Gov’t to fine bad weather forecasters

U.S. President Barack Obama participates in a town hall meeting with young Caribbean leaders at the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica April 9, 2015. U.S. President Barack Obama said Washington is concerned China is using its "sheer size and muscle" to push around smaller nations in the South China Sea, just hours after Beijing gave a detailed defense of its creation of artificial islands in the contested waterway. China's rapid reclamation around seven reefs in the Spratly archipelago of the South China Sea has alarmed other claimants, such as the Philippines and Vietnam, and drawn growing criticism from U.S. government officials and the military. While the new islands will not overturn U.S. military superiority in the region, workers are building ports and fuel storage depots and possibly two airstrips that experts have said would allow Beijing to project power deep into the maritime heart of Southeast Asia. "Where we get concerned with China is where it is not necessarily abiding by international norms and rules and is using its sheer size and muscle to force countries into subordinate positions," Obama told a town-hall event in Jamaica on Thursday ahead of a Caribbean summit in Panama. "We think this can be solved diplomatically, but just because the Philippines or Vietnam are not as large as China doesn't mean that they can just be elbowed aside," he said. China claims most of the potentially energy rich South China Sea, through which $5 trillion in ship-borne trade passes every year.…... [read more]

A recent image published by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) shows what it said were a chain of small artificial land formations along Mischief Reef China on Thursday sketched out plans for the islands it is creating in the disputed South China Sea, saying they would be used for military defence as well as to provide civilian services that would benefit other countries. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a news briefing that the reclamation and building work in the Spratly archipelago of the South China Sea was needed partly because of the risk of typhoons in an area with a lot of shipping that is far from land. "We are building shelters, aids for navigation, search and rescue as well as marine meteorological forecasting services, fishery services and other administrative services" for China and neighbouring countries, Hua said. The islands and reefs would also meet the demands for China's military defence, Hua said without elaborating. It's rare for China to give such detail about its plans for the artificial islands. The rapid reclamation taking place on seven reefs has alarmed other claimants and drawn U.S. criticism, including from Defense Secretary Ash Carter, who is visiting Japan and South Korea this week. "The relevant construction is a matter that is entirely within the scope of China's sovereignty. It is fair, reasonable, lawful, it does not affect and is not targeted against any country. It is beyond reproach," Hua added. China claims most of the South China…... [read more]

Vietnamese meteorologists have raised concerns about a lack of qualified staff and equipment to effectively forecast increasingly frequent floods and storms. This is particularly worrying now that the nation's weather is predicted to become more volatile due to climate change. Low pay is one of the major reasons leading to the shortage of skilled forecasters. According to general director of the National Hydro-meteorological Service of Viet Nam, Bui Van Duc, there was also a dire need for an advanced computer network to analyse meteorological statistics. However, he said that even if this equipment was installed, trained staff would still be needed to operate it. "The qualifications of our staff are insufficient to handle such super-computer networks," said Duc. "The nation's meteorologists need further training." The director of the service's forecasting centre, Bui Minh Tang, said low wages for meteorologists - between VND1.5 and VND2 million (US$90-120) a month - made it difficult to attract and retain talented workers. Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Pham Khoi Nguyen acknowledged that the shortage of skilled meteorologists was one of his great concerns. And he warned that two thirds of experienced forecasters would retire during the next five years. Young people, meanwhile, did not want to join the hydro-meteorology sector, he said. Nguyen quoted a statement from the Ministry of Education and Training that it was extremely difficult to get students to enrol in meteorology courses, even though the ministry had lowered the bar for university entrance. There are only a few universities…... [read more]

Officials of the National Hydro-meteorology Centre met with correspondents on November 18 to explain why their weather forecasts have been consistently wrong lately. Since late September 2008, the Central Hydro-meteorological Forecast Centre (under the National Hydro-meteorology Centre) has continuously published incorrect weather forecast bulletins, with quite gaping errors. Most recently, the centre delivered an inaccurate forecast about storm No. 10 (Noul), both as far as time and location. The storm hit the mainland many hours early than forecast. It hit the central provinces of Khanh Hoa and Ninh Thuan but the centre forecast it would hit a large part of the south and the Mekong Delta first. In accordance with the forecast, many southern and central provinces prepared very carefully, including evacuating thousands of people; but finally, the storm didn't appear. Meanwhile, over 100 boats sunk in Khanh Hoa and Ninh Thuan as the storm came earlier than expected. Previously, storm No 7 (Mekkhala) in late September hit the mainland many hours earlier than the centre predicted. The storm was not strong but it caused heavy losses for Vietnam because the people couldn't respond in time. The Prime Minister asked Deputy PM Hoang Trung Hai, who is in charge of overseeing flood and storm prevention: "The storm was not strong, so why did it kill so many people?" In late October and early November, Hanoi and some southern provinces suffered a historic flood but the centre had forecast only rain in these areas. While flood-hit areas were trying to survive…... [read more]

Hanoi Times - Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has urged relevant ministries, agencies and the Hanoi People's Committee to take concrete measures to cope with floods, which are forecast to continue in the next days. Addressing an urgent meeting with the National Steering Board for Flood and Storm Prevention and Control in Hanoi o­n Nov. 4, PM Dung underscored the need to control the water levels at reservoirs, protect important dyke sections, drain off the water, and excavate people. He said climate changes have led to changeable weather, causing heavy rains and large-scale floods, particularly in the capital city of Hanoi, where 22 people were reported dead. He said the serious aftermaths were partly due to incorrect weather forecast and asked the authorised agencies and localities to withdraw lessons from this in order to minimise losses in lives and properities. For Hanoi alone, he asked the authorities to take into account measures to diminish flooding, particularly for the city's expansion plan. It is forecast that Hanoi and some other localities will face heavy rains, with the rainfalls expected to be measured at 100-300 mm, in the next two days. The PM asked the authorised agencies to keep a close watch of and have timely solutions to cope with the development of the floods. VNA... [read more]

Hanoi Times - Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has urged relevant ministries, agencies and the Hanoi People's Committee to take concrete measures to cope with floods, which are forecast to continue in the next days. Addressing an urgent meeting with the National Steering Board for Flood and Storm Prevention and Control in Hanoi o­n Nov. 4, PM Dung underscored the need to control the water levels at reservoirs, protect important dyke sections, drain off the water, and excavate people. He said climate changes have led to changeable weather, causing heavy rains and large-scale floods, particularly in the capital city of Hanoi, where 22 people were reported dead. He said the serious aftermaths were partly due to incorrect weather forecast and asked the authorised agencies and localities to withdraw lessons from this in order to minimise losses in lives and properities. For Hanoi alone, he asked the authorities to take into account measures to diminish flooding, particularly for the city's expansion plan. It is forecast that Hanoi and some other localities will face heavy rains, with the rainfalls expected to be measured at 100-300 mm, in the next two days. The PM asked the authorised agencies to keep a close watch of and have timely solutions to cope with the development of the floods... [read more]

A man looks at a smartphone in a shopping mall in Beijing on August 3, 2017. Greg Baker/AFP. The step, arguably procedural, means that the commission will assign Qualcomm's complaint to an administrative law judge for evidentiary hearings instead of dismissing it out of hand. Qualcomm last month escalated a legal battle with Apple, filing a patent infringement lawsuit and requesting a ban on the importation of some iPhones, claiming unlawful and unfair use of the chipmaker's technology. Qualcomm asked for an import ban on some iPhones with the US International Trade Commission, a quasi-judicial government agency which hears cases involving trade disputes. "Qualcomm is pleased with the ITC's decision to investigate Apple’s unfair trade practices and the unauthorized importation of products using Qualcomm’s patents," executive vice president and general counsel Don Rosenberg said in a release. The products at issue in the investigation are mobile devices such as the iPhone 7 and specific components including baseband processor modems, according to the commission. The complaint alleges that iPhones, which are made in China, should not be allowed to be brought into the United States if they infringe on Qualcomm's patents. Apple referred AFP to comment it made in June, saying that Qualcomm's "illegal business practices" are harming the iPhone maker and the entire industry. Holders of standards-essential patents such as those at issue in Qualcomm's complaint have a responsibility to offer them at fair, reasonable, and non discriminatory terms, Apple chief executive Tim Cook pointed out during a recent…... [read more]

SAN FRANCISCO: The US International Trade Commission on Tuesday (Aug 8) said it will look into Qualcomm's complaint that Apple is violating its patents in some iPhones. Qualcomm chief Steve Mollenkopf, pictured in July 2017, said the chipmaker's legal war with Apple is about defending his company's business model. (AFP/Rob Lever) The step, arguably procedural, means that the commission will assign Qualcomm's complaint to an administrative law judge for evidentiary hearings instead of dismissing it out of hand. Qualcomm last month escalated a legal battle with Apple, filing a patent infringement lawsuit and requesting a ban on the importation of some iPhones, claiming unlawful and unfair use of the chipmaker's technology. Qualcomm asked for an import ban on some iPhones with the US International Trade Commission, a quasi-judicial government agency which hears cases involving trade disputes. "Qualcomm is pleased with the ITC's decision to investigate Apple?s unfair trade practices and the unauthorized importation of products using Qualcomm?s patents," executive vice president and general counsel Don Rosenberg said in a release. The products at issue in the investigation are mobile devices such as the iPhone 7 and specific components including baseband processor modems, according to the commission. The complaint alleges that iPhones, which are made in China, should not be allowed to be brought into the United States if they infringe on Qualcomm's patents. Apple referred AFP to comment it made…... [read more]

Software and legal documents on cybercrime prevention will soon be launched in Việt Nam. Cyber police in the capital city use advanced technology to investigate cybercrime.  As part of a project on increasing prevention of cybercrime until 2030, a censorship system including software that identifies, blocks, collects and processes misleading information on the internet will soon be launched in the country. Software that prevents personal computers from accessing websites containing misleading information, and an investigation system that analyses methods used by cyber criminals to conduct cybercrime, will also be developed. The project was recently approved by the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC). It aims at achieving the goals outlined in a national strategy on cybercrime prevention in the 2016-25 period, with a vision to 2030. As part of the project, MIC will collaborate with other ministries and sectors to develop communication plans and messages on mass media, at schools and in families to raise awareness on cybercrime prevention, especially teaching young people to filter out inappropriate information online. A system of legal documents on cybercrime prevention will be developed, which includes stricter measures against cybercrime, policies on online information management, and preferential policies that encourage the development of online services by Vietnamese IT enterprises. The project will also help strengthen the ability of information technology (IT) inspectors and investigators on fighting against cybercrime. It also aims to identify, investigate and handle 100 per cent of cases that perpetuate misleading information, as well as strengthening international and transnational collaboration on…... [read more]

Software and legal documents on cybercrime prevention will soon be launched in Viet Nam. — Photo bnews.vn Software and legal documents on cybercrime prevention will soon be launched in Viet Nam. As part of a project on increasing prevention of cybercrime until 2030, a censorship system including software that identifies, blocks, collects and processes misleading information on the internet will soon be launched in the country. Software that prevents personal computers from accessing websites containing misleading information, and an investigation system that analyses methods used by cyber criminals to conduct cybercrime, will also be developed. The project was recently approved by the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC). It aims at achieving the goals outlined in a national strategy on cybercrime prevention in the 2016-25 period, with a vision to 2030. As part of the project, MIC will collaborate with other ministries and sectors to develop communication plans and messages on mass media, at schools and in families to raise awareness on cybercrime prevention, especially teaching young people to filter out inappropriate information online. A system of legal documents on cybercrime prevention will be developed, which includes stricter measures against cybercrime, policies on online information management, and preferential policies that encourage the development of online services by Vietnamese IT enterprises. The project will also help strengthen the ability of information technology (IT) inspectors and investigators on fighting against cybercrime. It also aims to identify, investigate and handle 100 per cent…... [read more]




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