Vietnam Coast Guard

Vietnam Coast Guard
(Cảnh sát biển Việt Nam)
Seal of the Vietnam Coast Guard
Active 28 August 1998 – present
Country  Vietnam
Allegiance Communist Party of Vietnam[1]
Type Coastal defence force
Role Vietnam maritime law enforcement, patrol, border control, search and rescue, coastal defence
Part of Vietnam People's Army
Headquarters Hanoi, Vietnam
Colours              Blue, White, Orange
Anniversaries 28 August
Equipment Patrol boats, Offshore vessels, Frigates, Salvage tugs, Search and rescue ships, Aircraft
Engagements MT Zafirah hijacking
MT Orkim Harmony hijacking
Commander-in-Chief Trần Đại Quang
Commander Major General Nguyễn Quang Đạm
Political Commissar Lieutenant General Hoàng Văn Đồng
Chief of Staff Major General Phạm Kim Hậu
Racing Stripe
Aircraft flown
Patrol 3 x CASA C-212 Aviocar

Vietnam Coast Guard (VCG; Vietnamese: Cảnh sát biển Việt Nam) is the coast guard of Vietnam. It is a branch of the Vietnam People's Army, and falls under the management of the Vietnamese Ministry of Defence. Since its creation in the late 1990s, the Vietnam Coast Guard plays an important role in maintaining sea security and protection of the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and continental shelf boundary. It has dispatched forces in waters in overlapping areas between Vietnam and foreign countries, providing protection and assistance to local fishermen when necessary. In addition, the Vietnam Coast Guard perform search and rescue duties, along with their duties of combating and preventing smuggling, piracy, and trade fraud in Vietnamese waters.


The Vietnam Coast Guard was first set up through President Tran Duc Luong's order No 3-L/CTN (7 April 1998), announcing the Ordinance on the Vietnam Coast Guard, which had been accepted by The Tenth National Assembly of Vietnam on 28 March 1998.[2]

Previously, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam did not have a dedicated Coast Guard; the Navy had been used for offshore patrol and related military activity, along with the Border Patrol Directorate (Bộ Tư Lệnh Biên Phòng), which had checkpoints in estuarine and littoral areas. These bodies were equipped with small boats for short pursuit and related equipment intended for short-term security applications. All river patrol responsibility belongs to the Fluvial Police (Cục Cảnh sát giao thông đường thủy - Bureau code:C25), supervised by provincial and/or local police office (Ministry of Public Safety - Bộ Công An), and sometimes to the Vietnam Customs (Hải Quan), depending on the particular geographical responsibility (fluvial or fresh water only).

The Vietnam Coast Guard became independent from the Vietnam People's Navy on 1 March 2008. It has in-scope intelligence based on international exchange and co-operation with its ASEAN counterparts in smuggling and on-sea drug interdiction operations. As an organisation established to fight against illegal trafficking, it was keen to start with a fresh image, equipped with adequate technology and hardware, to deploy efficiently for its various specific missions. The current organisational pattern will serve as a role model for future extended projects.



In the internal waters, territorial waters, contiguous zone, exclusive economic zone and continental shelf of Vietnam, Vietnam Coast Guard have mission to patrol and control in accordance with the laws of Vietnam and international treaties concerned that, Vietnam is a contracting member (such as The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS)) to protect the sovereignty, jurisdiction, protection of natural resources, prevention of environmental pollution; detect, prevent and combating acts of smuggling, piracy, armed robbery against ships, illegal transport and trafficking, transporting illegal narcotics, precursors.

Vietnam Coast Guard is responsible in co-operating with functional agencies to do the mission. If any incident happens at sea, Vietnam Coast Guard have responsibility to inform to the functional agencies and co-ordinate with foreign countries to settle the issue. Lt. General Phạm Đức Lĩnh said in The 7th Heads of Asia Coast Guard Agencies Meeting (HACGAM - 7) on July 2011: "Vietnam Coast Guard used in overlapping sea areas between Vietnam and foreign countries. Local fishermen will be better protected and assisted if necessary, and remind local fishermen not to cross into the waters of foreign countries."[3] In October 2013 the VMP were transferred from the navy to the coast guard, apparently so as to qualify for Japanese equipment aid.[4]

The Vietnam Coast Guard is responsible for protecting the security of Vietnam's coast line and deals with problems like:

In addition to its role, the Vietnam Coast Guard has moved their headquarters from Hai Phong to Hanoi in February 2008, due to current needs to address these tasks. Current headquarters are located at 94 Le Loi Street, Nguyen Trai ward, Ha Dong district, Ha Noi. Their training base and logistic support facilities remain in Hai Phong.


Organisational system

1. Coast Guard Command[5]

2. Units in Coast Guard Department:

Regional Coast Guard

Vietnam Coast Guard regions

International co-operation

CASA C-212 series 400 in Vietnam Coast Guard

Vietnam Coast Guard and Philippine Coast Guard have signed an agreement to set up hotline in principle. In the near future, both will draft detailed regulations on co-ordination, so that when a situation at sea will settle in time.[6]

On 14 July 2012, Japan's Minister for Foreign Affairs Kōichirō Genba and Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh had a meeting in Hanoi. Japan Coast Guard is willing to help Vietnam bolster its coastal patrol capabilities, include set up such an institution and train its personnel.[7]

Vietnam Coast Guard would be equipped with modern facilities to carry out effectively their tasks to maintain security, order and safety in the territorial waters and exclusive economic zone with the close co-operation with regional coast guards of regional countries.[8]

That is the reason why Vietnam Coast Guard need to strengthen confidence building, mutual understanding between members, promote practical co-operation and efficiency among countries in Southeast Asia and in the world. To solve issues such as piracy, smuggling, trade fraud and transportation of persons, illegal drugs, disaster search and rescue, disaster,... Vietnam Coast Guard's in collaboration with some countries for networking exercises of information processing, situation, to forwards to exercise with soldiers on sea in some situations, such as anti-piracy, search and rescue, environmental response to incidents,...


Main type of patrol vessels in Vietnam Coast Guard

To create a breakthrough development for Vietnam Coast Guard, a contract signed between Vietnam and United States that United States Coast Guard helped train Vietnam Coast Guard from 2009. The United States Coast Guard kicked off its partnership program with the Vietnam Coast Guard under the Export Control and Related Border Security program by conducting two sessions of the Maritime Law Enforcement Boarding Officer course in Hai Phong and Phu Quoc, 12–23 October 2009. This was the first United States Coast Guard engagement with the Vietnam Coast Guard under their new partnership program. Its positive results bode well for future co-operation between the two forces. The training courses received a great deal of attention from the Vietnam Coast Guard leadership, as well as the Ministry of Defence (Vietnam), with senior representatives from MOD both attending the opening and closing ceremonies, and hosting farewell lunches and dinners. The Vietnam Coast Guard leadership's recommendations for future training will not only be very useful for planning purposes, but represent clear signals that they are eager for further co-operation. Continuing the partnership plan, the United States Coast Guard has invited one VMP officer to attend the 15-week International Maritime Officer Course starting in March 2010 at the United States Coast Guard Training Center in Yorktown, Virginia.[9]

Besides vessels are equipped with self-building, Vietnam Coast Guard also cooperated with Damen Group to build large vessels with Netherlands's license, being built in Vietnam by Song Thu company, 189 company,... Vessels have completed such as one Offshore patrol vessel 9014, one hydrographic survey vessel 6613, four Salvage tugs 6412,...[10]

Later on in 2008, Vietnam Coast Guard received three ocean sentry turboprop aeroplanes CASA C-212 Aviocar - Series 400 equipped with MSS 6000 systems from the Swedish Space Corporation.[11]

Vietnamese Government has planned to invest in upgrading facilities for the force including modern ships which can operate in bad weather and stay long at sea. Furthermore, the force is also equipped with helicopters to enhance its operations at the border of continental shelf and exclusive economic zone of Vietnam to protect the territorial waters and fishermen as well. In particular, on Vietnamese sea, adjacent waters boundary waters disputes over sovereignty, there must be always the presence of Vietnam Coast Guard.[6][8]


A vessel of Vietnam Coast Guard

Vietnam Coast Guard's vessels are equipped with specialised functions (almost all Vietnam Coast Guard's vessels are self-produced):

Almost Vietnam Coast Guard's vessels named CSB (abbreviated by Vietnamese words: Cảnh Sát Biển - Coast Guard).

Ships (62 in service)
Photo Type Builder Role Quantity Name
Shershen class
148 tons
 Soviet Union Patrol 4 CSB-5011, CSB-5012, CSB-5013, CSB-5014
120 tons
 Vietnam Patrol 14 CSB 001,CSB-1011,CSB 1012, CSB 1013, CSB 1014, CSB-3001, CSB-3002, CSB-3003, CSB-3004, CSB-3005, CSB-3006, CSB-3007, CSB-3008, CSB-3009
200 tons
 Vietnam Patrol 10 CSB-2001, CSB-2002, CSB-2003, CSB-2004, CSB-2005, CSB-2006, CSB-2007, CSB-2008, CSB-2009, CSB-2010
400 tons
 Vietnam Patrol 9 CSB-4031, CSB-4032, CSB-4033, CSB-4034, CSB-4035, CSB-4036, CSB-4037, CSB-4038, CSB-4039
1500 tons
 Vietnam Patrol (8 more on order)
398 tons
 Vietnam Patrol/Search and rescue 1 CSB-6008
Offshore patrol vessel
1200 tons
 Vietnam Patrol/Search and rescue 2 CSB-6006, CSB-6007
DN 2000 (Damen 9014 class)
2500 tons
 Vietnam Patrol 4 (5 more on order) CSB-8001, CSB-8002, CSB-8004, CSB-8005
DN 4000
4000 tons
 Vietnam Patrol (5 more on order)
Teshio class (Natsui class)
600 tons
 Japan Patrol/Transport 5 CSB-6001, CSB-6002, CSB-6003, CSB-6004, CSB-6005
Offshore patrol
1500 tons
 South Korea Patrol 1 CSB-8003
Patrol boat
280 tons
 South Korea Patrol 2 CSB-2015, CSB-2016
High-Speed Patrol boat  Vietnam Patrol 1 CSB-426
Damen Salvage tug
1400 tons
Search and rescue 5 CSB-9001, CSB-9002, CSB-9003, CSB-9004, CSB-9005
Damen Stan 4207 patrol vessel  Netherlands Search and rescue 3 SAR-411, SAR-412, SAR-413
2900 tons
 Vietnam Replenishment/Transport 1 CSB-7011
Aircraft (3 in service)
Photo Type Builder Role Quantity Name
CASA C-212 Aviocar series 400  Spain Patrol 3 (3 more on order). One was lost during a crash while searching for a Su-30 fighter.[12] 8981, 8982, 8984

Table of Ranks

The Coast Guard does not use naval or maritime ranks. And unlike the Vietnam People's Navy the Coast Guard does not use sleeve and cuff rank insignia for officers.

Flag OfficersField Grade Officers Company Grade Officers
Trung tướngThiếu tướngĐại táThượng tá Trung táThiếu táĐại úyThượng úy Trung úy Thiếu úy
Lieutenant GeneralMajor General Senior ColonelColonelLieutenant Colonel MajorCaptainLieutenant Sub-lieutenantEnsign
Officer cadet NCOs Seamen
Học viên Sĩ quanThượng sĩTrung sĩHạ sĩ Binh nhất Binh nhì
Officer Cadet Sergeant Major Sergeant Corporal Seaman First Class Seaman

See also


  1. "Oath of Honor". 1970. Retrieved 31 October 2015. To sacrifice himself undeservedly for the fatherland, fight for the cause of national independence and socialism, under the leadership of the Vietnam Workers Party...
  2. 1 2 "Pháp Lệnh Lực Lượng Cảnh Sát Biển Việt Nam". Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  3. "Vietnam Marine Police Force to be equipped with modern vehicles". Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  4. Sasaki, Manabu; Makino, Yoshihiro (2 June 2014). "Japan Coast Guard vessels and equipment in high demand in S.E. Asia, Africa". THE ASAHI SHIMBUN. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
  5. "Cảnh sát biển đảm bảo an ninh vùng biển Việt Nam - Báo Khoa học Đời Sống Online, 21/10/2009 20:05:44". 21 October 2009. Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  6. 1 2 "Cảnh sát Biển VN nâng phạm vi hoạt động - Tiền Phong Online". Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  8. 1 2 "Vietnam Marine Police Force's international cooperation strengthened - Quân đội nhân dân". Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  9. "Cable Viewer". Retrieved 12 December 2011.
  11. "Airbus Military delivers coast guard airplane to Vietnam - Airbus Military delivers coast guard airplane to Vietnam". Saigon Times Online. 26 October 2007. Retrieved 12 December 2011.

External links

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