Japan helps develop organic agriculture in Ben Tre

The second phase of the project will be carried out in four communes of Binh Dai and Ba Tri districts by the Japanese-funded Seed to Table organisation. The organisation will provide farmers with knowledge and equipment for organic agricultural production and processing.The Japanese Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City will help build a processing plant in the locality.Speaking at the signing ceremony, Japanese Consul General Kawaue Junichi pledged to provide maximum support for the project.Earlier, Seed to Table received aid worth nearly US$90,000 to implement the first phase of the project.

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Hoa Binh Construction Group wins multi-million dollar contracts

The Swiss Belresort Nha Trang – a complex of hotel, villas and condotel – spreads over 30ha of land in the North Cam Ranh tourist site in Cam Lam district. It has a total investment of VND2,100 billion (nearly US$92.2 million), with VND1,000 billion to be disbursed in the first phase for the building of 171 villas, restaurants, swimming pools and technical infrastructure.  The Hoa Binh group will start construction work in the first phase of the project at the end of February.  One day earlier, the group also inked two contracts with a total value of VND110 billion (US$4.8 million) for the construction of the foundation and basement of the Hoang Cau office and commercial complex in Hanoi’s Dong Da district and the structure of the office building at No. 198 Tran Quang Khai street in Hanoi’s Hoan Kiem district. Founded in 1987, the Hoa Binh Construction Group JSC is a holding company which engages in industrial and civil construction services. It is based in Ho Chi Minh City.

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Vietnam’s population to reach 94.7 million in 2018

Vietnam’s population will rise by one million, its life expectancy will hit 73.7, and the infant sex ratio will be 112.8 boys/100 girls in 2018, according to the Vietnam General Office for Population-Family Planning (GOPFP).    GOPFP reported that the Vietnamese population hit 93.7 million in 2017 and predicted the figure would rise to 94.7 million in 2018. This would make Vietnam the 14th most populous country in the world. Vietnam’s population has increased by 1.07 percent compared to 2016, according Le Canh Nhac, deputy general director of GOPFP. About 1.3 million children were born in 2017, with the average sex ratio at 112.4 boys/100 girls. The highest boy to girl sex ratios of infants can be found in the northern provinces, such as Son La (120 boys/100 girls), Hung Yen (118.6 boys/100 girls), Bac Ninh (117.6 boys/100 girls), Hai Duong (116.3 boys/100 girls), and others. The boy to girl sex ratio for infants born in Hanoi is 114 boys/100 girls. It was predicted that the average sex ratio of infants will slightly rise to 112.8 boys/100 girls in 2018. The high boy to girl ratio could be attributed to three factors, according to Nguyen Van Tan, deputy general director of GOPFP. There is the tendency for families to expect a baby boy, sex-selective abortion, and the lack of a guaranteed social security for parents. GOPFP also showed a detailed disparity in children/parent ratios between remote areas and urban ones, with an average of 2-3 children/parent for the former and… [Read full story]

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Could Trump’s US tax overhaul hit FDI inflow in Vietnam?

The U.S. House of Representatives gave its final approval to a sweeping, debt-financed tax bill at the end of 2017, representing the biggest overhaul of the U.S. tax code in more than 30 years. The changes include the country’s corporate income tax rate falling from 35 percent to 21 percent, as of January 1, 2018.  “We’ve become competitive all over the world. Our companies won’t be leaving our country any longer because our tax burden is so high,” CNBC quoted President Donald Trump as saying at a recent cabinet meeting. The president called it “above all else a jobs bill”, contending that changes to the business tax structure would encourage more companies to relocate their operations to the U.S. and hire more workers. But what Trump claims to be positive for the U.S. could have negative implications for its foreign partners. “The overhaul could have negative impacts on U.S. backed investment in Vietnam. U.S. businesses are likely to review their investment strategies in overseas markets, including Vietnam,” economist Nguyen Tri Hieu said. They could withdraw their profits from Vietnam to relocate their operations back home, instead of expanding their investments in Vietnam, he added. “This is a concern for our economy.” However, what is more worrying is that some countries could offer tax incentives to persuade U.S. companies to stay, local media quoted Vu Viet Ngoan, head of the economic advisory group for Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, as saying. This could affect Vietnam’s competitiveness in attracting foreign investors,… [Read full story]

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​Vietnamese woman on no-fly list breezes through airport security

A Vietnamese woman subject to a six-month flight ban successfully boarded an international flight departing from Hanoi’s Noi Bai airport last month, raising eyebrows at the current security system’s failure to stop her from flying. Pham Thu Thuy, 36, a resident of Hai Duong Province, northern Vietnam, was able to board an Aeroflot plane headed to Moscow, Russia from Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi on January 3, despite being handed an official suspension from flying between September 16, 2017 and March 15, 2018 by Vietnam’s aviation authorities. The woman forfeited her right to fly after quarreling with a fellow female passenger aboard an SU 291 flight operated by the same airline on a Russia-bound flight on August 16, 2017. Thuy then received a financial penalty and had her name added to a no-fly list managed by the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam. The no-fly list extended to both domestic and foreign airlines. Customs and police, as well as airport officials, are also called upon to thwart any attempts of individuals on the list to board a plane during the ban. In Thuy’s case, customs and police only became aware of the getaway after she safely landed in Moscow. How Thuy was able to pass through airport control remains a mystery, according to To Tu Hung, an official at the aviation body.   “A conclusion on whether the case was due to professional negligence and incompetence or due to complicity requires further investigation,” he said. The official affirmed that the… [Read full story]

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Prime Minister approves waste database

Waste water treatment system at Bao Minh Industrial Zone in Nam Dinh province (Photo: VNS) Hanoi (VNA) – Prime Minister NguyenXuan Phuc has approved a project that would build a national database of wasteresources, helping authorised agencies better control the discharge of wastenationwide.According to the newspaper Dien Dan Doanh Nghiep (Business Forum), the project will conductsurveys, assessments and classify waste resources around the country, as wellas their environmental impacts. Based on the study, authorised agencies willdevelop mechanisms and policies to better control waste resources.The development of the database on wasteresources will include the building of an overall structure of waste resources.Of that, a database on waste resources will be located at the Ministry ofNatural Resources and Environment and linked to ministries, sectors andlocalities; and a database on waste resources under the management of theMinistry of Public Security and the Ministry of National Defence.The implementation of surveys, assessments andclassification of waste resources and the development of databases on wastesources must be carried out according to a specific plan, and will be closelymonitored and supervised during the time of implementation. Results from lastyear’s economic survey and other relevant surveys should be used as reference forthe process.The waste resource database must be scalable,flexible, and ensure connection from central to local levels in line with thee-government framework.It was necessary to review and promulgate legaldocuments and regulations for the management, exploitation, operation, updatingand use of information from the database on waste resources. The projectwill be implemented from now until 2021.Waste discharge from factories in industrial andeconomic zones, or… [Read full story]

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PM presents U23 team’s ball, shirt for auction to raise funds for the poor

Vice President brings New Year gifts to needy residents

President visits Gia Lai province ahead of Tet

Skywatchers see ‘super blue blood Moon’

The night sky had a display in store on Wednesday 31 January, with a lunar event being called the “Super blue blood moon”. For Australia, Asia and some parts of the US and Eastern Europe, there was a lunar eclipse, as the Earth passed between the Sun and the Moon. On the very same night, our only natural satellite entered the closest point to us in its elliptical orbit. It is also the second full Moon of the month, commonly called a blue moon. The eclipse began at 10:51 GMT and ended at 16:08 GMT. The word “blood” has been used to describe the deep red colour of the sunlight that passes through Earth’s atmosphere to illuminate our celestial neighbour. Supermoon watching This red glow was produced by the same effect that gave us blue skies and red sunsets, Dr Shannon Schmoll, director of Abrams Planetarium in Michigan, said. “Some sunlight is skimming through the Earth’s atmosphere on its way to the Moon, and it also gets refracted or bent towards the Moon a little bit,” she said. “So, we have this process of filtering out the blue light and leaving the red light to see. “And then having that light bent a little bit toward the Moon.” Dr Schmoll said the coincidence of these three lunar events was a “good excuse to go out and look at the night sky”. “I know some people did not like the term supermoon, since it’s not always obvious how much bigger it… [Read full story]

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​Congestion lurks at Ho Chi Minh City entrances ahead of Lunar New Year

As the risk of traffic congestion is expected to increase significantly ahead of the Lunar New Year (Tet), traffic police units in Ho Chi Minh City are preparing to cope with the situation, especially at the city’s entrances. Local authorities anticipate that over one million bus passengers and hundreds of thousands of motorcyclists will leave the southern metropolis for destinations in the Mekong Delta and southeast region for the national holiday, placing extreme traffic pressure on major routes. A similar situation is also expected at the end of the festive period, when people rush back to the city for work. The Lunar New Year begins on February 16 but preparation and celebration often take place one week before and after the date. Nguyen Ngoc Thua, director of the Mien Tay (Western) Bus Station, expressed concern over potential disorder at the facility during peak periods surrounding the holiday. To prepare for all scenarios, the bus station has asked competent authorities to allow transport businesses to be proactive in preparing additional high-quality buses to meet the rising demand. Nguyen Hoang Huy, director of the Mien Dong (Eastern) Bus Station, stated that he has mobilized around the clock personnel to ensure traffic safety and order within the venue. If congestion occurs on nearby streets, employees at the facility will coordinate with traffic police to curb the situation, Huy added. The Mien Tay Bus Station, located in Binh Tan District, accommodates buses traveling to localities in the Mekong Delta, while the Mien Dong, situated… [Read full story]

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​Vietnamese TV channel faces backlash over dog meat episode