Int’l model shows off ao dai in New York’s Times Square

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Angelica Kotliar, one of the supermodels of Victoria’s Secret, the largest American lingerie retailer, was in a photoshoot to promote a collection of ao dai (Vietnamese long dress) themed "New York, I love you" by local designer Vo Viet Chung in Times Square, New York. According to the designer, Angelica Kotliar joined the photoshoot for free as she loves ao dai of Vietnam and her figure well fits the traditional costume of Vietnam. Previously, Chung had a chance to meet Kotliar at the New York Fashion Week in 2014. "New York, I love you" is a Spring – Summer 2015 collection featuring haute couture designs in the theme nude color with luxury patterns of evening gown’s styles. The collection inspired from Renaissance and Baroque art will be introduced at a gala fashion event to mark the U.S. Independence Day. The event will feature over 100 fashion designers in the world and Chung will be the only Asian there. SGT … [Read more...]

Asia migrants: Bangkok meeting to debate crisis

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A regional conference is under way in the Thai capital Bangkok to discuss possible solutions to the South East Asia migrant crisis. The talks include member states from the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) as well as representatives from the US and the UN. Bangladesh and Myanmar have seen an exodus of people fleeing south by boat to Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. Thousands are thought to be stranded at sea in abandoned boats. Most are economic migrants from Bangladesh and Rohingya Muslims fleeing persecution in Myanmar - also known as Burma. In his opening remarks, Thailand's Foreign Minister Tanasak Patimapragorn said "the influx of irregular migrants... has reached alarming levels" and an urgent and united response was needed. Thailand has agreed to allow US surveillance planes to fly from its territory to find boats carrying migrants adrift in the ocean, according to Reuters news agency. Mr Patimapragorn added that "the root causes that motivated these … [Read more...]

Fifa to vote on Sepp Blatter presidency

The 209 members of Fifa are set to vote for their new president at their congress in Zurich, amid a huge corruption scandal. Sepp Blatter is seeking a fifth term. His only challenger is Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan. The vote comes two days after seven top officials were held in Zurich in a US fraud inquiry that indicted 14 people. Mr Blatter has faced calls to quit but says he is not responsible for the scandal and is favourite to win. 'Good victory' Both Mr Blatter, 79, and Prince Ali, 39, will have 15 minutes to address the delegates. Each of the 209 member associations can then vote. In the first round, a candidate must get two-thirds of the votes to win outright, or 140 votes. If that is not achieved there will be a second round requiring a simple majority, even though there are only two candidates. Mr Blatter, in office for 17 years, remains the favourite, with strong support in Asia, the Americas and Africa. The president of the Nigerian Football Federation, … [Read more...]

Profitable businesses do not seek the state as a shareholder

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VietNamNet Bridge - The State has been urged to withdraw capital from Vinamilk because dairy production is not a business field the State needs to invest in. However, the State Capital Investment Corporation (SCIC), which has the power to make investments in business with the state’s money, does not agree. SCIC, which is restructuring its investment portfolio, decided that it will keep long-term investment in four enterprises. Vinamilk, the leading dairy producer, is one of these. Economists say they don’t think continuing holding Vinamilk shares is a good idea. The State plans to withdraw capital from thousands of enterprises by bringing them into equitization and only pour capital into certain business fields which cannot be done by private investors, or fields related to national defence and security. Pham Chi Lan, a renowned economist, said there is no reason for the state to continue being a shareholder of Vinamilk, an enterprise in a business field where the … [Read more...]

Vietnam confident to beat Brunei in SE Asian Games men’s soccer

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Vietnam are hoping to start their under-23 men’s football (soccer) campaign at the 28th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games with a big victory over Brunei in Singapore on Friday. The Vietnamese will take on Brunei in their Group B opener at 3:00 pm (Vietnam time) at Bishan Stadium. The match will be broadcast live in Vietnam on VTV6. "We are eager for this opening game. We will defeat Brunei to create psychological relaxation for the coming matches that will be more tense," said Vietnamese striker Mac Hong Quan. Japanese coach Toshiya Miura of Vietnam said he will field his best players to ensure an emphatic win in the opening game. Vietnam are aiming for a rout to create an advantage in goals scored for their possible race with other archrivals like Thailand and Malaysia in the group to advance to the next round. The Vietnamese have won each of the last three encounters with Brunei at the SEA Games, scoring 20 goals and conceding only one. At this edition of the … [Read more...]

Difference and Future: a story told by autistic children

A painting, inspired by Dong Ho folk paintings, by 12-year old Nguyen Gia Bao.  "Goat and cow" by Pham Binh Minh.  "A wolf on the mountain" by Pham Binh Minh, 11.  Visitors at the exhibition in Hanoi

"Playing the guitar", a painting of Nguyen Gia Bao. Dozens of paintings made by five young autistic artists are on display in a Hanoi coffee shop. Trung Hieu, the oldest of the five aged from 10 to 15, started by scribbling on the wall when he was five. Since then drawing has become the only way for him to connect with the outside world. "Through his paintings, I can gauge his mood, know if he is happy or sad," Hieu’s mother Nguyen Thi Mai Anh says. Binh Minh, 11, chose another way to express his feelings. "Wherever he sat down in the house, he would find a piece of paper and begin to tear it apart," his mother recalls of his early years. The boy later knew how to stick pieces of paper onto a frame and color them with oil paints. "He also knows there is an exhibition," his mother says referring to "Difference and Future", which is on at 24 Ly Quoc Su Street until May 31. "He was glad though he did not understand and had to ask what an exhibition was. "Then he seemed to … [Read more...]

Samaritan alley: where everything is free for poor people

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While tanks of free iced tea are common on Ho Chi Minh City streets, Alley #96 off Phan Dinh Phung Street is unique for providing things like medicines and even coffins for free for poor people. Photo: Thao Vi Its official name is Alley #96 in Phan Dinh Phung Street -- in Ho Chi Minh City's Phu Nhuan District -- but locals call it free alley or samaritan alley. This is because it offers heaps of things, from iced tea to motorbike repair, from medicines to coffins, for free to poor people. Samaritan is a 52-year-old man named Do Van Ut, who fixes motorbikes and operates a xe ôm (motorbike taxi) in the alley. Ut, better known as Viet, lives with his wife, a part-time janitor, in a rented nine-square-meter room in a nearby alley. He earns a mere VND100,000-200,000 (US$4.6-9.2) a day. But the meager income does not prevent him from doing charity. Do Van Ut, better known as Viet, repairs a motorbike at the entrance to the alley on May 26, 2015. Photo: Thao Vi He had begun by … [Read more...]

Enjoying Nha Trang with 150m high lighthouse

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A lighthouse built on the 45th floor of of the Best Western Premier Havana in the coastal city of Nha Trang in Khanh Hoa Province will be lighted up in coming time. The construction called Skylight with a capacity of around 1,000 people includes a Beach club, 360˚ Skydeck, skywalk, and lighthouse with an overall view to Nha Trang City. The lighthouse is 150m high and has a capacity of around 10 people. It is the first attraction of its kind in Nha Trang with unrivaled views encompassing the entire beach and beyond. It will be a must-visit destination in the coastal city. … [Read more...]

Pedagogical schools urged to keep up with the times

The country must reform pedagogical schools so future teachers can keep up with changes in education requirements, Deputy Minister of Education and Training Nguyen VinhHien said. At a conference on Wednesday, Hien said most teaching students were not up to date on educational issues and had no opportunity to provide input. They did not know what was going on at schools or whether teaching methods and content were changing. So they could hardly become devoted, skilful teachers, Hien said. Pedagogical schools' curriculum was causing the difficulties, she added. Leaders of some pedagogical schools admitted that they had not yet changed their curriculum. Once reformed, they would focus on developing students' abilities instead of just training them. They also said that many lecturers did not know how to guide students on scientific research and creative activities. So graduates had no experience in those subjects, though they were main targets in the reform. In a survey 80 percent of … [Read more...]

Free insurance contracts given to families of traffic accident victims

Vietnam's National Traffic Safety Committee and Prudential Insurance Company in Vietnam and Charity Association of the Transport sector yesterday signed an agreement to implement "Loving Arm –Secure to go Ahead " (Vong Tay Yeu Thuong – Yen Tam Tiep Buoc) program to share the pain of traffic accident victims. As per the agreement, from now to 2019, Prudential will give 5,000 free insurance contracts to low-income families whose husband or wives died for traffic accidents and are raising children under 18 years old. Each contract is worth VND50 million (US$ 2,293) for each child in these families. The program will be implemented in10 cities and provinces across the country including Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. Speaking the signing ceremony, Transport Minister Dinh La Thang called for contribution of organizations and individuals towards disadvantaged families of traffic accidents to help them overcome living difficulties and integrate into the society. … [Read more...]

HCM City seeks more skilled workers to fill employment gap

An engineer works at the Integrated Circuit Design Research and Education Centre at the HCM City-based Viet Nam National University. IT is one of the sectors that needs trained workers. — VNA/VNS Photo The Anh

Of the 25,000 positions HCM City needs to fill in June, 35 per cent require manual labourers and 65 per cent skilled workers with training at vocational schools, colleges or universities. The HCM City Centre for Human Resource Forecast and Labour Information said that most jobs needing trained workers were in the fields of IT, electronics, electricity, food technology, textiles-garments, services and construction. In May, the centre conducted a survey of 1,852 enterprises, which showed a need for more than 7,100 employees. Trained workers made up 70 per cent of recruitment needs, an increase of 19.97 per cent compared to April. Architecture-construction, IT consulting and customer care saw an increased need. Many positions required fluency in English, Korean or Japanese, as well as professional knowledge and skills. Tran Anh Tuan, the centre's deputy head, said that enterprises in the textile-garment field faced a shortage of trained human resources. The ASEAN Economic … [Read more...]

Vietnam joins St Petersburg International Legal Forum

Vietnamese officials are joining top economists and lawyers from around the globe at the fifth International Legal Forum in Russia to discuss the role of law in an era of change. The Vietnamese delegation was headed by Deputy Judge of the Supreme People’s Court Tong Anh Hao and Deputy Minister of Justice Nguyen Khanh Ngoc. Speaking at the opening ceremony in St Petersburg on May 27, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev suggested countries create new legal structures to ensure the smooth operation of the legal system. The PM also spoke of the complexity of cyber issues in the light of today’s rapid technological changes, saying legal regulations in the field need to guarantee freedom of information exchange and data security alike. Formed in 2011, the annual St Petersburg International Legal Forum is one of the most important law events in the world, creating a major platform for dialogue between politicians, lawyers, economists and researchers. This year’s … [Read more...]

Vietnam one of 15 nations with highest rate of smokers

Vietnam is still named one of 15 nations in the world with the highest rate of cigarette smokers. This was released at a meeting held by the Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO) on May 28 in Hanoi to review 10 years carrying out of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) among adult smokers, and in some countries, among adult non-smokers and among youth. With WHO's figure, there has been an upward trend of non-infection diseases in the country lately. These non-infection diseases such as stroke, coronary thrombosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and lung cancer are leading diseases to cause deaths among male and female. Noteworthy, over 75 percent of deaths in Vietnam are caused by non-infection diseases and tobacco is one of the main causes. Jeffery Kobza, the acting WHO's Representative to Vietnam, pointed out that though tobacco is the main cause of many diseases and deaths, people can avoid them by stop smoking. Every year, In Viet Nam, … [Read more...]

AP displays photos of Vietnam War in Hanoi

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(VOV) -The Associated Press (AP) will organise an exhibition themed "Vietnam: The Real War" at the Exhibition Hall in Hanoi on June 12. The event will feature 50 images which capture the drama and tragedy of people in the Vietnam War. According to AP, the highlight of the exhibition will be Malcolm Browne’s horrific photograph of an elderly Buddhist monk who voluntarily set ablaze during a protest against the South Vietnamese government and Nick Ut’s famous picture of a 9-year-old girl running scorched and naked from a napalm attack. The event will also display other renowned photos of AP photographers including Horst Faas and Henri Huet. Before the opening ceremony of the exhibition, Nick Ut will revisit the place near Trang Bang, outskirt of Ho Chi Minh City, where he took his iconic photo on June 8, 1972 and memorise his feeling during his journey via AP Images’ Instagram account. The exhibit will run until June 26. Previously, a number of photo exhibition … [Read more...]

The trouble with tech transfer in Vietnam

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(VOV) - There is a risk in Vietnam of expecting too much in the way of improved international competitiveness from technology transfer from foreign invested enterprises, according to Christian Brix Moller, the Danish Ambassador to Vietnam. When Moller referred to technology transfer he was referring to proprietary technology – which is protected by intellectual property rights – not the technology that is freely disbursed throughout the public domain. The main reason that countries seeking industrial might become strong is not that they borrow basic technologies, but that they are innovative in developing novel ways to create and market products utilizing those basic technologies, Moller stressed. This is Vietnam’s major problem— its lack of innovation and technological capability to take the initiative in the globalization process and lead in the knowledge based world of ideas combined with action to give those ideas effect. Far too many Vietnamese have … [Read more...]

Social housing package disbursed less than one fifth after two years

New built buildings in HCMC (Photo: SGGP)

The Ministry Construction has reported that the VND30 trillion (US$1.38 billion) credit package for social housing project has been disbursed slowly reaching less than one fifth after two years of implementation. Banks have pledged to loan house buyers with VND13,078 billion as of April 30. Of these, VND7,155 billion has been disbursed including VND5,211 billion to 16,432 households and VND1,944 billion to 33 projects of businesses. According to the ministry, the slow disbursement is because of low social housing supply. Most of unsold apartments are with large areas and high prices, which the buyers are unaffordable for. In addition, banks have tightened their loaning conditions to ensure debt collection ability. Investors of sixty commercial housing projects have registered to transfer into social housing with a total supply of nearly 39,000 apartments. Seventy four others want to divide their apartments into smaller ones for easier sales. Total inventory value in the real … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s int’l tourist numbers down for 12th straight month

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Vietnam’s international tourist arrival numbers dropped for the 12th consecutive month in May but the government said it needs more time to consider scrapping visa requirements for more countries. * Wrap-up of the troubled Vietnamese tourism More than 576,000 international tourists visited Vietnam this month, a 16.4 percent drop compared to May 2014, the General Statistics Office reported Thursday. Total foreign tourist arrival numbers in the first five months of this year reached more than 3.27 million, another 12.6 percent decline from the same period last year. Vietnam’s international tourist count has fallen for 12 months in a row despite complaints and calls for help from industry insiders. Although there are several problems that discourage global vacationers from spending their holidays in Vietnam, the country’s visa requirements emerge as one of the most crucial issues. International tourists currently have to meet strict requirements, complete … [Read more...]

Ca Mau fertilisers make debut in Cambodian market

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(VOV) - The PetroVietnam Ca Mau Fertiliser Company introduced its fertiliser products to Cambodia at a ceremony in Phnom Penh on May 28. Addressing the event, Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Men Som On highly praised the presence of Vietnam’s fertilizers on the market, saying that it will provide a good chance for Cambodian farmers to choose high quality products at reasonable prices. The Company General Director Bui Minh Tien revealed that the Ca Mau Fertiliser Plant, with an annual capacity of 800,000 tonnes of urea, is able to meet both domestic and export demands. The company will develop a network of sales agents and distributors and set up a representative office in Cambodia right after this ceremony, Tien said. He added the company has entered into four contracts with its Cambodian partners and planted a trade representative in the country for products promotion and distribution. … [Read more...]

HCMC to remove low-tech firms from industrial zones

Medicine production at Cat Lai Industrial Zone, District 2, HCMC (Photo: SGGP)

Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee has instructed HCMC Export Processing and Industrial Zone Authority (Hepza) to work with relevant agenciesto review, classify, and estimate businesses to build a restructuring plan and reduce the number of low-tech and labor-intensive ones. Most of industrial parks (IPs) and export processing zones (EPZs) in the city have built traffic, electricity and water infrastructures before calling on investors. They have tried to invite investors as much as possible to fully occupy the built zones and paid little heed to technology, resulting in products’ low-added value. A survey by the city Department of Science and Technology shows that only one percent of businesses at IPs and EPZs are at advanced technology level, four percent at rather good level and 51 percent at low level. According to Hepza, most foreign invested projects in the zones have done outwork using a lot of workers and creating low added value. They concentrate in garment … [Read more...]

Vietnam boats three among 27 Asia’s natural wonders

Boats on Ha Long Bay (Photo: VNA)

Vietnam is home to three among Asia’s 27 natural wonders listed by website Smarter Travel. Ha Long Bay came first in the list, described as a giant sea dragon with over 1,500 islets jutting out of the turquoise water. Son Doong Cave, the world’s largest cave took the 19th place. Located in central Vietnam, the cave is over 200 metres high and 150 metres wide. It is home to a network of underground rivers, tropical jungle and even beaches. Can Gio Mangrove Forest in Ho Chi Minh City is also named in the list. The forest is home to around 200 different species of wildlife and 150 rare species of flora. Other natural wonders on the list include Longdong of Taiwan, The Chocolate Hills of the Philippines, Flaming Cliffs of Mongolia, Thi Lo Su Waterfalls in Thailand, Mt. Kelimutu in Indonesia and Kuangsi Falls in Laos. … [Read more...]