Another Vietnam-Cambodia Friendship Monument inaugurated
People take photo at the Vietnam-Cambodia Friendship Monument (Source: nhandan.com.vn)
A Vietnam-Cambodia Friendship Monument was inaugurated in Steung Treng city of the province of the same name on November 15 after one year of restoration.
It is the tenth of the 17 monuments across Cambodia that have been upgraded under a project funded by the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defence, aiming to mark the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties.
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony, Secretary of State at the Cambodian Ministry of Cults and Religions Nhem Valy and Governor of Steung Treng province Mom Saroeun affirmed that the monument commemorates patriotic Cambodians and Vietnamese volunteer soldiers who laid down their lives for Cambodia’s liberation.
It is also considered as an everlasting symbol of the traditional solidarity and friendship between the two countries, they stated.
They reconfirmed that Cambodia can never revive and develop as it does today, without the support from Vietnam in overthrowing the Pol Pot genocidal regime with the historic victory on January 7, 1979.
Vietnam, Morocco talk administrative decentralisation
Experience in administrative decentralisation was shared among Vietnamese and Moroccan law experts at a seminar held in Hanoi on November 14.
The event, jointly held by the School of Law of the National University-Hanoi and the Moroccan Embassy in Vietnam, is significant as it helps diversify cooperation between Vietnam and Morocco in the field, said Nguyen Thi Que Anh, Vice Dean of the School of Law.
Vietnam has renovated its administrative apparatus to ensure that it operates in a more democratic and effective way, she said, stressing that the change in the 2013 Constitution, of which Chapter “People’s Council and People’s Committee” was revised into “Local Government”, is the biggest change in the country’s administrative reform.
The National Assembly then passed the Law on Organisation of Local Administration in 2015 to concretise new articles in the 2013 Constitution, she highlighted, saying that exchanging experience in administrative decentralisation with foreign countries is necessary to realise the 2013 Constitution.
Meanwhile, Professor Hassan Ouazzani Chahdi said that decentralisation means managing local authorities and promoting them to make significant contributions to the nation’s sustainable development goals.
Local governments have crucial roles in implementing the international community’s activities like alleviating poverty, improving local people’s access to basic services such as fresh water, hygiene, education and healthcare, he added.
Xi’s Vietnam visit highlighted in Chinese media
The Chinese media on November 13-14 ran articles highlighting the State visit to Vietnam by General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and State President Xi Jinping, as well as his attendance at the 25th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting.
In its November 13 issue, the People Daily published a story stating that, whilst in Hanoi, the two countries’ leaders agreed to boost the bilateral, comprehensive, strategic, cooperative partnership in the interests of the two peoples.
Both sides appreciated each other’s development achievements, pledging to maintain and promote the time-honoured friendship between Vietnam and China.
It also said that the article entitled “Development prospects for China-Vietnam relations” written by Xi in Vietnam’s Nhan Dan (People) Newspaper has been highly praised by the countries’ experts and scholars.
China’s news agency Xinhua stressed that Party General Secretary and President Xi called on both sides to pay attention to the general interests of the Parties and States which originate from the two peoples’ basic interests, and to work together to help the traditional friendship to overcome all difficulties and open up a new chapter in the bilateral relations.
Meanwhile, Qiushi newspaper ran an article emphasising that, during their talks, the two countries’ leaders agreed to maintain the exchange of high-level delegations, continuously pursue friendship policies, intensify strategic exchanges and political trust, and satisfactorily solve disagreements in order to keep the China-Vietnam relations on the right track.
The Global Times wrote that the two sides committed to expanding their cooperation in culture, education, communications, health, tourism and youth work.
They also were unanimous in tackling sea-related issues satisfactorily, stepping up maritime cooperation in different forms, including maintaining peace and stability in the East Sea based on the consensus to be reached by the two countries’ Party and State leaders, it noted.
Also at this time, China Radio International (CRI), China Central Television (CCTV) and Phoenix TV broadcast interviews by the two countries’ Ambassadors, experts and students on the nations’ development achievements, and their time-honoured friendship, as well as the prospects for bilateral relations.
50 interesting books to be introduced at Hanoi Book Street
Con Soc Cultural And Media Joint Stock Company will introduce 50 interesting copyrighted books at Hanoi Book Street on November 15-16.
The event will offer a good opportunity for publishers, bookstores and publishing companies to search and select copyrighted books in line with their area.
These books include winners of prestigious literary awards of the year with sales volume ranging from hundreds to millions of copies in many countries.
During the event, the organizers will introduce the copyright of literature books written by famous authors and writers from Austria, Japan and Germany such as Ursula Poznanski, Edogawa Rampo, Keigo Higashino, Asano Atsuko, and Testsya Honda.
The event will provide a valuable insight into the diversified and colourful world and latest trends of literature.
Japanese companies offer scholarships for Dong Nai students
Ajinomoto Scholarship Foundation and the Study Promotion Association of southeastern Dong Nai province have granted 200 scholarships totally worth VND 220 million to disadvantaged students in the province.
Ajinomoto Vietnam’s general director Keiji Kaneko said the scholarship program has been implemented for 14 years. He hoped that these scholarships will help outstanding students from poor families overcome difficulties to improve themselves for a bright future.
The company has so far engaged in many social activities such as building houses for the poor across Vietnam and giving scholarships to disadvantaged students in Dong Nai province.
The 200 scholarships worth VND220 million offered to Dong Nai students this time are jointly funded by Ajinomoto Vietnam, Vietnam-Japan Gas JSC, Quadrille Vietnam Ltd and Kureha Vietnam Ltd.
Green trees help Ha Tinh province move on
The central province of Ha Tinh has been through its share of difficulties, but after six years of building new-style rural areas, the province is full of fields and gardens of high economic value.
One of the goals the province has introduced for new-style rural area building is that 70 percent of fences in the areas must be covered with green trees.
The province set the goal because in many other areas, concrete is used to build fences, which while being cleaner and sturdier, lack rural beauty. Thus the province uses the goal to ensure the rural landscape and economic value at the same time.
Ngo Viet Ha, Secretary of the Party Committee of Huong Tra commune in Huong Khe district, said that after years of setting up new-style rural areas, local residents are reaping the rewards.
Green trees are planted along the roads, with trees such as paper flowers, rose-mallows, loopah trees and gourd trees resplendent.
“Both local residents and authorities are happy and enthusiastic to work,” said Ha.
Remembering the very first days of the programme, Ha said that local authorities met many obstacles.
“Many households did not understand the programme so they refused our requests.
Village and commune managers educated and instructed them, so at last, they agreed and followed our directions,” said Ha.
Dinh Phuc Tan, Secretary of the Nam Tra village Party Committee, said that now Nam Tra village has 20 model gardens. Every year, the village welcomes hundreds of delegations from other provinces nationwide to visit and learn from its experiences.
The Yen My village in Cam Yen commune, Cam Xuyen district is also a good example of the work.
Nguyen Quoc Sy, Chairman of the Cam Yên commune People’s Committee, said that 70 out of 120 gardens in the village are model gardens, and the rest are green and clean.
“When local residents have some work far from home, they can water their gardens via an automatic system controlled by mobile phone,” he said.
Sy added that on the average, each model garden brought 71-100 million VND (3,100-4,400 USD) per year. Most of them plant vegetables and fruit trees.
One typical household in Yen My village is Nguyen Thi Thuan’s family whose income exceeds 100 million VND (4,400 USD) per year thanks to growing oranges.
Thuan said that earlier she planted different kinds of trees in the garden, with her income unstable. Since she became a model garden, the garden was more beautiful and brought better income.
At present more than 7,500 households in the province have registered to build model gardens, of which 1,725 reached norms of model gardens and enjoy supportive policies from provincial authorities. It is expected that by the end of this year, 1,000 more gardens will qualify.
Tran Huy Oanh, office manager of the Ha Tinh New-Style Rural Areas Operation Department, said that the province recognised seven communes as new-style rural areas in 2013, but the common landscape in the province was not good.
Thus the provincial authorities planned to set up model of new-style rural areas in three villages, and provide each village 300 million VND (13,300 USD) for the effort.
The movement of setting up new-style rural areas has spread rapidly. In several villages such as Tan An, Yen My and Hong Linh, local residents are determined to establish such gardens.
Duong Kim Hue, Secretary of the Party committee of Tuong Son commune, Thach Ha district said that the commune had six co-operatives, 21 working teams and four enterprises running effectively so they worked with local residents in manufacturing.
“It is the most important factor helping model gardens sell their products, and therefore be stable,” said Hue.
Ngo Tat Thang, Deputy Director of the National New-Style Rural Areas Operation Department, said the model gardens initiative was a success of Ha Tinh province.
“The model focuses on micro manufacture and being suitable with rural areas,” he said.
“Thanks to re-organising their lives, local residents will better understand their role in the national target programme on setting up new-style rural areas,” said Thang.
Thang said the province’s best achievement was that, via the model gardens, local residents’ health, awareness and living standards were improved.
Workers and managers from provincial to village level have also worked together so their guidance and instruction to residents is clear.
“Thus local residents participated in the programme enthusiastically and believe in its results. And as a result, the province has made outstanding achievements,” said Thang.-
Two schoolboys drown in Hà Tĩnh sea
Two schoolboys drowned while swimming in the sea in central Hà Tĩnh Province on Monday afternoon.
Hồ Xuân Phong and Nguyễn Tông Dũng, both 14, were reported missing on Monday after strong waves swept them away from a beach in the province’s Thiên Cầm Township. Their bodies were found this afternoon following a one-day search by local authorities and residents.
The two boys, accompanied by eight other schoolmates from Cẩm Trung Secondary School, were playing on Thiên Cầm’s beach when nine of them decided to go for a swim in the local sea. The only boy who stayed on the beach said sudden strong waves swept three boys away and he rushed to call for help from the nearby border guards.
The guards later succeeded in rescuing one boy, but were unable to rescue Phong and Dũng. Nguyễn Đình Kỷ, the township’s chairman, said search for the missing boys started right after the incident occurred. However, the first body was found 3km from the incident site on Tuesday afternoon.
The local search team said the rough sea prevented them from finding the bodies sooner.
Recently, Hà Tĩnh reported a programme to train students in swimming was completed at local schools. Drowning is a major cause of deaths of children in Việt Nam, and educators have demanded the inclusion of swimming in the school’s extra curriculum, however, not many schools have achieved the target.
HCM City charity run raises $178k for kids’ heart surgery
Around VNĐ4 billion (US$178,000) was raised for heart surgeries for poor children at the “Run for heart 2017” event in HCM City on Sunday.
Organised by the “Việt Nam Heart Fund” and Malaysia’s Gamuda Land Joint Stock Company, the charity run attracted 17,000 participants.
In its four years, the “Run for heart” event has collected a total of VNĐ10.6 billion ($472,000) and provided heart surgeries for 438 children with congenital heart disease.
Every year 12,000 children are born in Việt Nam with congenital heart disease, half of them requiring surgery. Heart surgeries are very expensive, costing between VNĐ54 – 190 million ($2,400- 8,500).
Policies needed to improve healthcare for the elderly
Việt Nam is advised to quickly develop the model of family doctors, as well as improve the capability of hospitals and medical centres that specialise in taking care of the elderly, in order to meet increasing demand from senior citizens.
The advice was released at a workshop held on Monday in Hà Nội. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Việt Nam is among the countries with the fastest aging rate in the world.
The number of the elderly is over 10 million people, accounting for 11 per cent of the nation’s total population, but the national system to provide health care for the elderly remains severely lacking.
Data showed that public healthcare centres only receive about 40,000 elderly people now. The number is too small compared to the real demand.
Participants at the workshop also said that the Government should issue policies, including reductions on land tax, to encourage private sector investment in building healthcare centres specialised for older people.
At present, a lot of companies are keen on establishing centres that focus on the elderly, however, they are hesitant because of the high price of land.
Dengue fever cases keep falling
The number of dengue fever cases keep dropping, according to the latest report from the Ministry of Health’s Department of Preventive Medicine.
A downturn was seen in 47 out of 63 provinces and cities nationwide. However, a slight increase was recorded in three southern provinces, namely An Giang, Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu and Tây Ninh.
According to the department, from October 30-November 5, 2,744 dengue cases were reported across the country, down 17.9 per cent over the previous week. There were no fatalities in Hà Nội, one of the worst-hit localities. The city recorded a sharp decrease of 80 per cent last month (from 500 cases to 100 cases per day).
The city recorded 31,572 cases in early 2017, including seven deaths. However, the number of cases fell to 1,100, who are being treated in hospitals.
Dengue fever generally mimics flu symptoms and goes away within a week, but some cases can require hospitalisation.
Experts said dengue fever in Hà Nội had been controlled due to campaigns to kill larva and mosquitoes on a large scale.
The health ministry’s Steering Committee for Epidemic Prevention and Control has kept a close watch on developments of the disease, while stepping up the killing of mosquitoes and larva in risky areas. The ministry has also provided additional chemical spraying machines to serve these activities.
Despite the sharp fall, the preventive medicine department warns the community to not neglect preventive measures. Although cooler weather has recently reduced mosquitoes in the northern region, southern and central regions are still in the peak season for dengue fever, the department said.
Deputy Director of the Hà Nội Department of Health Hoàng Đức Hạnh said the current weather conditions were still favourable for mosquitoes.
Hà Nội still had many hot spots of dengue fever and experienced unusual weather conditions, posing a high risk for the spread of the disease, he said.
People were advised to take measures to kill mosquitoes and larva, and protect themselves from mosquitoes, while co-ordinating with authorities in spraying anti-mosquito chemicals.
Compensation to dialysis patients: Hospital says not irresponsible
Director of the Hoà Bình City General Hospital in northern Hòa Bình Province on Tuesday dismissed news on social media that the hospital was irresponsible in compensating eight families of kidney patients who died in May while receiving dialysis at the hospital.
Dr Lê Xuân Hoàng said the occurrence of serious medical problems was the responsibility of the hospital, and the hospital had apologised to the families of the victims.
It also agreed to compensate the families of the victims with VNĐ50 million (US$2,200) per family, he said.
The hospital held a dialogue with representatives of the eight families to reach an agreement on compensation. However, the two sides were unable to reach a deal because one family asked for too much compensation, which was outside the legal framework and the level of the hospital’s payment ability, Hoàng said.
The case would be referred to the People’s Court for trial according to the provisions of law if the two sides were unable to reach an agreement on their own. The hospital would strictly adhere to the judgment of the court, he said.
The incident took place on May 29, when seven of the 18 patients undergoing dialysis at Hòa Bình hospital displayed symptoms of anaphylactic shock and died soon after. Another patient from the same group died on June 4 after multiple organ failure, raising the death count to eight.
President Tran Dai Quang joins national solidarity festival
President Tran Dai Quang attended the National Solidarity Festival 2017 in Tan Hung commune, Lang Giang district of the northern province of Bac Giang.
Tan Hung commune covers 1,336 hectares, with 15 villages, 2,825 households and 11,200 people. The recognised new-style rural commune is home to seven ethnic minority groups and one Catholic parish.
Its economic growth in 2017 is likely to reach 14 percent and budget collection expected to hit 8 billion VND.
Local poor households account for only 4.87 percent of total population, while per capita income of locals is 44 million VND annually. Up to 98 percent of local people have joined health insurance scheme.
President Tran Dai Quang lauded the local community’s lifestyle changes, as well as efforts to preserve and promote traditional culture.
He praised the communal Party cells, government and organisations for their endeavors to get local people engaged in patriotism movements, thus improving their spiritual and material life and ensuring security and order, and fostering solidarity and mutual support between the local communities.
The State leader asked Tan Hung commune and Bac Giang province in general to continue encouraging individuals and collectives to involve in the building of Party, government and socio-political organisations as well as the implementation of new-style rural area building programme.
Highlighting that solidarity is the primary strength of the nation, he expressed hope that local people and government will stay united to make their homeland greener and more prosperous.
Thua Thien-Hue reviews trial dioxin remediation using microbial technology
A workshop was held in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue on November 13 to look into the outcomes of the trial remediation of dioxin using microbial technology at A Sho airfield in A Luoi district.
The event was organised by the Vietnam Association for Conservation of Nature and Environment (VACNE), the Republic of Korea’s BJC company, and the A Luoi district People’s Committee.
VACNE and BJC experts shared the view that the trial remediation was carried out in line with the process, met technical standards for biological treatment, and matched local conditions.
Biotechnology is relatively simple technology with low cost, high feasibility and considerable effects in dioxin contaminated land, they noted.
The VACNE and Korean partners like BJC, KIT and KIOST have assisted A Luoi district to pilot remediating dioxin-polluted land of A Sho airfield over the past years.
On this occasion, the VACNE and BJC presented gift packages to more than 30 families with Agent Orange/dioxin victims. They also supported A Luoi district with 60 million VND (over 2,600 USD) to help build a relic site showing chemical war remnants.
The US army sprayed some 80 million litres of toxic chemicals from 1961 to 1971, 61 percent of which was Agent Orange containing 366 kilograms of dioxin, over nearly one quarter of the total area of South Vietnam.
Preliminary statistics showed that 4.8 million Vietnamese people were exposed to Agent Orange/dioxin, and about 3 million people became victims. Tens of thousands of people have died while millions of others have suffered from cancer and other incurable diseases as a result. Many of their offspring have also suffered from birth deformities.
Plan helps protect aquatic resources in Ha Long Bay
Ha Long city in the northern coastal province of Quang Ninh has issued a plan on intensifying measures to protect aquatic resources in Ha Long Bay – a UNESCO-recognised World Heritage Site – during the 2017-2020 period.
The plan aims to strengthen environmental protection, protect and reproduce aquatic resources, and put an end to all fishing activities in the absolute protection zone in the bay.
It also seeks to raise awareness of obeying the State, Quang Ninh province and Ha Long city’s regulations on seafood exploitation activities.
The plan is expected to be implemented from October 25, 2017 to December 2020 in the buffer and absolute protection zones in the bay.
Specifically, patrol is strengthened to detect and punish violations related to seafood exploitation and protection in coastal areas, especially in Ha Long and Bai Tu Long bays and banned fishing areas.
Vehicles without registration, and violated fishing tools will be seized or destroyed.
Additionally, under the plan, a survey will be conducted to define the number of fishermen working in Ha Long Bay to report to the provincial People’s Committee to support them change jobs if necessary.
Fishermen and owners of fishing boats are requested to commit to strictly following regulations on aquatic resources protection, not using banned fishing vehicles and tools, not conducting fishing in prohibited areas.
These moves are to aquatic resources and also the landscape of the world heritage site.
With high per capita income and an increasingly synchronised infrastructure system, the tourism hub of Ha Long city has become an attractive investment destination for many real estate and resort investors.
With Ha Long Bay – one of the seven natural masterpieces of the world, the city is a must-go place for those who spend holidays in Vietnam, in particular Quang Ninh province.
Ha Long Bay is prioritised to develop into national tourism sites. It welcomed 6.3 million tourists and grossed 7.7 trillion VND (over 338 million USD) in revenue, representing respective increases of 14 percent and 65 percent from the previous year. Of the visitors, about 2.7 million were foreigners, a year-on-year growth of 16 percent.
Quang Ninh has a coastline of more than 250 kilometres and over 2,000 islands and islets which account for two-thirds of the total number in Vietnam.
Under a plan for tourism development in Quang Ninh, the province hopes to become an international tourism centre and a leading tourism destination in Vietnam with modern infrastructure and diverse, competitive tourism products.
By 2020, Quang Ninh aims to welcome 15-16 million tourists, including seven million foreigners, and rake in 30trillion VND – 40 trillion VND (1.3-1.7 billion USD) in revenue. The tourism sector is expected to contribute 14-15 percent to the gross regional domestic product.
In 2016, Quang Ninh welcomed 8.3 million tourist arrivals, a year-on-year increase of seven percent, and earned over 13 trillion VND (571 million USD) in revenue, up 23 percent, according to the Quang Ninh Department of Tourism.
Hanoi Medical University asked to step up scientific research
President Tran Dai Quang has urged lecturers and students of the Hanoi Medical University to increase their participation in scientific research, particularly those in emerging diseases.
The State leader made the request addressing a ceremony held in Hanoi on November 14 to mark the university’s 115th founding anniversary.
President Quang recognised the university’s efforts in training high-quality human resources and developing modern and traditional medicines, making Vietnamese medicine shining in the world.
The university’s most significant achievement is the combination of medical academic knowledge with practice, training, studying and providing medical examinations to improve public health, he said.
The President asked the university to make concerted efforts to become a leading medical training and research establishment in Vietnam, which trains both Vietnamese and foreign students, applies research results both inside and outside the country as well as services both Vietnamese and foreign communities.
President Quang also ordered the university to effectively implement the Party and State’s policy on education-training, protecting and fine-tuning public health, particularly work to renovate education and education autonomy.
On the occasion, the university was bestowed a first-class Labour Order.
Young doctors volunteer to make a difference
A medical specialist training programme has opened in Hải Phòng City for 19 medical graduates who have volunteered to work in various remote localities in the country.
The programme, launched on Monday, will train the young volunteers for two years in seven specialties: internal medicine, surgery, obstetrics, pediatrics, anesthesia, diagnostic medical imaging and infectious diseases at the Hải Phòng University of Medicine and Pharmacy.
The graduates were chosen by the Ministry of Health (MoH) based on outstanding academic performances.
The training programme is part of a pilot project, started by the ministry in 2013, that sends medical graduates to disadvantaged areas, including mountainous regions, border areas and islands.
It was prompted by a shortage of about 600 medical specialists in 62 poor districts of the country, according to Dr Phạm Văn Tác, project director as well as director of the ministry’s Department of Organisation and Personnel.
“Some hospitals in the mountainous districts of the Lai Châu, Sơn La, Cao Bằng and Hà Giang provinces only have four to five doctors; and some don’t have any,” he told the Hà Nội Mới (New Hà Nôi) newspaper.
“Meanwhile there are about 140 doctors in just a single district in Nam Định Province. It’s a huge discrepancy,” he said.
After getting project approval in February 2013, over the last three years, the ministry has collaborated with the Hà Nội Medical University to organise five training programmes for 78 medical graduates who volunteered to work in 37 poor districts across 13 provinces.
The 78 chosen were medical students who’d graduated with distinction and volunteered to join the project, said Associate Professor Nguyễn Đức Hinh, principal of Hà Nội Medical University.
These students will work at central hospitals for a short period of time before joining a two-year specialist training programme, after which they will be considered “doctors”, and sent to work at district-level hospitals in poor provinces for four years (men) and two years (women), he added.
“After that they get to choose whether to go back to the central hospitals where they previously worked, or transfer to local hospitals in their hometowns,” he said.
In July, the first seven medical volunteers who completed their training were sent to Lào Cai Province’s Bắc Hà and Mường Khương districts, Sơn La Province’s Sốp Cộp District, Bắc Kạn Province’s Pác Nậm and Ba Bể districts, and Điện Biên Province’s Mường Nhé District.
Soon after he was sent to the Bắc Hà General Hospital, surgeon Nguyễn Chiến Quyết, 28, performed an endoscopic surgery on a Mông man suffering from appendicitis.
“I hadn’t had much experience at that time and hadn’t even got used to working with my colleagues. But luckily the operation turned out fine,” Quyết told the Nhân Dân (People) newspaper.
“From then on, I was determined to apply to the fullest what I had learned in school to take care of the local people here,” he added.
The young doctors have anticipated the struggles and difficulties that come with working in remote areas among ethnic minority people whose languages they were not familiar with, said Trần Thị Loan, a female doctor from that first batch of seven, who was sent to the Mường Khương General Hospital in Lào Cai Province.
“I got used to them after a while,” she said. “Now I’m confident that I’ll ‘nail’ my two years of duty here.”
Despite the well-meant intention to alleviate doctor shortages, directors of many local health departments have raised concern over the project’s effectiveness in the long run, said project director Dr Phạm Văn Tác.
“Some say that two to three years are too short for the medical volunteers to actually improve their skills and help increase healthcare quality at district-level hospitals. Not to mention the ‘gaps’ left by these doctors when they fulfill their duty and leave,” he said.
The MoH will reconsider the duration of deputation, starting with the next batch of medical volunteers, Tác said. It will also work to retain them in the poor districts, he added.
The ministry will also consider providing specialist training for local doctors in the poor areas so that they can fill up the spots left by the volunteers, he said.
The project expects to send 300-500 doctors to 62 disadvantaged districts by 2020.
Bình Dương cycling race to draw strong field
The Bình Dương Television Cycling Tournament, Ống Nhựa Hoa Sen Cup, is scheduled to run from December 3-12 in the southern province of Bình Dương.
The event will attract the 10 strongest teams in the country, including HCM City, Đồng Tháp, An Giang and Đồng Nai with nearly 70 cyclists, more than 20 of whom are now members of the national team
They will compete in nine stages, with the total length of nearly 1,100km via the provinces of Bình Thuận, Ninh Thuận, Khánh Hòa, Gia Lai, Kon Tum, Đắk Nông, Bình Phước, and Bình Dương.
The tournament has a total prize of VNĐ400 million (US$17,400), of which the winners of the overall yellow jersey will earn VNĐ60 million ($2,600).
The event’s organisers will hold charity activities on the sidelines of the event, including giving 900 gifts to disadvantaged households and 90 bicycles for poor students in the provinces the cyclists will pass through.
The event, which is co-organised by Bình Dương Radio-Television, the Việt Nam Sports Bicycle and Motorbike Federation and Hoa Sen Group, will provide the competitors a chance to hone their skills to prepare for the Asian Games to be held in Indonesia next year.
Vietnam starts construction on education facilities in Laos
The Ministry of Education and Training of Vietnam and the Ministry of Education and Physical Training of Laos held a ground-breaking ceremony for three education facilities in Vientiane, Laos on November 14.
Total investment for the construction is 84 billion VND (about 4 million USD), which comes from the Vietnamese Government’s non-refundable aid.
Of the total, 20.2 billion VND (889,400 USD) will be spent for the second phase of the Vietnam-Laos friendship high school, 40.14 billion VND (1.77 million USD) for the renovation of the dormitory for foreign students at the National University of Laos and the remaining for the construction of Vietnamese language department at Souphanouvong University.
Lao Deputy Minister of Education and Sports Kongsi Sengmani thanked Vietnam for the country’s support, saying that construction of those education facilities takes place when the two countries are celebrating the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Vietnam-Laos Treaty of Amity and Cooperation and the 55th anniversary of diplomatic ties.
He stated that it will help tighten traditional and special solidarity as well as comprehensive cooperation between the two Parties and Governments.
The Lao Government and relevant authorities will create favourable conditions to ensure that the construction is completed as scheduled.
Luxembourg supports climate change response in Thua Thien-Hue
The Luxembourg Government has pledged 2 million EUR in non-refundable aid to support the central province of Thua Thien-Hue’s climate change response project through the Global Climate Partnership Fund.
The 2.3 million EUR project will be carried out in 30 months in 11 communes in Quang Dien district and nine communes in Phu Vang district. The remaining 0.3 million EUR comes from local corresponding budget.
The project aims to enhance local capacity to respond to climate change.
The first component of the project, called “capacity”, focuses on raising public awareness on climate change response. Infrastructure facilities to cope with climate change in the targeted areas will be set up in the second component while management measures will be promoted in the third component to preserve natural resources and develop markets for organically-cultivated products, a new and sustainable sector for the region.
TV report contest for prevention of tobacco harm launched
The TV report contest themed “Preventing the harmful effects of tobacco” was jointly launched by the Ministry of Information and Communications and the Ministry of Health this morning in Hanoi.
At the launching ceremony, Information and Communications Deputy Minister Hoang Vinh Bao said the contest aims to increase information of preventing the toxic effect of tobacco through TV reports and encourage reporters, editors who actively take part in raising people’s awareness of tobacco evils of smoking and tobacco.
The organizer expects that the contest becomes impetus for reporters and editors to produce good animated and genuine image with clear message of the contest theme; accordingly, these reports will help to change people’s awareness and behaviors to damages and losses of health and economy caused by tobacco.
Entries are TV reports in Vietnam with subtitle in Vietnam released on TV channels from January 1 to December 31, 2017. They reflect tobacco-related harms and missions to prevent the harm carried out in 2017.
Entries must highlight policies on price and taxation of tobacco in reducing demand in Vietnam, or the theme of the World Health Organization’s World No Tobacco Day, harmful effects of tobacco and secondhand smoking and regulation on public smoking ban as per the law of tobacco prevention.
Besides, entries help improve non-smokers’ awareness in remind smokers not to emit fumes in public places according to the law as well as introduce shining examples in fighting smoking in a bid to tackling smoking.
Entries must arrive at the Legal Department at 8 Nguyen Du Street in Ha Noi ‘s Hai Ba Trung District from November 16 to January 31, 2018.
The organizer is going to present one first prize, three second prizes, five encouragement prizes for individual while one first prize, two second prizes for teams. Especially, one special prize will be given for team with more entries.
The prize-giving ceremony is scheduled to take place in January 2018.
Those are interested in the contest can seek further information in the website mic.gov.vn or on Facebook cuocthithuocla2017 and media.
Private sector prompted to develop waterway transport
Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The has required relevant agencies to boost the private sector’s participation in developing waterway transport field.
The requirement was made after the Prime Minister asked the ministry to report reasons for the currently undeveloped field.
According to Mr. The, cargo and passenger transport by waterway now account for 17-19 percent and 4-6 percent of the market share, which are too low and unable to promote the strength of national waterway network.
That has been because of asynchronous infrastructures to linking up seaports, old and outdated waterway transport means, low investment capital and businesses’ weak competitive ability.
Minister The asked Vietnam Inland Waterway Administration to have suitable solutions basing on real situation. At first, the agency should issue legal documents to create a mechanism for private firms participate in developing the field, have policies to help them access credit sources and provide special preferences for residents and businesses to build new waterway transport means.
He urged the agency’s leaders to get rid of the thought of using state budget to develop waterway projects in the current period and focus on solving difficulties for the private sector.
Mr. The required the administration to soon organize a conference to review logistics activities in the Mekong Delta region to find out reasons why waterway transport has not developed in the area despite having advantageous conditions.
Lam Dong spends VND 550mln to repair Mimosa Mountain Pass’s road surfaces
People’s Committee in the central highlands province of Lam Dong this morning decided to invest VND 550million in upgrading and repairing the road surface on the Mimosa Mountain Pass in Dalat City.
Lam Dong spends VND 550mln to repair Mimosa Mountain Pass’s road surfaces
The amount of money is taken from the province’s road maintenance fund 2018, contributing to ensure traffic safety, serve Flower Festival 2017 on the Tet holidays.
The province assigned Transport Department to complete related procedures to implement the upgrading of road surfaces before December 20.
The Mimosa Mountain Pass is the length of 10km starting from Prenn fall to Dalat center however many recent years, this route has been downgraded seriously after a long time in use.
Earlier, transport department of the central highlands province of Lam Dong sent document to the Vietnam Road Administration (VRA) to upgrade the road surfaces.
However, to date, the VRA has not given any replies about this suggestion.
Lam Dong transport department said while waiting for the suggestion to be approved, it should have to implement some works aiming to ensure traffic safety on this route as this route has seen crowded traffic day by day.
Some accidents had ever occurred on this route.
Book festival celebrates Vietnam Teacher’s Day
A book show marking Vietnam Teacher’s Day (November 20) will be organized in Nguyen Van Binh Book street in Ho Chi Minh City from November 15-20.
The event will display thousands of books in various fields, such as education, comics, literature, text and reference books and others. Publishing houses will offer a discount of up to 50 percent on books.
There will be a clay flower making workshop and exchanges with the participations of veteran teachers.
Kien Giang invests VND 60 bln in Phu Quoc – Tho Chau ship route
Passenger ship on Phu Quoc – Tho Chau route has just been put into the operation from Phu Quoc Island to Tho Chau Island in the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang and vice versa, said Vice Director of the Provincial Transport Department Le Viet Bac yesterday.
Accordingly, the high- speed ship departs from Bai Vong Port, Ham Ninh commune, Phu Quoc district.
The Phu Quoc No.9 ship was designed with a length of 36.5 meters and width of six meters, speed 24 nautical miles an hour, with total investment capital of around VND 60 billion.
It is able to carry 120 passengers.
The ship runs every five days and trip duration is about 3.5- 4 hours.
Student basketball tournament attracts 163 teams
Nestlé MILO Cup, a basketball tournament for students in HCMC, kicked off at Phu Tho Stadium in District 11 on Sunday, with 163 teams from 89 primary and secondary schools in the city taking part.
Organized by the HCMC Basketball Federation and Nestlé Vietnam’s Milo brand, the basketball championship lasts until December 1.
The 12th annual event has contributed to promoting sporting activities among school children and discovering talent for the city’s basketball teams.
The tournament is part of a series of activities of the “Active Vietnam” program launched by Nestlé’s Milo brand in collaboration with the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism this year.
Doing away with ‘barter trade’
The good news now is that the HCMC government has decided to do away with the so-called barter trade in infrastructure development. The weird form of barter trade – which is not the preferable non-cash transaction, but the absence of money as a means of payment in modern-day business – has for quite a long time prevailed in not only the city but other parts of the country, under which an investor will develop a certain infrastructure project and is allocated land in return.
For many years, there have been concerns about such an investment form, officially known as the Build-Transfer (BT) format as part of a wider public-private partnership that also includes the Build-Operate-Transfer (BT) format.
In 2013, the Ministry of Planning and Investment voiced its concerns about the BT format, saying there remained many loopholes in regulations governing this form. Ever since, many State agencies have also complained about the waste of the country’s land resources, as vast areas of land have been offered to investors at low prices in exchange for roads and bridges.
Most recently, Ho Duc Phoc, head of the State Audit of Vietnam, told a conference in Hanoi three weeks ago that flaws are awash in the BT format, as it is fertile ground for interest groups due to the lack of transparency. Investors in BT projects have for the most part been appointed by local authorities instead of having to go through a tight screening process or a competition.
In an effort to remedy the situation, the HCMC government has just decided to put on hold all those BT projects still under negotiation, pending a new set of procedures governing this investment format. The key aim, said HCMC Vice Chairman Tran Vinh Tuyen at a seminar last week, is to make the whole process transparent and to ward off all possible irregularities. A report at the seminar shows that as many as 130 investors have submitted schemes to develop infrastructure projects in the city under either BT or BOT, with total estimated capital of VND350 trillion, or roughly US$15 billion.
The city government does not mean to shun the BT format, which is said to have helped the city mobilize over VND20 trillion in 2015-2017 for infrastructure projects. However, land instead of being handed over to investors will be put up for auction, and the money will be used to reimburse such investors. Investors for infrastructure projects will also be chosen via competitive bidding.
Such a move apparently will help enhance transparency in capital construction, and is seen a farewell to the old-fashioned barter trade in this field.
However, more efforts need to be taken to do away with the weird barter trade still rampant in other areas of the economy. Donating a social housing building to get land for a commercial condo project, or building a school or a medical center in a certain region to gain similar privileges are just a few examples of barter trade that should be removed, if real transparency is to be achieved.