Marine Spatial Planning Workshop

Norway shared experiences on marine spatial planning with Vietnam at a workshop "Master Plan on Sustainable Exploitation and Use of Coastal Resources from 2021 to 2030, with a Vision to 2045."

The workshop was held on 5-6 January 2023 by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of Vietnam and the Quang Binh Provincial People's Committee with support from the Norwegian Embassy in Hanoi and the United Nations Development Program.

In her opening remarks at the Workshop, Deputy Head of Mission of the Norwegian Embassy in Hanoi, Mrs. Mette Moglestue (pictured) said “Norway is among the first countries to develop management plans for our coastal and ocean areas. These have been developed and refined over the years - learning from mistakes along the way. Norwegian ocean areas are now considered to be among the best managed in the world – and with a very high level of value creation: 70 percent of Norway’s export earnings come from the ocean”.

“Norway’s experiences with the integrated marine management approach shows that it is possible to simultaneously develop a prosperous ocean-based economy and to keep our oceans clean and healthy. A good marine spatial planning is key to this. Therefore, Norway is happy to co-organize this Workshop with UNDP and Vietnamese counterparts and to share our experience and expertise in this regard”, Mrs. Moglestue added.  

Le Minh Ngan, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment said "Viet Nam is a coastal nation with a coastline of more than 3260 km, which provides great natural capital for economic growth. It offers significant potential for inshore and offshore wind power. If developed sustainably, it will support energy security and assist Viet Nam in achieving its commitment to net zero emissions by 2050. Viet Nam issued Resolution No. 36/NQ-TW of the Central Committee in 2018 on the strategy for sustainable marine economy growth in Viet Nam to 2030, with a vision to 2045, in which the key solution is to develop a national marine spatial plan and a master plan for the sustainable exploitation and use of coastal resources."

"As a country with a long coastline and many islands, facing the challenges of environmental pollution, the decline of marine resources and resources, and the impact of climate change, Vietnam has actively developed policies and laws on the management of seas and islands while enhancing international cooperation over the past few years," he added. 

Meanwhile, Patrick Haverman, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Vietnam said sustainable management of coastal and marine areas is a crucial tool for Vietnam's development of a blue sea economy, promotion of the growth of new sectors to enhance income, and creation of new jobs.

“Particularly, coastal planning and open marine spatial planning have the chance to capitalize on the vast potential of marine wind energy as an essential renewable energy source for achieving Vietnam's climate objectives,” Haverman noted.

Coastal planning will also help ensure optimal and coordinated development between sectors in the exploitation and use of Vietnam's coastal resources, the conservation of nature and biodiversity, preservation of cultural and historical values, and improvement of climate resilience, he emphasized.


According to the Resolution, the scope of the Coastal Zone Plan includes the coastal waters and land as follows: (i) The coastal sea area has the inner boundary as the lowest sea edge of the average for many years (18,6 years), and the outer boundary is six nautical miles from the lowest sea edge on average for many years as determined and announced by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment; and (ii) the coastal land includes communes, wards, and townships with the sea in 28 provinces and cities directly under the Central Government.

The master plan is to sustainably develop the coastal zone by enhancing the efficiency of resource management, exploitation, and utilization within an integrated management framework, while proactively adapting to climate change and sea level rise. It also aims to enhance the lifestyles and living conditions of the coastal communities in conjunction with the conservation and development of natural, ecological, and cultural qualities, maintain social order and guarantee national defense and security.

Regarding social culture, it is to maintain and preserve the integrity of tangible and intangible cultural heritages; conserve and promote the cultural values and identities of each ethnic group in coastal regions. The master plan aims to advance social justice, safeguarding the right of coastal people to access the sea, ensuring the right to access to the sea and enjoy essential services and social welfare of coastal people, and strengthening the active and responsible participation of people in the protection of natural resources, environment, and cultural and historical values in coastal areas.

Regarding the environment, it aims to effectively manage and protect the ecosystems in the coastal areas and restore and increase the scope of protected areas on coastal lands and waters to contribute to achieving at least six per cent of the coastal and marine protected areas. Effective management of pollution sources from the mainland, plastic waste pollution in the coastal area contributes to a 75 per cent reduction in plastic waste at sea. 100 per cent of marine protected areas no longer have plastic waste within the coastal zone. 100 per cent of hazardous waste, daily-life solid waste, and plastic waste in coastal areas are collected and treated up to environmental standards. 100 per cent of economic zones, industrial parks, and urban areas in coastal regions have centralized wastewater treatment systems, meeting environmental standards and regulations.

At the workshop, a representative of Viet Nam's Department of Seas and Islands discussed the zoning for the development of marine economic sectors in coastal areas, including issues, problems, and potential solutions. Consequently, the exploitation and use of natural resources in Vietnam's coastal zone are determined according to four regions: the northern coast (Quang Ninh - Ninh Binh), the North Central Coast, and the Central Coast (Thanh Hoa - Binh Thuan), the southeast coast (Ba Ria - Vung Tau - Ho Chi Minh City), and the southwest coast (Ba Ria - Vung Tau - Ho Chi Minh City) (Tien Giang - Ca Mau - Kien Giang).

For more information, kindly contact the Information and Communication Adviser at Norwegian Embassy in Ha Noi at