Bibica becomes official PAN Food subsidiary

PAN Food Manufacturing JSC (PAN Food) successfully acquired more than 50 per cent of Bibica Corporation (Bibica)’s stakes, overtaking Lotte Confectionery Co., Ltd. (Lotte) as the biggest shareholder and turning Bibica into a subsidiary.

Bibica is now a subsidiary of PAN Food

On August 30, 2017, PAN Food announced the successful purchase of 977,647 Bibica stocks, which raised its total holding in Bibica to 7,720,577 shares, an equivalent of 50.07 per cent. By holding more than 50 per cent, PAN Food has become the biggest shareholder in Bibica, overtaking Lotte, which holds 44.03 per cent. Therefore, Bibica has quietly become a subsidiary of PAN Food.

However, as of the middle of June 2017, Lotte still had two representatives on Bibica’s board of directors, while PAN Food had only one, Nguyen Khac Hai. Currently, even though PAN Food holds a 51 per cent stake in Bibica, it cannot add another representative to the board of directors just yet, as they will have to wait until a Lotte representative or an independent member ends their term.

The reason is that in accordance with the Law on Enterprises, PAN Food should hold 65 per cent of Bibica’s stakes to call a shareholders’ meeting and call for the election of a new member.

PAN Food said that it will team up with Bibica to pool strengths and enhance human resources in the food industry, improve corporate governance, mobilise capital, raise investment into manufacturing facilities, and expand the distribution system.

The cooperation between PAN Food and Bibica started in 2015, when Bibica administered significant changes in investment orientation and product portfolio, as well as the increasing growth rate. Thanks to this partnership, Bibica has utilised many of PAN Food’s advantages to enhance its financial management system, operation management, and risk management.

In 2016, Bibica generated a net revenue of more than VND1.2 trillion ($52.8 million), earned an after-tax profit of more than VND81 billion ($3.6 million), and paid its shareholders a dividend of 12 per cent in cash.

In 2017, Bibica targeted to generate a net revenue of more than VND1.4 trillion ($61.6 million), earn a pre-tax profit of VND104.3 billion ($4.6 million) and after-tax profit of VND86.6 billion ($3.8 million). The expected dividend paid for shareholders in 2017 was 12-18 per cent.

Also in 2017, Bibica has invested in the first high-end soft candy project in Vietnam. This candy product has a high level of condensed milk content (20 per cent), while similar products in the market have 4-8 per cent only. Moreover, Bibica also has a cookies project and a project on upgrading its bread production lines. The total investment for these projects has exceeded VND250 billion ($11 million).

PAN Food, a subsidiary of PAN Group, operates in the food processing and distribution industry, specialising in safe and nutritious food products.

Sticking to this strategy, from 2014 till now, PAN Food has implemented numerous mergers and acquisitions (M&A) deals with the aim of investing, owning, and merging with leading enterprises in the food processing industry, such as Bibica, Lafooco, and Aquatex Ben Tre.

By Trang Vu



Link http://news.c10mt.com/search/label/vietnambreakingnews and http://news.c10mt.com

Vietnam builds first modern fishing ship for Canada

“You had mortar rounds going off in the mountains and you were surfing off China Beach,” he said. “It was ‘Apocalypse Now!’” Forty-five years later, Palazzo is back, this time as a tech entrepreneur contributing to the planned construction of one of Southeast Asia’s most modern cities. The roar of F-4 Phantom jets has become the rumble of bulldozers, the rattle of Huey helicopter rotors has been replaced with spinning casino slot machines; instead of bullets, golf balls whizz down world-class fairways. lled East Sea Beach. “They are welcoming of foreigners. In terms of process and getting things done, Danang is by far much more friendly to businesses than Ho Chi Minh City,” the country’s commercial center, formerly known as Saigon. In Da Nang, you might be forgiven for wondering how the war ended. Tourists sun themselves on the white sand in front of the Hyatt Regency resort, a few blocks up the coast from the Greg Norman-designed Danang Golf Club. Downtown, outside the Big C supermarket, which sells French baguettes and bottles of Bordeaux, traffic directed by International Business Machines Corp. software flows on toward the airport and the Coca-Cola Co. factory. Vietnam’s Singapore Decades after the city revolved around the U.S. military air bases, Danang is recasting itself as the Singapore of Vietnam, touting a transparent and efficient government. A building boom has transformed the landscape into a budding metropolis, ranked at or near the top of the Vietnam Provincial Competitiveness Index for good governance and business-friendly policies…... [read more]

Over the past years, the State has poured more investment into repairing and upgrading the river and sea embankment systems, helping mitigate the consequences of natural disasters. Every year, a tropical country like Vietnam braces for natural disasters. When the stormy season comes, it develops in a complicated manner. We all know that natural disasters are inevitable phenomena, but better forecast and proper prevention and control measures will help mitigate the human and property losses caused by natural disasters. Overcoming the consequences of typhoon Chanchu, which killed hundreds of Vietnamese fishermen offshore recently, cannot be done overnight, and from now on we should learn lessons from the typhoon. According to the fisheries sector, Vietnamese fishing practices have developed for a long time and all fishermen conduct their activities offshore with traditional experiences, accumulating over many generations. Each lesson of experience is a high price and sometimes costs the lives of those involved. For the fishing industry, each lesson costs fishermen’s lives. The sea is very unpredictable and experienced fishermen cannot predict unexpected situations. Nobody thought that during the calm sea days, a tropical low pressure system was building and suddenly struck central Thanh Hoa province, killing hundreds of local fishermen in Hau Loc district. Nobody thought that the south-eastern region – which is rarely hit by typhoons and tropical low pressures – could unexpectedly be stricken by a powerful typhoon, killing thousands of fishermen. And nobody thought that Chanchu – the first typhoon in the East Sea this year –…... [read more]

Many of these workers do not hold legal documents authorising them to work in the country and as a consequence are vulnerable to exploitation and lack access to legal protection for fear that they would be deported. As a result, the Vietnam Overseas Labour Management Department working closely with the Thailand government has been taking the initiative to protect their rights. The majority of these workers are from farming villages in rural Vietnam and they send their salaries to their families back home. Many Vietnam migrant workers in Thailand As one example of the abuse, take the case of dockworkers at the Pae Pla Pier in Mahachai, Thailand. Guest workers earn between US$9–US$18 per day for carting barrels of fish from the fishing trawlers and loading on to seafood trucks. Another example is the fish canning factories of Unicord, where an estimated 6,000 guest workers, some of whom are Vietnamese, labour each day over two shifts for pithy wages. Duc said that more than 200 people from his home district are currently working in Bangkok, mainly as restaurant workers or household employees and substantially all of them are underpaid. A local official from the village of My Loc, Hoang Thi Giang, said the village has more than 1,200 migrant workers in Thailand. In addition, many local people of other villages like Ky Phong and Nghi Thiet have gone to Thailand to work. However, most of them are working illegally in Thailand, gaining entry to the country as a tourist and…... [read more]

PANO – Ship Truong Sa 18 successfully rescued 10 fishermen on distressed boat TG-93333 TS on November 16. Previously, the fishing trawler, captained by Vong Van Ven from Go Cong Dong district, Tien Giang province, with nine other fishermen on board was stranded due to a broken bilgeabout four nautical miles north of Sinh Ton Dong Island. Receiving the information, the Naval Region 4 Command instructed troops stationed on Sinh Ton Dong Island to send Ship Truong Sa 18 to the scene and rescue the troubled fishermen. At 12:45am the same day, 10 fishermen on the distressed trawler were safely moved to Ship Truong Sa 18. The ship then headed back to Sinh Ton Dong Island. On the island, the distressed fishermen were provided with first aid and food. Translated by Hong Thanh... [read more]

Vietnam, EU share experience in ensuring human rights Experts from Vietnam and the European Union (EU) shared experience in ensuring human rights while implementing the United Nations Convention against Torture (UNCAT) during a workshop held in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho on October 3. The event gave an insight into important human rights principles set in international conventions and the UNCAT in particular for officials working in Vietnam's public security, judicial and court sectors. Participants presented Vietnam's responsibility in carrying out international conventions, including the UNCAT, to which the country is a member. EU experts updated the current situation in the field in the union as well as shared experience of EU and member states on crime investigation without use of torture and methods to prevent torture. The Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (commonly known as the UN Convention against Torture ) is an international human rights treaty approved by the UN General Assembly in December 1984. It aims to prevent torture and other acts of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment around the world. Vietnam signed the UNCAT in 2013 with the approval of the National Assembly in 2014, demonstrating the Vietnamese Government's strong commitment to preventing torture and protecting human rights in the country. In ASEAN, Vietnam was the sixth nation to join the UNCAT, along with Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia and Laos. Vietnam, Cambodia foster cooperation in ethnic affairs A delegation of the Committee for Ethnic Affairs had…... [read more]

Viet Nam News ĐÀ NẴNG - The central city has launched a fishery logistics trawler for the city's fishing boat fleet on Hoàng Sa (Paracel) Island of Việt Nam after five months of building. The ship owner, Lê Văn Khang of Sơn Trà District, said the 1,200CV capacity boat was built for VNĐ7 billion (US$311,000), of which VNĐ800 million ($36,000) was funded by the city. It's one of the newest logistics ship built in Đà Nẵng following a master plan of offshore fishing ship fleet development. Khang said his family has six other fishing boats in the sea off Hoàng Sa (Paracel) Island - a traditional fishing ground of Việt Nam. Last year, the city introduced two fishery logistics co-operatives to supply fuel, ice, food, fresh water and necessities for longer trips involving 60 offshore fishing trawlers in Đà Nẵng and other central provinces. The central city's People's Committee has approved an eight-year deep-sea fishing project worth VNĐ1.1 trillion ($52 million). The project is aimed at increasing productivity and providing bigger and better high-capacity vessels equipped with the latest technology. This includes the development of a fleet of 400 trawlers by 2020, most equipped with global positioning and fish-detection systems. The central city, which has 15,000sq.km of fishing grounds, has a fleet of 2,300 fishing boats, of which 699 are deep-sea trawlers. - VNS... [read more]

Kuala Lumpur (VNA) – At least three fishermen were kidnapped in waters near the Pulau Pom Pom resort off Malaysia's Sabah state on September 10. Eastern Sabah Security Command Commander Wan Abdul Bari Abdul Khalid confirmed receiving a report from the fishing vessel’s owner about the missing men at 1.59am. The owner said that armed kidnappers stormed the vessel and kidnapped three crew members, including the captain and a mechanic. A previous kidnapping at the Pulau Pom Pom resort occurred on November 15, 2013 when armed kidnappers killed a Taiwanese tourist before taking his wife hostage and bringing her to the southern Philippines. The victim was released the following month after a ransom was reportedly paid to secure her release.-VNA... [read more]

PANO – Troops on board ship BP 32.04.03 of Border Guard Flotilla 2 of the Binh Dinh provincial Border Guard Command on September 2 successfully saved six distressed fishermen and towed their fishing trawler BD 96259-TS to the Mui Tan Border Station in Hai Cang ward, Quy Nhon city. Previously, at 7:30pm on September 1, fishing ship BD 96259-TS with a capacity of 400CV, captained by Van Cong Truyen from Hoai Hai commune, Hoai Nhon district was stranded about 30 nautical miles off the coast of Quy Nhon city. Receiving the mayday signals, the command immediately sent its ship to the scene and saved the troubled trawler with six fishermen on board. At present, six fishermen are recovering. Translated by Chung Anh... [read more]

Dozens of migrants were missing Friday after an overloaded fishing boat sank off the coast of Libya, the third major tragedy in the Mediterranean in as many days, Italian rescuers said. Italian coastguards sent in rescue ships after a call for help that spoke of 350 people in the water, while the Italian navy said it had saved 130 people and was still searching for others. The coastguard, which coordinates rescue operations in the area, was not able to immediately provide further information about the latest incident. But it said about 1,900 people were saved on Friday from 16 vessels in distress, adding to an estimated 10,000 people already rescued near the Libyan coast in the past four days. A bout of good weather as summer arrives has kicked off a fresh stream of boats attempting to make the perilous crossing from Libya to Italy. About 40,000 migrants and refugees have arrived in the country's southern ports so far this year. But in one of the worst tragedies in the Mediterranean in recent months, a fishing trawler carrying some 650 people capsized off the coast of Libya on Wednesday. The Italian navy, which captured the tragedy in a horrifying video that shows the boat roll over and dump its passengers into the water, was able to rescue about 560 people. But five people died and 100 are still feared missing, according to many survivors who reported having lost a loved one or a close passenger. On Thursday, the EU's naval…... [read more]

Fishing boats with Chinese national flags are seen at a harbor in Baimajing, Hainan province, April 7, 2016. Photo: Reuters/Megha Rajagopalan The fishing fleet based in this tiny port town on Hainan island is getting everything from military training and subsidies to even fuel and ice as China creates an increasingly sophisticated fishing militia to sail into the disputed South China Sea. The training and support includes exercises at sea and requests to fishermen to gather information on foreign vessels, provincial government officials, regional diplomats and fishing company executives said in recent interviews. "The maritime militia is expanding because of the country's need for it, and because of the desire of the fishermen to engage in national service, protecting our country's interests," said an advisor to the Hainan government who did not want to be named. But the fishing militia also raises the risk of conflict with foreign navies in the strategic waterway through which $5 trillion of trade passes each year, diplomats and naval experts say. The United States has been conducting sea and air patrols near artificial islands China is building in the disputed Spratlys archipelago, including by two B-52 strategic bombers in November. Washington said in February it would increase the "freedom of navigation" sail-bys around the disputed sea. Basic military training The city-level branches of the People's Armed Forces Department provide basic military training to fishermen, said the Hainan government advisor. The branches are overseen by both the military and local Communist Party authorities in charge…... [read more]

Japan funds construction of drainage system in Bien Hoa

At the meeting (Source: VNA) Tokyo (VNA) – Politburo member Pham Minh Chinh met Chairman of the House of Councillors of Japan Date Chuichi and Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono in Tokyo on August 30, the last day of his working visit to Japan. Chinh, who is also Head of the Party Central Committee’s Organisation Commission and Chairman of the Vietnam – Japan Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group, said Vietnam will continue pushing forward administrative reform and improving business climate to create favourable conditions for foreign investors in Vietnam, including those from Japan. He asked Japan to continue providing Vietnam with official development assistance (ODA) in the near future. Date Chuichi said the Japanese House of Councillors will continue to support bilateral ties and increase exchanges between the two countries’ parliamentarians and people to further bolster trust and mutual understanding between the two nations. Taro Kono, for his part, expressed wish to further develop the bilateral extensive strategic partnership. He committed to working closely with Vietnam in regional and global issues to maintain peace, stability and development in the region and the world. The Japanese side vowed to assist Vietnam in projects regarding infrastructure, administrative reform and high-quality workforce training funded by Japanese ODA. They underscored Japan’s full support for Vietnam to fulfill its role as host of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit 2017. The two sides promised to effectively work together to celebrate…... [read more]

  Illustrative photo (Source: AFP)   Khanh Hoa (VNA) – The 5th Vietnam-Japan defence policy dialogue took place in the south central province of Khanh Hoa’s Nha Trang city on August 30 under the co-chair of Deputy Defence Minister Sen. Lieut. Gen. Nguyen Chi Vinh and his Japanese counterpart Manabe Ro. At the dialogue, the two sides discussed world and regional issues of mutual concern and reviewed the outcomes of implementing cooperation contents reached at the previous event in Tokyo in November 2016. Both sides expressed their pleasure at progress in defence cooperation in the recent time as well as the activeness of Vietnamese and Japanese relevant agencies in deploying the agreed contents. In the coming time, the two sides agreed to continue strengthening partnership in various fields such as exchange of delegations at all levels, personnel training and sharing experience in UN peacekeeping activities and overcoming war aftermaths, including bomb and mine clearance and dioxin detoxification. They also agreed to work closely in cyber security, maritime security, defence industry and technology transfer. In addition, the officers also consented to create favourable conditions for defence units to conduct cooperation activities in the spheres of rescue, military medicine and exchange of information among strategic research agencies of the two defence ministries. Vinh stressed that the Party, State and People’s Army of Vietnam have paid great attention to dealing with the war consequences and are calling for support from the international community. Vietnam expected that…... [read more]

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has just approved the budget for grassroots healthcare from 2016-20, a programme that includes funding for constructing health facilities, supporting traditional medicine, and providing healthcare in remote areas. The Target Programme on the development of grassroots healthcare in the 2016-20 period forecasts a total investment for the programme of VNĐ19.829 trillion (US$872 million), and this figure could be adjusted to rise but will not exceed VNĐ22.5 trillion ($989.8 million). Nearly half of the total investment - about VNĐ10 trillion ($444 million) - comes from local budgets and the national lottery. The central budget contributes VNĐ2.4 trillion ($105 million). This figure could nearly double to VNĐ 5.06 trillion, but only when “more capital sources are available.” VNĐ4.94 trillion is sourced from official development assistance (ODA) funds and other aids. The programme comprises three different component projects, targeting different areas of healthcare. Component project 1 provides VNĐ16.6 trillion as investment into modern health facilities, with the goal of easing patient overload on hospitals from 2013-20.  The project aims to reach the target of 26.5 patient beds for every 10,000 people, minimising instances in which patients must share beds with others.  In addition, resources will be focused on the completion of 64 projects begun in 2011-15 period that remain unfinished due to lack of capital, plus the implementation of at least 28 new projects in the 2016-20 period. Component project 2, with a total budget of VNĐ1.63 trillion, aims to give a boost to traditional medicine health facilities,…... [read more]

Tan Vu-Lach Huyen bridge, the country’s longest cross-sea bridge, will be opened to traffic on National Day. (Photo: VNA) Hanoi (VNA) – Tan Vu-Lach Huyen Highway in the northern port city of Hai Phong, which includes the country’s longest cross-sea bridge, will be opened to traffic on National Day (September 2),  according to the Project Management Board 2 under the Ministry of Transport. The 5.4 kilometre bridge is part of the Tan Vu-Lach Huyen Highway project which connects developing areas in the east of Hai Phong city with Lach Huyen International Port in the island district of Cat Hai and the Hanoi-Hai Phong Expressway. Once the bridge becomes operational, travelling from Hai Phong city to Cat Hai Island will take about five minutes, compared to hours on ferries. The highway, 15.63 kilometres in length, had total investment of about 11.85 trillion VND (525.3 million USD), with the majority from Japanese official development assistance. The project is expected to form a complete transport network facilitating transportation to Lach Huyen International Port, thereby attracting more investment to Hai Phong city. Pham Hong Son, Director of the Project Management Board 2, said that after seeing the road meet quality requirements, the State Council for Pre-Acceptance Test of Construction Works approved the road opening to traffic on September 2.-VNA... [read more]

Head of the Party Central Committee’s Organisation Commission Pham Minh Chinh and President of the Japanese House of Councillors Oshima Tadamori (Source: VNA)  Tokyo (VNA) – Japan will continue working closely with Vietnam to effectively conduct projects funded by Japan’s official development assistance (ODA), especially in high-quality workforce development and administrative reform, said Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. During a reception in Tokyo on August 29 for Politburo member and head of the Party Central Committee’s Organisation Commission Pham Minh Chinh, who is also Chairman of the Vietnam – Japan Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group, Abe said Japan supports Vietnam in successfully holding the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting 2017 and wishes to increase bilateral ties in regional and global issues. Chinh asked Abe and the Japanese government to further promote bilateral comprehensive partnership, especially in ODA provision, and the development of infrastructure, high technology, and quality human resources, as well as share experience in administrative reform and public health care. The same day, Chinh met President of the Japanese House of Councillors Oshima Tadamori, Secretary General of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) of Japan cum President of the Japan – Vietnam Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group Nikai Toshihiro and head of the LDP’s Policy Research Council Fumio Kishida. Oshima expressed his strong support for continuing ODA supply to Vietnam, and enhancing ties between the two legislatures and the friendship parliamentarians’ groups of the two countries. He pledged to assist Vietnam in administrative reform projects…... [read more]

Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang (R) and Austria’s outgoing Ambassador to Vietnam Thomas Loidl (Photo: VNA)   Hanoi (VNA) – State President Tran Dai Quang hailed Austria’s outgoing Ambassador to Vietnam Thomas Loidl for his efforts to step up bilateral ties and introduce many Austrian businesses to Vietnam during his reception for the diplomat in Hanoi on August 29. He congratulated the diplomat on his very successful working term in Vietnam and wished that in any future positions, he would always be a close friend and work to foster the cooperation between Austria and Vietnam. The President was delighted at positive cooperation between the two countries across politics, diplomacy, trade-investment, development cooperation, education-training, healthcare and education. He cited the 2016 two-way trade value of 2.8 billion USD, which is 10 percent more than 2015’s figure. Austria is the sixth largest European exporter of Vietnam. It is running 28 projects with a total registered capital of 138 million USD in Vietnam, ranking 39th among 116 countries and territories investing in the country. He took the occasion to thank the Austrian Government for providing Official Development Assistance (ODA) in the fields of railways, healthcare and vocational training. Austria-funded programmes and projects have been productively contributing to Vietnam’s socio-economic development and international integration efforts. He suggested the two sides boosting visit exchanges, especially high-level ones, together with cultural and people-to-people exchanges, and coordinating in celebrations of the 45th anniversary of diplomatic ties to further the bilateral ties. …... [read more]

NDO/VNA – State President Tran Dai Quang hailed Austria’s outgoing Ambassador to Vietnam Thomas Loidl for his efforts to step up bilateral ties and introduce many Austrian businesses to Vietnam during his reception for the diplomat in Hanoi on August 29. He congratulated the diplomat on his very successful working term in Vietnam and wished that in any future positions, he would always be a close friend and work to foster the cooperation between Austria and Vietnam. The President was delighted at positive cooperation between the two countries across politics, diplomacy, trade-investment, development cooperation, education-training, healthcare and education. He cited the 2016 two-way trade value of US$2.8 billion, which is 10 percent more than 2015’s figure. Austria is the sixth largest European exporter of Vietnam. It is running 28 projects with a total registered capital of US$138 million in Vietnam, ranking 39th among 116 countries and territories investing in the country. He took the occasion to thank the Austrian Government for providing Official Development Assistance (ODA) in the fields of railways, healthcare and vocational training. Austria-funded programmes and projects have been productively contributing to Vietnam’s socio-economic development and international integration efforts. He suggested the two sides boosting visit exchanges, especially high-level ones, together with cultural and people-to-people exchanges, and coordinating in celebrations of the 45th anniversary of diplomatic ties to further the bilateral ties. He asked the diplomat to convey his invitation to visit Vietnam to President Alexander Van der Bellen.…... [read more]

Assigned to manage, operate and utilise technical infrastructure works in environment, drainage, green space and public lighting, Soc Trang Public Works One Member Limited Company always fulfils its roles and responsibility and to shape clean, lovely and green urban areas for Soc Trang province. Well-decorated streets, roadside trees, and busy parks all create a lively picture of modern, dynamic and lively Soc Trang City - are the outcomes of a continuous urbanisation process of Soc Trang province. This is a continuous process of Soc Trang province in planning and embellishing urban areas and infrastructure works. This is a great source of motivation for economic growth and public service. A significant contribution has been made by Soc Trang Public Works One Member Limited Company, which always tries its best to improve the urban space for Soc Trang City, the capital of Soc Trang province. As a manager, operator and user of technical infrastructure works in environment, drainage, greenery and public lighting, the corporation always completes its assigned tasks by carrying out important urbanisation investment projects in Soc Trang City. Particularly, Soc Trang City water drainage and treatment system construction investment project restored and upgraded 11.5km of sewers in Soc Trang City and built a wastewater treatment plant with a daily capacity of 13,180 cubic metres. Operated since 2013, the first-phase cost some EUR6 million from official development assistance (ODA), funded by KfW Development Bank (Germany) and domestic counterpart sources. Besides, the company was assigned to…... [read more]

The massive stimulus package of VNĐ30 trillion (US$1.32 billion), introduced in 2013 to encourage social housing development in Việt Nam and revitalise the listless real estate sector, has been entirely disbursed. However, with the expiry of the attractive interest rates, many businesses are contemplating pulling out of the social housing market while the demands show no signs of flagging. A view of a social housing building in Gia Lâm District in Hà Nội. - VNA/VNS Photo Tuấn Anh In a recent conference on measures to kick-start the real estate market towards the end of 2017, Vũ Văn Phấn, deputy head of the Ministry of Construction’s Housing and Real Estate Market Management Department, admitted that there have been cases where businesses asked to withdraw from social housing projects. In April, the National Assembly allocated VNĐ2 trillion ($87.9 million) to the construction of houses for contributors to the revolutionary cause as well as social housing projects, with more than half of the figure (VNĐ1.160 trillion) reserved for the latter purpose meant to be the continuation of the now expired stimulus package, but this amount is “still too little and not enough,” Phấn said. He also added that the construction ministry is asking the government for more financial support for social housing businesses as well as homebuyers, but that remains a distant vision. Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc signed a decision dictating the interest rate for social housing…... [read more]

Chairman of the Vietnam-Japan Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group Pham Minh Chinh receives a delegation from the Youth Division of Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party (Source: VNA) Hanoi (VNA) – Chairman of the Vietnam-Japan Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group Pham Minh Chinh proposed increasing exchanges between Vietnamese and Japanese young legislators at a reception for a delegation from the Youth Division of Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party led by its head Keisuke Suzuki in Hanoi on August 22. Chinh also suggested organising activities to promote cooperation in economy, investment and trade, as well as encourage more Japanese businesses to invest in Vietnam in the fields of support industry, manufacturing, energy, and hi-tech agriculture. He expressed his pleasure with the strong, comprehensive and intensive development of the extensive strategic partnership between Vietnam and Japan for peace and prosperity in Asia. He affirmed that Vietnam always considers Japan one of the top priorities in its foreign policy.  Chinh thanked the Japanese Government for providing official development assistance (ODA) for Vietnam to boost socio-economic development, reduce poverty, cope with climate change and develop infrastructure, energy and agriculture. For his part, Keisuke Suzuki said 2017 was a busy year for the two countries with a series of visits by their leaders. Among those were the Vietnam trips by the Japanese Emperor and Empress and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and most recently the visit to Japan by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, which created new developments for the bilateral relations. He called on…... [read more]

NA Vice Chairman works with Can Tho city

Vice Chairman of the Can Tho People’s Committee Truong Quang Hoai Nam (Photo: VNA) Can Tho (VNA) – Vietnamese businesses will be given top priorities in terms of procedures and competition when investing in Cuba, Consul General of Cuba in Ho Chi Minh City Bernabe Garcia Valido said on August 30. Talking to Vice Chairman of the Can Tho People’s Committee Truong Quang Hoai Nam, the outgoing diplomat said Cuba’s investment attraction policy prioritises firms from fraternal nations which have mutual trust with Cuba, and Vietnam is one of such countries. He said Cuba considers foreign investment as a resource for national economic development and a chance to learn new management methods, adding that investment opportunities concentrate on agricultural and forestry product manufacturing (especially food and cane sugar), industry, tourism, energy, mining, transport, pharmaceutical, biotechnology, health care, construction, trade and audiovisual industry. Valido affirmed that his successor will continue implementing the abovementioned cooperation projects and plans and focus on popularising opportunities for investment in the Mariel Special Economic Development Zone, which covers over 465 sq.km. in the west of Havana. He hoped that this zone’s potential will attract investors from Can Tho and other southwestern provinces of Vietnam. For his part, Vice Chairman Nam applauded the Consul General’s proposals and contributions, noting that cooperation between Can Tho and Cuba remains almost untapped due to a shortage of information about the market and investment policy.  Cuba has only one project worth 5.6 million…... [read more]

The Mekong Delta city of Cần Thơ is promoting community tourism on Cồn Sơn Islet in Bình Thủy District. Breath of fresh air: The 67ha islet attracts tourists with its serene setting, fresh air, fruit orchards, floating houses, and delicious traditional southern cakes made by locals. - Photo tuoitre.vn “The city aims to turn Cồn Sơn into a popular attraction for local and foreign tourists,” Lê Văn Tâm, deputy chairman of the Cần Thơ People’s Committee, said. Situated in the Hậu River, a tributary of the Cửu Long (Mekong), the 67ha islet attracts tourists with its serene setting, fresh air, fruit orchards, floating houses, and delicious traditional southern cakes made by locals. It is 600 metres from the river bank and takes only five minutes by boat from Cô Bắc boat station. According to Phan Thị Nguyệt, deputy chairwoman of the Bình Thủy District People’s Committee, 74 households live on the islet, earning their livelihoods from farming and tourism. Fifteen of them offer community tourism services to tourists such as catching fish in ponds, making cakes together with their hosts, visiting fruit orchards and homestay. Tâm said the city would provide all required support for the islet, with top priority being its infrastructure. There is now only one boat to Cồn Sơn from Cô Bắc boat station, and the city plans to build a new boat station. The city will…... [read more]

Recent surveys have found that residents in the Mekong Delta city have not taken the issue seriously. The working session focused on the impact of climate change on Can Tho’s Vinh Thanh and Binh Thuy districts, which are said to be the most at risk, and their capacity to respond to the problem is limited. The meeting was part of the the “Asian Cities Climate Change Resilience Network” project – an initiative jointly conducted by the CtC and the Rockefeller Foundation in Vietnam, Thailand, India and Indonesia.... [read more]

These areas included Can Tho, My Tho, Ca Mau, Tra Vinh, Cao Lanh, and Rach Gia. This plan was part of a strategy to upgrade national cities by 2020 to improve the living conditions of people in the Mekong Delta region. The project costed US$600 million, 65 percent of which came from the World Bank and 35 percent from Vietnam. The project will benefit 142,000 people directly and nearly 1.4 million indirectly. More than 12,055 families will be provided with loans to repair their houses. It will also help to upgrade essential projects to serve the people’s daily lives, such as roads, irrigation, and solid waste treatment. In Can Tho City, the project will invest US$112.7 million in building drain-pipes, installing equipment to support the management of drain-pipes and environmental sanitation, upgrading Bung Xang Lake, Ngong and Sao trenches, as well as some paths in Ninh Kieu district, expanding roads in Cai Ranh district, and building three resettlement areas in O Mon, Cai Rang and Binh Thuy districts. After the meeting, relevant agencies will assert the project in June, negotiate with partners and sign an agreement to borrow loans in September, and will approve the project in December and carry out it in January 2012.... [read more]

At a working session with the municipal authorities on August 14, the Party chief asked Can Tho to pay heed to Party build-ups and political system consolidation as well as the combat against corruption and waste. As a central city in the region, Can Tho has yet established strong connectivity with other regional localities, he said, urging it to proactively work with ministries and central agencies in addressing social problems stemming from urbanisation, like flooding, environmental pollution, and hospital overloads. Last year, the city’s per capita income was estimated at VND70.5 million (US$3,313), and its budget collection reached nearly VND11 trillion (US$517 million). The same day, Party leader Trong made a fact-finding trip to the Can Tho-O Mon thermo power plant, and had a working session with the Steering Committee for the Southwestern Region. He also visited Nam Hai Food Joint Stock Company in the Tra Noc Industrial Park, Binh Thuy district, the High Command of the Military Zone 9, and the city’s general hospital.... [read more]

Fighting Erosion In The Mekong Delta By Nguyen Huu Thien The Long Hoa Market landslide in Can Tho City’s Binh Thuy District earlier this month highlighted the erosion along the Mekong Delta’s rivers, canals and coastlines. Solutions to minimize this kind of disaster should be taken. The ground in the Mekong Delta is easily influenced by dynamic changes in the basin due to its weak foundation. However, the region in the past received the Mekong River’s silts and had the basin’s dynamic balance, with erosions and alluvial coverages due to the natural movement of currents. In recent years, the erosion in the Mekong Delta has turned unusually severe as the balance has been destroyed. From the change of flows… One of the factors destroying the Mekong Delta’s dynamic balance is the change of currents, due to the unusual rainfall caused by climate change and artificial constructions such as hydropower dams. Land use changes and forest losses in the Mekong River basin have also accelerated flood flows and reduced dry-season flows, and poured more sediment into the river. But if the river is obstructed with hydropower dams, the silt inflow to the downstream area will decrease and cause the phonomenon of “hungry water.” “Hungry water” is a term used to explain the shortfall of silts in water. When water lacks silts, it tends to seek silts along its course, namely from riverbanks and riverbeds, to maintain the flow dynamic balance and therefore cause erosion. According to International Rivers, a U.S.-based agency…... [read more]

Visitors to Vietnam’s southern Can Tho Province, which used to be called the country’s southwestern capital, often buy local souvenirs, including traditional food, to take home as gifts to their families and friends. Among those items, the Banh Tet La Cam, or cylindrical sticky rice cake with a violet color stuffing, is much sought after due to its fragrant and delicious taste. To learn more about how to make this special kind of cake, we visited a house in An Thoi Ward, Binh Thuy District in Can Tho Province, owned by Huynh Thi Trong, a local woman skilled in making Banh Tet La Cam for many years. At the age of 87 years old, she looked still healthy and was sound in mind. Local villagers said that Trong is the first villager to make this kind of cake and has contributed greatly in developing the craft over the past years. “Long ago, my family cooked sticky rice for sale. We used a kind of tree leaves with a violet colour (called La Cam in Vietnamese) and soaked them in water with the glutinous rice. When the rice is well done, it has a fragrant smell with a nice violet colour, so I thought I should make the Banh Tet having the same colour (Banh Tet La Cam) to make it more attractive and tasty to the buyers,” the artisan recalled. According to the artisan, it takes several step to prepare the Banh Tet La Cam. The main ingredients include sticky…... [read more]

“Can Tho gao trang nuoc trong” (Can Tho is characterised by white rice, clear water). This saying more or less tells of the richness endowed by nature on Can Tho called “Tay Do” (western city), namely the capital of Western Cochinchine. Nowadays, in addition to its natural and cultural potentials bearing deep imprints of Cochinchine crisscrossed with rivers and canals, Can Tho vigorously steps up its economic development in various forms, becoming a large economic and industrial hub, linking with the Mekong River delta provinces in many aspects. To the land of “white rice and clear water” Early in the morning, Yolanda Martinez and Marcelo Loper, two Spanish tourists, and their guide, left their hotel, boarding a native’s small boat to Cai Rang Floating Market known so far and wide in Western Cochinchine that everyone who comes to Can Tho also wishes to go there at least once. Cai Rang floating market is a fruit and farm produce wholesale market of the Mekong River delta region. It is held on the Cai Rang River at a section near Cai Rang bridge, which is some 6km by land from Can Tho City and about 30 minutes by boat from Ninh Kieu wharf. In the early morning, the market bustles with buyers and sellers, small boats fully loaded with fruits and agricultural products moving to and fro, with noises from boats, and the announcements of one’s wares and calls to each other. floating market. Photo: Trong Chinh/VNP All trade activites take place…... [read more]

Rhythms on the river On a small boat at this floating market, a 50-year-old man plays the guitar and begins to sing. At Cai Rang Floating Market, sellers offer many products but only this man uses his music to earn his living. He is Nguyen Van Luom, a. k. a. Ly Hung. Luom was born in Long Tuyen Commune, Binh Thuy District, Can Tho City. The largest space of his 30-square-meter boat, with a “n ca tài t” (traditional amateur music) signboard, is for guests who visit his boat to enjoy n ca tài t performance. Luom did not attend any course on n ca tài t. He only learnt it from his friends but he can play some three or four music instruments and master different rhythms of southern and northern regions.To Luom, performing n ca tài t is not only a way to support his family but also the love for this art of music, reported Saigon Giai Phong newspaper. A gift for Vietnam Irina Vinskovskaya, a Russian woman, expresses her love for Vietnam by designing the website www.nhat-nam.ru to introduce Vietnamese images to the world. Vinskovskaya tells Nong Thon Ngay Nay newspaper that the practitioners of Vietnamese traditional martial arts Nhat Nam in Moscow opened the website www.nhat-nam.ru in June 2001 to provide information on this martial arts. In early 2004, these practitioners asked Vinskovskaya to help them manage their website and she began to redesign it. Vinskovskaya found more information on Vietnam to upload on this…... [read more]

Pleasure of fishing in Can Tho City By Phuong Kieu in Can Tho Amidst the poetic scenery of the countryside with the murmur of canals running under ancient trees, Can Tho City is an ideal place for fishing for pleasure; providing a chance to contemplate in a place of tranquility. Dinh Thi Xuan Mai, the owner of the restaurant, said that the restaurant offers fishing services at VND30,000 per hour, exclusive of rod and fish food. However, visitors can borrow rods and buy fish food at VND10,000 for 100 grams or VND500 a cricket. Fishing here can be lucky, sometime ten kilograms of fish can be caught in just one hour, added Mai. Many visitors are from Tra Noc Ward, some of them come alone and others come with their family for a short holidays. They merrily gather under the cottages and make dishes from the fish they have caught, happily enjoying the meal together. Meanwhile, nearer to the center of Can Tho City, two large fish ponds in Gia Trang Quan, located on Nguyen Chi Thanh Street, Tra Noc Ward, Binh Thuy District, are very popular with tourists. "I had a passion for fishing when I lived in HCMC twenty years ago. When I came back to my hometown, Can Tho City, I opened a restaurant and fishing service to satisfy myself as well as my customers." said Phung Van Chau, owner of Gia Trang Quan. The two ponds were set up in 2004 on an area of 12,000…... [read more]

President conveys his best wishes for education sector in new school year

With public funding only able to meet a fifth of the VNĐ1.8 quadrillion (US$80 billion) required for development works in HCM City’s in 2016 – 20, authorities are striving to involve the private sector. HCM City needs to mobilise more investments for infrastructure development projects. - VNS File Photo. According to Sử Ngọc Anh, director of the city Department of Planning and Investment, many new measures and policies have been put in place to mobilise private resources, but challenges remain. He explained that investors must bring in 15-20 per cent of the funding required for a project, with loans from banks and other credit organisations making up the rest. Nguyễn Hoàng Minh, deputy director of the State Bank of Việt Nam, HCM City branch, said bank funding for socio-economic projects, especially in infrastructure, is linked to their effectiveness. Therefore, investors and relevant authorities must ensure the effectiveness of projects when they are completed, he said. Phạm Mạnh Thắng, deputy director general of Vietcombank, said the bank has provided loans of over VNĐ100 trillion for 61 projects, including 23 in the education sector, 16 for transport infrastructure (roads, bridges), nine for urban development, and seven for hospitals. In the context of inadequate public funding, making use of public-private-partnerships (PPP) is vital, he said, but admitted the PPP form faces legal hurdles. Thắng said another problem is that most local banks are small,…... [read more]

In the past time, with effective changes in guidance and administration of the Provincial Party Committee, the Provincial People’s Council and the Provincial People’s Committee as well as the drastic engagement of all departments and branches, Soc Trang province has solidly overcome difficulties and challenges to achieve most encouraging results in almost all areas. Changing the face of Soc Trang urban areasMr Pham Anh Minh, Deputy Director of the Department of Construction Positive urban development has helped economic restructuring, socio-economic development and people’s material and spiritual life improvement. The province has streamlined planning and planning management, decentralised management, applied information technology to management, intensified administrative procedure reform, attracted resources for development investment, and raised public awareness of construction planning, environmental protection, and urban landscape. As a result, the urban environment has been gradually improved and modernised In the past time, the province has effectively mobilised domestic and foreign capital sources and economic sectors, particularly from enterprises, to invest in technical infrastructure construction in urban areas, residential areas, commercial areas and environmental rehabilitation. The construction of new buildings helps change the look of urban areas and improve people’s livelihood quality. The technical and social infrastructure has been invested to promote socio-economic development. Aiming to build Soc Trang e-government Mr Duong Van Nhan, Deputy Director of the Department of Information and Communications As a poor province where Khmer people reside, Soc Trang lacks budget for IT application and e-government approach. Therefore, the deployment of e-government must have…... [read more]

The historic August 22-24 official visit to Indonesia by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong has served as a new driving force for Vietnam and Indonesia to further tighten bilateral investment co-operation. Thanh Tung reports from Jakarta. During the visit, many Indonesian firms and investors expressed their big interest in Vietnam’s market Last Wednesday afternoon, Samal Abdul Nasir Bamadhaj – director of Indonesia’s Intra Asia Indonesia – came to the storied Raffles hotel in  Indonesia’s capital city of Jakarta to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on coal trading and seaport investment with Vietnam’s Hong Phat Group. The document, signed during Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong’s official visit to Indonesia last week, would enable the Indonesian firm to build a $1 billion coal port in Vietnam. “I feel very happy about the signing of the MoU. It is very important to us as it will be the prerequisite for us to co-operate with Hong Phat, and we will realise it very soon,” Bamadhaj told VIR. The port, with a designed capacity of about 15-20 million tonnes of coal per year, will be largely used for cargo and logistics to serve export and import activities between Indonesia and Vietnam, especially coal. This is the first time that Intra Asia Indonesia, a coal miner and trader with three mines throughout Indonesia, has co-operated with a Vietnamese firm. Earlier, Hong Phat’s representatives came to Jakarta…... [read more]

He made the statement at a meeting to review the academic year 2016-2017 and implementation of new mission of the new school year held by the municipal Department of Education and Training. Mr. Tuyen stressed that the People’s Committee always advocates educational facilities to be self-financed institutions in an attempt to spend state budget less yet still guarantee teaching staffs’ lives and protect schools’ brand name. The deputy chairman appreciated the education sector’s for years including taking heed to providing a basic education for students, taking initiatives in reforming curricula and teaching methods as well as in testing and assessing so as to improve the quality. For the preparation of the new school year 2017-2018, the city allocated more than one fourth of state budget for the sector, said Mr. Tuyen. The amount was spent on building 1,500 classrooms and 85 preschool construction projects with 1,153 rooms and VND500 billion was used for repairing and purchasing equipment for teaching and learning activities. At the meeting, the People’s Committee presented certificates of merit to nine people and one certificate of merit to a team of good students who had won medals at the International Maths Olympiad 2017.By THU TAM - Translated by UYEN PHUONG... [read more]

NDO - It is crucial to remove any rigid regulations that are no longer effective and suitable with the current situation, in order to innovate education and training, particularly in state management. Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam made the statement at a national online conference, on August 21 in Hanoi, to review the 2016-2017 academic year and launch the tasks for 2017-2018. Addressing the conference, the Deputy PM lauded the prominent activities of the education sector, particulary the universalisation of preschool education for children of 5 years old. The education sector has developed a curriculum for students at three levels of general education, as well as succesfully completing and reforming the 2017 national high school examination, he added. He also highlighted that university autonomy has been gradually implemented, while educational management has been improved as unnecessary activities and exams have been eliminated. Deputy PM Dam also pointed out five inadequate issues of the sector, including the unsuitable regulations in State management and governance in universities, schools and preschools, in addition to the slow implementation of the textbook innovation programme. He stressed that the sector has not paid significant attention to comprehensive teaching methods; the settlement of the problem of excess teachers in secondary and high schools and the lack of preschool teachers; and continuing education. The Deputy PM called for a strong and practical enhancement of education for the people, particularly students at the general level. In addition, the universities’ self-reliance should…... [read more]

Despite the order to cut staff, state schools still face teacher redundancy problems as decisions are made by the departments of internal affairs instead of the education sector.    State schools face teacher redundancy problems For the past five years, the Ministry of Education and Training have constantly emphasised the need to cut staff at schools. The ministry tried to deal with the problems by re-training teachers and sending them to nursery schools. But this has proved controversial. Nguyen Kim Phung, director of the ministry's Higher Education Department, said the enrollment quota for teacher training in 2014 was 84,000. It was cut to 68,000 in 2016 and 54,000 in 2017 but Phung said the number was still too high. According to Decision 732 issued by the prime minister about training teachers and managers for the 2016-2020 period with a view to 2025, Vietnam only needs 190,000 more teachers. However, the enrolment quota for 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 academic years are already 122,000. Teacher quality was also in question as the entrance scores to many teacher training universities this year were extremely low. Le Truong Tung, head of FPT University said forecasting human resources for teachers was much easier than in other sectors as they can have an accurate estimate of the number of students and teachers for each grade and subject. "The Ministry of Education and Training asked universities to cut the enrolment quota every year but the implementation has not been effective," he said. Tung suggested following India where a…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge – Viet Nam has a long-standing tradition of venerating teachers as people who provide knowledge and mould future leaders and quality citizens. At a recent meeting held to review the 2016-2017 academic year and set tasks for the 2017-2018 academic year, Minister of Education and Training Phung Xuan Nha admitted that many teachers had failed to meet demands of education reform.   So it was shocking to learn that a position held in the highest esteem in society requires the lowest pass marks in a university entrance exam. As per the latest announcement of cutoff marks released by many pedagogical institutions, high school students virtually failing the entrance exams qualify for admission to become teachers, at just nine out of 30. To say this is shocking would be to put it mildly. Vietnamese 12th graders took the national exam in June with separate tests in math, literature, English and basic sciences. Their total scores in three of these tests are used to determine which university or college, if any, will accept them. This paper recently carried poignant stories about really bright children missing out on a college of their choice by a fraction, and many people questioning the preferential treatment given to students from rural areas and poor families. Now, it turns out that as long as you score just three out of 10, yes, you heard that right, just 30 per cent marks in an exam qualifies a student to train as a teacher. A high school…... [read more]

The Deputy PM made the statement at a meeting with the Ministry of Education and Training yesterday. The sector must assess real market demand for human resources of the pedagogical sector, accordingly it leads to surplus of teachers in some areas but shortage of teachers in other areas. The Deputy PM asserted that the education sector must submit the mechanism and demand policies for teachers in this year. At the meeting, Education Minister Phung Xuan Nha took the responsibility of issues of public concerns such as admission into universities, training quality in pedagogy universities, difficulties in find a job for graduates from teacher training facilities, local abundance and shortage of teachers. He said that because of difficulties in finding a job, good students refused to sit for examination into pedagogy universities. Additionally, salary and bonus don’t deserve with teachers’ efforts. Mr. Nha said that in the next time, the Ministry will liaise with the Ministry of Home Affairs and local administrations to carry out assessment on teacher demand of each subject to admission quota for each pedagogy university. To solve the abundance of teachers, Minister Nha said that on one side, the sector will tighten admission quota and on the other side, the sector will provide job for unemployed graduates by working with other sectors which are short of employees to re-train them. Moreover, the Ministry will provide refresher courses to over one million teachers. From 2018, the sector will stop enrollment of subjects with abundant teachers. Also from…... [read more]

However, this has also kept concerned agencies busy raiding and seizing illegally printed copies of the above-mentioned materials. The Vietnam Education Publishing House said its investigation department has busted several cases of illegal printing in the last few months. In Hanoi, Hai Anh Co Ltd. was found to have illegally printed 30,000 English textbooks; Thien Phu Printing Factory and Hai Chien Packaging Printing Company were discovered to illegally possess a large amount of pirated copies of English textbooks. In the central region, the department detected illegally-printed primary school textbooks in Quang Ngai province and large volumes of secondary school English textbooks in Da Nang city and Khanh Hoa province. More than 3,000 copies of textbooks, mainly in English, were collected in Dak Lak. Illegal printing of textbooks isn’t something new, it has been an open secret for many years, something that has never stopped. Authors, publishers and printing houses have pleaded for this practice to stop, but pirated books still exist despite repeated raids and fines. No official figures are available about the damage caused, but publishers estimate losses caused by the contraband book market at several billions of VND every year. Previously, the activity was confined to new books and bestsellers, but now, all curricula, textbooks, reference books and English books are being printed illegally. Typically printers involved in book piracy are unable to present contracts or have printed copies far in excess of the license. State management offices…... [read more]

Hanoi, August 17 (VNA) - For several months now, the market for textbooks, reference books and study kits has been abuzz with activity as the new school year approaches.  However, this has also kept concerned agencies busy raiding and seizing illegally printed copies of the above-mentioned materials.  The Vietnam Education Publishing House said its investigation department has busted several cases of illegal printing in the last few months.  In Hanoi, Hai Anh Co Ltd. was found to have illegally printed 30,000 English textbooks; Thien Phu Printing Factory and Hai Chien Packaging Printing Company were discovered to illegally possess a large amount of pirated copies of English textbooks.  In the central region, the department detected illegally-printed primary school textbooks in Quang Ngai province and large volumes of secondary school English textbooks in Da Nang city and Khanh Hoa province. More than 3,000 copies of textbooks, mainly in English, were collected in Dak Lak.  Illegal printing of textbooks isn’t something new, it has been an open secret for many years, something that has never stopped.  Authors, publishers and printing houses have pleaded for this practice to stop, but pirated books still exist despite repeated raids and fines.  No official figures are available about the damage caused, but publishers estimate losses caused by the contraband book market at several billions of  VND every year.  Previously, the activity was confined to new books and bestsellers, but now, all curricula, textbooks, reference books and English books…... [read more]

Harvey to cost Texas US$58b in losses: Report

PARIS: Economic losses in Texas from Hurricane Harvey, which is still pounding the water-logged US state with rain, will be about US$58 billion (€49 billion), disaster analysts in Germany said on Thursday (Aug 31).

A view of the Houston skyline after heavy rains broke in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, as seen on August 29, 2017 AFP/Brendan Smialowski

If that estimate holds, it would make Harvey the world’s ninth most expensive natural disaster since 1900, according to the Centre for Disaster Management and Risk Reduction Technology (CEDIM) in Karlsruhe, Germany.

It would also push the yearly economic loss from earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, cyclones and other natural cataclysms past US$100 billion for the eighth year in a row.

“The damage is extensive at around US$58 billion, and is over 90 per cent due to flooding,” said James Daniell, senior risk engineer at CEDIM, and head of its Forensic Disaster Analysis Group.

The estimate carries uncertainty range from US$41 billion to US$80 billion.

“Depending on the next couple of days, we may see this estimate rise, as it only includes Texas at this point,” he told AFP.

The total “flooded exposure” – the value of all the capital stock inundated by water, whether five centimetres or five metres – in the affected area was estimated at US$267 billion.

Other calculations of total economic loss have been considerably lower.

German insurance giant Hannover Re’s initial figure for damages was US$3 billion, while JP Morgan estimated the insurance sector could be out US$10-20 billion. Disaster risk specialists Enki Holdings, based in Savannah, Georgia, put the total tab at above US$30 billion.

41,000 NATURAL DISASTERS SINCE 1900

The CEDIM estimates are based in part on the largest database of natural catastrophes in the world, covering more than 41,000 events since 1900. They also reviewed new TerraSAR-X satellite data, which indicates a flood “footprint.”

To measure the region’s risk exposure, Daniell and his team used data from the US Bureau of Economic Analysis, which tracks investment.

“But we also checked that against building and replacement cost data,” Daniell said. “That’s usually the issue with a lot of other models – they don’t get the exposure right.”

Total capital stock in Texas is about US$4.5 trillion, and for the entire United States the figure is about US$56 trillion, he said.

The natural disaster with the highest economic costs – US$218 billion was the 2011 Tohoku earthquake, which generated a monster tsunami that devastated a large swathe of Honshu Island and crippled a nuclear power plant.

In second place is the earthquake that levelled part of China’s Sichuan Province in 2008 (US$162 billion), followed by Hurricane Katrina, which destroyed much of New Orleans in 2005 (US$160 billion).

CEDIM’s detailed report on Hurricane Harvey’s impact on Houston can be found here.

Source AFP



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Dollar and equities back in fashion

LONDON: The dollar held onto its gains and stocks climbed on Thursday (Aug 31) as strong concern over North Korea’s missile test faded, while oil prices shot higher.

Photo source: AFP

“Equities remain in rebound mode, extending their bounces as relative geopolitical calm and positive macro data” in China, the United States and the eurozone “fuels fresh risk taking by investors,” said Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets.

London closed 0.9 per cent higher, followed by a 0.6 per cent gain in Paris and 0.4 per cent in Frankfurt.

The gains were more modest on Wall Street, with the Dow up 0.2 per cent nearing midday.

“In light of the devastation wrought this week in Texas by Hurricane Harvey, and the provocative missile launch by North Korea, it’s a testament to the underlying bullish bias that the stock market has fared as well as it has,” said Patrick O’Hare of Briefing.com

But one notable heavy loss among individual companies was French supermarket giant Carrefour.

Its share price dived 13 per cent in Paris after the group published disappointing results for the first half and warned of a drop in earnings for the whole year.

The dollar was mostly holding onto gains made on Wednesday, when the US Commerce Department reported the world’s largest economy expanded a forecast-beating three percent in the second quarter.

“The greenback still seems to be benefiting from yesterday’s better than forecast second-quarter GDP reading,” said Spreadex analyst Connor Campbell.

The data revived speculation that the Federal Reserve could consider lifting US interest rates for a third time this year, and the attention of investors is now shifting to the release of US jobs figures on Friday.

“So, it is now all down to Friday’s official nonfarm payrolls report,” said market analyst Fawad Razaqzada at Forex.com.

“If this shows further strength in the labour market and another rise in wages then calls for a December rate rise may increase, triggering further dollar buying interest.

“Conversely, a very weak jobs report may have the opposite effect,” he said.

In Asian trade, the weak yen supported Japanese exporters, with Tokyo’s Nikkei ending 0.7 per cent higher, while Sydney added 0.8 per cent and Singapore gained 0.5 per cent. Wellington and Taipei were also higher.

However, Shanghai dipped 0.1 per cent as official figures showed a rise in Chinese factory activity in August but not strong enough to ease concerns about the world’s number two economy, which is growing at its slowest pace in more than a quarter of a century.

Hong Kong eased 0.4 per cent, with profit-takers also moving in after enjoying six days of gains in the previous seven trading days.

On oil markets, both main crude contracts shot higher after having slid this week on the impact of Hurricane Harvey, which has forced the temporary closure of dozens of refineries in the crude-rich Gulf of Mexico, thus depressing the demand for crude.

“WTI and Brent Crude oil prices jumped on the news that OPEC members had a 96 per cent compliance rate with the coordinated production cut in August,” said David Madden, a market analyst at CMC Markets UK.

“We are now finally seeing proper adherence to the production cut among oil producers.”

Key figures around 1530 GMT:

London – FTSE 100: UP 0.9 per cent at 7,430.62 points (close)

Tokyo – Nikkei 225: UP 0.7 per cent at 19,646.24 (close)

Euro/dollar: DOWN at US$1.1876 from US$1.1882 at 2100 GMT on Wednesday

Oil – Brent North Sea: UP US$1.56 at US$52.29 per barrel

Source AFP



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Vân Long Lagoon a must-see destination in Ninh Bình

To meet the increased demand the Hai Au Aviation Joint Stock Company has revealed plans to launch a new aerial service to shuttle tourists throughout the province, allowing them to see more from the air. At a recent meeting with leaders of Ninh Binh province, company officials said they are seeking an operating license to open new sightseeing tours of the Cuc Phuong National Park, Trang An scenic landscape complex, Ninh Binh City and Yen Thang Lake. They will be using a Cessna Grand Caravan EX hovercraft with services to start as soon as the license is approved. There was no public announcement on what the prices for the tours would be. Hai Au Aviation boasts being the first to offer seaplane adventures in Vietnam and Indochina, and offers tourists the thrill of flying from low altitudes, showcasing the beauty of the region from a bird’s eye view.... [read more]

Speaking at a workshop aimed at increasing inbound tourism to the province, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Dang Thi Bich Lien underscored the point that a refocused future strategy would be highly beneficial. She said given the importance of tourism to jobs and economic growth the priority should be to ensure that we have the right structures in place to maximise the benefits this crucial sector can bring. The province has seen significant growth in inbound visitor numbers and, more importantly, in tourism revenue over the last few years she said, adding that thechallenge is to maintain and build on that momentum and deliver a multimillion dollar thriving tourism industry for the province. Giovanni Boccardi, head of Asia-Pacific unit of UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre in turn said the new image should be closely interwoven with nurturing its new UNESCO world heritage status globally. The province should capitalise on the designation of the Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex as a UNESCO mixed natural and cultural heritage of the worldtorevamp its image through a highly coordinated effort, he added. The workshop was held by the Ninh Binh provincial People’s Committee in collaboration with UNESCO on January 22 at the Legend Hotel, Ninh Binh city as part of the festivities celebrating the province’s UNESCO selection.... [read more]

PANO - The Egyptian Nile TV Channel specializing in culture on November 19th aired a special program about Vietnam for the second time. The 30-minute live coverage featured Vietnam’s world cultural celebrities and heritage sites honored by UNESCO. In a live interview on Nile TV, Minister Counsellor Vu Thien of the Vietnamese Embassy in Egypt proudly said that it is a great honor for Vietnam to have three world cultural celebrities recognized by UNESCO, namely national hero Nguyen Trai, great poet Nguyen Du and President Ho Chi Minh. He also introduced Vietnam’s world cultural and natural heritage sites awarded by UNESCO, including Ha Long Bay, Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park, the Complex of Hue Monuments, Hoi An Ancient City, My Son Sanctuary, the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long, the Citadel of the Ho Dynasty and Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex. The channel also aired short documentaries highlighting milestones in Vietnam’s history, the country’s unique culture and its outstanding achievements after 30 years of the Doi Moi (Renewal) process. Translated by Lan Phuong... [read more]

Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex receives UNESCO title The Saigon Times Daily The Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex located in the northern province of Ninh Binh has been recognized as a world heritage site. The recognition makes Trang An the first heritage site of its kind in Vietnam. The acknowledgement of the Trang An complex is based on the principles of the Convention on the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritages including cultural, aesthetical, geological values, and the preservation of heritage. The result was unveiled at the 38th session of the World Heritage Committee in Doha, Qatar from June 15 to 25. The Trang An complex has become Vietnam’s 8th cultural and natural heritage site recognized by the UNESCO. The heritage site covers a large area of around 10,000 hectares, and is made up of three components within a single buffer zone, including the Trang An Ecological Area, the Tam Coc-Bich Dong River Landscape, and the Hoa Lu Ancient Citadel. The three areas share a common geological and ecological environment characterized by dramatic limestone karsts, permeated with a network of caves, and bound together by flooded inland waterways of high biological diversity. The 4,000-hectare Trang An ecological tourist attraction is the entire Trang An limestone area that is surrounded by 8,000ha, mostly consisting of rice fields. The site dates back some 250 million years and has hundreds of valleys and caves. Vietnam has five cultural heritage sites recognized by UNESCO including Hue Monuments Conservation Center, Hoi An Ancient Town,…... [read more]

Van Long Lake: Ideal Destination for Weekend Hideaway Van Long Lake, situated in Gia Van commune, Gia Vien district, Ninh Binh province, is the largest wetland nature reserve in the northern delta region of Vietnam. With a natural area of nearly 3,500 hectares, the lake is currently home to thousands of animals, plants and aquatic organisms, particularly the critically endangered Delacour langur (Trachypithecus delacouri) endemic to Vietnam. This is an ideal destination for short-time travel for it is only 80 kilometres from Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. To reach the Van Long Wetland Nature Reserve, travellers need to follow National Road 1A to reach Gian Khau fork junction in Gia Vien district, Ninh Binh province. Then, they will go further 10 km to get to Van Long Lake. Boat is the most popular means of transport in Van Long Lake. While metal boats rest at marinas to wait for passengers in other tourist attractions in Ninh Binh province like Tam Coc - Bich Dong or Trang An scenic landscape sites, the image of Van Long Wharf is quite different. Here, there are only small bamboo basket boats silently parking close together in the wharf and in the vast river to give a sense of countryside gentleness and peace to tourists. The basket boats move along creeks, surrounded by high-standing reeds and sedges, toward the foot of a mountain. The most beautiful scene in Van Long is seen in the summer time when lotus blossom along the way. Under the clear…... [read more]

PANO – On May 23rd, the Korean Cultural Center in Vietnam - in association with the Department of Fine Arts, Photography, and Exhibition (DAPE) under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism - opened its 1st exhibition, "Vietnam World Heritage Sites", at the Yoondang Art Hall in Seoul, Republic of Korea (RoK). The exhibition displays 100 photos of 16 Vietnam World Heritage Sites recognized by UNESCO. The photos feature the Hue Monuments Complex, Ha Long Bay, Phong Nha – Ke Bang National Park, Nha Nhac – the Vietnamese Court Music, the Space of the Gong Culture in the Central Highlands, Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long – Hanoi, the Giong Festival, the Art of Don Ca Tai Tu - Music and Song in the South of Vietnam, Trang An Scenic Landscapes, the Citadel of the Ho Dynasty, and Vi and Giam Folk singing of Nghe Tinh. According to Park Nark Jong, director of the Korean Cultural Center in Vietnam, this is the first time images of Vietnam have been showcased in the RoK. He hopes the same event will be held more frequently in the future to promote cultural cooperation between Vietnam and the RoK. The event is part of the 2016 Vietnam tourism promotion program. Most of the photos were selected by DAPE through a contest about Vietnam Heritage Sites in 2011. The exhibition closes on May 30th. Translated by Lam Anh... [read more]

While the Tam Coc – Bich Dong area in the UNESCO recognized Trang An Scenic Landscape Complex in the northern Vietnamese province of Ninh Binh has been known for its beauty during the harvest season, visiting the area in May during the green rice season offers a unique experience amongst the paddies. An ideal place for enjoying the green rice fields is the Mua Cave complex – an area composed of intricate cave systems and Limestone Mountains. No one knows the true story behind the complex’s name, but locals believe that it was in this area that King Tran enjoyed musical performances, lending itself to the name "Mua," which means "dancing." A winding road leads to the top of the Mua Mountain in the complex, where several towers are located, prompting visitors to take on the adventurous challenge to reach the peak. Few visitors accept the challenge, leaving the mountain as a quiet and peaceful sanctuary to enjoy the view of the mountain-flanked rice fields below. The Ngo Dong River weaves through the limestone mountains, dotted with wooden boats that glide slowly between the fields. By June and July, the area will change colors from green to yellow, marking the beginning of Ninh Binh’s harvest season. Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre : Tuoi Tre Tuoi Tre Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!... [read more]

The Hanoitimes - State President Tran Dai Quang attended a ceremony and beat a drum to open the Truong Yen Festival 2016 at the Hoa Lu ancient capital historic site in the northern province of Ninh Binh on April 15. Attending the event was Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue. Truong Yen Festival 2016 took place from April 15-17, aiming to commemorate King Dinh Tien Hoang who established the first centralised feudal state in Vietnam in 968. Addressing the opening ceremony, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Dinh Van Dien highlighted the great role and accomplishments of King Dinh Tien Hoang in quelling internal revolts 1,048 years ago. In 968, Dinh Bo Linh ascended to the throne and took the name of King Dinh Tien Hoang and reunified the country under the name of Dai Co Viet whose ancient capital is Hoa Lu in Ninh Binh province. The location of the kingdom was based on the favourable geographical conditions of the Ninh Binh province. During his 12-year reign, which ended in 979, King Dinh Tien Hoang built a strongly-institutionalised dynasty with a well-arranged administration and strong military force, and prioritised making use of natural land reserves while developing economy, culture and arts. With its salient and everlasting values, the Hoa Lu ancient capital was recorgnised as a national historic and architectural site by the Prime Minister. It is part of the Trang An scenic landscape complex, which was recognised as the world Cultural and Natural Heritage by UNESCO. Truong Yen…... [read more]

State President Tran Dai Quang beat a drum to open the Truong Yen Festival 2016 at the Hoa Lu ancient capital historic site in the northern province of Ninh Binh on April 15. This year’s festival took place from April 15-17, aiming to commemorate King Dinh Tien Hoang who established the first centralised feudal state in Vietnam in 968. Speaking at the opening ceremony, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Dinh Van Dien highlighted the great role and accomplishments of King Dinh Tien Hoang in quelling internal revolts 1,048 years ago. In 968, Dinh Bo Linh ascended to the throne and took the name of King Dinh Tien Hoang and reunified the country under the name of Dai Co Viet whose ancient capital is Hoa Lu in Ninh Binh province. The location of the kingdom was based on the favourable geographical conditions of the locality. During his 12-year reign, which ended in 979, King Dinh Tien Hoang built a strongly-institutionalised dynasty with a well-arranged administration and strong military force, and prioritised making use of natural land reserves while developing economy, culture and arts. With its salient and everlasting values, the Hoa Lu ancient capital was recorgnised as a national historic and architectural site by the Prime Minister. It is part of the Trang An scenic landscape complex, which was recognised as the world Cultural and Natural Heritage by UNESCO. Truong Yen festival has been recognised as a national intangible cultural heritage by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism. On…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge – The Vietnam Record Organization (VietKings) has nominated four special destinations among the top 100 most attractive destinations in the world. The top destination - Ha Long Bay in Quang Ninh Ha Long Bay, located in the Gulf of Tonkin, in the northeast of Vietnam, is 165 km from the capital of Ha Noi. Covering an area of 43,400 ha and including over 1,600 islands and islets, most of which are uninhabited and unaffected by humans, it forms a spectacular seascape of limestone pillars and is an ideal model of a mature Karst landscape developed during a warm and wet tropical climate. The property’s exceptional scenic beauty is complemented by its great biological interest. The outstanding value of the property is centered around the drowned limestone karst landforms, displaying spectacular pillars with a variety of coastal erosional features such as arches and caves which form a majestic natural scenery. The repeated regression and transgression of the sea on the limestone karst over geological time has produced a mature landscape of clusters of conical peaks and isolated towers which were modified by sea invasion, adding an extra element to the process of lateral undercutting of the limestone towers and islands. Halong Bay is also one of the cradles of ancient Vietnamese people, with three prehistoric cultures in succession, from 18,000 to 3,500 years ago, including Soi Nhu, Cai Beo and Ha Long culture. With its unique value, Halong Bay has twice been recognized by UNESCO as a World Natural…... [read more]

Scientists release land degradation warning map

VietNamNet Bridge – For the first time the Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) has three female members, including National Assembly Vice Chairs Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan and Tong Thi Phong and Chair of the National Assembly Committee for Social Affairs Truong Thi Mai. The youngest member is Mr. Vo Van Thuong, 46, Vice Permanent Party Secretary of HCM City. The oldest member is Mr. Nguyen Phu Trong, Party Secretary General. The politburo has only one representative of the local agency – Mr. Vo Van Thuong from HCM City. There are three Deputy Prime Ministers in the list - Mr. Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Mr. Pham Binh Minh and Mr. Hoang Trung Hai; three Ministers – Minister of Public Security Tran Dai Quang, Minister of Transport Dinh La Thang and the Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam Nguyen Van Binh. There are four officials from Party organizations: Mr. Vuong Dinh Hue, Head of the Central Economic Committee; Mr. Dinh The Huynh, Head of the Central Propaganda and Education Committee; Mr. Pham Minh Chinh, Deputy Head of the Central Organizing Committee; and Mr. Tran Quoc Vuong, Head of the Office of the Party Central Committee. Three members of the Party Central Committee (not the Politburo members) were elected to the Party Secretariat, including the Chair of the Government Office - Mr. Nguyen Van Nen, Head of the Supreme People’s Procuracy Nguyen Hoa Binh, and Lieutenant General - Vice Chairman of the People's Army General Political Department Luong Cuong. Brief…... [read more]

The opening ceremony of the 19th Vietnam Film Festival was held at Hoa Binh Theater in Ho Chi Minh City on December 1. The 18th Film Festival Best Actress Van Trang and best Actor Quoc Thai hoisted Vietnam flag, making the opening of the festival. Before the opening ceremony a delegation of artists and officials led by Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Hoang Tuan Anh offered flowers dedicated to late President Ho Chi Minh at his statue in front of the headquarters of the Ho Chi Minh city People's Committee. This year’s event themed ‘"Vietnam’s Cinema –Ethnicity, Humanity, Innovation and Integration" welcomed about 125 cinematographic submissions, including 20 featured films and others in categories of documentary, cartoon, and science. It is expected that there are 500 artists, movie makers, movie producers, distributors, representatives of movie companies and media organizations taking part in the festival. The jury picked up 125 films from hundreds of films to be selected for the main competition sections including fiction movie, documentary and scientific films and animated film and for screening out of competition. Film director Vu Xuan Hung is selected as the jury chief of feature section, Association Professor- Ph.D. Tran Kim Luan as jury chief of documentary and scientific section and Film Director Ha Bac as jury chief of animated film section. The organizers will present the Golden Lotus, Silver Lotus and the Jury Awards for titles such as Best Director, Best Screenwriter, Best Filmmaker, Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, Best…... [read more]

PANO - The Military Women Committee held a get-together on October 15th in Hanoi, in celebration of the 85th founding anniversary of the Vietnam Women’s Union (VWU) (October 20th, 1930) and the fifth anniversary of Vietnamese Women’s Day (October 20th, 2010). At the meeting, the delegates recalled the glorious tradition of Vietnamese women in general and of female troops in particular. Together with other women across Vietnam, female troops have always made the most of their tradition. So far, the Army has had four women promoted to Generals, nearly 1,000 associate professors, Ph.Ds, MAs, people’s physicians and artists. In all positions, female troops have tried their best to fulfill all assigned missions and become firm support in the homefront, to deserving of the commendation of the Central Military Commission of "Patriotic, united, creative, faithful and responsible". Addressing the meeting, Sen. Lt. Gen. Phuong Minh Hoa, Deputy Director of the General Department of Politics of the Vietnam People’s Army, praised all women in the army and hoped that organizations would pay much attention to and give opportunities for female troops to develop their talents. On the occasion, the general presented flowers and gifts to the female delegates. Translated by Ngoc Bich... [read more]

NDO - As many as of 548 students from 24 high schools across Vietnam took part in the International Mathematics Tournament of the Towns held at the Giang Vo Junior High School in Ba Dinh district, Hanoi on October 11. The Tournament of the Towns, the 37th competition of its kind, is a town-based mathematics competition, which originated in Russia, in which towns throughout the world can participate on an equal level. This was the first time Vietnam has participated in the competition which was held in Vietnam by the University of Education under the Vietnam National University, Hanoi in co-ordination with the Russian Central Organising Committee. 24 high schools joined this year's tournament including 11 junior high schools and 13 senior high schools from eight provinces and cities: Hanoi, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Phu Tho, Thanh Hoa, Nam Dinh, Hai Duong and Hai Phong. Speaking at the opening ceremony for the tournament, Associate Professor, Ph.D Le Kim Long, Rector of the University of Education and head of the tournament's organising board said the competition would bring about an interesting and educational learning platform for students, helping to inspire a love for mathematics within them. Associate Professor, Ph.D Le Anh Vinh, head of the board of jury confirmed the exam questions were compiled by the Central Organising Committee in Russia and sent to cities around the world. He noted that Vietnamese students are to attend the competition in Hanoi on October 11 for the O-Level (basic) and on October 25…... [read more]

From the glorious sunrise on Mui Dien to the peaceful sunset grappling the bird wing O Thuoc of Loan fairy, the imposing beauty, also very particularly interesting and intact of Phu Yen, there have been lots of compliments and admirations… To turn those potentials into previous tourism products, Phu Yen needs to swiftly form products in parallel with constructing one strategy of advertising and marketing the locality’s tourism. In the past years, Phu Yen tourism has not showed much development as to the right potentials and aspirations. Phu Yen is one province with the lowest number of enterprises taking part in exploiting tourism with modest scope among the provinces in the Central Coastal Region. According to the Associate Professor Ph.D, Mr. Pham Trung Luong, cum deputy head of the Institute of researching and developing tourism (Ministry of culture-sports-tourism), a person directly participating in constructing and scheming Phu Yen tourism, the most significant point for developing Phu Yen tourism is to construct the strong products of the locality with many types of services, creating conditions for the tourists to experience. To have featured tourism products of Phu Yen, for me, it’s necessary to determine in concrete the potentials, strengths of the locality and expressing thoroughly the vision of overall scheming of the province, in connection with concrete solutions, encouraging enterprises to expand tourism investment so as to exploit those potentials, to construct Phu Yen into one featured tourism destination. Applying technology of communication and withdrawing experience from the localities that have…... [read more]

With his recent coming back to Phu Yen, Associate Professor Ph.D Pham Trung Luong, deputy head of the Institute of tourism research and development (the Ministry of culture-sports-tourism), assesses that Phu Yen tourism has certain development, still slower than the locality’s potentials and strength. It is going to be hard to reach the targets set for the province’s strategy if there’s no strong determination for making breakthroughs. Phu Yen Newspaper held this interview with Mr. Pham Trung Luong, as related to this issue. * Being the person directly in charge of joining and constructing the scheme for Phu Yen tourism development in previous years, this time coming back, how do you assess the development so far? - I do see the multi-faced development like the tourism products and services; technical infrastructure; the accommodation system sufficient to meet the great demands during national or international scope events with a great number of V.I.P guests. One of the stressing points I do think that bears the fundamental as well as strategic features is that Phu Yen has constructed, upgraded Tuy Hoa airport. During the time we did the scheming task, it was not like now. Tuy Hoa airport is fairly modern, competent to welcome aircrafts typed A320, A321, which is one considerable advantage for Phu Yen tourism to connect with the two ends of the country, being the "gateway to the EastSea" of the Highlands provinces. Nevertheless, we do need to look back, in a straightforward way, on Phu Yen province’s level…... [read more]

The Vietnamese Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) has recently presented three plans for a new national examination slated to begin in 2015, prompting mixed opinions from local educators and students. At the conference to summarize the academic year of 2013-2014 and discuss plans for the following year held on July 29 in Hanoi, the educational ministry brought up three plans that are under consideration for the new national exam. The exam is planned to replace the two separate high school graduation and university entrance exams currently in place. Vietnamese 12th-graders are now required to pass four MoET tests at the end of their school year to graduate from high school in June and sit for a set of three MoET papers, depending on their majors, to gain admission to college in July. Plan No. 1 requires students to complete four tests in four compulsory subjects - mathematics, literature, a foreign language and one of the following: physics, chemistry, biology, history or geography. The results of the four tests will be used for high school graduation. Students can also take tests in the remaining subjects and use the results for university and college entrance. Under Plan No. 2, students are tested on five subjects: maths, literature, a foreign language, natural sciences (integrating knowledge from physics, chemistry and biology), and social sciences (integrating history and geography). The results will be used for high school graduation and university and college entrance. Plan No. 3 gathers 11 subjects - maths, literature, physics, chemistry,…... [read more]

CR - International cooperation in defence is an important part of the active and positive international integration of Viet Nam. The 11th Party Congress emphasized: "Continuing the expansion of international cooperation in national defence and security"(1). This strategic guiding thought of the Party needs to be effectively, widely and deeply carried out in external military activities so as to further international cooperation in defence of Viet Nam. 1- In implementing the policy of expanding external activities, active and initiative international integration laid down by the 11th Party Congress, Viet Nam's international cooperation in defence has recently made new developments which can be seen in following fundamental areas: First, strongly representing own responsibility in international community, contributing to the building of faith, fostering cooperation in defense among nations in the region and across the world. Our Party's thought on international cooperation in defense represents a strong connection between national defense and resolution of emerging security issues in the region and the world; its also represents a new approach which considers regional and global security challenges as that of Viet Nam. With this spirit, in recent years, cooperation in defence between Viet Nam and other countries has widely expanded and deeply developed toward stability, lasting, equality, mutual respect and benefit. Viet Nam has made contribution in term of action, keen political and military thought for international community; participating in settlement of regional and the world security issues; playing a responsible role in multilateral defence and security organizations, forum and mechanism in the…... [read more]

In order to make a breakthrough in human resource development and aim at building up a highly qualified labour force, Quang Ngai Provincial People's Committee has issued Decision 27/2013/QD-UBND stipulating the policies of attracting, encouraging workers of high quality and full-time graduates to work in the province. The estimated fund for this activity is approximately VND150 billion. Regarding the reason why Quang Ngai gives out the policies of encouraging and appealing to qualified labourers, Director Tran Van Thanh, Department of Home Affairs said that at present, the provincial labour force is just at medium level in comparison with it neighbours. Thus, there's a need of a hit through policies of training labour at site at the same time as appealing talents, which then can facilitate Quang Ngai socio-economic rapid development. Also shared by Mr Thanh, Quang Ngai will annually spend about 2 percent of provincial state budget on training and attracting labourers of high quality to work in the province. Starting from 2014, the province will announce the list of occupations prioritized for attraction, remuneration and support under its policies. As for 2013, the province started to exercise the labor attraction policies since 1st July. According to the newly issued policies, apart from salary, allowance and remuneration in compliance with the current applicable Governmental regulations, Quang Ngai province will bonus one-time fund of VND100-350 million for each candidate on the basis of their educational degree, title or prioritized occupational sector. In particular, those with titles of Medical Master, Specialist level…... [read more]

In the process of developing the socialist-oriented market economy, Viet Nam has continuously renovated and developed different forms of enterprises, considering it one of the fundamental and decisive tasks towards comprehensive renovation and socio-economic development of the country. The Communist Party of Viet Nam has gradually built and promulgated systems of resolutions and decrees on its leadership in enterprises. The cross-cutting and unified feature of the resolutions and decrees is to ensure all forms of enterprises to develop equality and favorably. At the same time, from and through practices, Party organizations at all levels have lived up to their roles to lead enterprises and to build the organizations strong and clean. Prompted by characteristics and functions of each enterprise, the Party issued regulations on functions and tasks of party organizations in those enterprises. The Party organization in State enterprise is a political nucleus which is responsible for leading Party cadres and members and disseminating and mobilizing members of enterprises to implement the Party's policies and orientations, the State's legislation, the enterprises' regulations and rules; participating in developing objectives, vision, production and business tasks of the enterprises and leading Party cadres, members and laborers in fulfilling the enterprises' production and business tasks and building the Party organizations' strong and clean. Party organizations in equitised enterprises implement similar tasks of party organizations in other form of enterprises. But due to their characteristics, the scope and extend of the leading role of party organizations there are different from those in state enterprises. For…... [read more]