Most modern cemetery in Vietnam, new threat to Dong Nai river

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VietNamNet Bridge - It remains questionable why the cemetery project near the Dong Nai River which threatens the life of the river, has been approved. In early July 2011, Dona Coop announced the project on building a cemetery which is expected to be the most modern one in Vietnam, to be located on the advantageous position in accordance with oriental geomancy. However, worries and doubts have been raised about the feasibility of the project. The position which the investors calls "advantageous position" is, in fact, is just 100 meters far from the Dong Nai river. Therefore, they have every reason to worry that the cemetery would pollute the river and threaten the means of subsistence of thousands of local people. The paradise for the dead… The An Vien Vinh Hang cemetery covers an area of 116 hectares in the first phase, capitalized at 500 billion dong and it is expected to become operational from the end of 2011. After that, 200 hectares more would be expanded in the second phase of … [Read more...]

New study sheds light on bank performance in Vietnam

As of February 29 this year, charter capital of all credit institutions totals VND460.9 trillion (US$20.9 billion).

The process of restructuring commercial banks in Viet Nam mostly focusses on mitigating negative effects and not on promoting positive factors, one of which is the increase in private ownership. Nguyen Hong Son, rector of the Viet Nam National University's School of Economics and Business, made the remark in his group's recent working paper which shows the results of an empirical test to study the relation between the ownership structure and bank performance, using data collected from 44 banks in the Vietnamese banking system from 2010 to 2012. The study finds that in their models measuring banks' Return on Asset (ROA) and Return on Equity (ROE), the non-performing loan ratio has the opposite impact on the banks' ability to earn profits while the percentage of private ownership presents a positive relationship with profitability. Therefore, the researchers recommended that the percentage of private equity in banks should be increased, even in the State-owned commercial banks, … [Read more...]

HCM City wants office to be named national heritage site

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HCM City has petitioned the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism to list its People's Committee office as a national heritage site along with some other French-era buildings in the city. The HCM City People's Committee head office was painted in traditional colours last year when the Nguyen Hue Pedestrian Street was built. The building at 86 Le Thanh Ton, District 1, was built between 1898 and 1909 based on the bell tower architecture from northern France. Designed by Femand Gardès, it used to be the Hôtel de Ville de Saigon. Though this elegant colonial building is not open to the public now, it remains very popular with tourists looking for photo opportunities. Tourists can take photographs outside and many people choose to do so at night when the building and its grounds are lit up. HCM City is the place with the most number of 100-year-old buildings in the country. The list also includes Lê Quý Đôn High School, HCM City University of Fine Arts, Thông Tây Hội Communal … [Read more...]

There is no “magic stick” but Vietnam has Cam Ranh

Cam Ranh Port

VietNamNet Bridge - Vietnam can use strategic ports and harbors, such as Cam Ranh, to provide inventories and logistics, anchoring, repair and maintenance services for international ships passing through the maritime route from the East Sea to the Indian Ocean and vice versa. In China’s provoking strategy in the East Sea in order to monopolise the region, the strength of Vietnam/the Philippines is they have international public opinion on their side. The adventurous point of China’s strategy is it increasingly pushes the US and its allies as Japan, Western Europe, including Australia, and India, to have to confront China in a competition in the freedom of navigation. Specifically, the future conflict of freedom of circulation and maritime security in the Western Pacific, which can spread to the Indian Ocean, once Vietnam/the Philippines and other countries in the region gradually lose sovereignty and fall into the orbit of China. Thus, in parallel with the game of … [Read more...]

East Sea: Resignation will become acceptance

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VietNamNet Bridge - Resignation will gradually transform into the forced acceptance of the de facto control of China in the East Sea (internationally known as the South China Sea) and then the existence of the conventions on the law of the sea cannot do much to change the fact: the U-shaped line is established gradually in practice. The long-term goal of China is to control the international shipping route, from the Near East through the Indian Ocean to the East Sea. Along with economic growth, this sea route has become increasingly vital to China. But it is also vital to the US, Japan and other countries in the region. The collaboration of international maritime security between China and the US, Japan and ASEAN would be ideal for the stability and prosperity of the region. But turning the international waters into the territorial waters of China is a more secure guarantee for China, at the cost of the sovereignty of the smaller countries in the region which has been violated. In … [Read more...]

Social News 10/5

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Early summer rain alleviates saltwater in Hau Giang A heavy rain that lasted for one hour on May 9 has helped ease the after-effects of saline intrusion in many parts of the Mekong Delta province of Hau Giang. The rain came as a release after nearly half a month the province bears the brunt of the worst saltwater intrusion in history. In early May, the province had to declare an emergency situation due to high salinity in Vi Thanh City, Long My town and the districts of Long My and Vi Thuy. As of early May, the serious situation caused damage worth 13 billion VND (585,000 USD) in Hau Giang. According to Truong Canh Tuyen, Chairman of the provincial People's Committee, if the situation continues to get worst, the province will lose another 3,000 hectares of summer-autumn paddies by May's end. If the intrusion persists in June, there will be a high risk of mass crop failure and many local craft villages will have to suspend operation over materials shortage, he noted, adding … [Read more...]

HCM City hospital performs 100 heart surgeries

HCM City hospital performing 100 heart surgeries

Cardiac surgeons at the HCM City University Medical Centre have successfully performed 100 minimally invasive heart operations. With technical assistance from German surgeons, the hospital performed the first case in June 2014, Doctor Nguyen Hoang Dinh, head of the center’s heart surgery department, said. Surgeons perform minimally invasive heart surgery through a small incision (4-5 cm long) on the right side of the chest instead of cutting through the breastbone to gain access to the heart as in traditional open-heart surgery. This method offers many advantages, including less trauma and pain, lower risk of infection, shorter recovery time and smaller scars, Dinh said. It takes around three weeks for patients to recover instead of three months in case of open-heart surgery. Surgeons can perform a number of procedures using this technique, including repair and replacement of the mitral and tricuspid valves, replacement of the aortic valve, atrioventricular canal defect … [Read more...]

UV radiation reaches high-risk level in South Vietnam

Cover up: Residents in HCM City wear hats, long-sleeved clothes, sunglasses and masks to protect their skin as the ultraviolet (UV) radiation index in the southern region, including HCM City, rose to 10-12, a high risk level this week – Photo: VNS

VietNamNet Bridge – The ultraviolet (UV) radiation index in much of the southern region, including HCM City, will continue to be at 10-12 high-risk level until the end of this week, according to a meteorologist. Le Thi Xuan Lan, lecturer at the HCM City University for Natural Resources and Environment, said that the prolonged dry season and hot weather since the beginning of the year had caused the high UV level. According to the Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting in the Southern Region, the average temperature since Monday has been 34-40 degrees Celsius. All southern provinces and the area’s two major cities, HCM City and Can Tho, received a total of 10-50 millimetres of rain, beginning on May 1. Lan said that the UV index of 8 to 10 is considered "very high" exposure, and 11 to 13 is considered "extreme", according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. "UV radiation is strongest between 10 am and 4 pm. The overexposure could lead to high risk of harm … [Read more...]

Social News 8/5

​Kinh Thien Palace is now left with a staircase bordered by two stone dragons.

French building to be moved for Kinh Thien Palace restoration The Prime Minister has approved the moving of the two-storey building of the Department of Operations to a new location for the restoration of Kinh Thien Palace of Thang Long Citadel Complex in Hanoi. The French-built building where the Department of Operations was located during wartime blocks the front view of Kinh Thien Palace and disrupts the direct link between the palace and Doan Mon (South Gate) of the citadel. According to Dai Viet Su Ky Toan Thu (Complete Annals of Dai Viet), construction of the palace began in 1428 under the reign of King Le Thai To and was completed under King Le Thanh Tong. The palace is among the most important buildings in the citadel complex which was often used for royal meetings during the Ly (1009-1225), Tran (1226-1400), Le (1428-1789) and Nguyen (1802-1945) dynasties. Most of it was destroyed by French in 1886. They left behind only the floor and a staircase bordered by two stone … [Read more...]

Artist creates ornamental tiles from coconut shells

Pham Hong Bao, owner of a handicraft factory in Tuy Hoa City, has succeeded in developing an environmentally-friendly product, winning artistic acclaim for his work. -- Photo enternews.vn

VietNamNet Bridge – A graduate from the HCM City University of Fine Arts is using coconut shells for ornamental tiles to develop his small business in his home province of Phu Yen. Pham Hong Bao, owner of a handicraft factory in Tuy Hoa City, has succeeded in developing an environmentally-friendly product, winning artistic acclaim for his work. Coconut shells have long been a popular material in the country for making eating utensils such as bowls and trays. In 2005, Bao took advantage of the coconut shell’s hardness and natural beauty to make ornamental tiles. "I crushed the coconut shells and fixed them with special glue, and then put them under pressure to create the tiles,’’ he said. "This helps products have very beautiful designs created by natural patterns on coconut shells put together at random," said Bao, who has experience in the fine arts. Bao said the production cost of coconut shells is cheap, around VND20,000 (US$1) for one kilo. "I buy … [Read more...]

Traditional ao dai remains a timeless trend

Globetrotting: Ao dai is worn at the Vatican. - VNS Photo from the fan page Ao Dai Around the world  Hats off: More than 1,000 people wore ao dai at the opening ceremony of the HCM City Ao Dai Festival 2016. - VNS Photo Dao Quang Chau

VietNamNet Bridge - Though Viet Nam's famous traditional dress has taken many forms over the centuries, its allure and appeal has never died. People all over Viet Nam are familiar with poems featuring the beauty of the country's national dress, the ao dai, its slim-fitting tunic with long side splits from the waist, worn over palazzo-style trousers. The traditional woman's dress has been mentioned in many poems, stories and songs for centuries. Poet Dinh Vu Ngoc likened it to the country's S-shape in her poem Chiec Ao Dai Viet Nam, which was roughly translated as: "The fatherland's dress, slender shape "The national beauty split into two flaps "The flap on the side of the East Sea with sparkling waves "The flap on the side of the Truong Son Mountains is brilliant with flowers "The wide flap in the South flying in the wind "The waspy waist of the Central region "The heartbeat of Ha Noi on the chest "The fragrance of three regions, the fragrance of flesh. The ao dai is … [Read more...]

UNESCO Vietnam faces complaints over USD1,000 a head awards ceremony

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Many people have complained about the Vietnam Federation of UNESCO Associations (VFUA) who been accused of harassing people into spending VND22 million (USD1,000) for tickets to an awards ceremony. People are asked to pay nearly USD1,000 to attend the event In the past few days, several academics have been invited to a ceremony to honour managers on global ethical standards, people that make achievements in Vietnam and to honour individuals and organisations in business sectors that meet UNESCO's criteria. The event is expected to be held on April 23 in Hanoi. On the invitation, they were asked to pay VND22m to cover the cost of venue rental, light, equipment and the trophies that will be given to them. By participating, they are promised to a global ethic conference held by UNESCO Vietnam and meeting with experts in education, culture, health sectors and country's top leaders. Associated Professor Nguyen Thi Phuong Hoa from University of Social Sciences and Humanities - Vietnam … [Read more...]

HCM City to issue electronic bus ticket cards

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The HCM City Department of Transport plans to issue electronic ticket cards on all bus routes next year in an aim to improve passenger convenience and management of the bus system. The build-own-operate project for the smart ticket system for public transport has a total investment of 321.1 billion VND (14.3 million USD), approved by the municipal People’s Committee. The three-year project, which began last year, will allow passengers to pay ticket fares online each month or for the entire year. Khuat Viet Hung, Deputy Chairman of the National Traffic Safety Committee, said that the implementation of electronic ticket systems in public passenger transport would create conveniences for passengers. An information technology revamp will prevent misuse of subsidy policies, Hung said at a conference held recently. Although subsidies for bus operators have remained stable, the number of bus passengers has fallen sharply, according to the city’s Public Transport … [Read more...]

HCM City to issue electronic bus ticket cards for all routes

A bus of the Saigonbus Co Ltd heads towards the Ben Thanh Market-Cho Lon Terminal. The HCM City Department of Transport plans to issue electronic ticket cards for all bus routes next year. – VNA/VNS Photo Hoang Hai

VietNamNet Bridge – The HCM City Department of Transport plans to issue electronic ticket cards on all bus routes next year in an aim to improve passenger convenience and management of the bus system. The build-own-operate project for the smart ticket system for public transport has a total investment of VND321.1 billion (US$14.3 million), approved by the municipal People’s Committee. The three-year project, which began last year, will allow passengers to pay ticket fares online each month or for the entire year. Khuat Viet Hung, deputy chairman of the National Traffic Safety Committee, said that the implementation of electronic ticket systems in public passenger transport would create conveniences for passengers. An information technology revamp will prevent misuse of subsidy policies, Hung said at a conference held last Friday. Although subsidies for bus operators have remained stable, the number of bus passengers has fallen sharply, according to the city’s … [Read more...]

Artists’ photo campaign a warning about devastating effects of pollution

A photo collection featuring eight Vietnamese artists wearing gas masks is circulating on social media websites YouTube, Facebook and Instagram. The photos depict the effects of pollution on daily life, especially from exhaust emitted by power stations that use fossil fuel. - Photo daidoanket.vn

VietNamNet Bridge - A photo collection featuring eight Vietnamese artists wearing gas masks is circulating on social media websites YouTube, Facebook and Instagram. The photos depict the effects of pollution on daily life, especially from exhaust emitted by power stations that use fossil fuel. "I'm shocked. I can't imagine how my life will be in the future if pollution becomes more severe," said Nguyen The Hung, a student at the HCM City University of Economies. The photo collection, created by art director Lai Nguyen and photographer Milor Tran, is part of the "I Can't" campaign launched by CHANGE (Centre of Hands-on Action and Networking for Growth and Environment) and 350.org Viet Nam. With the topic of "Don't Let Pollution Destroy Your Life", the campaign has attracted eight artists, including composer/singers Thanh Bui and Tien Tien, singers Trong Hieu, Bich Ngoc and Hoang Quyen, actress Diem My, choreographer Alexander Tu and dancer Hai Anh. Composer/singer Thanh Bui, who … [Read more...]

CAAV’s plan to build airports in northwest raises controversy

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VietNamNet Bridge - Aviation experts believe that it would be a waste to spend VND10 trillion to build three airports in the northwest. The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) has submitted to the Ministry of Transport a plan to build three airports in the northwestern provinces with total investment capital of VND9.813 trillion. Economists disagree with the plan, describing it as ‘unnecessary’ and ‘wasteful’. Tran Dinh Ba from the Vietnam Economics Association said Vietnam is not a large country, but it has up to 100 airports, many of which are located near each other and and left idle. "The Phu Quoc Airport, built at a high cost, has been put up for sale. The Can Tho International Airport nearby has been deserted. I am afraid that the three airports in the northwest will be in the same situation," he said. The expert said that National Assembly’s deputies have many times expressed their worries about the ‘airport inflation’ in … [Read more...]

Teen tales hit shelves amid growing demand

Life and love: The cover of Chao (Fermented Tofu), a 70-page book of eight short stories by writer Doan Thach Bien, includes tales about girls and boys at high school. -- VNS Photo

VietNamNet Bridge - After a hiatus of several years, talented writer Doan Thach Bien has written two books, both of which were released in HCM City this week. While the 70-page book Chao (Fermented Tofu) includes eight short stories, the 107-page Mua He Khac Nghiet (Hard Summer) is a novella. Both tell stories about girls and boys at high school who discover life and love. The book features teen loves, hopes and dreams, written with the author's typical imagination and flair. Bien told his fans at the book-signing ceremony in HCM City that he was involved in writing books aimed at teenagers because he "wanted to create a dreamlike world for youngsters, who believe in the best things about life and people". More than 11,000 copies of the two books have been printed and distributed by the HCM City Culture and Arts Publishing House and Phương Nam Book. According to the Phương Nam Book, the company signed an exclusive contract to publish several books of Bien, some of them released … [Read more...]

Students’ research on iris biometrics technology recognized in journal

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VietNamNet Bridge - A research work by two Vietnamese university students on iris biometrics has been recognized by the Journal of KIIT, a prestigious scientific publication, which is heartening news for the Vietnamese community of young scientists. In Vietnam, iris biometrics technology remains unfamiliar to people. However, Nguyen Hai Duong and Ung Quang Huy, the two young scientists, believe that the technology is a growing trend for security solutions in modern times. They have devoted themselves to research on the matter. Citibank has utilized iris biometric technology for its ATM cards, while Fujitsu and Microsoft have used the technology for smartphones instead of PIN codes. The bad news is that password, PIN codes and fingerprint biometrics cannot ensure absolute security. Most recently, a research team from University of Michigan and Vkansee announced they could forge fingerprints to unlock iPhones. A research work by two Vietnamese university students on iris … [Read more...]

Southern provinces shifts to compressed natural gas

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Officials from the transport sectors of southern provinces urged the Government to issue special policies to encourage the use of compressed natural gas (CNG) in public transportation. A compressed natural gas (CNG) bus is put into operation on the Ben Thanh - Cho Lon route in HCM City. Tran Van Quan, deputy director of Dong Nai Province's Department of Transport, said the scheme of purchasing 550 CNG buses for the province had been submitted to the provincial government twice. However, the central government has not issued a policy to help enterprises develop the CNG transport industry. The Government had said that CNG was not a new technology that was to be given top priority, he said. The province has been working with Binh Duong Province and HCM City to present its views to the Government. The Government does not see the long-term environmental benefits of reducing import taxes to develop a CNG automobile industry, Quan said, adding that the Government should offer … [Read more...]

US, Russia compete for investment opportunities in Vietnam

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VietNamNet Bridge - The US economic presence in Vietnam has been increasing steadily since the normalization of Vietnam-US relations since the 1990s. Russia, which was once the largest trade partner of Vietnam, has also returned. Russia Beyond The HeadLines, in an article published some days ago, quoted economists as saying that there are plenty of niches that Russia can find in the Vietnamese market, even though the US’s increased presence seems to make it more difficult for Russia and other countries to compete. Hoang Khu, a former technical specialist at Vietsovpetro, an oil and gas joint venture between Vietnam and Russia, said on the website that Russia remains Vietnam’s favorite partner in the fields of high technology, national defence and nuclear power. Moscow and Hanoi both wish to boost cooperation between the two countries in economic fields. The export of Russian Renault cars to Vietnam and the establishment of a Vietnam industrial complex in Moscow are … [Read more...]