updated information and promptly handled incidents arising at sea. In early October, the two sides successfully held the third conference to learn from the implementation of the Protocol on the hotline communication mechanism in Vietnam.
The results of the above-mentioned activities have contributed to the common interests of the two peoples in the historical waters and sea areas adjacent to the two countries for peace and stability in the region as well as constantly improving the effectiveness of coordination in security, order, safety protection and crime prevention between the Vietnam Coast Guard and the Cambodia National Committee for Maritime Security.
They agreed in the coming time to continue implementing the contents of the Protocol on the hotline communication mechanism; exchange of security, order and safety situation in the adjacent waters and fishing activities of fishermen in historical waters; actively participate in multilateral forums on maritime law enforcement and maritime security to which the two forces are members.
|The two delegations in a joint photo. Source: PANO
The two sides plan to discuss and agree on the form of organization of the fourth meeting to learn from the implementation of the Protocol and exchange of delegations at the regional level in 2023.
The first “Vietnam Coast Guards and friends” exchange program underways on December 10 in Hanoi with the participations of the host Vietnam Coast Guard Command, the Cambodia National Committee for Maritime Security, the China Coast Guard, the Indonesian Sea and Coast Guard, the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency, the Philippines Coast Guard and the Thailand Maritime Enforcement Coordinating Center.