Making the Most Out of Rural Garden Tours

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Located in the heart of the Mekong Delta with dozens of large-scale fruit garden attractions concentrated nearby in Cai Rang, Phong Dien, Binh Thuy, O Mon and Thot Not, Can Tho City is considered to have considerable potential in river and rural garden tourism development. Director of the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Can Tho Tran Viet Phuong said: "In the future, rural garden tourism of Can Tho will be developed to serve all the needs of visitors."Hoang Lam reports.Can you tell us more about the potential and advantages of rural garden tourism development of Can Tho? In recent years, how has this tourism potential been exploited, and has it been effective? Rural garden tourism is the special product that Can Tho City, for many years, has been focused on exploiting efficiently, gaining remarkable results for the city's tourism sector. In particular, the number of tourists coming to Can Tho has increased by 12 percent a year on average; tourism revenue has reached … [Read more...]

Press digest – January 28

Deputy Prime Minister welcomes Lao Justice Minister Deputy PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc held a reception for a delegation from the Lao Justice Ministry led by Minister Bounkeut Sangsomsak. He highlighted that Viet Nam always supports and creates favourable conditions for the coordination between the two justice ministries. Minister Bounkeut Sangsomsak expressed his hope for more bilateral delegation exchange as well as more support from Viet Nam towards his ministry, especially in human resources training. DPM Minh to visit Philippines Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh will pay a working visit to the Philippines from January 29-31 at the invitation of Philippine FM Albert Del Rosario. During the visit, he will co-chair the first meeting of the Joint Working Committee on Viet Nam-Philippines Strategic Partnership. No Vietnamese casualties in eastern Ukraine: FM’s spokesman There has been no report of Vietnamese casualties in the recent fighting in eastern Ukraine, Foreign … [Read more...]

Government News 29/1

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No Vietnamese casualties in eastern Ukraine: FM’s spokesman There has been no report of Vietnamese casualties in the recent fighting in eastern Ukraine, Foreign Minister’s spokesman Le Hai Binh said in response to reporters’ queries in Hanoi on January 28. He said the Foreign Ministry has instructed the Vietnamese Embassy in Ukraine to closely monitor the situation and take measures to ensure security and safety of the Vietnamese community in the country, adding that the embassy has acted to quickly evacuate Vietnamese citizens from dangerous areas. In coordination with local Vietnamese associations, the embassy urged the Vietnamese community to stand in unity and offer mutual support, as well as take measures to ensure safety of their lives and assets, he said. According to him, the embassy is moving quickly to handle request for support in cases of unforeseen problems and help those who want to return to Vietnam. Deputy Prime Minister welcomes Lao Justice … [Read more...]

Ancient craft village battles devastating pollution

Women burn scrap metal in a field in the northern province of Bac Ninh's Dai Bai Commune. Pollution is a major problem in the commune - the home of a 400-year-old copper craft village.

VietNamNet Bridge – In a field filled with smoke, two women burned scrap metal. They had brought the metal here to burn so the smoke would not pollute the village, a job that brought them a daily wage of VND100,000 (nearly US$5). After the fire burned out, they would bring home what was left and salvage the usable pieces. Pollution is a major problem in Dai Bai Commune, home to a copper craft village that is more than 400 years old. In the modern era, villagers adopted the practice of using scrap metal as raw material, leaving the environment so polluted that for the last seven years, they have not been able to use local water, said Nguyen Viet Quang, vice chairman of Dai Bai Commune People's Committee in charge of economy and environment. Instead, they must buy clean water transported by tankers from outside for VND250,000 (around US$12) per cu.m. "Clean water is now our most serious problem. We were occupied with pursuing profits for so long that when we realised that we … [Read more...]

Police move gingerly on new law

A traffic police officer stops a motorbike on a busy street in HCM City. Traffic police say enforcing the new law on registering vehicle ownership is difficult, so they tend to focus on other violations. — Photo Tuoi tre (Youth) newspaper

VietNamNet Bridge – Traffic police in several northern localities say they are finding it difficult, if not impossible, to enforce a new law that imposes administrative penalties on people failing to register their ownership of used vehicles. Many traffic police officers in Ha Noi, Ninh Binh, Nam Dinh and Ha Nam told the Tien Phong (The Vanguard) newspaper that if the vehicles had already changed hands several times without re-registration, proving ownership or non-ownership would be a complicated, time-consuming process. "There is no way of knowing whether the driver of a vehicle running on the road is the registered owner or not unless it is stopped by traffic police for other violations or suspicious crimes," said Colonel Tran Van Luan, head of the Nam Dinh Traffic Police Department. And even if it is found that the driver is not the registered owner of the vehicle, it is not easy to fine him or her for that offence, according to Luan. "In many cases where vehicles are … [Read more...]

Vietnam, US Look for Deeper Relations in 2015

"Economic cooperation continues to be a bright spot in bilateral relations,"

says Vietnam’s ambassador to the US Pham Quang Vinh. Photo: Tran Le Lam – VNA Talking to a Washington-based Vietnam News Agency correspondent on January 3, the diplomat highlighted the recent fruitful achievements in the bilateral ties, saying that the comprehensive partnership, set up during President Truong Tan Sang’s visit to the US in July 2013, is an important framework for stepping up the two countries’ relations. He stressed that the results contributed significantly to pushing the all-around ties, especially in politics-diplomacy with a series of all -level visits during 2014. The two sides implemented 11 dialogue mechanisms in such areas as politics, security, defence, economy, development, democracy, human rights and labour, he added. According to the ambassador, economic cooperation continued to be a bright spot in bilateral relations. The US remains one of Vietnam’s leading economic partners and export markets with two-way trade … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s two biggest cities to upgrade power grids on $273mn ADB loan

The government will re-lend the $273 million credit package it borrows from the Asian Development Bank and the ASEAN Infrastructure Fund pursuant to a 20-year term to EVN Hanoi and EVN Ho Chi Minh City, according to the

Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has approved a financial mechanism to develop the power grids in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City under a foreign loan worth more than US$270 million, local media reported Wednesday. Vietnam News Agency. The borrowers are the subsidiaries of Electricity Vietnam (EVN), the country’s power monopoly. The two will have to repay the loan within 20 years. They are not required to pay back the principal from now until March 15, 2020 but the borrowers are liable for the interest during that grace period. EVN provides a guarantee for its Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City units on the loan, which means the state-run power utility will repay the debts if the borrowers fail to do so. The power grid upgrade projects in Vietnam’s two biggest cities are intended to reduce power cuts and ease the overloading of the 220/110kV system. The projects also seek to improve electricity quality and reduce power loss to increase the credibility and safety of … [Read more...]

Military helicopter crashed in Ho Chi Minh City

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Chairman of the People’s Committee of Binh Chanh District in Ho Chi Minh City, Nguyen Van Tuoi affirmed that a military helicopter crashed in Pham Van Hai Commune on January 28. The Bell UH-1 helicopter with 4 people on board lost contact with ground traffic control about 8 minutes after departing Tan Son Nhat International Aiport for a training exercise. All of the city’s search and rescue forces from the Ho Chi Minh City's Fire Prevention and Fighting Police Department, the city High Command and the border guards are joining in a search for the plane. The Bell UH-1 is a multipurpose military helicopter. The 14-seat plane (including 4 crew) with a maximum speed of 217km per hour is 17.4m; 4.39m high and weighed 4,100kg. … [Read more...]

Quang Binh accelerates thermal plant project

The authorities of central Quang Binh province and the management board of the Vung Ang-Quang Trach Power Project are implementing a range of measures to speed up the construction of the Quang Trach 1 thermal power plant to ensure it is operational by 2020. The province will focus on compensation and site clearance to hand over the property to the project management board before the third quarter of 2015, while building electricity and transportation systems to facilitate the construction of the plant. It also pledged to create favourable conditions for the investor to carry out the project in a timely manner. Meanwhile, the project management board will work to complete legal procedures dictating the selection of a contractor and consultant group so that construction can commence in June 2016. The 34 trillion VND (1.59 billion USD) Quang Trach 1 thermal power plant, invested by Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group, was launched in Vinh Son hamlet, Quang Dong commune, Quang Trach … [Read more...]

Fisheries output increases despite unfavourable weather

Fisheries output up 2.3% in January.    NDO – The nation’s total fishing production in January is estimated to reach 409,000 tonnes, up 2.3% compared to the same period in 2014, despite unfavourable weather conditions.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), total production is forecasted at 223,000 tonnes, up 2.8%; while aquaculture output is also up by 1.8% to 186,000 tonnes. A representative from the Directorate of Fisheries under the MARD said that fishermen in northern localities on their fishing season enlist to offshore operation, generating in a considerable output. Local fishermen are encouraged to team up for offshore fishing and focus on catching high-value fish such as tuna, scad, squid, and shrimp, while increasing investment in boats to increase offshore capacity. In particular, for tuna fishing, some provinces have seen significant increase in the total of produce caught, including Khanh Hoa with 450 tonnes, up 7.1%; Binh Dinh 240 tonnes, up 4.3%; and Phu Yen estimated at 550 tonnes, equivalent to the same period last year. Aquaculture output in January also rose, estimated to reach 186,000 tonnes nationwide, up 1.8% year-on-year. Accordingly, … [Read more...]

World-famous seafood producers from southern Vietnam

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VietNamNet Bridge – The prestigious seafood journal, "Seafood Intrafish", has announced the Top 100 most influential people in the fisheries sector worldwide, with two Vietnamese names. The first is Le Van Quang, Chairman of Minh Phu Seafood Corporation JSC, ranking 54th. Minh Phu corporation of Le Van Quang and his family are giant shrimp exporters with export turnover up to 50,000 tons per year and $730 million in revenue last year. Minh Phu is striving to reach $1 billion after breakthrough growth of 40% annually in 2013-2014. Earlier, on the list of top 100 largest seafood businesses worldwide of Undercurrent News, a journal of fisheries based in the UK, Minh Phu ranked 23rd. The company also entered the list of 20 businesses in East Asia honored as global development enterprises by the World Economic Forum. On the Vietnam stock market, the property of Quang rocketed last year. Quang and his wife - Mrs. Chu Thi Binh - each earned an additional VND1 trillion (nearly $50 … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s livestock sector in a changing landscape

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The Hanoitimes - Vietnam’s livestock sector has always been considered by most leading economists to be particularly vulnerable to regional and global trade liberalisation, largely because it is dominated by smallholder production systems typified by the traditional family farm. The argument has been that agricultural trade liberalisation would give undue advantage to large commercial scale production systems such as those in neighbouring Thailand at the expense of the family farmer resulting in a deterioration of the trade balance for the industry. However, other economists have said not so fast, regional trade liberalization in particular would bring with it a reduction in costs for the smallholder in Vietnam along with an increase in sales prices relative to costs and thereby increase their income. It would also provide the opportunity for those able to reinvest those profits or corral alternative sources of investment to boost research, modernise their equipment and scale … [Read more...]

Social News 27/1

Students respond to blood donation campaign Thousands of students from various universities in Hanoi participated in a voluntary blood donation campaign at the Hanoi University of Technology on January 25 as part of the ongoing ‘Red Sunday’ festival nationwide. Speaking at the event , Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said more efforts need to be made to further promote voluntary blood donation movements, including raising public awareness and keeping blood transfusion safe . Phuc joined volunteers in signing to show determination in promoting voluntary blood donation , making the Red Sunday develop further in the coming time. Meanwhile, Health Minister Nguyen Thi Kim Tien, who is also head of the National Steering Committee for Voluntary Blood Donation, quoted the World Health Organsisation’s statistics saying that Vietnam needs minimum 1.8 million blood units to save patients. However, the country has yet to meet the demand, she noted, adding that the … [Read more...]

Second-home segment bouncing back

The second-home market is becoming livelier as the property market emerges from a long slump. Dau Tu newspaper reported that the Vinh Thien Duong Company is wrapping up preparations for its 300 million VND Alma resort in Cam Ranh, comprising of 200 villas and 400 apartments meant as holiday homes. Russian firm State Development is building the Cam Ranh Flowers Resort in the same town with villas, bungalows and apartments, and is scheduled to complete it in the first quarter of 2016. In nearby Nha Trang, Hoan Cau Group, the developer of the 4-billion-VND Diamond Bay City, has unveiled its Diamond Bay Resort II. It is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter with more than 1000 apartments and almost 380 bungalows, all of four-star quality. An 18-hole golf course and a resort are already in operation. The company's Business and Marketing Director Tran Ngoc Nhat hoped that the first 200 apartments on offer will soon find buyers since Nha Trang is a favourite destination for … [Read more...]

Transplanting cucumber

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Tam Binh Plant Protection Station (Vinh Long Province) has launched a pilot model which allowed them to transplant cucumbers with gourds, luffa fruits, and other creeper plants. It promises to offer high income for farmers and can extend this model in the region. The model was implemented in three households in Binh Quy Hamlet (Ngai Tu Commune) with an area of 3,000 square meters; farmers were well-trained, and supported seeding to conduct this model. The model has some outstanding properties in comparison with current method, for example: cucumbers are less wilted, longer harvest time, well-looking fruits, brittle fruit pulp, estimated productivity 1.5 ton/1,000 square meters, higher 300-500 kg compared to model without transplantation. The model had technical supports from associate professor, Dr. Tran Thi Ba, Faculty of Agriculture & Biological Application (Can Tho University). … [Read more...]

Vietnamese masseuse held for stealing 2 iPhones from Australian expert

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Vietnamese police have identified the masseuse who stole two cell phones from an Australian expert while serving him at a local hotel a fortnight ago, local media reported. >> Cabbie in Vietnam metropolis returns $11,600 Vertu phone to passenger After days of investigation, police in the central province of Nghe An said on Sunday that they had detained Nguyen Thi Ha, 22, a local woman, on suspicion of stealing property. Ha is a drug addict and has a previous conviction of appropriating property through swindling, police said. The investigation was launched after Mark Beaumont Dutch, 52, an Australian national who is head of the technical department at the Nghi Son Oil Refinery Plant in the central province of Thanh Hoa, reported he lost an iPhone 5 and 5s and a Zippo lighter at the Thai Binh Duong Hotel in Nghe An’s Cua Lo town. On January evening, after a working trip to Nghe An’s Vinh City, Dutch stayed at the hotel and asked it for a massage service in … [Read more...]

Hai Phong climb to top of V-League

On the rise: Andre Diego Fagan of Hai Phong (left) vies for the ball against Can Tho's Phan Thanh Phuc during their V-League match.

VietNamNet Bridge – The rich Quang Ninh Coal let defending champions Becamex Binh Duong taste their first defeat of the Toyota V.League 1 season yesterday, Jan 25. The team were beaten 1-2 on their home turf at Go Dau Stadium. The loss resulted in the hosts losing their top position to Hai Phong, who secured their fourth win in a row yesterday. On-song visitors created a miracle, with top performances from all players, giving the hosts – who won all four matches ahead of their clash – no chance. A multi-layer defence worked so hard and effectively that none of Binh Duong's goal hunters could access anywhere near their penalty area during the first half, although the hosts dominated ball possession. Quang Ninh nearly opened the score with rapid counter-attack tactics in the middle of the first half, when overseas Vietnamese striker Mac Hong Quan's kick found the cross bar. Former national player Nguyen Quang Hai made a double for Quang Ninh in the first five … [Read more...]

HCM City to provide vocational training, jobs for youth

A free haircut class for youth in HCM City. Employment services and vocational training centres in the city will provide job training to 20,000 young people and jobs to another 25,000 youth this year.

VietNamNet Bridge – Employment services and vocational training centres overseen by the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union will provide job training to 20,000 young people and jobs to another 25,000 youth this year. They also plan to provide career counselling to 400,000 people, and work more closely with enterprises in industrial parks and export processing zones, said Le Thanh Tu, head of the HCM Communist Youth Union Central Committee's employment division. Tu spoke this week at a workshop on jobs for young people held by the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union. He said the centres would give priority to job training to match jobs in high demand in their localities. Also speaking at the workshop, Nguyen Thi Hai Van, head of the Department of Labour and Employment, said the centres had taken an active role in creating jobs for young people in the country. She praised the quality of programmes at HCM City's Employment Services and Vocational Training Centre for Young … [Read more...]

Social News 25/1

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Authorities bust traffickers for transporting firecrackers Several individuals were caught transporting forbidden commodities over the past few days, alerting authorities to the worsening problem of trafficking during the days approaching Tet (lunar new year). In Quang Ninh Province's Ha Long City yesterday, a team of economic and traffic police caught container driver Tran Van Dang transporting 17kg of made-in-China firecrackers. The Hai Duong Province resident said he purchased the goods in Mong Cai City for VND800,000 (US$37) and intended to resell them for profit. City police are completing the necessary documents to charge Dang with transport of forbidden goods. On Wednesday, the General Department of Viet Nam Customs's Department of Investigation and Anti-Smuggling and Quang Ninh Province's Mong Cai Border Gate customs officers dispatched forces to watch for firecracker smugglers. Although the smugglers escaped, they left behind four jute bags containing 30 strings of … [Read more...]