Northern localities asked to brace for torrential rain, floods

Authorities in the northern province of Hoa Binh suspended the director of the province's general hospital on Wednesday following the deaths of eight patients in a dialysis disaster at the hospital in May. Truong Quy Duong was found to have failed to fulfill his duties as the hospital's director, resulting in an accident involving 18 hemodialysis patients at Hoa Binh Province General Hospital on May 25, according to Hoa Binh's Department of Health. Truong Quy Duong has been suspended for one year. Photo by VnExpress/N.P. As a result, the department has decided to suspend him for a year. Quach Thien Tuong, the hospital's deputy director, will serve as acting director until August next year. On May 29, 18 patients were undergoing kidney dialysis treatment at the hospital, 80 kilometers (50 miles) southwest of Hanoi. After 45 minutes some reported nausea, abdominal pain and shortness of breath. The hospital sent for help from Hanoi but it was too late for eight of the patients, who appeared to have died from anaphylactic shock. The remaining 10 patients were transferred to Hanoi's Bach Mai Hospital where they made a full recovery from the incident. Hoa Binh police quickly launched a criminal investigation, and concluded that the water used in the dialysis treatment was the cause of the incident as concentrations of fluoride in the water were up to 260 times above the permitted level. Police have arrested Bui Manh Quoc, director of the Tram Anh Water Treatment Company, for manslaughter. Tran Van Son,…... [read more]

Participants in the launching ceremony of the text-message programme donate money to flood victims (Photo: VNA) Hanoi (VNA) – The Vietnam Red Cross Society (VRC) on August 9 launched a text-message programme to raise funds for people in flood-hit areas in northern Vietnam. By texting “UH” to the number 1409, a donor can donate 20,000 VND to the programme, which lasts from August 9 to October 7. Other material aid can be delivered to the VRC headquarters at No 82 Nguyen Du street in Hanoi or its southern representative office at No 201 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai street in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City. Money can also be sent to the bank account “Trung uong Hoi Chu thap do Viet Nam”, number 124 02 02 005 348 (for VND), 124 02 02 018198 (for USD), or 124 02 02 006862 (for EUR), at the Hoang Mai branch of the Vietnam Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (No 127 Lo Duc street in Hai Ba Trung district, Hanoi). All of the collected money and materials will be used to support flood-affected people with fundamental goods, housing and livelihoods. On August 8, the VRC also called on its chapters, members and people nationwide to provide assistance for flood victims. The campaign will last until the end of September. Heavy rains and subsequent flash floods occurred across northern mountainous provinces over the last few days, especially in Yen Bai, Son La and Lai Chau…... [read more]

Work on the Nam Dinh General Hospital started in November 2007 covering nearly 10 hectares (25 acres) in its namesake province, around two hours drive to the south of Hanoi. The facility was designed to become a major healthcare center for the north of the country, with 700 sickbeds and a helicopter pad. The project was being funded by government bonds. In 2009, costs ballooned by 42 percent from the original estimate to VND850.8 billion ($37.4 million). The main contractors are the Vinaconex 504 Joint Stock Company under the construction ministry and the Urban Infrastructure Development Investment Corporation under Hanoi’s construction department. The builders were scheduled to finish the job in 2011. But work has been dragging on and most of the building is still a shell. Weeds have taken over. Rust has taken its toll on exposed metalwork. Locals said the contractors only send in workers for a couple days when inspectors are scheduled to visit. Vu Khac Dong, deputy head of the management agency in charge of key construction projects in Nam Dinh, said the project was further delayed in 2015 when the government decided it was not entitled to more funding until after 2020. Dong said his agency will be looking for alternative investment sources. “We know its a waste but we have not come up with a plan B yet.”... [read more]

Since the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), Vietnam has become a potential market for regional retailers, which promotes the development of the domestic retail sector, but also alerts domestic enterprises to watch out and continuously improve to not fall behind in this fierce competition.  Siam City Cement to invest in Dong Nai Small home appliance manufacturers struggle to gain domestic market share Asian investors control M&A activities in Vietnam   The Big C chain in Vietnam was acquired by Central Group from Thailand   Vietnam after AEC Before 2015, the Vietnamese retail sector largely slipped under the notice of the mass media and there were only a handful of investors, such as Big C, a brand of Groupe Casino from France, a mass retailer with operations around the world. Additionally Metro Cash & Carry, an international self-service wholesaler from Germany, and some big retailers from Asia, such as Aeon Group from Japan and Lotte Group from South Korea were present. - ASEAN has become Vietnam’s second biggest trade partner with an annual growth rate of 14.5 per cent during the last decade - Two-way trade turnover between Vietnam and the ASEAN increased from about $19 billion in 2006 to around $41.36 billion in 2016 - The ASEAN is the third biggest market and supplier…... [read more]

Vietnam’s bustling e-commerce market is drawing more attention from Singaporean firms and startups. Shopee, a Singapore-based mobile marketplace startup, has expanded its operations in Vietnam under the support of Sea – formerly known as Garena – Southeast Asia’s largest internet platform provider. Last week, Shopee Vietnam celebrated its first anniversary. Since its local debut, the firm’s app has been downloaded five million times and its listings have increased by 133 per cent, with a total of four million listings to date. Regionally, Shopee has achieved an annualised gross merchandise volume of over $3 billion, with its mobile market app having been downloaded on over 40 million devices. In the past year, Shopee has advanced online shopping in Vietnam by expanding its range of product listings, providing buyers with a fast and integrated delivery system, and offering buyers more competitive prices. Pine Kyaw, managing director of Shopee Vietnam, said, “Vietnam is the firm’s key market in the region, with the third-fastest user growth rate following Taiwan and Indonesia. We have grown tremendously over the past year and our performance has far exceeded our expectations.” Moving forward, Shopee aims to expand its user base nationwide. “We want to cater to every buyer and seller nationwide. With our robust and well-integrated platform, we’re confident that we can provide an easy and hassle-free shopping experience and be the one-stop shopping destination in Vietnam,” he said, adding that Shopee has…... [read more]

Together with strong interests in real estate, construction, and manufacturing, Singaporean investors have been trending towards healthcare and renewable energy projects in Vietnam to cash in on rising local demand and the government’s supporting policies. Bich Thuy reports. Singaporean firms are finding robust opportunities in a wide variety of local industries In April, SHS Holdings and Singapore’s Sinenergy Holdings signed a memorandum of understanding with Ninh Thuan province to develop a $360 million solar power and high-tech agriculture complex. The 300MW solar farm project is slated for completion in July 2019. That same month, Singapore-based The Blue Circle and Vietnam’s TSV commenced work on the Dam Nai wind farm in Ninh Thuan, marking the official entry of The Blue Circle into the local renewable energy market. The $80 million project is scheduled for completion in October 2018. According to the Singapore Business Association in Vietnam (SBAV), renewable energy is an emerging trend among Singaporean investors in Vietnam, where electricity consumption outpaced the country’s economic growth rate by two-fold over the past few years. Last year, Armstrong S.E. Clean Energy Fund, a dedicated renewable energy private equity fund based in Singapore, and IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced an investment in Gia Lai Electricity JSC (GEC), which is one of the largest private sector hydropower players in Vietnam. “With the current introduction of the feed-in-tariff of 9.35 US cents/kilowatt-hour and Decision…... [read more]

Some 1,768 natural disasters hit the country by July 30, down 203 compared to the same period of last year. However, death toll and the number of people missing amounted to 511 and 145 respectively, up 42 and 45, respectively since the same period last year. Chairing a conference on evaluating natural disaster response in the capital city yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung pointed out some shortcomings in the natural disaster rescue process nationwide. “Reviews of landslide-prone locations and resident evacuations were not conducted in an urgent manner,” he said. “Some localities were passive during emergencies.” Some areas did not take natural disaster forecasts and warnings seriously and were not fully prepared for evacuations during storms and floods, he added. The Deputy PM asked local authorities and residents to fully grasp the severity of the current climate situation to stay ready for response. Natural disasters will continue to ravage the country this year and the following years as a result of climate change, creating negative effects on agriculture and industrial production and prompting unexpected accidents in mainland and on the sea, he said. He urged the National Committee on Incident, Disaster Response and Search and Rescue to instruct ministries, agencies and localities to continue revising and supplementing solutions to flash floods, landslides, tsunamis and other disasters. At the same time, they should raise public awareness of disaster response and search and rescue, increasing supervision over the effort, he added. Search and rescue forces should enhance international cooperation…... [read more]

Some 1,768 natural disasters hit the country by July 30, down 203 compared to the same period of last year. However, death toll and the number of people missing amounted to 511 and 145 respectively, up 42 and 45, respectively since the same period last year. Chairing a conference on evaluating natural disaster response in the capital city yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung pointed out some shortcomings in the natural disaster rescue process nationwide. “Reviews of landslide-prone locations and resident evacuations were not conducted in an urgent manner,” he said. “Some localities were passive during emergencies.” Some areas did not take natural disaster forecasts and warnings seriously and were not fully prepared for evacuations during storms and floods, he added. The Deputy PM asked local authorities and residents to fully grasp the severity of the current climate situation to stay ready for response. Natural disasters will continue to ravage the country this year and the following years as a result of climate change, creating negative effects on agriculture and industrial production and prompting unexpected accidents in mainland and on the sea, he said. He urged the National Committee on Incident, Disaster Response and Search and Rescue to instruct ministries, agencies and localities to continue revising and supplementing solutions to flash floods, landslides, tsunamis and other disasters. At the same time, they should raise public awareness of disaster response and search and rescue, increasing supervision over the effort, he added. Search and rescue forces should enhance international cooperation…... [read more]

As of the afternoon on August 5, provinces such as Yen Bai, Son La, Lai Chau and Dien Bien found dead bodies of 18 people, 18 people were still missing. Total damage caused by the flash flood has totaled VND718 billion (US$32 million). In Mu Cang Chai district, Yen Bai, authorized agencies continued searching for missing victims and helping residents to remedy flood consequences. Yesterday they just found dead bodies of four victims and the destiny of 10 others were unclear. Kim Noi commune reported most dead and missing number in the upper reaches of Nam Kim spring while Mu Cang Chai town was devastated with floodwaters and stones in the lower reaches. Rescue workers have broken up stones for removal at collapsed houses and together with locals travelled to area near Khao Mang hydropower reservoirs, three kilometers from Mu Cang Chai town, to find missing ones. Mr. Le Trong Khang, deputy chairman of the district People’s Committee, said that residents in Mu Cang Chai district faced many difficulties after the flood as their houses and assets had been washed away or buried under debris of soil and stone. Mr. Mu A Qua in Mu Cang Chai town said that when flood occurred, his family just ran away and could not take any asset with them. The old motorbike which was means of livelihood of his five member family has been crushed under stone. The most concern is that six public works comprising schools have been devastated. Mr. Vu Van…... [read more]

As of the afternoon on August 5, provinces such as Yen Bai, Son La, Lai Chau and Dien Bien found dead bodies of 18 people, 18 people were still missing. Total damage caused by the flash flood has totaled VND718 billion (US$32 million). In Mu Cang Chai district, Yen Bai, authorized agencies continued searching for missing victims and helping residents to remedy flood consequences. Yesterday they just found dead bodies of four victims and the destiny of 10 others were unclear. Kim Noi commune reported most dead and missing number in the upper reaches of Nam Kim spring while Mu Cang Chai town was devastated with floodwaters and stones in the lower reaches. Rescue workers have broken up stones for removal at collapsed houses and together with locals travelled to area near Khao Mang hydropower reservoirs, three kilometers from Mu Cang Chai town, to find missing ones. Mr. Le Trong Khang, deputy chairman of the district People’s Committee, said that residents in Mu Cang Chai district faced many difficulties after the flood as their houses and assets had been washed away or buried under debris of soil and stone. Mr. Mu A Qua in Mu Cang Chai town said that when flood occurred, his family just ran away and could not take any asset with them. The old motorbike which was means of livelihood of his five member family has been crushed under stone. The most concern is that six public works comprising schools have been devastated. Mr. Vu Van…... [read more]




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