Spatial planning should be based on quality not speed

Dao Ngoc Nghiem, President of the Viet Nam Urban Planning and Development Association, spoke to Ha Noi Moi (New Ha Noi) newspaper on what subjects should be covered in the Law on Planning. What are existing problems Viet Nam is facing in planning activities? For many years, spatial planning has been a tool to manage and administer the nation's socio-economic development. However, we have encountered many challenges. We have many urban planning projects, but those in charge have not consulted each other. As a result, they are not synchronised and even overlap. Consequently, they cause difficulties for authorities to manage or implement. I have to concede that quite a few planning projects are of low quality and weak feasibility on a national scale, particularly funding for project implementation. So it is high time for the National Assembly to enact a Law on Planning. According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the current work of planning is subjected to the adjustment … [Read more...]

Viet kieu, foreigners invest in homes

Compiled by Le Hung Vong The changes to the housing law allowing foreigners and Viet kieu (overseas Vietnamese) to buy houses in Viet Nam (from July 1) has had an impact on the housing market. The increasing number of successful deals in the past seven weeks is a good sign for the market, indicating further good times are in store for it. Nguyen Bich Diep of Ha Noi's Thanh Tri District said her elder sister, who lives in Germany, has bought an 80sq.m apartment in Ha Noi for over VND2 billion (over US$90,000), and aims to rent it out if she cannot return to Viet Nam. Minh Anh, another overseas Vietnamese from Germany, has bought an apartment in HCM City and said he would sell in soon if he can make a profit. Otherwise, he would let it out for lease. "A return [on the investment] of 6 per cent is OK," Tin Tuc newspaper quoted him as saying. "It is equal to the interest rates offered by Vietnamese banks for one-year deposits and a little higher than interest rates at overseas … [Read more...]

Vietnam, Malaysia ink MoU to boost guest workers

Hanoi, August 18 (VNA) – Vietnam and Malaysia inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the employment of workers in a bid to boost the number of Vietnamese guest workers in Malaysia, reported the Ha Noi Moi. According to the Department of Overseas Labour at the Ministry of Labour, War Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA), the MoU enables the two nations to exchange information on each side’s labour-related laws and policies. Vietnam is allowed to send eligible workers to Malaysia in accordance with the partner’s requirements and laws while being required to take all necessary measures to prevent illegal immigration, human trafficking and illegal recruitment. Malaysia expressed its intent to cooperate with Vietnam across the board, including providing a favourable environment for Vietnamese labourers working in Malaysia. The MoLISA revealed that Vietnam has sent 220,000 workers to Malaysia since 2002 after the two countries signed a MoU on labour … [Read more...]

Pay rises depend on productivity

Bui Sy Loi, Deputy Head of the National Assembly's Social Affairs Committee, speaks to Ha Noi Moi (New Ha Noi) about salary reforms. Will you please ex-plain why work-ers' average wages in Viet Nam are lower than their peers in the region and the world? It is a universal truth that adjustment of a worker's minimum wage and their basic monthly salary depend on the economic growth rate, labour productivity and consumer price index (CPI) of the country. For example, in Viet Nam in the first quarter of 2015 there was not much change in our CPI, while the GDP was reported at 6.28 per cent. These two factors are not sufficient for the government to make a decision to increase the worker's salary. That's why, if we want to raise the workers' minimum wage, the only way is to increase labour productivity. But high labour productivity depends on several factors, including the production line, technology, machinery and equipment, labour structure in each type of enterprise and other things. I … [Read more...]

Consumer price index on increase in major cities

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Illustrative image (Source: VNA) Consumer price index (CPI) for the month of July rose in the country's two largest cities, Hanoi and HCM City, according to the statistics offices in these cities. The July CPI in Hanoi grew by 0.18 percent against the previous month's level and 0.77 percent over the same month last year, the statistics office of Hanoi reported on July 22. Nine of the 11 groups of goods used to calculate the CPI reflected a rise in prices this month. Of these, the price for the group comprising restaurant and catering services showed a growth of 0.13 percent due to a strong surge in food prices. The price for the group of housing, electricity, tap water, fuel and building material increased by 0.32 percent because of high demand for electricity and water from households during the hot weather period, said the office. The prices also rose by 0.26 percent for the group of beverages and tobacco; 0.47 percent for the group of textile, garment, hat and footwear; … [Read more...]

Consumer price index on the increase in major cities

HA NOI (VNS) — Consumer price index (CPI) for the month of July rose in the country's two largest cities, Ha Noi and HCM City, according to the statistics offices in these cities. The July CPI in Ha Noi grew by 0.18 per cent against the previous month's level and 0.77 per cent over the same month last year, the statistics office of Ha Noi reported yesterday. Nine of the 11 groups of goods used to calculate the CPI reflected a rise in prices this month. Of these, the price for the group comprising restaurant and catering services showed a growth of 0.13 per cent due to a strong surge in food prices. The price for the group of housing, electricity, tap water, fuel and building material increased by 0.32 per cent because of high demand for electricity and water from households during the hot weather period, said the office. The prices also rose by 0.26 per cent for the group of beverages and tobacco; 0.47 per cent for the group of textile, garment, hat and footwear; 0.38 per … [Read more...]

RoK-funded project helps improve vocational skills for Hai Duong workers

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The project will provide Hai Duong’s female workers with training courses on necessary vocational skills (Photo: VNA) NDO – The Korean International Co-operation Agency in Vietnam (KOICA) launched a project worth US$200,000 in Hai Duong province to improve the vocational skills of local female workers. Under the project, 150 female workers will receive training courses in English, Korean, computer and service skills, which are necessary vocational skills required by local and RoK businesses working in the locality. The trainees will also receive support for seeking jobs after finishing their courses. The project is co-financed by KOICA and Asiana Airlines to meet the demands of the local market while narrowing the wage gap between female and male workers. According to Country Director of KOICA in Vietnam Chang Jae Yun, imbalances in income between male and female workers, as well as the lack of safety at work, have imposed obstacles on Vietnamese women’s … [Read more...]

Hanoi’s six-month economic growth to reach four-year high

Hanoi economy is expected to grow at 7.8% during the first half of this year - the fastest pace in four years, reported the Ha Noi Moi (New Hanoi) daily newspaper. The gross domestic product expansion in the first six months has seen nearly all sectors with a higher growth pace than 2014, according to a draft report read at a regular meeting of the municipal People’s Committee on June 4. Industrial production rebounded with an expected value increase of 6.7% while budget revenue will exceed VND72.43 trillion (US$3.33 billion), excluding collections from dividends and remaining profits of State-owned companies. The draft reveals that the capital city succeeded in ensuring demand and supply balance of goods and price stability, especially during the Lunar New Year holiday in mid-February. Hanoi still faced major problems despite such substantial progress, said Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen The Thao, pointing out business bottlenecks, export … [Read more...]

Social News 23/5

Health officials find no addictive substance in street food Head of the Department of Food Administration of Vietnam under the Ministry of Health Dr. Nguyen Thanh Phong yesterday said that no addictive substances have been found in street food in Hanoi. After receiving the information of street food in Hanoi containing addictive substances, the Food Administration of Vietnam asked its sub-division, the National Institute of Food Control, to take samples for testing to update the information for consumers. Following the direction, medical workers from the National Institute of Food Control have taken 15 food samples from street eateries including 5 samples of sausages, 5 samples of steak and 5 fermented pork rolls. Test result showed that no addictive substances was found in most of food samples Dr. Nguyen Thanh Phong said that next time his Department would keep an eye on the matter especially health authorities in big cities to continue supervising food safety and hygiene in … [Read more...]

Russia to increase investment as co-operation with VN grows

The Chief Representative of the Russian Trade Office in Viet Nam, Maxim Golikov. — Photo laodong

HA NOI (VNS) — The Chief Representative of the Russian Trade Office in Viet Nam, Maxim Golikov, suggested that Russia and Viet Nam expand cooperation in trade and investment as well as implement policies to gain sustainability in trade turnover. Speaking at a press conference on Russia-Viet Nam investment prospects on Wednesday in Ha Noi, he stressed the need to focus on projects that boost socio-economic development via investment in new technologies, which would create jobs for the two sides. He also told the media that attracting investment was a central issue raised during Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's working sessions with Vietnamese leaders at his April visit to Viet Nam. A majority of the cooperation documents signed during his official visit related to investment cooperation. To achieve investment cooperation targets, the two countries introduced new mechanisms, like an inter-governmental working group to handle prioritised investment projects. The free … [Read more...]

Social News 21/5

Dong Nai residents face eviction for airport Authorities in Dong Nai Province have asked the central Government to allow it to evict residents and resettle them to make way for a project to build Long Thanh airport. At a working session on Tuesday, Dong Nai People's Committee and a work panel for handling the resettlement, said it was important to hear comments from affected residents. Tran Van Vinh, vice-chairman of the committee, appointed the provincial Department of Natural Resources and the Environment as the focal point. It is supposed to work with other departments and agencies to complete a blueprint of the project and submit it to the committee this month. The committee will consider it and and forward it on to other relevant agencies next month. Vinh also asked the Department of Labour, War Invalids and Social Affairs to collect input from concerned departments and agencies on a vocational training scheme tailored for the affected residents. This is hoped to help … [Read more...]

Labour productivity key to sustainable development

Vietnamese workers rank high in ASEAN skills competitions, but its labour productivity remains lower than other countries, Nguyen Anh Tuan of the Vietnam Productivity Institute told Ha Noi Moi newspaper. Tuan said t he country's labour productivity has increased by 3.5 percent annually since 2005, reaching about 74.3 million VND (3,500 USD) per labourer, according to recent statistics. However, d ata from 2012 showed Vietnam's productivity was about one fifteenth that of Singapore, one ninth of Japan's, one seventh of the Republic of Korea's and one third of Thailand's. Acdording to the official, labour productivity is affected by two factors: capital power and total factor productivity (TFP). TFP in economics is also called multi-factor productivity – the strengthening of investment capital in production and business activities. So, infrastructure and transport construction will help boost labour productivity. Thus, with the same quantity of human resources but more … [Read more...]

Expatriate-funded speedboat presented to Truong Sa soldiers

A speedboat built using money donated by Vietnamese expatriates in Germany was handed over to soldiers on Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelago on May 20, reported the Ha Noi Moi newspaper. The paper said the boat, named Truong Sa CQ-01, will be sent to serve military units on Song Tu Tay Island, part of the Vietnamese archipelago. The boat’s construction was funded with 110,000 EUR (about 122,370 USD) donated by the overseas community who wish to contribute to the protection of the national sea and island sovereignty. The money was raised under a programme which was launched by expatriates in Germany in the wake of China’s illegal placement of an oil rig in Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone in May 2014.-VNA … [Read more...]

IT firms seek mobile programming workers

Information technology (IT) companies in Vietnam are in need of personnel in mobile application programming due to a shortage of workers in the field, the Ha Noi Moi (New Hanoi) daily reported. Smart phones have become popular among Vietnamese people in recent years, especially the youth, with 20 percent of the country’s population using smart phones in 2014. The rapidly growing use of smart phones has resulted in increasing demand for mobile programming workers. According to the Ho Chi Minh City Centre of Forecasting Manpower Needs and Labour Market Information, the demand for IT personnel in the first half of last year accounted for more than 7 percent of the total vacancies. Up to 15 percent of the IT job vacancies were in mobile programming and continued to hike during the last half of the year. The city is forecast to need 16,000-20,000 IT workers every year, including 2,000-2,500 in mobile programming. Acting Director of the centre Tran Anh Tuan predicts more than … [Read more...]

Gov’t mulls bankrolling amateur innovators to boost quality, yields

The Government is committed to supporting people with creative ideas, Nguyen Quan, Minister of Science and Technology, told Ha Noi Moi (New Hanoi) newspaper. Q: How is Vietnam situated in terms of technical innovation, in particular the contribution of Vietnamese amateurs (those who are not scientists, engineers, etc.)? A: Vietnam is very proud to have a good contingent of well educated scientists working at research institutes and universities. They are leading science and technology development in our country. However, in general, I would say that the demand is bigger than supply. So it is a good idea to call for the participation of amateur innovators from enterprises, organisations and individuals from all walks of life. There are many people who do not have academic qualifications but are passionate about innovating and further developing science and technology in the country. We should give them opportunities and support to conduct research and apply their work in their own … [Read more...]

Run day for health opened in Hanoi

HNM Deputy Editor-in-Chief Mai Thi Kim Thoa (R) receiving the donation from General Director of Amway Vietnam Leo Boon Wang

PANO - As many as 3,000 runners participated in a 3.4km run around Hoan Kiem Lake during the "Run Day for Health 2015" program launched in Hanoi on April 26th. The event was jointly held by the city's Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, in association with Nutrilite, Amway's brand name in Vietnam, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of South Liberation and National Reunification and raise fund for the "Bridge of Humanity" Charity Program by Ha Noi Moi Newspaper (HNM). Addressing the event, Director of the city's Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism To Van Dong held that the run was a practical activity to call on people to regularly exercise sports, contributing to improving people's health. The proceeds from the sale of sport clothing, worth over VND 200 million, was presented to Ha Noi Moi Newspaper to help disadvanteged people in the city. The event was also part of activities to mark the 80th anniversary of Nutrilite's brand name worldwide after its success in … [Read more...]

Website launched to promote Hanoi eateries

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A Hanoi cultural fund has launched a website to introduce eateries and cafés with delectable food and drinks and friendly, affordable services to locals and tourists. The Hanoi Cultural Fund on Wednesday put its website, "Dia Chi Ha Noi" (Hanoi Addresses), online at diachi.hanoidep.vn, newswire Vietnamplus reported. The website is one of the tasks which the management of a project called "Ha Noi Dep Va Chua Dep" (Hanoi’s Nice and Ugly Things) has worked on since late last year. Available on the site are the addresses of food shops and restaurants across the capital whose quality, prices, and service are ensured by the project management. Vietnamplus cited Nguyen Khac Loi, deputy director of the Hanoi Department of Culture, Sports, and Tourism, as saying that the website is an attempt to promote cultured manners in public. The "Dia Chi Ha Noi" website is expected to offer more helpful tourist and entertainment tidbits including scenic spots and recreation places … [Read more...]

Hanoi consumer prices up 0.2% in April

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A Hapro supermarket in Hanoi (Credit: Ha Noi Moi) NDO - Hanoi’s consumer price index (CPI) in April went up 0.2% against the previous month and 0.74% year on year, the municipal statistical agency has announced. This is second month that a rise in CPI was recorded after prices fell consecutively in the first two months of 2015. Last month, consumer prices in the capital city climbed by 0.38%, after dropping 0.17% and 0.07% in January and February respectively. The increases in the prices of petrol and electricity in March pushed up transport and utility costs by 2.5% and 1.84%. Home appliances rose by 0.34% against March, while garments and footwear posted a one-month increase of 0.25%. Food and dining services fell by 0.49% thanks to abundant supplies of grains, meat and vegetables. … [Read more...]

Luxury cruise brings around 1,600 visitors to Vietnam

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Luxury cruise liner Celebrity Millennium brings around 1,600 tourists to Vietnam NDO - The luxury cruise liner Celebrity Millennium bringing around 1,600 tourists docked at the Chan May port in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue on April 6. During their stay in Hue, the tourists visited signature landscapes of the central region, including the UNESCO-recognised Complex of Hue Monuments, Hoi An Ancient Town and My Son Sanctuary in Quang Nam province. The visitors will next travel to Hanoi, where they will take a city tour on electric cars and discover Vietnam’s history and culture at the Vietnam Museum of Ethnology. They are also scheduled to visit Hoa Lo prison, Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, One Pillar Pagoda, and the Temple of Literature. Earlier, the cruise passengers spent two days, April 4 and 5, in Ho Chi Minh City, Vung Tau city in Ba Ria-Vung Tau province and Nha Trang in Khanh Hoa province. The Celebrity Millennium will leave Vietnam on April 8 to continue their … [Read more...]

Fake cosmetics products flood market

Market watch teams check cosmetics products. Up to 50 per cent of cosmetics in the Viet Nam market place are reported to be counterfeits of well-known brands. — VNA/VNS Photo Tran Viet

HA NOI — Authorities will push for more checks on the cosmetics industry to be listed in the revised Investment Law, Ha Noi Moi (New Ha Noi) newspaper quoted a representative from the Drug Administration of Viet Nam. Up to 50 per cent of cosmetics in the Viet Nam market place are reported to be counterfeits of well-known brands, according to statistics from the Viet Nam unit on intellectual property. The unit said that low-quality and fake cosmetics posed a threat to customer's health. Many smuggling and illegal cosmetics factories were detected recently. The most recent was detected by the Ha Noi's Market Watch's Unit 14 last Saturday. The watch unit inspected five stores of the Xuan Thuy Cosmetics Ltd, confiscating about 100,000 cosmetics and related products. Market Watch sent samples of confiscated goods to police for testing. Last year, 164,000 cosmetics products in Ha Noi were found to be of uncertain origin, according to Market Watch. The department attributed the … [Read more...]