Supermarkets sell dubious veggies

Customers shop for vegetables at a supermarket in Ha Noi. Leading supermarket chains have suspended purchases from the Ba Chu Safe Vegetables Company after its duplicitous practices were exposed.

VietNamNet Bridge – Vegetables delivered by Ba Chu Safe Vegetables Co., Ltd. have been removed from display racks at BigC, Metro and Lotte Mart, the three biggest supermarket chains in Ha Noi, following a scandal over their origin. Nong Nghiep Viet Nam (Viet Nam Agriculture) newspaper revealed on Tuesday that a truck owned by the Dong Anh District-based company frequently arrived at Minh Khai Market in Bac Tu Liem District in the early morning to buy vegetables, which it then delivered to a number of supermarkets in the city. The vegetables picked up at the wholesale market reportedly included Chinese cabbage and herbs with unclear origin. The truck was caught transporting the vegetables to Metro Thang Long on Pham Van Dong Street, BigC Thang Long on Tran Duy Hung Street and Lotte Mart on Tay Son Street as well as supermarkets on Nguyen Trai, Ha Dong, Truong Dinh and Hoang Mai streets. Wrong reporting? BigC's Public Relations Director Ho Quoc Nguyen announced that the … [Read more...]

Social News 22/1

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Students stable after anaphylactic shock The 35 students who experienced anaphylactic shock after being vaccinated in a secondary school in southern Hau Giang Province are now in stable condition, according to the provincial Preventive Health Centre. On Monday, 35 students at Vinh Vien A Secondary School experienced difficulty breathing, headache, vomiting and fever after getting the measles-rubella vaccination. Ten were in serious condition and taken to the provincial general hospital. Doctors said these students were possibly in anaphylactic shock. The rest of the vaccines were revoked for testing. Head of the centre Nguyen Van Muoi said all the students would be discharged from the hospital and resume their studies soon. Under the measles and rubella vaccination campaign launched by the provincial health sector, children between 1 and 14 years old are being vaccinated from October to the end of this month. Hanoi increases treatment for mental health patients Ha Noi treated … [Read more...]

EVENTS SCHEDULED FOR JANUARY 20-31 (daily updated)

Symphony Concert with Spanish Conductor David Gómez Ramírez Fri 30 Jan 2015, 8 pm Vietnam National Academy of Music 77 Hao Nam, Hanoi You are invited to a symphony concert with: Conductor: David Gómez Ramírez Piano Soloist: Vu Ngoc Linh and the Hanoi Philharmonic Orchestra Program L.V. Beethoven Overture Egmont P.I. Tchaikovsky Concerto No 1 for piano and orchestra Interval F. Mendelssohn Syphony No.3 About Conductor David Gómez Ramírez David Gómez Ramírez is one of the most promising young conductor and composer in Spain. He has been director of the Lira Saguntina Symphony Orchestra in Valencia, as well as director of the Conservatory of Music "Joaquin Rodrigo" in Sagunto, Valencia since 2007. He has been the resident conductor in Seville and Coutances (France) Orchestre. During the past seven years, he has conducted all the major Spanish orchestras and he appears as a guest conductor in Europe (Italy, France, Portugal, The Netherlands, in Asia and in South … [Read more...]

Social News 19/1

Court jails 27 for gambling The people's court in Cao Bang Province yesterday sent 27 people to prison for organised gambling. According to the court reports, on January 10, 2014, the Cao Bang police raided a guest room in the province and found four people engaging in illegal gambling. They also seized VND742 million (US$34,500) in cash from the site. Further investigations showed that the four persons were part of a larger gambling network that also organised gambling in the province from October 2013 to January 2014. The gambling network comprised 27 people, who received prison terms varying from one to six years. Several other persons were given probation. According to the Criminal Code, gambling is illegal in Viet Nam. Work begins on Ha Noi ring-road link Construction work on the Trung Hoa-Ring Road 3 intersection in the capital city, which will include two tunnels, began on Sunday, the Thang Long Project Management Board has announced. Vu Xuan Hoa, head of the Board, said … [Read more...]

Social News 16/1

Separate jails proposed for transgender, gay prisoners Homosexual and transgender prisoners may be housed in jails separate from the general prison population to protect them from sexual harassment under a plan proposed by the Social, Economic and Environmental Institute to the Ministry of Public Security. The institute has been studying gender-related problems for many years and says many countries provide separate jails for transgender prisoners who are classified as trans-female or trans-male. A 2014 report found that the majority of transgender prisoners wanted separate jails to avoid the risks of sexual harassment. Homosexual and transgender prisoners face the highest risk of sexual harassment. The institute cited statistics from the US state of California, which showed 67 percent of homosexual and transgender prisoners have suffered sexual harassment. The institute said that under current infrastructure in Vietnam, transgender prisoners can only either be held in solitary … [Read more...]

Social News 15/1

S.Korea firm to sue workers for loss-causing strike Striking workers at a South Korean-invested firm in HCM City will be sued for losses caused to the company. Some 800 workers at Carimax Sai Gon Ltd. Co. went on strike January 3 after the company declined to pass on a mandated rise in minimum wages. Company officials said on January 12 that workers who failed to carry out their duties for five consecutive days would be sacked and sued for losses incurred by the company. Carimax said trade union intervention had failed to resolve the strike. The government decreed last year minimum wages would rise by VND250,000-400,000 (USD11.9-USD19) a month, depending on region, from January 1, 2015. But on December 27, the board of directors at Carimax said that because of 2014 losses, the pay rise would be determined according to each worker's attitude, capability and experiences. It also declared the Tet bonus would be 90% of a worker's monthly wage, but if workers went on strike, the … [Read more...]

Art & Entertainment News 10/1

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Vietnamese publisher releases ‘Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang’ Kim Dong Publishing House has released a Vietnamese version of the delightful children’s novel ‘Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang: The Magical Car’translated by Hoang Anh. The novel, which was first published in 1964 by Ian Fleming two months after his death, tells the story about a racing car Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is a story that Fleming created for his son Caspar at bedtime. It is a tale about a magical car that flies, floats and even thinks. This enjoyable story follows Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the Pott family as they embark upon adventures that take them to the sky, the sea and beyond! Familiar to many through the original book, the 1968 classic film starring Dick Van Dyke also helped mark the story an enduring classic for children and adults throughout the world. Vietnam-Japan Festive Day to blast off at Royal City Thousands of youth and students from universities, … [Read more...]

Social News 10/1

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Facelift for HCM City Post Office stirs criticism Relate news HCM City Post Office gets facelift after 40 years A facelift for HCM City's 130-year-old post office has stirred critics for being too garish, even through the colours used matched those of the original building that is a landmark of the city. The building, at 2 Paris Commune in District 1 was built in 1886 by the French colonial government and, along with the Notre Dame Cathedral and Saigon Tax Centre, is considered a symbol of HCM City, making it a popular destination for foreign tourists and attracting thousands of visitors a day. Local authorities spent nearly VND5b to restore the façade, the project starting in September 2014 and scheduled for completion ahead of next month's Tet. The post office is decorated mainly in orange-yellow with white trim and highlights, which was its original colouring and symbolised the colours of the Vietnam post and telecommunication industry. On January 6, the … [Read more...]

Discovering Ban Gioc Waterfall and Saigon-Ban Gioc Resort

A spectacular view of Ban Gioc Waterfall - PHOTO: COURTESY OF SAIGONTOURIST

Tien Dat First four-star hotel in Ban Gioc Waterfall area Saigon-Ban Gioc Resort by Ban Gioc Waterfall, which is one of the most magnificent waterfalls in Asia, covers more than 31 hectares and is a four-star resort. Its first-phase facilities that were put into use this week include bedrooms, the lounge, conference room with more than 200 seats and a restaurant serving European, Asian and local cuisines. In the meantime, Saigontourist and its business partner will continue building 80 more guest rooms and other facilities such as tennis court, swimming pool, entertainment section, spa and camping site. From the resort, guests can come to discover the magnificent Ban Gioc Waterfall, breathtaking Nguom Ngao Cave and peaceful border landscapes. In addition, they can also tour other places of interest in Cao Bang such as Pac Bo Cave, Lenin Spring, Thang Hen Lake, and the newly opened Truc Lam Ban Gioc Buddha Pagoda, as well as learn about life and culture of ethnic minority … [Read more...]

Social News 3/1

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Safety checks of hydropower projects urged The Ministry of Construction has asked the Ministry of Industry and Trade and provincial governments to review and inspect all small- and medium-scale hydropower projects under construction nationwide following a serious tunnel collapse at Da Dang hydropower plant. The construction ministry said in a document sent last week to the industry ministry and provincial governments that the incident at the hydropower project in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong on December 16 showed that small- and medium-scaled hydropower projects put workers at risk. Therefore, the construction ministry has urged the industry ministry and provincial authorities to review and strictly monitor construction, and safety and quality management at such hydropower plants, especially those in the process of building tunnels or having prolonged construction schedules and those in the areas with complex geology. The objective is to prevent a similar incident … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s dairy industry attractive to local and foreign investors

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VietNamNet Bridge - Still considered attractive, this year Vietnam's dairy market has welcomed many new domestic and foreign investors. In mid-December, VinaCapital Vietnam Opportunity Fund (VOF) and Japanese partners Daiwa PI Partners announced that they would invest $45 million into the International Dairy JSC (IDP - Ba Vi brand). VinaCapital and Daiwa hold a 70% share of IDP and the family of Nguyen Tuan Khai and the General Director of IDP Tran Bao Minh own the remaining 30% stake. Explaining VinaCapital’s move into the dairy market, its CEO Andy Ho said this sector has great potential for development in the future. Meanwhile, IDP is in the top 5 milk producers in Vietnam, with 2014 revenue estimated at $80 million. In the coming time, with charter capital increasing to $460 million, IDP will launch new products. A representative of Daiwa PI Partners, Mr. Go Fujiyama said this is the first investment of Daiwa in the dairy market of Vietnam. He said in 1960 the per … [Read more...]

Investor reshuffle for Van Don airport

Quang Ninh’s leaders are now keen for Sun Group to take over the airport project in the Van Don Economic Zone

VietNamNet Bridge – Sun Group – the owner of luxury resorts in the central city of Danang including Ba Na Hills and Son Tra Intercontinental Resort – is planning to invest in the Van Don International Airport project in the northern province of Quang Ninh where it is also developing two resorts. If the private group gains an investment certificate for the airport, it will mean that the South Korean-backed Joinus Company Limited may lose its already-granted permit because of the slow pace of the company’s work. Pham Minh Chinh, Secretary of the Quang Ninh Provincial Party Committee, said at a recent conference that the Van Don project looked like it would "break ground in the first quarter next year." He also said the provincial authorities were working closely with an investor to push the project forward. "The investor is Sun Group," said Trinh Van Hong, deputy director of the Quang Ninh Provincial Economic Zones Management Authority. The airport is … [Read more...]

Social News 1/1

Saigon Railway to add trains for New Year holiday The Saigon Railway Passenger Transport Company is scheduling additional trains to meet the increased travel demands for the four-day New Year holiday from January 1-4, 2015. Accordingly, the Saigon Railway Passenger Transport Company will add more trains to the SN4 Sai Gon–Nha Trang and SQN4 Sai Gon–Quy Nhon on December 31, 2014; SPT4 Sai Gon–Phan Thiet on January 1,2 and 4; SN5 Nha Trang–Sai Gon, and SQN3 Quy Nhon–Sai Gon on January 3, 2015; SPT3 Phan Thiet–Sai Gon on January 1,3 and 4, 2015; SN3 Nha Trang–Sai Gon on January 3 and 4, 2015. The trains along the Saigon-Hanoi route will also have additional carriages. In additional to additional trains, the Vietnam Railways (VR) and the Saigon Railway Passenger Transport Company will offer a 10% discount on rail fares between midnight on January 1, 2015 to 12.59pm on February 1, 2015. Foreign students enjoy New Year gathering in Hanoi The … [Read more...]

Comedies laugh all the way to the bank

The 100-minute comedy De Hoi Tinh raked in VND60 billion in ticket sales in just ten days beginning December 18

VietNamNet Bridge – Private film companies that invested large amounts of money into making comedies for Christmas and New Year holiday releases are laughing all the way to the bank. The 100-minute comedy De Hoi Tinh (Hoi's Life) raked in VND60 billion (US$3 million) in ticket sales in just ten days beginning December 18. Galaxy (Thien Ngan) Studio, one of the film's four producers, has announced that they are very hopeful the numbers will shoot up further. Thien Ngan and its partners, CJ Entertainment, Chanh Phuong Film and Early Rise Media Group, reportedly invested big sums in hiring Vietnamese-American director Chairle Nguyen – a rising star in the industry, and hedged their bets further by having leading roles played by talented comedian Thai Hoa and model-actress Diem My. The film is about Hoi, played by Hoa, a gay man who faces challenges in finding his true love. Hoa left a very strong impression in his previous films, Long Ruoi (Mr Long, the Fly) and Teo Em … [Read more...]

Social News 29/12

Transport Ministry asks for airfare reduction on short-haul routes Minister of Transport Dinh La Thang has recently issued a directive on reducing airfares on short-haul domestic routes, aiming to promote socio-economic development in disadvantage areas. Thang asked the airlines operating in Vietnam to promptly study and offer fare incentive policies for short-haul flights under 500 kilometres, and conduct price registration and listing in accordance with regulations. The airfare cuts will enable the people living in the remote, isolated, border and island areas to use air traffic and make contributions to boosting local socio-economic development. Earlier, Minister Thang signed a directive adding national revolutionary contributors to the list of passengers enjoying preferential services at the airports. Nearly VND100 billion raised for Hoang Sa, Truong Sa More than VND100 billion has been raised so far from the programmes organised by the Vietnam General Confederation of Labour … [Read more...]

JX Nippon to partner with Petrolimex in petrochemical project

The signing of a MOU between Petrolimex and JX Nippon Oil & Energy Corporation takes place last weekend - PHOTO: PETROLIMEX

Van Nam The joint venture is considered the first step of JX NOE to enter Vietnam’s fuel retail market. Tran Van Thinh, general director of Petrolimex, told the Daily on December 25 that the Government has an open policy to allow foreign companies involved in oil refinery projects in Vietnam to sell products in Vietnam. According to Thinh, the policy is expected to attract more foreign investors and will be applied to other oil refinery projects soon, including Nghi Son in the northern province of Thanh Hoa and Long Son in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau. Petrolimex will be in further talks with JX NOE over the joint development of Nam Van Phong project whose capital is estimated at US$4.2-4.5 billion. The capital contribution ratio is still under negotiation. The two companies signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation and investment in Hanoi last weekend. JX NOE will become the strategic partner of Petrolimex when the latter issues shares to raise … [Read more...]

2 boarding houses for mountainous schools

​ Quang Ngai Provincial Youth Union and Binh Son Refining and Petrochemical Company Limited (BSR) have just held a ceremony to hand over 2 boarding houses to Son Bua Primary School (Son Tay district) and Son Ba Primary School (Son Ha district). ​ Each boarding house worth 500 million VND covers an area of about 100 square meters, consisting of 4 living rooms, kitchen and toilet system. Reportedly, they are two out of four boarding houses in mountainous districts of Son Ha, Son Tay, Ba To and Minh Long funded by BSR. The newly-built schools are expected to improve teaching and learning conditions of teachers and pupils in disadvantaged areas. Dai Kiet … [Read more...]

Social News 23/12

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Farmer turns down VND30m offers for giant chicken A farmer in Hung Yen Province has grown what he hopes will be an award-winning giant chicken, weighing seven kilograms, and has refused offers of more than VND 30 million to sell it. Han Minh, from Dong Tao Commune, Khoai Chau Distrist, wants to enter the chicken in the annual chicken fair later this month. The commune is renowned for its breed of giant chickens, which can have legs bigger than a man's arm. Han Minh said, "Some people offered me over VND 30 million for my seven kilogram chicken, but I want to sign it up for the upcoming fair." Dong Tao's chickens, which take up to two years to grow to full size, are much sought after for their unique appearance, and as a luxury status symbol for the Tet holiday. The chickens usually fetch prices of VND 300,000 to VND 400,000 per kilogram. Expressway crack repairs completed The Viet Nam Expressway Corporation has finished fixing a 73m crack that appeared between Km82 and 83 of … [Read more...]

Foreign-currency price fluctuations help some businesses, hurt others

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VietNamNet Bridge – The price fluctuations of the US dollar, euro, Japanese yen and Korean won have helped many businesses prosper and hurt others. Hard foreign currencies continue to fluctuate, affecting businesses’ performance in the fourth quarter and the entire year of 2014. In late October, PPC, the Pha Lai thermopower plant, reported a VND340 billion increase in the Q3’s profit from financial investments. The company incurred a cumulative loss of VND120 billion from business activities, but made a profit of VND410 billion from the dong/yen exchange rate fluctuations. The exchange rate fluctuations always have a big impact on the operation of the power generation plant, which received a huge loan worth 25 billion yen. The loan had fallen to VND5.3 trillion by June and to VND4.8 trillion by the end of September 2014. The gains and losses of the hard currencies in the world have helped turn many unprofitable businesses into profitable ones, and vice … [Read more...]