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Seaports

Chapter IV
SEAPORTS

Article 59.-Seaports
1. Seaport is an area covering port land and port waters where facilities are built and equipment is installed for seagoing vessel’s navigation and operation for loading and unloading cargoes, embarking and disembarking passengers and providing other services.
Port land is a delimited land area for the construction of wharves, warehouses, storage yards, workshops, office buildings, service facilities, road, information and communication, electricity and water systems and other aids and for the installation of equipment.
Port waters is a delimited water area for the establishment of waters in front of wharves, area for vessels’ maneuvers, area for anchorage, area for lighterage, storm-shelter area, area for embarkment and disembarkment of pilots, quarantine area, area for fairways, and other aids.
A seaport may have one or more habors. A harbor may have one or more wharves. A harbor consists of wharves, warehouses, storage yards, workshops, office buildings, service facilities, road, information and communication, electricity and water systems, entrance channels, and other aids. A wharf is a fixed structure in a harbor, used for seagoing vessel’s anchorage, loading and unloading of cargoes, embarkment and disembarkment of passengers, and provision of other services.
2. Seaport facilities consists of harbor facilities and public seaport facilities.
Harbor facilities consist of wharves, waters in front of wharves, warehouses, storage yards, workshops, office buildings, service facilities, road, information and communication, electricity and water systems, sub-channels of the seaport and other aids constructed or installed on the port land and in the waters in front of wharves.
Public seaport facilities consist of seaport channels, the system of navigation aids and other aids.
3. Seaport channel is a delimited water area from the sea to a port marked by a system of navigation aids and other aids to ensure safe navigation of seagoing vessels and other crafts into and out of the seaport.
Sub-channel is a delimited water area from the seaport channel to a harbor marked by a system of navigation aids and other aids to ensure safe navigation of seagoing vessels and other crafts into and out of the harbor.
4. Military ports, fishing ports and inland waterway ports and landing stages situated in the seaport waters shall be subject to the state management of marine navigation safety, marine navigation security and prevention of environmental pollution under the provisions of this Code.

Article 60.- Classification of seaports
Seaports are classified into the following classes:
1. Seaports of class I are extremely important, big seaports in service of national or inter-regional socio-economic development;
2. Seaports of class II are important, medium seaports in service of regional or local socio-economic development;
3. Seaports of class III are small seaports in service of enterprises’ operation.

Article 61.- Functions of seaports
1. To ensure safety for seagoing vessels entering, operating in and leaving the seaports
2. To provide facilities and equipment necessary for seagoing vessels to anchor, load and unload cargoes, embark and disembark passengers.
3. To provide cargo transportation, loading and unloading, warehousing and preservation services in the seaports.
4. To provide shelter, repair, maintenance or necessary services to seagoing vessels and other crafts in emergency cases.
5. To provide other services for seagoing vessels, people and cargoes.

Article 62.-Announcement of closure, opening of seaports and seaport waters
1. The Government shall provide for conditions and procedures for closure or opening of seaports and seaport waters, management of marine navigable channels and maritime shipping activities in seaports.
2. The Transport Minister shall announce the closure or opening of seaports, seaport waters and management areas of seaport authorities after consulting the People’s Committees of the provinces or centrally-run cities where seaports exist.
3. Directors of seaport authorities shall make decisions to temporarily ban vessels and boats from entering or leaving their seaports.
Article 63.- Seaport development plans
1. Seaport development plans must be based on socio-economic strategies; defense and security tasks; plans for development of the transport sector, other sectors and localities, as well as the maritime shipping development trends in the world.
When drawing up plans relating to seaports, sectors and localities must obtain written opinions from the Transport Ministry.
2. The Prime Minister shall approve master plans for development of the system of seaports.
3. The Transport Minister shall approve detailed plans for development of the system of seaports.

Article 64.- Investment in building, management and operation of, seaports and seaport channels
1. Investment in building seaports and seaport fairways must comply with the plans on development of the system of seaports and seaport channels, the provisions of law on investment, on construction, and other relevant provisions of law.
2. Domestic and foreign organizations and individuals may invest in building seaports and seaport channels in accordance with the provisions of law.
Organizations and individuals investing in building seaports and seaport channels shall decide on the forms of management and operation of seaports and seaport channels.
3. The Government shall provide in detail for investment in building, management and operation of, seaports and seaport channels.

Article 65.-Marine navigation safety, marine navigation security and prevention of environmental pollution.
Organizations and individuals operating in seaports must observe the provisions of Vietnamese laws and treaties to which the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is a contracting party, concerning marine navigation safety, marine navigation security and prevention of environmental pollution.

Article 66.-Port Authorities
1. Port authorities are agencies performing the state management of maritime shipping in seaports and seaport waters.
2. Directors of port authorities are the highest commanders of port authorities.
3. The Transport Ministry shall provide for the organization and operation of port authorities.

Article 67.-Tasks and powers of directors of port authorities
1. To participate in formulating plans for development of seaports under their management and organize and supervise the implementation thereof after they are approved by competent state agencies.
2. To organize the implementation of regulations on management of maritime shipping activities in seaports and areas under their management; inspect and supervise seaport channels, the system of navigation aids; supervise maritime shipping activities carried out by organizations and individuals in seaports and areas under their management.
3. To grant permits, supervise seagoing vessels leaving, entering and operating in seaports; prohibit seagoing vessels which fail to meet all necessary conditions on marine navigation safety, marine navigation security and prevention of environmental pollution from entering seaports.
4. To execute seagoing vessel arrest decisions issued by competent state agencies.
5. To temporarily detain seagoing vessel under the provisions of Article 68 of this Code.
6. To organize search and rescue of persons in distress in seaport waters; mobilize persons and necessary means for conducting search and rescue or handling environmental pollution incidents.
7. To organize the registration of seagoing vessels, registration of crewmen; collect, manage and use assorted seaport dues according to the provisions of law.
8. To organize maritime inspection, investigate and handle according to their competence maritime accidents occurring in seaports and areas under their management.
9. To assume the prime responsibilities for and administer the coordination of activities of state management agencies in seaports.
10. To sanction administrative violations in the maritime domain according to their competence.
11. To perform other tasks and exercise other powers as provided for by law.

Article 68.-Temporary detention of seagoing vessels
1. The temporary detention of seagoing vessels shall be effected in the following cases:
a. Failure to meet all conditions on marine navigation safety, marine navigation security and prevention of environmental pollution;
b. In the process of investigation of maritime accidents;
c. Failure to fully pay maritime charges and fees;
d. Failure to fully pay fines for administrative violations according to the provisions of law;
e. Other cases as provided for by law.
2. The temporary detention of seagoing vessels shall terminate when the reason therefore set out in Clause 1 of this Article no longer exist.

Article 69.- Coordination of state management activities in seaports
1. State management agencies in charge of maritime shipping, security, quarantine, customs, taxation, culture and information, fire and explosion prevention and fight, environmental protection and other state management agencies shall perform their tasks and exercise their posers in seaports according to the provisions of law. Within the scope of their respective tasks and powers, these agencies shall have to coordinate with, and submit to the administration of the coordination of activities by, the directors of port authorities.2. State management agencies that carry out regular activities in seaports may establish their working office within seaports. Port enterprises shall have to create favorable conditions for these agencies to perform their tasks and exercise their powers.