Mekong Delta Coastal Habitat Conservation

Speeches Shim

In partnership with the Government of Vietnam, provincial governments, businesses, management boards, development partners, and fishing communities, the Mekong Delta Coastal Habitat Conservation project works to mitigate threats to coastal biodiversity and fisheries and enhance coastal resilience in the delta.

The Mekong Delta and its islands are home to 70 percent of Vietnam’s mangroves and 90 percent of its seagrass beds. Fed by the sediment and nutrients from the Mekong River, these habitats support Vietnam’s richest fishing grounds. However, these habitats are under growing threat. Intensive near-shore fishing has depleted fish stocks leading to the phenomenon of “fishing down the food chain,” with ecologically devastating effects. The delta’s mangrove forests, which provide nursery habitat for sea bass, snapper, and other commercially important species, as well as crucial protection for coastal communities from storm surges, are declining, trapped between rising sea levels and sea dikes. Other climate change impacts such as prolonged droughts and higher ambient temperatures, made worse by the loss of mangroves and their micro-climate regulation, threaten shrimp stocks. Shrimp farmers instead are turning to pumped groundwater to maintain required marine temperatures, leading to land subsidence and faster mangrove loss.

The project focuses on the delta’s lowest lying and most vulnerable coastlines along the East and West Seas, on the Phu Quoc Marine Protected Area/National Park, and on three small island clusters (Hai Tac, Ba Lua, Nam Du) in the West Sea.


The project will demonstrate models of co-management of fisheries resources in three island clusters of West Sea (Hai Tac, Ba Lua, Nam Du), promote biodiversity conservation activities in these island clusters and the Phu Quoc Marine Protected Area, and involve the active participation of local communities and businesses. It will also complete a series of studies with specific recomemdations to strengthen marine resources management, as well as support the Phu Quoc Business Platform to promote and coordinate business investment in coastal habitat and species conservation.


The project will explore and test solutions to conserve and expand mangrove forests to increase fish nursery habitat and coastal biodiversity, including mangrove expansion behind the sea dikes.


This project will strengthen the management of marine resources to reduce illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing activities, and conserve and expand coastal and marine biodiversity of the Mekong Delta, which will also help build resilience for local communities.

Issuing Country 
Wednesday, October 27, 2021 - 3:00am

Last updated: November 18, 2021