Prompt actions made to cope with floods in central region
Northern central provinces are making utmost efforts to deal with severe floods that have led to widespread damage over the last few days.
The standing board of the Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control had a meeting on October 16 to direct flood response in the region.
Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Hoang Van Thang, who is also deputy head of the committee’s standing board, asked the affected localities to keep a close watch on the rainfall and flood situation, expeditiously search for the missing and repair roads, and evacuate people in areas prone to flash flood and landslides.
Reservoirs must be examined while their release of water must ensure the safety for residents in lower areas. They must also keep an eye on typhoon Sarika, which has entered the East Sea on October 16 morning, and informed vehicles working at sea about it, he added.
Heavy rains and floods in the region, including Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue, have claimed 15 lives and injured 18 people while nine others went missing.
Nearly 100,400 houses, 1,600ha of rice and over 3,000ha of aquatic farming areas have been inundated with floodwater. Thirty-six positions on national roads have been under water or eroded, leading to traffic congestion, according to the committee’s standing office.
On late October 15, Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung led a delegation of the central steering committee and the National Committee for Search and Rescue to Quang Binh to steer response activities.
From October 13-15, the province recorded a rainfall of between 600-900mm, especially up to 920mm in Dong Hoi city and 950mm in Ham Ninh commune, triggering widespread floods, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Nguyen Huu Hoai said, adding that Quang Binh suspended all meetings to focus on coping with the deluge, including evacuation and food and water delivery to flood-hit areas.
Also on October 15, a Prime Minister document was sent to the affected provinces and relevant ministries to farm out specific tasks and urge them to make all-out efforts to handle the flood.
It said that due to a concurrent tropical depression and cold spell, downpours with rainfall of between 300-400mm were reported in the provinces from Ha Tinh to Thua Thien-Hue from October 12. Flood levels in downstream rivers continue rising, and there is high risks of flash flood and landslide in mountainous areas.
In the face of the serious flood damage, the Central Committee of the Vietnam Red Cross Society has decided to provide initial emergency relief worth 1.97 billion VND (over 88,600 USD) in cash and goods for Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh and Quang Tri.-VNA
PM launches national movement to support the poor
PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc and other officials sent messages to support the poor
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has launched a national movement to join hands to support the poor, targeting an annual average decrease of up to 1.5 percent of the poor household rate in the 2016-2020 period in line with the multidimensional poverty line.
The movement was kicked off at an online conference to implement the national target programme on sustainable poverty reduction in the 2016-2020 period in Hanoi on October 15, during which the PM and participants responded to a text-message campaign to raise fund for the poor and called for the entire society to join the campaign.
With each message of “VNN” sent to 1409 from October 15 to November 30, people can donate 15,000 VND to the fund. The number of messages by one person is unlimited.
Under the old poverty line, as of 2015, the proportion of poor households was 4.25 percent, a sharp drop from 14.2 percent in 2010. During the 2011-2015 period, the ratio declined 2 percent each year averagely and 6 percent in poor districts.
Meanwhile, average per capita income of poor households increased 1.6 times over that in 2011, while the rise was 2.5 times for those in extremely difficult and mountainous areas.
In the period, nearly 47.34 trillion VND was poured into the national target programme for sustainable poverty reduction, which has helped improved the living conditions for the poor as well as the infrastructure system in poor localities.
In the 2016-2020 period, the ratio of poor households is expected to drop 1-1.5 percent each year averagely in accordance with the new poverty line. The reduction is set to reach 4 percent per year in poor communes and districts and 3-4 percent among families from ethnic minority groups.
Resources for the programme is nearly 48.4 trillion VND, the majority of which is from the State budget.
UNDP Country Director in Vietnam Louise Chamberlain held that Vietnam should allocate more resources in activities to improve capacity of the poor in getting rid of poverty.
The UNDP pledged to work closely with the Vietnamese Government to mobilise financial sources, seeking creative and comprehensive solutions and connecting parties to support Vietnam in fulfilling all 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals, she stated.
PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc affirmed that poverty reduction is among top concern of the Party and State. Vietnam ’s achievements in the fields have been recognised by the international community, he said, noting that the country’s poverty rate dropped from 58 percent in 1993 to 4.45 percent in 2015 to the old poverty line, equivalent to 9.92 percent to the new line.
Vietnam has finished the UN Millennium Development Goals while there are still over 1 billion poor people in the world, mostly in rural areas, he declared.
However, he noted that the poverty rate of over 50 percent is still seen in 41 districts nationwide, while income of people from ethnic minority groups is equal to only one sixth of the country’s average figure.
At the same time, some localities are still confused in the classification of poor households, he said.
He called for high determination and solidarity of the entire society in implementing resolutions of the Party and National Assembly in poverty reduction and fulfilling UN SGDs.
The PM highlighted the need to strengthen communications in the field, as well as the improvement of people’s intellectual standards as a major solutions, along with the development of industry and services as well as the building of new-style rural area and the application of advanced technology in increasing livelihood for people.
He called for all families, enterprises, agencies and international organisation to uphold their social responsibility and raise funds for the poor and promoting activities of assisting poor localities and households in escaping poverty.
Vietnamese women rescued from prostitution in Malaysia
Malaysian police on October 12 rescued 26 Vietnamese women from a brothel in Bandar Botanic, Klang, Kuala Lumpur.
They are among 41 women, aged between 18 and 35, believed to be victims of human trafficking.
The rescued also include three Indonesians, eight Chinese and four Laotians who were forced to work for the brothel, which operated under the form of an entertainment centre.
The local police said a 36-year-old Malaysian man who managed the centre was arrested during the raid.
The case is under further investigation.
Outstanding farmers honoured in Hanoi
Outstanding farmers from 63 cities and provinces nationwide were honoured at a ceremony held in Hanoi on October 14 in the presence of President Tran Dai Quang.
The programme is a practical activity to encourage excellent farmers to modernise the agricultural sector, the President said.
He added that agriculture, farmers, and rural areas hold strategic position in the cause of national industrialisation, modernisation, construction and defence as well as play key role to spur socio-economic development, maintain political stability, ensure national defence-security, and promote cultural identities and environmental protection.
The President noted that farmers make up nearly 70 percent of the country’s total population and 50 percent of the workforce.
He urged the Vietnam Farmer’s Union to increase campaigns on building new rural areas, preserving and developing craft villages, improving human resources training, and developing economic cooperatives.
The Party and State will adjust policies to ensure social welfares for farmers and help them mitigate risks, he said.
President of the Vietnam Farmer’s Union Lai Xuan Mon said the annual programme aim to honour outstanding farmers for their innovation in labour production, rural development, and national security and sovereignty safeguarding.
Vietnamese Government grants scholarships to expat students in Laos
The Vietnamese Government’s scholarships for 2016 were presented to 35 children of overseas Vietnamese in Laos at a ceremony in Vientiane, Laos, on October 14.
The scholarships was part of an agreement on education and training cooperation between the two Governments and a cooperation plan on education and human resources development between Vietnam’s Ministry of Education and Training and Laos’s Ministry of Education and Sports.
Congratulating the 35 scholarship recipients, Vietnamese Ambassador to Laos Nguyen Manh Hung said the scholarships demonstrate the Vietnamese Party, State and people’s attention to overseas Vietnamese in Laos.
He hoped that they will study well so as to contribute to the development of Laos, which is their second homeland, and consolidate the special solidarity between the two countries.
The number of the Vietnamese Government’s scholarships for children of overseas Vietnamese in Laos has increased from five in 2005 to 35 at present.
Nguyen Duy Trung, Chairman of the General Association of Vietnamese People in Laos, described the scholarships as valuable material and spiritual gifts to the students that help encourage the development of the Vietnamese community, which is a friendship bridge linking the two nations.
Photos capture journalist’s visit to Truong Sa
As many as 60 photos taken by journalist Nguyen My Tra during her journey to Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelago are being put on show at an exhibition held in Ho Chi Minh City from October 15-20.
The photos were selected from her album while visiting Truong Sa and platform DK1– an important economics-science-service complex in the southern continental shelf for 10 days in June 2016.
The exhibition is a tribute to officials and soldiers who devoted their youth to safeguard the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity as well as ensure peace and happiness of families.
The Lighthouse work, created by Hoa Binh Construction & Real Estate Corporation and First News – a cultural company specialising in books, was introduced to public.
It is 7.4 meters high and weighs 1.2 tonnes with a diameter of 1.4 meters, demonstrating Vietnam’s sovereignty over Truong Sa and Hoang Sa (Paracel) archipelgos.
Trade Expo Indonesia offers opportunities for Vietnamese companies
Twenty Vietnamese enterprises are attending the Trade Expo Indonesia 2016, which opened in Jakarta, on October 12.
Le Hong Minh, head of Vietnam’s trade office in Indonesia, said the goal of Vietnamese enterprises is to introduce their products and survey the market.
Vietnam-Indonesia trade is estimated to reach between 5.4 to 5.6 billion USD in 2016, he said, noted that bilateral trade saw a slightly decrease this year and it might be difficult to realise the goal of 10 billion USD in two-way trade value in 2018.
The expo, Indonesia’s annual largest trade fair, attracted the participation of 120 countries and territories with 15,500 booths, displaying a wide range of products from food, beverage, consumer goods to health care products and drugs, electric and electronic equipment and machinery.
More than 1,100 Indonesian enterprises participated in the event and the organising board hopes that the total value of transactions at the expo will be about 154 million USD.
The expo will take place until October 16.
Programme to help vulnerable kids
A children’s protection programme will try to lower the proportion of disadvantaged children and those who are identified as vulnerable under the current rate of 4.3 percent from now to 2020, according to goals set by the HCM City Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.
Nguyen Thanh Phung, head of the department’s division in charge of the programme, said the municipal People’s Committee had approved the programme two months ago.
Phung spoke at a workshop on the programme held on October 11 in the city.
Disadvantaged children include those from families who are poor, near poor or from migrant families. They also include children with physical disabilities and HIV.
Vulnerable children are those who have a high risk of falling into poverty, which could lead to an increased risk of abuse or exposure to crime.
The children’s programme is also trying to lower the proportion of abused (defined as physical or sexual abuse) children in the city. Last year, the rate was 0.04 percent of all children.
Although the rate had fallen by 40 percent compared to 2011, the proportion was still too high, Phung said.
As of the first quarter, the city had more than 1.4 million children, including 18,000 considered disadvantaged and more than 57,000 identified as vulnerable.
From now to 2020, the programme will continue focusing on juveniles who have violated or are at a high risk of violating laws.
Speaking at the seminar, Ngo Thi Thuy, head of the Worldwide Orphans Foundation in Vietnam, said she was impressed by the city’s vocational training and education centre for adolescents, which has provided jobs to homeless children in not only the city but also neighbouring provinces.
She said the foundation would work with the Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs to carry out the 2020 children’s protection programme.
To Thi Kim Hoa, deputy chairwoman of the city’s Children’s Rights Protection Association, said that it was urgent to set up fast-response teams at communes or wards to provide timely assistance to children when they are abused or subjected to violence.
“One time, the association’s hotline received calls from a mother of Binh Chanh District to ask for help when her child was hit at school and treated at hospital. At that time, we could not provide timely assistance. We only sent the information about the case to the department’s Children Protection Division and suggested that the legal association help,” Hoa said.
Safe farm products week kicks off in Hanoi
The Vietnamese Safe Farm Products and Food Week fair started on October 12 at the exhibition fair and economic-trade transaction area in Hoang Quoc Viet street, Cau Giay district, Hanoi.
On display at 100 booths in the fair area and 142 distribution points across the city are 1,800 products, including rice, fruit, vegetable, tea, seafood and processed food.
Opening the event, Vice Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Van Suu said that with a population of 10 million, Hanoi is a major goods consumption market.
Meanwhile, the city’s agricultural production has yet to meet the demand so it has to buy farm products from other localities, posing difficulties for the city in food quality and hygiene management.
The event aims to bring safe products and specialties from localities nationwide to Hanoians while boosting trade and building consumption chains, he said.
During the week, the Agriculture Trade Promotion Centre under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development will organise activities to help customers identify safe farm products.
The event runs until October 17.
Exhibition on Ho Chi Minh Trail in Laos comes to Savannakhet
A photo exhibition featuring the legendary Ho Chi Minh Trail in Laos during the 1961-1975 period opened in the Lao central province of Savannakhet on October 12.
The event was jointly held by the Vietnamese Embassy in Laos , the Vietnam Consulate General in Savannakhet, the Lao Ministry of National Defence and Savannakhet province to mark the 55th anniversary of the Tay Truong Son (West Truong Son) road (1961-2016).
Addressing the ceremony, Governor of Savannakhet Santiphap Phomvihane recalled how local people worked side by side with Vietnamese soldiers to build the road and later to protect it during the war, helping ensure the flow of supplies to battlefields in southern Vietnam.
Vietnamese Ambassador to Laos Nguyen Minh Hung said the exhibition acknowledges contributions and valuable support of the Lao Party, army and people to national liberation and reunification in Vietnam as well as the construction and protection of the road.
On display are nearly 100 pictures taken by war reporters illuminating a glorious period in history of the people and armies of Vietnam and Laos when they fought together in the war against the US under the leadership of the Labour Party of Vietnam, now the Communist Party of Vietnam, and the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party.
In May 1959, the Vietnam People’s Army formed Mission 559 and tasked it to build the Ho Chi Minh Trail as a supply route for southern battlefields to aim for ultimate national independence and reunification.
In late 1960, at the permission of the Lao side, the Ho Chi Minh Trail was expanded beyond the Vietnam-Laos border to the west of Truong Son Range, which lies on the Lao territory.
From 1961 to 1975, with an iron will and strong determination, the armies and people of Vietnam and Laos together built thousands of kilometers of roads to connect the north of Vietnam , the central and northern regions of Laos , the Zone 5 and southeastern region of Vietnam , and northeastern Cambodia.
Vietnam and Laos also aligned closely to ensure the operation of the strategic road that played a decision role in the victory against the US and significantly contributed to the 1975 victory of Vietnam and Laos .
Earlier, the exhibition was held in the Lao capital city of Vientiane.
Workshop looks into wage policy reform in public sector
Salaries of officials, public servants and those working in the armed forces should not base on the minimum wage, heard a workshop in Hanoi on October 12.
The workshop was held by the Ministry of Home Affairs to look at ways to improve wage policy for public employees and members of the armed forces.
Participants said the raise of minimum wage is now based on forecasts on GDP growth and consumer price index (CPI), and the link between minimum wage and the social security system put pressure on both enterprises and the State budget while real income of workers does not increase.
The calculation of salaries for public employees using minimum wage as the basis has resulted in the widening gap between salaries in the civil service and that in the production-business sectors.
Pham Chi Lan, an economist, suggested that salaries in the administrative sector should be calculated based on the average income in society and replace the life-long employment with working contracts.
“We should not calculate salaries of public employees according to the minimum wage of manual work,” she said, adding that the contingent of public employees should be streamlined.
Deputy Minister of Home Affairs Tran Anh Tuan stressed that the wage reform must focus on renewing the management mechanism in the direction of paying according to service quality and efficiency.
The delegates analysed advantages and difficulties hindering the reform of wage policy in Vietnam for 2018-2021 and the relationship between wage reform and the streamlining of public administrative apparatus.
Dong Nai: Health insurance coverage lower than national average
Though the rate of population covered by health insurance in Dong Nai province has continually increased and reached about 70.6 percent at present, it is still 4 percent lower than the national average.
According to the People’s Committee of the southern province, districts with modest coverage are Tan Phu (56.7 percent), Xuan Loc (57.2 percent), Cam My (59.6 percent), Thong Nhat (60.1 percent), and Dinh Quan (64 percent).
It attributes the situation to local administrations’ lack of attention to health insurance policy implementation, lax coordination between state management and social insurance agencies, the public’s low awareness, and bad medical services at some healthcare centres.
The districts with low health insurance coverage are mostly poor farming areas with underdeveloped industrial production. The majority of their population are farmers and ethnic minority people with low income, who are reluctant to join insurance. Many only buy health insurance when they are sick or have serious illnesses.
Facing that fact, the provincial administration has requested local authorities and relevant agencies to support deprived families, ethnics and students to buy health insurance.
They will also have to equip local clinics, especially those in remote areas, with better facilities, improve checkup and treatment quality, and eradicate the gap between services for patients with and without health insurance.
Dong Nai aims to have over 90 percent of the population in the aforementioned districts covered by health insurance by 2020.
Meanwhile, the coverage nationwide will reach around 79 percent by the end of 2016 compared to the set target of 76 percent, Health Minister Nguyen Thi Kim Tien said at a recent meeting.
Japan-funded project helps protect transport arteries from landslide
The Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Institute of Transport Science and Technology (ITSC) under the Ministry of Transport jointly held a conference in the central city of Da Nang on October 11 to review a project to develop landslide risk assessment technology along the transportation arteries in Vietnam.
The project is part of a six-year cooperation programme with the Japanese side that will conclude in November this year.
According to Assistant Prof. Dr. Nguyen Xuan Khang, head of the ITSC and the project’s Vietnam director, said the Ministry of Transport approved the project in 2012 and assigned the institute to implement it until 2016.
The direct goal of the project was to reduce disasters caused by landslide along Vietnam ’s transport arteries through the development of risk assessment technologies, while its long-term objectives included the nationwide application of these technologies to ensure safety for main transport routes.
The project also installed landslide monitoring devices in Hai Van railway station, helping alert the Vietnam Railway Corporation and local government of landslide risks in the site to make necessary evacuation.
Meanwhile, Dinh Van Tien, director of the project’s management board, noted that Vietnam is facing a high risk of landslide, especially in mountainous areas, due to heavy rainfall and complicated terrain.
Japanese ODA-funded projects between 2011 and 2016 have help Vietnam train personnel and develop equipment and a standard system to assess landslide risks, contributing to preventing and reducing disasters in the future.
At the same time, Kieu Thuong, Vice Director of the Quang Nam-Da Nang Railway JSC, held that the landslide monitoring system in Hai Van pass will help the railway sector actively respond to natural disasters, ensuring the safety for passengers and their property.
According to the National Steering Committee for Storm and Flood Prevention and Control, 250 flash floods and landslides during 2000-2014 left more than 640 dead and missing, and injured about 350 others. Nearly 10,000 houses collapsed and more than 100,000 others were flooded. Floods also affected 75,000 hectares of rice and crops. Total losses were estimated at 150 million USD, the committee reported.
Vietnamese, Lao localities promote village-level twinning ties
The twinning relationship between border villages of the northern province of Son La and Houaphan province of Laos has helped foster cultural exchange and experience sharing in economic development between the two border localities.
The model was initiated in 2013 by Son La’s border guard force.
According to Lo Van Lien, head of Keo Muong village, Phieng Khoai commune, Yen Chau district of Son La, since it twinned with Keo Lom village of Houaphan, the two villages’ residents have frequently held sports exchanges and shared experience in cultivation and breeding.
Vi Xuan Chua, Secretary of the Party Committee of Phieng Khoai commune said the two sides’ twinned villages have effectively coordinated in educating locals on the close relationship between the two Parties and States, ensuring political security, and safeguarding the shared border.
They have also cooperated with authorized agencies in popularising the guidelines and policies of the two states among locals.
As many as seven pairs of villages of the two provinces have set up twinning ties so far. They have supported each other in socio-economic development, thus raising the locals’ spiritual lives.
Since 2013, medical stations in Vietnam’s border communes have provided check-ups and treatment for 959 Lao people. The Vietnamese localities have also helped their Lao peers with breeding animals and plants, office equipment and construction materials.
Colonel Nguyen Van Viet, deputy political commissar of the Son La Border Guard High Command said the model contributes to raising awareness of the two provinces’ residents of the Vietnam-Laos time-honoured relations and issues relating to border demarcation, thus deepening the friendship between the two nations. It also helps prevent cross-border crimes, he added.
Better management of health insurance funds needed
The overspending of the health insurance fund and measures to prevent abuse of health insurance were the main theme of a teleconference held by the Government e-portal on October 12.
According to Pham Luong Son, deputy general director of the Vietnam Social Insurance (VSI), the health insurance fund in the first six month totalled 28.22 trillion VND (1.23 billion USD) but the total spending reached 30.37 trillion VND (1.36 billion USD), resulting in an overspending of 2.15 trillion VND.
The overspending for the entire year is estimated at 5 trillion VND.
Experts said the situation is partly attributable to the abuse of health insurance by both medical facilities and patients.
The VSI deputy general director said many patients visited different hospitals for checkups and medicines, then sold the drugs they received to others. Meanwhile, some hospitals faked patients’ records or requested patients to do unnecessary tests in order to get paid from the insurance fund.
Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam asked the Ministry of Health, the VSI and the Vietnam Medical Association to inspect the use of the fund to punish wrongdoings.
The VSI is sending inspection teams to localities with big deficits, and accelerating the application of information technology to better control insurance payment for medical care services.
Tien Giang keen to develop ecotourism
The Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang plans to promote ecotourism in combination with environment protection.
The province expects to lure 2.2 million tourist arrivals by 2020, 40 percent of whom are foreigners, said Nguyen Ngoc Minh, Director of the local Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism.
Tien Giang has attempted to meet the target by offering incentives for businesses investing in ecotourism development projects and re-designing tourism spots.
The province also plans to develop Thoi ?Son Islet into a provincial tourist attraction.
There are some new destinations in Tien Giang, including the Dong Thap Muoi tourist area and Truc Lam Chanh Giac monestary which serves spiritual life of residents in Tien Giang and the southern region.
Tien Giang is home to 70,000 ha of orchards with numerous locally special fruits and a dense river and canal networks which benefit ecotourism development in the province.
Since the beginning of 2016, the province has welcomed 1.2 million tourist arrivals, including 393,600 foreigners, an increase of 5.6 percent against last year. Tourism revenue hit 3.5 trillion VND (157.5 million USD), up 10.7 percent compared to 2015.
Photo exhibition features works by VNA journalists
An exhibition showcasing photos taken by 22 journalists of Vietnam News Agency (VNA) opened on October 12 at the VNA representative office in HCM City.
The month-long exhibition called Ð?t Phuong Nam (Southern Land) features 55 works, including photo essays on political and social affairs including US President Barack Obama’s official visit to Vi?t Nam and the collapse of Gh?nh Bridge in Ð?ng Nai Province.
Photos depicting the beauty of Vi?t Nam and its people and culture are on display as well, including Sa Ðéc flower village in spring, HCM City Pedestrian Book Street, and a teacher bringing hope to children with hearing and speech impairments.
At the exhibition’s opening ceremony, the organisers awarded the “A” prize for a photo essay about the collapse of Gh?nh Bridge by journalist S? Tuyên of the Ð?ng Nai Province representative office.
Other top prizes were given to photo essays on the collection of dead fish on the Nhiêu L?c – Th? Nghè canal in HCM City by photojournalist Thanh Vu of the Photography Department, and the fight against drought and saltwater intrusion in C?u Long (Mekong) Delta by photojournalist Nguy?n Luân of Vi?t Nam Pictorial Magazine.
The organisers also gave prizes for photos on the life and work of people in southern provinces.
The exhibition is at the VNA building at 116-118 Nguy?n Th? Minh Khai Street in District 3.
President urges HUST to reform administration
President Tran Dai Quang urged the Hanoi University of Science and Technology (HUST) to reform its administration model towards autonomy while addressing a ceremony to mark the university’s 60th founding anniversary in Hanoi on October 15.
The President recognised the university’s efforts in improving quality of education and training, and extolled its pioneering role in research, application, and transfer of science and technology in production and business.
The HUST is one of the leading research facilities in Vietnam in the ranking of research capacity by global organisations, he said, adding that the university has made significant contributions to the establishment and development of the State technical college and university network.
It also took the lead in the implementation of the Party and State’s policy on fundamental and comprehensive educational reform in recent years, he said, referring to the university’s improved training programmes which are in line with the country’s requirements of industrialisation, modernisation and international integration.
He asked the HUST to continue implementing effectively the Party and State’s policy on education-training and science-technology, especially when the nation is entering a new development phase with advantages and difficulties.
The President underlined such key tasks as carrying out a pilot project to reform administration towards autonomy and models of advanced universities in the region and the world; promoting scientific and technological research in accordance with the national development strategy; and expanding international cooperation.
He reminded the HUST to build a friendly, healthy educational environment and pay heed to sharpening professional skills for the teaching staff.
According to President of the HUST Hoang Minh Son, after 60 years of foundation and development, the university has trained over 200,000 technical experts, including over 14,000 masters and 838 doctors, across the fields from economics and society to security and defense.
Currently, the university has 1,950 officials, encompassing 1,200 lecturers with 21 professors, 202 associate professors and 722 doctors. It has 35 engineer training programmes, 45 BA training programmes, 78 MA training programmes, and 60 PhD training programmes.
On the occasion, the HUST was honoured to receive the Ho Chi Minh Order for the second time.
Vietnamese, Cuban youths asked to increase exchange
Vice Secretary of the Ho Chi Minh City’s Party Committee Vo Thi Dung on October 15 had a meeting with a visiting delegation from the Cuba’s Young Communist League led by Second Secretary Ronald Hidalgo.
Ronald Hidalgo stated that people and the youth of Cuba always keep in their mind the warm sentiments as well as close accompany that Vietnam gave to their country during the hardest period in Cuba’s history.
He said that Cuban youngsters are willing to work for the reinforcement and promotion of the priceless values of the Cuba-Vietnam traditional relationship that was built with hold-hearted efforts by older generations.
On her part, Dung held that the Vietnam-Cuba ties, founded and nurtured by generations of leaders of both countries, have become a symbol of comradeship and brotherhood between countries.
She affirmed that Vietnamese people always highly value Cuba’s support during the past struggle for independence and the current national construction and development.
She suggested that the youth of both countries should promote the grorious revolutionary traditional and actively engage in the national construction in each country.
She also proposed that Vietnamese and Cuban youngsters should increase exchange and cooperation in the future, thus joining hands in fostering the sound traditional relations between the two countries for peace and prosperity of each nation.
Hanoi gives health insurance support to HIV carriers
The Hanoi Department of Health will expand the health insurance coverage among poor people living with HIV/AIDS by giving them financial support sourced from the city’s health insurance fund, according to head of the department Nguyen Khac Hien.
Hien said the department will make a list of beneficiaries who have not been supported by Stated budget and sent to the city’s Social Insurance soon.
Statistics show that Hanoi is currently home to 18,500 people living with HIV/AIDS, including nearly 9,000 AIDS cases. The majority of them have poor living conditions and need help in treatment.
In an effort to help all people living with HIV access health insurance as directed by the Prime Minister, the department has asked localities to strengthen communications to encourage HIV-infected people and their family join health insurance.
It has also tasked supporting funds for HIV/AIDS prevention and control to mobilise resources to purchase health insurance for the needy, while coordinating with the municipal Centre for HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control to ensure the supports go to right people.
Hanoi sets to expand health insurance coverage to 80 percent of local population by 2016 and 90 percent by 2020.
Constant supervision needed in fish death-related compensation
The administration of Thua Thien-Hue, a central province hit by the mass fish deaths earlier this year, has been asked to constantly supervise the payment of compensatory money to the affected residents.
Officials of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development made the request during a working session on the issue with the provincial People’s Committee on October 14.
Total compensation for damage caused by the mass fish deaths, resulted by flawed waste and wastewater treatment of Taiwan-invested Hung Nghiep Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Co. Ltd, in Thua Thien-Hue is over 749.76 billion VND (33.74 million USD), according to the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The People’s Committee has decided to allocate 400 billion VND sourced from the compensation advance to Phong Dien, Quang Dien, Phu Vang and Phu Loc districts and Huong Tra town.
These localities are publicizing the lists of affected residents. After the publication period (3-5 days), the payment will be made after complaints, if any, are solved, local officials said.
Aside from Thua Thien-Hue, three other central provinces were also influenced by the marine pollution, namely Ha Tinh, Quang Binh and Quang Tri.
The Ministry of Finance has transferred 3 trillion VND (135 million USD) to the four provinces, including 400 billion VND for Thua Thien-Hue. The money is part of the 500 million USD compensation paid by Formosa Ha Tinh.
Eligible for compensation are those working in seafood harvesting, aquatic breeding, salt production, coastal seafood business activities, fishing logistics, coastal tourism services, and seafood stockpiling and purchasing.
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