Vietnamese, Lao provinces boost comprehensive cooperation

Manila, August 7 (VNA) – Vietnam will work with Japan and Mekong nations to implement the 2015 Tokyo Strategy on Mekong-Japan cooperation and the Mekong-Japan Action Plan for Realisation of the New Tokyo Strategy for 2016-2018.  Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh reiterated Vietnam’s commitments at the Mekong-Japan Foreign Ministers' Meeting on the sidelines of the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM 50) in Manila, the Philippines, on August 6.  The event was attended by the Foreign Ministers from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and Japan.  To help Mekong nations participate deeply in global and regional value chains, the Vietnamese FM suggested developing international traffic corridors and logistics system so the region can serve as a bridge connecting the Indian Ocean and Asia – Pacific, and be a gate to markets like India and ASEAN.  Meanwhile, Japan should provide support for Mekong nations to shift toward green growth and energy saving models, to develop energy while ensuring energy, food and water security and to use water sustainably from the Mekong river while adapting to climate change, Minh said.  He also suggested Japan help Mekong countries develop high-quality human resources and enhance research and development capacity to meet the demand of enterprises.  During the event, participants discussed cooperation plans and preparations for the ninth Mekong – Japan Summit Meeting slated for November.  Mekong nations lauded Japan’s support for promoting regional connectivity, human resource development and industrial infrastructure facilities via the Partnership for Quality Infrastructure, the…... [read more]

Vietnam will work with Japan and Mekong nations to implement the 2015 Tokyo Strategy on Mekong-Japan cooperation and the Mekong-Japan Action Plan for Realisation of the New Tokyo Strategy for 2016-2018. Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (first right) and delegates participate the meeting Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh reiterated Vietnam’s commitments at the Mekong-Japan Foreign Ministers' Meeting on the sidelines of the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM 50) in Manila, the Philippines, on August 6. The event was attended by the Foreign Ministers from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and Japan. To help Mekong nations participate deeply in global and regional value chains, the Vietnamese FM suggested developing international traffic corridors and logistics system so the region can serve as a bridge connecting the Indian Ocean and Asia – Pacific, and be a gate to markets like India and ASEAN. Meanwhile, Japan should provide support for Mekong nations to shift toward green growth and energy saving models, to develop energy while ensuring energy, food and water security and to use water sustainably from the Mekong river while adapting to climate change, Minh said. He also suggested Japan help Mekong countries develop high-quality human resources and enhance research and development capacity to meet the demand of enterprises. During the event, participants discussed cooperation plans and preparations for the ninth Mekong – Japan Summit Meeting slated for November. Mekong nations lauded Japan’s support for promoting regional connectivity, human resource development and industrial infrastructure facilities via the Partnership…... [read more]

Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (first right) and delegates participate the meeting (Source: VNA) Manila (VNA) – Vietnam will work with Japan and Mekong nations to implement the 2015 Tokyo Strategy on Mekong-Japan cooperation and the Mekong-Japan Action Plan for Realisation of the New Tokyo Strategy for 2016-2018. Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh reiterated Vietnam’s commitments at the Mekong-Japan Foreign Ministers' Meeting on the sidelines of the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM 50) in Manila, the Philippines, on August 6. The event was attended by the Foreign Ministers from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and Japan. To help Mekong nations participate deeply in global and regional value chains, the Vietnamese FM suggested developing international traffic corridors and logistics system so the region can serve as a bridge connecting the Indian Ocean and Asia – Pacific, and be a gate to markets like India and ASEAN. Meanwhile, Japan should provide support for Mekong nations to shift toward green growth and energy saving models, to develop energy while ensuring energy, food and water security and to use water sustainably from the Mekong river while adapting to climate change, Minh said. He also suggested Japan help Mekong countries develop high-quality human resources and enhance research and development capacity to meet the demand of enterprises. During the event, participants discussed cooperation plans and preparations for the ninth Mekong – Japan Summit Meeting slated for November. Mekong nations lauded Japan’s support for promoting regional connectivity,…... [read more]

The Vietnamese government has lost patience over the slow disbursement of official development assistance (ODA) for several projects and the prime minister had to issue an ultimatum to speed up disbursement or risk losing this important capital source. Cat Linh-Hadong urban railway deadlock persists Cost increases on Hanoi Metro Line 2 Ho Chi Minh City metro projects short on capital The Cat Linh-Hadong urban railway project (Photo: Duc Thanh) Increasing investment cost A wide range of large-scale projects were listed out by the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) due to slow disbursement of ODA funds. These projects include the urban railway project Hanoi Metro line 2 - South Thang Long-Tran Hung Dao, and Metro Line 1, Ben Thanh-Suoi Tien, and Line 2 Ben Thanh-Tham Luong in Ho Chi  Minh City, among others. “All of these projects have adjusted their capital, which seriously influences their schedule because of the long appraisal process and asking for approval from related agencies,” MPI said. Along with slow construction, the huge additional amount of capital needed also makes the government impatient, as most of the urban railway projects adjusted their investment costs. For example, Hanoi Metro Line 2 - South Thang Long-Tran Hung Dao asked to increase its investment from nearly VND19.6 trillion ($862.4 million) to around VND51.8 trillion ($2.3 billion). After appraisal, this project was…... [read more]

An additional VNĐ20 trillion (US$883 million) needed for infrastructure projects by 2020 will have to come from the city budget as well as from private sources, as disbursement of state budget funds remains slow, the deputy chairman of the city’s People’s Committee, Trần Vĩnh Tuyến, has said. illustration photo As of the end of July, only VNĐ13.2 trillion ($583 million) had been disbursed of the VNĐ26.2 trillion ($1.16 billion) from state budget funds allocated this year for infrastructure projects in the city, according to the Department of Planning and Investment. The city still needs Official Development Assistance (ODA) funds of VNĐ7.7 trillion ($340 million) for projects for the rest of the year, but State funds can only provide 50 per cent of that figure. A department official said that limited funds were causing projects to run behind schedule. The slow disbursement of funds has also caused difficulties for project contractors, resulting in penalties and more interest charged for delayed payments. The Metro Line No 2 project, which will link Bến Thành Station in District 1 to Tham Lương Station in District 12, has seen delays because of slow capital disbursement for land clearance, according to reports from district authorities. A new bidding law on land compensation prices to residents who must resettle to make way for infrastructure projects has still not been approved, contributing to the delay.   Tuyến asked local…... [read more]

Đồng Nai closes illegal road-railway crossings The Đồng Nai Traffic Safety Committee, in co-ordination with local authorities, has closed all illegal road-railway crossing in the province since March this year. The work followed the request of Standing Deputy Prime Minister Trương Hòa Bình and the National Traffic Safety Committee. Nguyễn Bôn, chief of the secretariat of the Đồng Nai Traffic Safety Committee, said the north-south railway system ran through five districts and towns of Đồng Nai Province with a length of 90km. Local authorities set up 57 road-railway crossings with mobile warning system, guards and signals. However, residents opened 66 illegal road-railway crossings without any warning signals, mainly in Biên Hòa City and Trảng Bom and Xuân Lộc districts. The provincial authorities checked and decided to keep 11 crossings which are near industrial zones and residential areas. The province is setting up watchtowers, installing equipment and assigning guards to keep close watch at the 11 crossings all day and night. Bôn said locals’ awareness was still low, so they could re-open the illegal crossings. In the future, the Đồng Nai Traffic Safety Committee would improve education, and wards people’s committees would strengthen inspection, imposing appropriate penalties on violators. The province has witnessed five railway accidents, so far, this year, according to the Đồng Nai Traffic Safety Committee. The accidents killed six people and injured eight others, an increase by one and eight compared with the same period last year, respectively. Reasons for the accidents were locals crossing the railway line…... [read more]

Public capital disbursement in HCMC reaches 50.5% of planVan Nam A flood control project in HCMC deployed under the PPP format. Many public projects in the city are falling behind schedule due to slow capital disbursement - PHOTO: VAN NAM HCMC - Capital disbursed for public projects in HCMC in the first seven months of 2017 reached only 50.5% of the year’s plan, lower than targeted, announced the city’s Department of Planning and Investment at a meeting on August 3. According to the department, the city is allocated nearly VND26.2 trillion (about US$1.152 billion) for 2017 from the State budget, official development assistance (ODA) and the city’s own budget, for public projects. As of the end of July, over VND13.2 trillion had been disbursed, 50.5% of the plan. In particular, VND722 billion from the central State budget was disbursed, only 22% of the full-year plan, VND2.9 trillion from ODA, 71.9%, and VND9.59 trillion from the city’s budget, 50.8%. The pace of capital disbursement was slower than expected due to many reasons. For capital from the State budget, the city was allocated VND3.2 trillion to build Children’s Hospital and Oncology Hospital 2. The investor, the Works Construction and Management Authority under the city’s Department of Health, only began to disburse capital for the projects after the financial management agency finished paperwork. ODA required for the city’s public projects in 2017 was estimated at VND7.7 trillion but the city was allocated only VND4 trillion. Therefore, the city could not complete the projects…... [read more]

PM Phuc urges ministers to take action to achieve growth targetsTu Hoang Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc speaks at the Government’s regular meeting on August 3 - PHOTO: VGP HANOI – Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc urged ministers to take specific and drastic measures in the last five months of 2017 to achieve the nation’s socio-economic growth targets, heard the Government’s regular meeting on August 3. The Government leader and Cabinet members discussed ways to solve shortcomings in administrative procedures, equitization and divestment of State-owned enterprises, slow disbursement of official development assistance (ODA) and high production costs and administrative fees. The Prime Minister stressed that capital disbursement for public projects must be accelerated and total investment capital in the economy should account for 34-35% of gross domestic product (GDP). Heads of ministries, departments and localities were asked to complete their assigned tasks to obtain the country’s growth target The Government leader underlined responsibilities of ministers and leaders of cities and provinces for identifying weaknesses and shortcomings in their management and adopting appropriate solutions to improve management capacity. Phuc pointed out some programs moving at a slow pace, including the program to turn household businesses into companies and equitization of State-owned enterprises. There were still numerous difficulties and shortcomings in economic development, including the attenuation of the mining industry, high logistics and transport costs, and slow capital disbursement. According to the Prime Minister, dengue, which has made 50,000 people hospitalized and killed 17 people since the beginning of this year, was…... [read more]

Harvesting coffee in Dak Lak (Source: VNA)   Dak Lak (VNA) – The Central Highlands province of Dak Lak has attracted many official development assistance (ODA) and foreign direct investment (FDI) projects as well as non-governmental assistance, including funds from the Republic of Korea (RoK). The provincial Department of Planning and Investment reported that Dak Lak now houses three ODA projects valued at a total 12.5 million USD funded by the Korea International Cooperation Agency. Two other projects worth 47.3 million USD cover food, cosmetics and medicine production and solar power. Dak Lak recently held an investment promotion seminar in the RoK’s Joellabuk province with more than 40 businesses participating. During the seminar, Solarpark Global I&D of the RoK inked a memorandum of understanding with Dak Lak on a solar power project, and asked for the province’s licence to carry out another project worth 45 million USD. RoK firms have also invested in education, water supply and waste collection and treatment in Dak Lak. Such projects have helped the locality improve its infrastructure and reduce poverty, especially in remote, far-flung and ethnic minority-inhabited areas. The province wants RoK investments in high-tech agriculture, with priority given to projects in Ea Kpam commune and Ea Pok town in Cu Mgar district, and Ea Tu and Hoa Xuan communes in Buon Ma Thuot city. In the first six months of this year, Dak Lak lured 29 investment…... [read more]

HCM City, August 4 (VNA) – Vice Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Tran Vinh Tuyen has asked local departments and districts to disburse all public investment capital from 2017 by the end of January 2018.  At a meeting on August 3 to review the city’s disbursement of public investment capital, Deputy Director of the municipal Department of Planning and Investment Tran Thi Binh Minh said more than 26.18 trillion VND (1.15 billion USD) has been allocated from the State budget to HCM City so far this year.  The city had disbursed 13.21 trillion VND (581.1 million USD) as of July 31, 50 percent of the sum planned to be disbursed this year. That includes 722 billion VND (31.8 million USD) of capital from the central budget, 22 percent of total State capital subject to disbursement.  HCM City also disbursed 2.9 trillion VND (127.6 million USD) or 72 percent of Official Development Assistance (ODA) capital allocated by central agencies as of July 31. Meanwhile, local projects need about 7.7 trillion VND (338.7 million USD) of ODA capital this year.  Minh said as the provided ODA capital has met about 50 percent of local demand, HCM City will struggle to soon finish many projects.  This is also a reason behind the slow payment of contracts signed with foreign partners, which could force the city to pay fines for late payment, she added.  Meanwhile, about 9.59 trillion VND (421.9 million USD)…... [read more]




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