Vietnam ensures safe, legal migration, prevents human trafficking

(VOVWORLD) - The shocking deaths of 39 Vietnamese migrants in a container being transported from Belgium to the UK in October 2019 resulted in the UK’s largest murder investigation. With human trafficking and illegal migration a growing issue, Vietnam has made a concerted effort to ensure safe migration and prevent human trafficking as it continues to integrate internationally.
Vietnam ensures safe, legal migration, prevents human trafficking - ảnh 1A workshop on migrant labor management (Photo: VNA)

The Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs are working closely with relevant agencies to prevent workers being illegally sent to Europe, while publicizing information about how to obtain a contract to work in Europe safely and legally. The Ministry of Public Security has strengthened a project aimed at fighting modern slavery and human trafficking by promoting an interdisciplinary approach to changing behavior and strengthening legal assistance to help trafficking victims reintegrate. The project is funded by the UK through the International Organization of Migration, the British Council, and World Vision.

Vietnam has also adopted a number of policies and legal documents to prevent human trafficking, including the Program against Human Trafficking in the 2016-2020 period, which, like the UK-funded project, aimed to reduce trafficking and support victims.

Since 2016 Vietnam has observed July 30th as “All-People Day against Human Trafficking”, and the Prime Minister has approved a new Program against Human Trafficking for the 2021-2025 period with Orientations to 2030.

Vietnam has adopted the ASEAN Convention Against Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children; participated in the 2017-2020 Bohol Trafficking in Persons Work Plan; engaged in the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons, and Related Transnational Crime; and joined the Coordinated Mekong Ministerial Initiative Against Trafficking (COMMIT) Process. Vietnam has signed bilateral agreements on preventing cross-border human trafficking with China, Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos.

Vietnam is studying and negotiating agreements on labor cooperation with potential markets like Romania and Germany and considering participation in the Protocol against Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea, and Air, Supplementing the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime.  

Vietnam pursues a consistent policy of ensuring safe, legal migration, preventing illegal migration, and protecting the legal interests and rights of citizens throughout the migration process. Nonetheless, in the first half of this year there have been multiple reports of illegal Vietnamese migration between European countries and to the UK in particular. Rings transporting Vietnamese illegally to neighboring Cambodia and China have become more sophisticated in response to tightened migration control during the COVID-19 pandemic. Most illegal emigrants cross the border after reading a job advertisement on one of the social networks.

Enticing people to go abroad in the hope of finding an easily-obtained, better-paying job is challenging Vietnam’s ability to manage migration and protect Vietnamese citizens abroad.

Vietnam has strengthened its immigration management, and publicized human trafficking crimes and the risks of illegal migration. Vietnamese agencies have bolstered international cooperation to deal with illegal migration and smuggling.

Vietnam has participated in Interpol’s Operation Turquessa II, targeting migrant smuggling and human trafficking and the Task force on Planning and Preparedness on the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime. Vietnam has implemented the Plan on Realizing the Global Agreement on Legal, Safe, and Orderly Migration (also known as the Global Compact for Migration Agreement) and worked out several solutions to ensure safe, legal migration and protect migrants’ rights.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has worked closely with the Prime Minister on solutions to this issue, focusing on strengthening the management of residence and  immigration in Vietnam, and protecting the rights and interests of Vietnamese citizens who are refused residence by a foreign country, taking into consideration all COVID-19 prevention and control regulations. The Ministry has enhanced international cooperation to prevent, detect, investigate, and deal with illegal migration.

When the COVID-19 pandemic is contained, international travel will be restored, and illegal migration can be expected to increase due to greater demand for the job, study, and business opportunities which have been disrupted by the pandemic.

Vietnam is implementing mesures to prevent illegal migration while facilitating legal, safe and orderly migration.