Culture week kicks off in Quảng Ninh

Vietnam’s government has expressed support for a new draft law that would give foreigners 99-year leaseholds on properties they buy in key investment areas. The Ministry of Planning and Investment presented the bill to the cabinet on Wednesday, suggesting the leasehold duration for foreigners in special economic zones should be nearly doubled from the current 50 years. Vietnam has 18 special economic zones and is developing three more in Quang Ninh Province near the Chinese border, the central province of Khanh Hoa, and Phu Quoc Island in the southern province of Kien Giang Province.  Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said the bill had been carefully drafted but needed to stand out to draw more investment to the zones. The bill will be reviewed by the legislative National Assembly for approval this October. Vietnam opened up its housing market to outsiders in July 2015, allowing foreign investment funds, foreigners with valid visas, and international firms operating in Vietnam and overseas to buy unlimited residential properties with a leasehold of 50 years. There are around 82,000 foreigners working and living in Vietnam. Before the amendments to the Housing Law, each of them were elegible to buy one apartment providing they were either married to Vietnamese nationals, held managerial positions or had contributed to the country. Industry insiders believe that easing ownership restrictions has created more interest in the local housing market, but many people complain that regulations and paperwork are still very complicated for foreign buyers. Meanwhile, many Vietnamese are pouring…... [read more]

Self-modified three-wheel vehicles will be strictly controlled before being completely banned in 2018, said Vũ Văn Diện, deputy chairman of northern Quảng Ninh Province’s People Committee. Self-modified three-wheel vehicles are considered as popular means of transportation to transport tourists on the number of island communes in Quảng Ninh’s Vân Đồn District. – VNA/VNS Photo Văn Đức He made the announcement at a meeting on traffic order and safety held last weekend in Quảng Ninh. Self-modified three-wheel vehicles have been operated in the province for over 10 years.   These vehicles are considered as a popular means of transportation for tourists on the islands of Quan Lạn, Minh Châu and Ngọc Vừng. It has recently been used to transport visitors from hotels and guest houses to the beach at Bãi Cháy Resort in Hạ Long City. However, most drivers of these vehicles lack licences and do not register their vehicles. These vehicle owners have regularly flouted the law, and it affects the safety and order of transport in the city, making it a matter for public concern. Lưu Minh Đức, chairman of People’s Committee of Quan Lạn Commune, home to 150 three-wheel vehicles, said since the beginning of this year local authorities have coordinated with the police force to number the vehicles for better management. Local residents have also been informed about roadmap to stop the operation of these kinds of…... [read more]

Real estate developer FLC Group has announced it will employ more than 100 locals for its FLC Ha Long Golf & Resort project in north-eastern Quang Ninh Province. — Photo Real estate developer FLC Group has announced it will employ more than 100 locals for its FLC Ha Long Golf & Resort project in north-eastern Quang Ninh Province. The five-star complex, which is expected to become operational in September, includes a golf course, villas, hotels and entertainment facilities. Covering an area of 224ha, the project has total investment of VND5.3 trillion (US$235.5 million). FLC Ha Long plans to introduce some 260 villas with areas of 300 to 1,500sq.m and 450 apartments in the market. It will also have a 1,500-seat international convention centre, restaurants, bars, spa and fitness centre. FLC Ha Long is considered “a wonder in the middle of wonder” as all its rooms, restaurants, villas and golf course have a view of Ha Long Bay – among the new seven natural wonders of the world. In particular, its 18-hole golf course is designed by famous architect Schmidt Curley. FLC has also invested in many property projects nationwide, including FLC Vinh Phuc (Vinh Phuc), FLC Sam Son (Thanh Hoa) and FLC Quy Nhon (Binh Dinh), as well as Quang Binh and Hai Phong in the near future. Its total value of real estate projects was estimated at $3.8 billion in 2016 by Savills. The group has contributed to boosting…... [read more]

NDO – Developing tourism at national tourist sites has brought about positive results in local socio-economic growth, but on the other hand, it has also posed concerning negative impacts on the environment, heard delegates at a conference held in Ninh Binh province, on July 28. The seminar was organised by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MOCST) under the theme ‘Protecting the environment at national tourist sites’. Addressing the event, Tu Manh Luong, Head of MOCST’s Department of Science, Technology and Environment, outlined Vietnam’s master plan for tourism development by 2020, with a vision towards 2030, with priority placed on advertising 46 national tourist sites across the country. However, one of the huge challenges facing tourist sites in Vietnam is environmental protection. At many tourist attractions, the discharge of solid waste, a lack of water closets and out-dated facilities pose a high risk of environment pollution. Therefore, he stressed that protecting the environment and ecological diversity must be key tasks at tourist sites in order to attain sustainable development and green growth in the tourism sector. Regarding the solutions to the issue, Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong, Deputy Head of Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, said that it is necessary to compete the legal system and regulations on environmental protection at tourist sites, to tighten the management over tourist activities which have created certain impacts on the environment, increase the inspection of environmental situations at tourist attractions and strengthen international cooperation on sustainable tourism development. …... [read more]

According to the Vietnam National Coal Mineral Industries Group (Vinacomin), as from 2012 Vietnam will have to import coal and the quantity will rise from 34 million tonnes in 2015 to 114 million tonnes in 2020 and 228 million tonnes in 2025. Some specialists from the Ministry of Industry and Trade recently forecast that Vietnam would have to import coal as early as 2015. However, in reality, imports will start earlier than expected. Vinacomin has just signed a contract to buy 3.5 million tonnes of coal from Indonesia for the Vinh Tan thermal power project in Binh Thuan province. Meanwhile, it has also sent specialists to Australia to prepare for the import of coal for other thermal power projects. It is no big surprise for people working in the coal sector that Vietnam which has many open-cast coal mines with great reserves will have to import coal sooner or later. As for outsiders, they still feel confused about the situation. Every year Vinacomin mines more than 50 million tonnes of coal, providing about 15 - 20 million tonnes for domestic use and the rest for export, mainly to China. This is not to mention the illegal export of millions of tonnes of coal, or even much more than that as was recently claimed by the press and investigators. Coalmines in Quang Ninh province are the main sources of supply. According to Vinacomin, this coal mining region has total reserves of 10.5 billion tonnes, which are enough to supply the national…... [read more]

In the first half of this year, a number of major economic groups such as the Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) and the Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (Vinashin) have loosened their management over the use of toxic waste. In a typical case, Vinashin’s Cuu Long Joint Stock Company imported 21 transformers from the Republic of Korea (RoK) with manufacture dates from 1960-1980. Of that number, three contained PBC waste oil (Poly Chlorinated Biphenyls) which is very harmful to people and the environment. The remainder were old and even deformed. Although the import of waste materials and wreckage from old ships has lessened since 2007, they continue to pass through ports in Hai Phong, Quanh Ninh and HCM City. Many organisations and individuals are granted permits for collecting and treating waste but violate waste management regulations when signing contracts with other businesses, which are not involved in waste treatment. The illegal disposal of construction waste has occurred frequently in major cities, particularly in Hanoi, causing anger among the population. At present, 70 percent of 192 industrial parks have no waste treatment system for solid and water waste and 31 out of 33 businesses face the same situation. Most industrial parks do not comply with requirements to assess the impact on the environment and also exploit underground water resources illegally. In addition, the number of violations in the protection of wild animals is on the rise along with raising wild animal without being supervised relevant agencies. The trade and transport of large numbers…... [read more]

The Lam Dong provincial People’s Committee reported that there were more than 185,000 arrivals in a week from February 2-7 with the number of foreign visitors rising 15 percent to 10,000 from a year earlier. From January 31 to February 7, Quang Ninh province welcomed more than 280,000 visitors, including 55,000 foreigners, up 3 percent against last year’s figure. In January alone, the province welcomed more than 270,000 visitors including over 167,000 foreigners. Total turnover from tourism services reached more than VND260 billion, up 20 percent compared to the same month of last year. Meanwhile, the Management Board of the Hung King Temples historical complex said more than 30,000 visitors offered incense to the Hung Kings during the Tet festival and there were around 4,000 arrivals per day. Tien Giang province welcomed more than 40,000 tourists including nearly 7,000 foreigners, up 28 percent over the previous year.... [read more]

A ceremony to welcome him was held at the Bai Chay tourism resort in Ha Long Bay, northern Quang Ninh province, on December 26. This is an important event for the tourism sector to promote its potential, not only in the province. The French tourist will be presented with a free trip for two from Da Nang to Hoi An from Saigon Tourist Co, Ltd. The 5,999,999th visitor, Zang DongMei from China, will enjoy a free tour of Ha Long Bay and a dinner voucher for two at Hanoi Press Club offered by Apple Tree Hospitality. The 6,000,001st visitor, Jonson Tjaij from Indonesia, will have a free stay at a luxury room in Melia hotel, Hanoi for three nights. Over the past 11 months of the year, Vietnam has seen a larger number of international tourists coming from Asia, Europe and America than last year, overfulfilling its set target for 6 million and earning VND130,000 billion in revenue. It expects to welcome 10 million visitors by 2020 and 20 million by 2030.... [read more]

A provisional announcement of the bay's new status was made three months ago after global voting ended, by New Open World Corporation, an associate of the New 7 Wonders Foundation. Finalists include: the Amazon in South America, Vietnam's Ha Long Bay, Iguazu Falls of Argentina, Jeju Island of the Republic of Korea, Komodo National Park of Indonesia, Puerto Princesa Underground River of the Philippines, and Table Mountain of South Africa. World-wide voters selected from 400 natural wonders in more than 200 countries and territories in a polling session which ended on November 11, 2011. The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism said it will hold a press conference to announce the official listing on March 31. Ha Long Bay in northern Quang Ninh Province has been recognised twice as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site, notable for its breathtaking landscape and geographical value. The 1, bay is dotted with 1,969 islands, which collectively offer an exquisite example of karst formation in tropical and humid conditions. One distinctive feature of Ha Long Bay is its abundant cave system formed between 11,000 to two million years ago. The long evolution and erosion of the bay has produced pyramid-shaped karst towers that gave the bay its unique beauty. The bay accommodates temperate ecosystems suitable for many species of marine animals, in addition to its great cultural and historical value. Scientists have shown that Ha Long was inhabited by three successive cultures between 3,000 and 18,000 years ago: the Soi Nhu, Cai Beo and…... [read more]

Free wifi for tourists to Ha Long Bay It’s essential to escape the heat and humidity of Hanoi and get to the beach during summer, but which of the northern beaches is best? Most foreigners tend to fly to Danang, but surely there are options in the north which are worth exploring. I’m forewarned by friends that beaches like Sam Son and Do Son are overcrowded so my wife and I decided to cast our eyes further afield. One well-traveled associate of mine suggests Quan Lan island. We consult the map. It’s certainly further than all the other beach destinations in the north and involves taking a boat through the Tonkin Gulf. But we are promised that this sparsely populated island his home to unspoiled beaches and lacks the major developments that are now dominating Vietnam’s most popular coastal destinations on the mainland. Thankfully my kids are good travelers. We are used to going a little bit further off the beaten track to find the country’s most enchanting and captivating locations and frankly I think it’s worth the effort. On our last beach holiday we stayed at Six Senses Con Dao (Poulo Condor) on the remote but breathtakingly beautiful Poulo Condor island. So this year we’re happy to try and find somewhere that’s equally exotic but a little closer to home. After some research, we decided to book everything online with Luxury Travel ( Our first choice is Minh Chau Resort on Minh Chau Island but our hopes are dashed…... [read more]

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