Securities firms can apply for FOL increase

An unidentified investor checks stock information on the website of Maybank Kim Eng Securities Limited in this file photo. Local securities enterprises can now submit foreign ownership limit (FOL) increase applications to the State Securities Commission (SSC) - PHOTO: TL

Thanh Thuong Speaking to the Daily, SSC vice chairman Nguyen Thanh Long said a higher FOL would apply to securities firms from September 1 when Decree 60 takes effect. Given the new rule, brokerages can register at the SSC to raise their foreign ownership cap to over 49% or even 100%. They are able to sell shares to foreign investors after they get approval from the agency rather than having to wait for a guidance circular. Long said the objective is to help struggling enterprises seek new sources of capital and boost restructuring plans. This is also in line with Vietnam’s commitments to the World Trade Organization (WTO). The new decree stipulates that foreigners can own up to 100% shares at a securities enterprise or establish a 100% foreign-owned securities firm in the country. It replaces Decree 58, which allows foreigners to either own a 49% stake at a Vietnamese brokerage or set up a 100% foreign-owned company. The old decree prevents foreigners from holding a … [Read more...]

Luxury hotels face rising competition

Tran Thu The company’s 2014 survey on hotels released last week showed average room occupancy at four- and five-star hotels nationwide was 60.7% last year, down two percentage points against the previous year. The rate at hotels in HCMC fell 6.7% but edged up 6.7% in Hanoi in 2014 from a year ago. Kenneth Atkinson, executive chairman of Grant Thornton Vietnam, told reporters in HCMC last week that room occupancy in Hanoi jumped thanks to more supporting infrastructure. Meanwhile, the rate in HCMC was down due to fierce competition and new hotels in service. The average room tariff in 2014 at upscale hotels inched up 0.2%, from US$97.6 in 2013 to US$97.8 last year. The survey found an increase of 3.6% in the average room tariff at four-star hotels but a decline of 6.4% in that of five-star hotels. Room charges in Danang City and Hoi An City registered growth of 23% but dropped by 17.2% in Phan Thiet City, by 13.7% in Hanoi and by 4.7% in HCMC. Atkinson said when a new … [Read more...]

Vietnam Party Chief’s US visit marks a turning point: expert


US Ambassador to Vietnam Ted Osius (L) shakes hands with Vietnam’s Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong after he arrives at the Andrews military airport in Washington DC at 8 a.m. July 6 (local time). Photo: VNA/Tien Dung An ongoing visit to the US by Vietnamese Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong could be a turning point in the 20-year diplomatic relations between the two countries, said an American expert in an interview with the Vietnam News Agency. Gregory Poling from the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) said bilateral relations have progressed substantially, reflected in Vietnam’s joining of the World Trade Organization, a boom in bilateral trade and investment activities, the establishment of a comprehensive partnership and the US partly lifting its arms embargo on Vietnam. This is the first time a General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam has made a visit to the US. The visit takes place at a time important to Vietnam-US … [Read more...]

Vietnam attends UNIDO projects

The Prime Minister has approved Vietnam’s participation in a regional project funded by the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) as part of efforts to implement the Stockholm Convention of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POP). The project, which will use non-refundable aid sourced by the Global Environmental Facility Fund (GEF), will focus on demonstrating best available techniques (BAT) and best environmental practices (BEP) in open burning activities in response to the Stockholm Convention. The PM assigned the Ministry of Nature Resources and Environment (MoNRE) to cooperate with UNIDO to complete documents and sign the project with sponsoring partners, as well as to implement the project in line with the regulations. The projects is expected to help reduce the unintentional emission of POPs by industrial sectors in Vietnam, contributing to protecting the environment and human’s health, especially during the country’s industrialization and … [Read more...]

Vietnam, RoK hospitals conduct joint medical activities

Thai Nguyen International Hospital and the Gumi Gangdong Hospital of the Republic of Korea (RoK) launched a joint medical programme in the northern province of Thai Nguyen on July 7 to mark the decade-old twinning relations between Thai Nguyen and the RoK’s Gyeongsangbuk province. Through July 9, medical workers of Gumi Gangdong, a leading hospital in cosmetic and spine surgery in the RoK, will offer free check-ups and treatment to local spine, joint and neurosurgery patients. Later, the two hospitals will inaugurate a hi-tech clinic specialising in cosmetic, spine and joint surgery at the Thai Nguyen International Hospital The Thai Nguyen International Hospital is the largest private hospital in Vietnam’s northeastern mountainous region.-VNA … [Read more...]

Cambodia welcomes 2 million foreign tourists


Tourists visit Ta Phrom temple, part of Angkor Wat (Source: AFP/VNA) Cambodia welcomed nearly two million foreign tourists during the first five months of 2015, a 4.4 percent increase from the same period last year, primarily hailing from Vietnam, China, the Republic of Korea, Laos and Thailand. Vietnam topped the list with 400,000 tourists, up 15 ,5 percent compared to the same period last year, followed by China and RoK with 289,000 and 210,000 arrivals respectively. Cambodian Minister of Tourism Thong Khon said the ministry has implemented several tourism promotion programmes abroad and hosted the world cultural tourism conference, helping to bring the country’s image to the world. Tourism is one of Cambodia’s key economic sectors, which posts a stable growth of 15-20 percent and accounts for a major part in the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). In 2014 the country received 4.5 million foreign arrivals, an increase of seven percent compared to the … [Read more...]

Vietnam officially has the first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

PANO – The national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines officially received the first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner at the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in the US on July 7th. The handover ceremony saw the participation of General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Nguyen Phu Trong, who is on an official visit to the US at the invitation of the US President Barack Obama from July 6th to 10th. General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong (second from left) cutting the ribbon at the ceremony Addressing the event, Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong highlighted the first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner is the airline’s major upgradation of the long-haul fleet. This enables the Vietnam Airlines to become the first carrier in the Asia-Pacific to operate the all-new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner and Airbus A350-900 XWB. As scheduled, Vietnam Airlines will put the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner into operation on the Hanoi-Ho Chi Minh City domestic route and then other direct routes between … [Read more...]

Vietnam, Cambodia to boost repatriation of Vietnamese martyrs’ remains

PANO - The two Special Boards of the Governments of Vietnam and Cambodia in the dry season of 2015-2016 will continue their search and repatriation of Vietnamese volunteer soldiers and experts who had sacrificed while serving their international duty in Cambodia. This information was underlined in a cooperation agreement signed by Vietnamese Deputy Defence Minister Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Thanh Cung, Head of the Vietnamese Government’s Special Board, and his Cambodian counterpart General Pol Saruon, Commander of the Cambodian Royal Army, in Ho Chi Minh City on July 6th. The signing ceremony At the event, the two sides reviewed the achievements in cooperating together in this meaningful work. In spite of difficulties, they collected and repatriated 701 sets of martyrs’ remains during the previous dry season. Of that number, 15 have been identified. Highly appreciated practical supports from Cambodian people and authorities, Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Thanh … [Read more...]

Tourists to Hanoi increase by 8.8%

PANO – Hanoi on July 6th held a conference to deploy tourism tasks for the second half of 2015 and the action plan to develop tourism under Resolution No. 92/NQ-CP of the government. Literature Temple, one of the destinations in Hanoi. Photo: At the conference, the city Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism reported that the number of tourists to Hanoi in the first half of 2015 reached around 10 million, increasing by 4% compared to the same period in 2014. Of the 10 million tourists, more than 1.58 million were foreigners, moving up by 8.8% and the rest 8.45 million were domestic, up by 3%. Estimatedly, the revenue from tourism totaled VND 15 trillion, an increase of 3% compared to the same period in 2014. Translated by Huu Duong … [Read more...]

Scientific conference on history of MZ 1’s armed forces

PANO - Military Zone (MZ) 1 Command of the Vietnam People's Army (VPA) on July 7th held a scientific conference themed "The history of MZ 1's Armed Forces - Viet Bac (1945- 2015) at the zone's Convalescent Mission No. 16 - Nui Coc Lake in Dai Tu district, Thai Nguyen province. Lieutenant General Nguyen Quoc Khanh, Deputy Chief of the General Staff and many generations of former generals and officers attended the conference. Participants discussing on the sidelines of the conference At the event, delegates highlighted the zone's important role and strategic position during the national construction and defence cause, stressing that the Viet Bac's armed forces of MZ 1 is the predecessor of VPA. Delegates agreed that the zone has maintained their heroic traditions over the past 70 years of construction and development. To popularize and educate the heroic traditions for the young generation of troops, the zone's party committee has also directed functional agencies to compile a book … [Read more...]

National contributors of Can Tho City get- together

PANO – Leaders of the Department of Policies, on behalf of the Ministry of National Defence and the General Department of Politics, held a warm reception for the national contributors of Can Tho City on July 6th in Hanoi. The delegation is visiting the capital and offering incense to President Ho Chi Minh at his Mausoleum. At the meeting, contributors were given gifts from the Ministry of National Defence and introduced to the ministry’s gratitude activities, including the search and collection of martyrs’ remains, building of policies for national contributors, construction of gratitude houses, etc. Accordingly, since early this year the army has built and handed over 6,912 gratitude and comrade houses, donated nearly VND 169 billion to the "Gratitude Fund", committed to taking care of 1,402 Vietnamese heroic mothers, generated jobs for 259 children of severely wounded and sick soldiers and presented medical equipment worth nearly VND 37 billion to convalescent … [Read more...]

Mobile Game Asia 2015 to launch in Vietnam

Banner of the event

PANO - The Global Mobile Game Confederation (GMGC) at a press conference on July 6th informed that an international seminar themed "Mobile Game Asia 2015" will be launched in Vietnam on July 9th and 10th at Windsor Plaza Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City. The seminar, the third of its kind in Southeast Asia, gathered 70 lecturers from over 13 countries worldwide, including 47 foreign top executives from the world leading game companies and several representatives of the host country. In addition to 16 speeches and 8 discussion topics during the seminar, the event will features 40 booths of mobile games' technologies from 18 domestic game businesses and 22 oversea ones. Addressing the press conference, GMGC Vice President Maxim de Wit revealed that Vietnam was chosen for the third Mobile Game Asia because of its rapid growth of the number of smartphone users and potential game businesses such as VinaGame (VNG), Soha Game, etc. Translated by Trung Thanh … [Read more...]

Great poet Nguyen Du’s birth anniversary observed

The press conference announcing the anniversary. Photo:

PANO – The National-level Celebration of the 250th birth anniversary of Nguyen Du, prominent Vietnamese poet and World Cultural Celebrity (1765 – 2015) will take place in November in Ha Tinh province, announced the organizers on July 6th. Accordingly, there will be seminars on "The Tale of Kieu" and Nguyen Du, an international seminar on his life and career, a collection contest on Nguyen Du’s works, and dramas and music performances on his life, career, and works. These activities aim to help people understand more about the life and career of the great Vietnamese poet, pupularize Vietnam’s cultural values to international friends, raise the younger generation’s patriotism and pride of the nation, preserve and promote cultural values in line with socio-economic development, and foster people’s soul and affection. Translated by Son Ca … [Read more...]

Son Doong Cave attracts foreign tourists

Light from an archway high above falls onto the pool of water, turning it a gorgeous shade of turquoise as wisps of smoke escape from the camp fire.

PANO – The province of Quang Binh received an additional number of 349 tourists (more than 90% are foreign tourists) to Son Doong in the first half of this year. The tour named "Conquering Son Doong, the world largest cave" has so far this year brought home more than VND 22 billion. According to Oxalis Adventure Tours (the exclusive unit running this tour), all the tourists praised the tour, highlighting that it is a wonderful world-class adventure tour with professional service, food, and safety. Below are some images of the Son Doong Cave. PANO and Travel & LeisureTranslated by Chung Anh … [Read more...]

Muon Waterfall: the irresistible destination

Muon Waterfall overflowing

PANO – Almost all visitors to the Muon Waterfall have a similar wish to return to the place someday in the future for their second, third (or even more) visit! Muon Waterfall is no doubt an endowment of nature to the land of Thanh Hoa province. The grandiose waterfall lies amidst the jungle and no one knows for sure when it came into being. It is only known that the waterfall, with the name written in the epic of the Muong people titled "De dat, de nuoc" (birth of land and water), has been there for hundreds of years. In the epic, the waterfall is associated with the legendary faithful love story of a maiden. As the story goes, once upon a time there was an old couple who were hard-working and kind-hearted to all their neighbours. However, they had never felt the happiness of cuddling a child. After all that long time, it seemed that the heavenly king’s heart had fallen for their kind-heartedness as one day the wife got pregnant. The pregnancy, however, lasted for twice … [Read more...]

Party Chief’s US visit marks a turning point: expert


An ongoing visit to the US by Vietnamese Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong could be a turning point in the 20-year diplomatic relations between the two countries, Gregory Poling from the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) told a Vietnam New Agency correspondent in Washington D.C. He continued to say relations have progressed substantially, reflected in Vietnam’s joining of the World Trade Organization, a boom in bilateral trade and investment activities, the establishment of a comprehensive partnership and the US partly lifting its arms embargo on Vietnam. General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong received by staff of Vietnam's Embassay and overseas Vietnamese. Photo: VNA Poling spoke of a recent US visit by Minister of Public Security Tran Dai Quang, highlighting the positive outcomes of meetings between Minister Quang, FBI Director James Comey and other US officials. Meanwhile, the expert said the conclusion of Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations could … [Read more...]

Chief of General Staff receives Cambodian Air Force Chief

Chief of the General Staff Do Ba Ty (R) receiving Cambodian Air Force Commander Soeung Samnang

PANO – Senior Lieutenant General Do Ba Ty, Chief of the General Staff of the Vietnam People’s Army, on July 6th received the visiting Commander of the Royal Cambodianl Air Force Soeung Samnang, who is on a business trip to Vietnam. At the reception, Senior Lieutenant General Do Ba Ty stressed that in recent years, the bilateral defence cooperation has seen huge development in both scope and scale with practical achievements. The two defence ministries have signed the Protocol on defence cooperation for the period 2015-2019 and annual cooperation plans. As for the air forces of Vietnam and Cambodia, the implementation of various cooperation activities such as delegation exchange, official training, cooperation at multilateral fora, etc. is already underway. The Vietnamese general proposed that the two sides should further increase delegation exchange, information and professional experience sharing so as to consolidate the friendship and boost cooperation between the two … [Read more...]

Major milestones in Vietnam-US relationship

The Vietnam-US relationship has come a long way in benefiting the two peoples since its normalisation in 1995. The official US visit from July 6-10 by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong including talks with US President Barack Obama is seen as a "historic milestone" and a "higher stepladder" in the bilateral comprehensive partnership established in 2013. The following is a chronology of key milestones in Vietnam-US ties: August 1987: Envoy of US President, General John Vessey visits Vietnam for the first time to discuss humanitarian issues of shared concern. July 1991: The Office for Missing in Action Affairs officially goes into operation, becoming the first US official agency present full-time in Vietnam since 1975. December 1991: Washington lifts the ban on organised US travel to Vietnam. November 1992: Restrictions on US telephone service to Vietnam is lifted, allowing direct phone service between the two countries. December 1992: US President George H. W. Bush … [Read more...]

Can Tho to demolish colonial school following France’s notice


Chau Van Liem High School is one of the two built by French in the Mekong Delta, the other in Tien Giang. File photo The public in Can Tho is mourning a school of nearly 100 years old as the city plans to knock it down to start building a new one this year, saying it acts upon safety warning from France. French people built the school in 1917 and named it Collège de Can Tho, which gave it the colonial architecture of the 20th century and made it a part of the Mekong Delta city’s history. But the city government is going to spend VND98 billion (US$4.5 million) to replace that history. The city’s education department is calling for bids. It expects work to start by the end of August and finish in early 2017, saying it will make sure construction preserves the old design. During that time, the teachers and around 1,000 students will use another school in the city. Chau Van Liem is now one of the major schools in the Mekong Delta, known for its high quality … [Read more...]

Spanish groups consider waste treatment project in Vinh Phuc

Spain-based BPA Group and SACYR Group had a working session with Vice Chairman of the Vinh Phuc provincial People’s Committee Vu Chi Giang on July 7 on the possibility of investment in waste treatment and public lighting in the northern province. BPA Group Chairman Radjou Dupont said BPA and SACYR groups have implemented multiple projects in waste and waste water treatment and public lighting system across the country. The groups use latest waste disposal technology which saves costs and protects the environment as waste will be classified to produce biogas, organic fertilizers and power for lighting, Dupont noted. He hoped that the provincial authority would create favourable conditions for the groups to build a waste treatment plant in Vinh Phuc which is designed to cover an area of 20-25 hectares and have a capacity of 1,000 tonnes per day. Vice Chairman Vu Chi Giang said Vinh Phuc currently has three dumping sites capable of handling about 500 tonnes per day, and is … [Read more...]