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  • 11/20/17--02:11: Article 0
  • Vietnam warns against threat of cryptocurrency mining malware CoinHive

    CoinHive, lurking unseen on websites, taps the processing power of visitors' computers to mine the cryptocurrency Monero


    ​Vietnam warns against threat of cryptocurrency mining malware CoinHive 
    A cryptocurrency 'mining farm' in Vietnam.

    Internet users in Vietnam are being warned of a malicious software program hiding on websites to ‘steal’ the computing resources on visitors’ devices to mine the cryptocurrency Monero for hackers.

    The Vietnam Computer Emergency Response Team (VNCERT) announced on Thursday that it has received numerous complaints over the past week of cybersecurity threats caused by the CoinHive malware program.

    Monero, like Bitcoin, is a digital currency where coins are ‘mined’ by using computing power to solve puzzles and problems in the cryptocurrency’s systems.

    CoinHive is a JavaScript program that lurks unseen on websites in order to tap into the processing power of visitors' computers and mine Monero.

    When a visitor accesses a website infected with CoinHive, the malicious program is able to secretly run on the victim’s Internet browser and solve problems to earn Monero. The mined coins are then transferred directly to the hackers’ ‘wallet’.

    The process taps into the computer’s CPU power, chips, or graphics cards on the ‘borrowed PC.”  It also causes the victim’s computer to consume more electricity and runs up a higher power bill.

    A man carries out a transaction on a Bitcoin machine in Vietnam. Photo: Tuoi Tre

    VNCERT has initiated an emergency response to tackle the malware and introduced a set of recommendations for Internet users to protect themselves, according to deputy director Ngo Khac Lich.

    Webmasters are advised to ensure their websites have not been infected by the malware, whereas Chrome users are recommended to install “No Coin Chrome” or “minerBlock” extensions, and the “NoScripts” add-on for Firefox users, to stay secure.

    PC users can also check if their CPU resources are being stealthily abused by malware through the Windows Task Manager or Resource Monitor functions.

    Threats from cryptocurrency mining malware is rapidly growing, with the CoinHive variant becoming the sixth most-used malware in October, according to the latest Global Threat Impact Index report by Check Point Software, a cyber-security solutions provider.

     Tuoi Tre News


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  • 11/21/17--00:17: Article 4
  • BUSINESS IN BRIEF 21/11


    Dung Quat EZ finds fruitful partnership in Korea


     Dung Quat EZ finds fruitful partnership in Korea, SOE reform to fuel higher economic growth, Da Nang to host ASEAN Banking Council Meeting, Viet Nam Expo to begin on December 6

    Quang Ngai authorities yesterday held a working session with Doosan Heavy Industries Company at its Korean headquarters and granted investment certificates to six Korean enterprises investing in Dung Quat Economic Zone in the central province.

    This event was part of the investment promotion programmes, led by Tran Ngoc Cang, Chairman of the Quang Ngai People's Committee, in South Korea, with Doosan Vina as the bridge.

    The certificates were granted to Samshin Company, Yoobong Company, Wookang Industry Company, Kwangjin Company, Hanbit ENG and Nasan Electric Industry Company, with a total investment value exceeding $11 million. The projects will cover a total of 65,022 square metres in Binh Thuan commune, Binh Son district.

    Jung Yoen In, CEO of Doosan Vina, said, “Doosan Vina will do its utmost to bring Korean businesses to Quang Ngai to invest and raise the province’s level of development. It is also our commitment when investing here."

    Speaking at the meeting with Doosan Heavy Industries Company, Chairman Cang said that Doosan Vina’s plant was the first foreign invested project in Quang Ngai.

    Since October 20, 2006, the project has been contributing to the fundamental change in the GDP structure of the province and increasing industrial density, budget revenue, and providing jobs for 2,500 provincial laborers and more than 1,000 workers from other provinces and cities in Vietnam.

    Also at the meeting, Cang awarded certificates of merit to Doosan Vina for its contribution over the past 10 years to the provincial development.

    Notorious JA Solar project finally receives environmental approval

    The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment has approved the environmental impact assessment for JA Solar Hong Kong Investment’s silicon solar cell manufacturing plant project a long time after construction works had to be suspended, according to newswire Dantri.

    According to the approved report, the investor will have to install a wastewater treatment system with a capacity of 5,400 cubic metres per day and ensuring that the entire wastewater volume produced by the plant will be treated before disposal.

    Besides, it will have to install an automatic wastewater monitoring system connected with the monitoring system of the Bac Giang Department of Natural Resources and Environment.

    Additionally, the plant will not be permitted to import silicon scraps for manufacturing silicon solar cells.

    Previously, on November 27, 2016, the construction of the $280-million first phase of JA Solar Vietnam was officially started at Quang Chau Industrial Park in Viet Yen district in the northern province of Bac Giang.

    Accordingly, JA Solar Hong Kong would build a plant to produce solar cells with a total investment of $1 billion. The plant would generate $500 million in revenue each year and employ 3,000 people.

    However, in March, construction works stopped after the investor was found not to have prepared the necessary environmental impact assessment report.

    Nguyen Anh Quyen, head of the Bac Giang Industrial Zones Management Board, admitted at a local conference that JA Solar Hong Kong had started construction before its environmental impact report was approved.

    Founded in May 2005, JA Solar, the world’s leading cell producer since 2010, has firmly established itself as a tier 1 module supplier. It has eight production facilities worldwide. Its silicon wafer, cell, and module production capacity has reached 2.0GW, 5.0GW, and 5.5GW, respectively.

    To date, JA Solar has shipped products with a cumulative capacity of 17.5GW. In 2015, the company earned $2.15 billion in revenue and now employs 22,000 people.

    SOE reform to fuel higher economic growth

    Shosuke Mori, senior managing executive officer at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, told yesterday’s Nikkei-led forum on Vietnam’s growth outlook in Hanoi that the Vietnamese economy boasts great potential for higher growth with higher quality.

    “The Vietnamese economy has been consistently growing over 20 years. Vietnam is the only country among the ASEAN-5 that has consistently achieved more than 5 per cent growth since 2000,” Mori said.

    According to him, along with this high growth, Vietnam’s economy has undergone transformational changes since 1990. The country’s GDP per capita has grown by 22-fold, from $98 in 1990 to $2,172 in 2016, and nominal GDP has expanded about 31 times, from $6.5 billion in 1990 to $201 billion last year.

    “These figures are expected to accelerate even further. According to the International Monetary Fund, Vietnam’s GDP per capita is projected to reach $3,300, and nominal GDP $300 billion by 2022,” Mori stressed.

    However, Mori also underlined Vietnam’s slow equitisation of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) as one of the biggest challenges for the economy in general and the country’s investment attraction.

    “I think the SOE reform will be the key in driving the evolution of the Vietnamese economy,” Mori said. “The SOE sector accounts for about 30 per cent of the GDP in Vietnam, and is linked to many industries.”

    “The reform of SOEs would bring Vietnam to the next stage of its development. The average growth rate of the SOE sector from 2006 to 2016 was around 3.8 per cent, lower than the private sector’s at 4.9 per cent, and the foreign invested sector’s 7.7 per cent.”

    He also highlighted the government’s efforts to revamp the SOE sector.

    “Since SOE reform was mentioned in 1986 in the doi moi policy, I understand that the Vietnamese government has been taking proactive steps in this regard,” he said.

    For example, rules on corporate governance and disclosure, which were a long-standing issue, were established in 2015, and individual directions for the equitisation of SOEs were also announced last year under the strong leadership of the government.

    The number of SOEs in which the government has more than 50 per cent ownership decreased from 4,000 to 2,800 over the past ten years due to the government's efforts.

    “SOEs are key drivers of Vietnam’s economic growth, and with these reforms, I believe they can help transform domestic industries,” Mori stressed.

    Da Nang to host ASEAN Banking Council Meeting

    The 47th ASEAN Banking Council Meeting hosted by the Vietnam Banks Association (VNBA) is scheduled to take place at Furama Resort in central Da Nang City on November 23-24.

    The major annual event of the regional banking community will be presented by banking associations of ASEAN countries - Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

    This is the third time the VNBA has held such a meeting with the first one in 2000 and the second in 2007.

    The meeting will focus discussions on sustainable financial development, financial inclusion, the application of state-of-art technologies, human resource training and others as well as proposing cooperation initiatives and action plans.

    It will be an excellent opportunity for participants to share experience and strengthen cooperation among regional banks and partners.

    Role of livestock in achieving SDGs in spotlight

    Experts and policy-makers from eight Southeast Asian countries gathered in a workshop on “The Role of Livestock in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Southeast Asia” in Hanoi on November 16.

    The event, held by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), sought to enhance current contribution of the livestock industry to the sustainable livelihood and develop its potentials in the region.

    Speaking at the workshop, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Le Quoc Doanh said Vietnam has adopted the National Action Plan to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development which promotes sustainable agriculture among its goals.

    The country has been implementing agricultural reforms, including steps to improve added values of livestock farming and at the same time, develop livelihoods of the farmers, protect the environment and ensure food safety, Doanh noted. 

    The livestock industry grew about 4.5 – 5% annually between 2011 and 2016 and contributed to around 30 – 32% of the agricultural earnings, he added.

    Director of the National Institute of Animal Sciences Nguyen Thanh Son said progress in livestock farming plays a major part in achieving ten out of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). He expected public awareness of the significance of the livestock industry to the SDGs will be improved in the time ahead while there will be more activities to encourage investment into the sector to maximize its contribution to the SDGs.

    Livestock helps boost economic growth, creates incomes, and improve food security, nutrition and human health, said ILRI Director General Jimmy Smith, adding that research and development activities and policy support programmes are able to transform small and medium-scale breeding farms in the region into more adaptive, efficient and dynamic food supply systems, bringing better opportunity for women and young people.

    At the workshop, attendees shared experience and study findings about the growth of the livestock in Southeast Asia and the regional countries’ priorities and investment plans for the sector to develop sustainably. They also discussed ways to step up cooperation between the countries and organisations in the region to address common challenges in the field.

    Sales & Marketing Camp 2017 officially opens in HCM City

    Over 1,000 leaders, directors, senior managers as well as sales and marketing staff and students this morning participated in Vietnam Sales & Marketing Camp 2017 themed “Digital Transformation” in Ho Chi Minh City to study and improve their knowledge.

     Being the largest event in the sales and marketing sector co-organised by chairman of the directors of Sales & Marketing Club Vietnam (CSMO Vietnam) and Le Bros, Vietnam Sales & Marketing Camp 2017 aims to help participants to update on new trends, while simultaneously expand their relationship network to develop their careers and exchange experiences.

    “The digital transformation and the 4.0 Industrial Revolution have brought about dynamically changing operation trends, shifting the position of enterprises in the sales and marketing and communication sectors. We hope that the event will help participants understand better the power of digital solutions and then apply them in reality and find new ways to develop their enterprises,” said Bui Quy Phong, deputy chairman of CSMO in the north.

    In the framework of the two-day event (November 17-18), 45 speakers from leading groups will hold presentations on 10 key topics and discussions to share knowledge and new trends, as well as the compulsory creativities in order to maintain their operations in the sales and marketing sector.

    Notably, the programme organised today is for everyone interested in the communications, sales, and marketing sector. CSMO Summit organised tomorrow is for senior managers with discussions of management and human resources and job opportunities, as well as the agency-client relationship.

    Dung Quat EZ attracts more than US$11 million investment

    Six businesses from the Republic of Korea have been granted licences to invest in Dung Quat Economic Zone in the central province of Quang Ngai.

    Tran Ngoc Cang, chairman of Quang Ngai Provincial People’s Committee, and representatives of the managing board of Dung Quat Economic Zone handed over investment licences to the six businesses at the headquarters of Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Co., Ltd in Busan during their recent working visit to the ROK.

    This was part of the trade and investment promotion activities of Quang Ngai province in the ROK, supported by Doosan Vina.

    Six businesses will pour more than US$11 million into projects covering 65,022 sq m in Binh Thuan commune, Binh Son district, Quang Ngai province.

    Yoen In Jung, Doosan Vina CEO, said that since it established operations in Vietnam, Doosan Vina has always stood side by side with Quang Ngai province in investment attraction. It serves as a bridge to bring more Korean investors to the province.

    At a working session with Doosan, Mr. Cang said Doosan Vina was the first FDI project in Quang Ngai. After 11 years of operation, the company has contributed to changing the provincial GDP structure, increasing budget collection, and creating jobs for 2,500 direct workers and more than 1,000 indirect labourers.

    Viet Nam Expo to begin on December 6     

    The 15th Viet Nam Expo 2017 will take place in HCM City’s Sai Gon Exhibition and Convention Centre from December 6 to 9. It is expected to be a landmark event for local and international businesses to exchange trade and investment opportunities.

    “The forthcoming exhibition, the largest ever of its kind, will comprise 800 pavilions of 750 companies from 16 countries and territories such as India, Taiwan, Germany and South Korea, as well as Indonesia, Malaysia, America and mainland China,” the event’s organiser, the Viet Nam National Trade Fair and Advertising Co, said in a statement.

    On display will be electronics, electrics, tech devices and equipment and accessories, as well as manufacturing machines, construction material, tools and hand tools, in addition to interior and outdoor decorations, food, beverages and cosmetics.

    A series of conferences and programmes will be held on the sidelines of the four-day event, including the Viet Nam-China mechanical engineering exchange programme and a seminar on economic, trade and investment co-operation in China’s three provinces of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei on December 6. A dialogue discussing infrastructure quality in Asia and a workshop on opportunities and challenges for Viet Nam’s supporting industries in the context of the Industrial Revolution 4.0 will be held on December 7.

    A training programme on techniques and processes for developing customer-oriented products in the context of global competition on December 8 will be also held.

    The previous event in HCM City attracted the participation of 520 businesses and over 11,600 visitors. 

    Vinasun, MoMo partner on smart payments     

    Taxi service provider Vietnam Sun Corporation (Vinasun) and MoMo E-wallet developer M_Service Company signed a strategic cooperation agreement on Wednesday to provide smart payment service to customers.

    Under the agreement, customers using Vinasun’s services can use the MoMo E-Wallet on their smartphone to scan QR codes provided by taxi drivers to pay taxi charges.

    In addition, passengers who book a car via the Vinasun app can choose to link with the MoMo E-Wallet integrated in the app and the system will automatically pay the exact amount after each trip.

    Once the trip and payment is completed, a message will be sent and the transaction history will be saved on the customer’s e-wallet application. This helps customers find information and manage their spending effortlessly.

    Money in the MoMo E-wallet can be deposited directly from accounts at 11 banks and through international cards of users or topped up at more than 5,000 transaction points of MoMo nationwide.

    Viet Nam can exploit Industry 4.0: Deputy PM     

    Viet Nam’s telecom infrastructure gives it a good foundation for developing business models based on digital connections, vital for success in the fourth industrial revolution, Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue said on Friday.

    As such, the nation will focus on building a world of super-connectivity needed to tackle challenges posed by Industry 4.0, he told a forum held in Ha Noi.

    In line with its aim of being a constructive Government, his administration will work closely with the business community as well as local and foreign experts to overcome problems that arise, the Deputy PM added.

    He also said that the Government would promote corporate social responsibility on the basis of harmonious interests between the State, the people and businesses.

    Efforts will continue to remove administrative barriers and develop favourable policies and mechanisms to boost national competitiveness, he said.

    The Deputy PM noted that Viet Nam has achieved remarkable success in developing its telecommunications industry, with over 130 million mobile phone subscribers and more than 55 per cent of the population regularly connecting to the Internet.

    This has laid a good foundation for new business models based on digital connections, including sci-tech startups, he said.

    With the right approach, low-income groups can also participate in and benefit from the fourth industrial revolution, he added.

    “To be successful, every country and every business needs to come up with a unique solution and approach. Knowing the problem and having a different vision is very important in today’s context,” Hue said.

    The forum featured in-depth discussions among the prospects of a competitive and inclusive Viet Nam, measuring social impacts of businesses, the WEF’s new approach to assessing national competitiveness and technological change, bottlenecks to improving national competitiveness and other solutions for improvement.

    Justin Wood, Asia Pacific head of the World Economic Forum (WEF), said that the impact of the Fourth Revolution will lead to a shift in focus from cheap labour to labour quality.

    In response, the WEF has been working on a project with the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA) to develop a human resources training system using the former’s experience and expertise in business competitiveness and economic development, Wood said.

    The WEF sees that Viet Nam’s connectivity index will improved in the coming years, said Thierry Geiger, WEF’s Head of Analytics and Quantitative Research on Global Competitiveness and Risks.

    He noted that Viet Nam has evolved from a low-income to a middle-income country, and is looking to further develop into a high income one in order to avoid the middle-income trap.

    A super-connected world will provide opportunities for all individuals, businesses and organisations in all regions regardless of borders, creating the ultimate opportunity for development, which is true for Viet Nam and all other economies, said Gemma Corrigan, WEF’s expert on Economic Growth and Social Inclusion Initiative.

    However, the Deputy PM noted that some recent changes in business models have caused social disturbances through large-scale displacement of workers, as has happened with taxi firms and some manufacturing industries.

    The new transnational digital platform business model has to address the issue of fair financial obligations and fair competition, and the role of the State in managing this development process, Hue said.

    Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son noted that the Vietnamese Government and WEF had early this year signed a co-operation agreement on future economic development.

    At the moment, the WEF is in the process of preparing a report on Viet Nam during the Fourth Industrial Revolution that is expected to provide practical recommendations.

    Jointly held by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) and the WEF, the theme of yesterday event was Competitiveness and Development in the context of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. 

    Sao Ta Foods becomes Ben Tre Aquaproduct affiliate     

    Ben Tre Aquaproduct Import and Export JSC (ABT) has completed the purchase of nearly 7.84 million shares, equal to 20.1 per cent of voting rights in Sao Ta Foods JSC (FMC), making the latter an affiliate company of Ben Tre Aquaproduct.

    The company made the announcement on the HCM Stock Exchange on Thursday.

    Ben Tre Aquaproduct is a subsidiary of PAN Group which holds 72.82 per cent of its capital.

    Earlier, Hung Vuong Corp (HVG) decided to offload its entire holding of 21.128 million shares — equivalent to 54.28 per cent of Sao Ta Foods’ capital — to streamline its business in the context of declining performance and heavy interest burdens.

    SSI Asset Management Co Ltd on Monday also bought more than 7.72 million shares of Sao Ta Foods, lifting its ownership to 19.97 per cent of voting rights.

    Sao Ta Foods is one of the three biggest shrimp exporters in Viet Nam. The shrimp exporter reported its best-ever result with estimated pre-tax profit of VND125 billion (US$5.5 million) in the fiscal year 2016-17, an increase of 25 per cent over the yearly target and up 60 per cent year-on-year.

    The company’s shares are trading at about VND22,000 per share on the HCM Stock Exchange. 

    Japanese backs Da Nang tourism     

    The Mikazuki hotel Group from Japan will spend more than US$100 million to build a water park and five-star hotel on the beach of Da Nang – the biggest investment in tourism property from Japan iin the city.

    The project, which will cover 13ha, will include a 5ha water park, and a five-star hotel with 280 rooms on Da Nang Bay.

    It is the biggest foreign investment in tourism property in the city this year.

    Earlier, the Route Inn Group from Japan launched a four-star hotel project, the Grandvrio Da Nang City. It is the first of a chain of 50 hotels in the country.

    Japan is the second largest investor in Da Nang with 134 projects worth $598 million.

    The city has hosted 5.1 million tourists, of which 1.76 million were foreigners, in the first nine months this year. The number of Japanese visitors has trebled in recent years..

    Japanese projects create 40,000 jobs for the city and neighbouring provinces.

    The city has also reserved a 134ha industrial park for medium and small-size businesses from Japan.

    Tourist real estate remains a favourite investment magnet in this central city, attracting 25 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects worth $1.8 billion or 54 per cent of total FDI capital in the city.

    The city has so far developed 16 tourist property projects consisting of 749 villas, of which 609 are for sale and 140 for lease.

    Vingroup launches 2 new Vincom centres     

    The real estate developer Vingroup on Friday officially launched Vincom Plaza Tuy Hoa in the southern province of Phu Yen and Vincom+ Uong Bi in the northern province of Quảng Ninh, increasing the number of Vingroup’s commercial centres to 44.

    Vincom Plaza Tuy Hoa and Vincom + Uong Bi are covered with full retail, food, and entertainment areas – marking the first appearance of Vincom in Phu Yen and Uong Bi, bringing modern consumer culture to young cities.

    In Phu Yen Province, Vincom Plaza Tuy Hoa has a total area of over 12.000sq.m located in the centre of a crowded urban area. It brings local people the utilities that first appeared in the province such as a CGV cinema and modern electronic entertainment zone named Đức Nguyen Phat. Customers also witnessed the appearance of a series of top restaurants such as King BBQ, Hotto, Lotteria, Rainbow Yogurt and other prestige brands in Việt Nam and internationally such as Korean style home appliances Minigood, Vascara shoes and bags, Triumph, IVY Moda, TNG, Aristino, PNJ and Fahasa bookstore.

    In Quang Ninh Province, Vincom + Uong Bi, covering an area of 4,000sq.m, will be a new shopping destination for local people and tourists with well-known brands such as TNG Fashion, Esjaco, Chingu BBQ and Lotteria. The TomKiss entertainment area, with many modern entertainment activities for children to exercise and play, will be an ideal destination for young families at the weekend.

    These two new shopping centres will also see some of Vingroup’s retail brands, such as VinMart supermarket and the VinPro technology and electronic supermarket.

    Of which, VinMart provides a variety of products, from fresh food such as VinEco products applying Israeli agricultural technology, cosmetics, household appliances and consumer goods. With reasonable prices, clear origin and quality guarantee, VinMart will contribute to improving the quality of life and become the daily choice of every family.

    In addition, VinPro offers electronic products, refrigeration, household appliances, mobile phones, and laptops from world famous brands and attractive after-sales policies.

    On the occasion their launch, Vincom Plaza Tuy Hoa, Phu Yen and Vincom + Uong Bi are offering a series of promotions for customers.

    CapitaLand acquires 1.45ha project in HCM City     

    CapitaLand has acquired a 1.45ha site in District 4 which will be developed into an 870-unit residential development worth a total of US$177 million, the real estate company announced without disclosing the deal value.

    The acquisition represents the company’s ninth residential development in HCM City and 11th project in Viet Nam, according to the press release issued on Thursday.

    Strategically located within a five-minute drive from Districts 1 and 7, the project will comprise three 24-storey towers and enjoy panoramic views of the Sai Gon River and city skyline.

    The latest acquisition comes on the back of a year of record home sales growth for CapitaLand in Viet Nam, it said.

    “2017 marks a record year of growth for CapitaLand in Viet Nam with the highest home sales value achieved in nine months, surpassing that of the 2016 fiscal year by close to 50 per cent,” said Chen Lian Pang, CEO of CapitaLand Vietnam.

    Viet Nam is the third largest market for CapitaLand in Southeast Asia, after Singapore and Malaysia. As at end September 2017, it has S$2 billion worth of gross assets under management in Viet Nam.

    The latest acquisition will expand CapitaLand’s portfolio to 11 residential developments, 21 serviced residences with around 4,700 units and one international Grade A office development across six cities in Viet Nam. 

    Mekong Agriculture Technology Challenge programme starts     

    The Mekong Agriculture Technology Challenge (MATch) was launched in HCM City on Thursday, aiming to support agricultural start-ups for the Mekong region’s agriculture to be turned into a more competitive and sustainable industry.

    MATch is the latest in a series of innovation accelerators by the Mekong Business Initiative (MBI) with funding and support from the Australian Government and the Asian Development Bank.

    Phan Vinh Quang, deputy director of MBI, said agricultural technology start-ups and global agricultural solution providers, can join MATCh to help transform the Mekong region’s agriculture industry into a leading global supplier of safe and nutritious food.

    The programme includes two challenges – the MATch Startup Accelerator and the MATch Market Access Accelerator. The first is aimed at innovative early stage agritech start-ups and traditional agriculture businesses with new, scalable business models in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Viet Nam.

    The second challenge will help mature international agritech companies expand into the Mekong region. Participants will receive mentorship and assistance with their expansion plans including product adaptation, and help forge relationships with partners and investors in the region.

    The competition offers awards and prizes worth US$200,000 in total, provided via technical support and service provision. Award winners will also be introduced to and receive finance from strategic investors.

    The winners will also be invited to present their solutions at the Greater Mekong Subregion Summit in Ha Noi in 2018 and to participate in the Future Food Asia Award Competition held in Singapore.

    The programme accepts online applications at www.match.mekongbiz.org until the end of December. 

    Mau Son tourism site goes green in fresh campaigns

    Mau Son tourism site in the northern mountainous province of Lang Son has been cleaned up thanks to efforts to raise public awareness to protect the environment at the tourist attraction.

    Various popularisation programmes have been run such as “Green Sunday” and “Mau Son youth join hands to conserve the environment”. Volunteers and locals have collected rubbish around the site at weekends and on holidays when tourists flock to the site.

    According to the Mau Son tourism site management board, from the outset of the year, Mau Son welcomed some 75,000 visitors who left a lot of trash and waste during their trips.

    The board said that it will promote popularisation work to ensure a clean environment at this tourist attraction. 

    Located 30 kilometres northeast of Lang Son city, Mau Son is home to the Tay, Dao, and Nung ethnic minorities. The mountain boasts beautiful landscapes, clean air, and cool weather year-round.

    Tourists often flock here to enjoy its beautiful streams and waterfalls as well as to occasionally experience snow in winter.

    The area is well-known for peaches, Tuyet Son tea, wine and rare cockerels with six claws.

    Vietnam Expo 2017 promotes new products for 2018

    The 15th Vietnam International Trade Fair (Vietnam Expo 2017) on December 6-9 in Ho Chi Minh City will see the introduction of new products that will hit the market in 2018.

    According to the Vietnam National Trade Fair & Advertising Company (Vinexad), participating companies want to introduce their new items for 2018 with the aim of seeking customers’ feedback for evaluating the market’s demand.

    The expo, held by the Vinexad, continues to be an important bridge to connect Vietnamese and foreign enterprises, allowing them to meet and exchange views on business cooperation.

    It is also a destination where policy makers can update latest waves of market and producer can popularise their trademarks as well as expand consumption market network.

    This year event will feature 800 booths displaying products in the fields of electronic devices and products, hardware products and hand tools, construction materials and household products-consumer goods.

    The organising board has received 860 registrations through website and fanpage so far, including those from the UK, the US, the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Russia, Slovakia, Belarus and Asian countries.

    A line-up of talks and trade exchange conferencewill be held in the framework of the event.

    According to the organising board, some 320 enterprises attended the 2015 event while the number increased to 520 in 2016 and is expected at 750 in 2017.

    Houses presented to disadvantaged families in Soc Trang

    The Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) of the Mekong Delta province of Soc Trang and the provincial Lottery Company on November 16 presented 167 houses to poor and near-poor families.

    Each family also received an aid of 30 million VND (1,320 USD) and a gift set worth 500,000 VND.

    At the ceremony, Duong Sa Kha, Chairman of the provincial VFF, said that the houses were built with 5 billion VND (220,130 USD) sponsored by the Soc Trang Lottery Company along with the contributions of local authorities and those families. 

    Since 2015, the Soc Trang Lottery Company has raised more than 15 billion VND (660,390 USD) to build 667 houses for disadvantaged families across the locality.

    Industry, trade sector see strong growth in HCM City

    HCM City’s industry and trade sectors were among the leading, the city’s Department of Industry and Trade, said on November 15.

    Compared with 2016, the index of industrial production (IIP) this year is expected to increase by nearly 8.5 percent; turnover from retail goods and consumer services by 10.9 percent; and export turnover by 15.1 percent.

    Industry and trade reached added value of around 356 trillion VND (15.8 billion USD), accounting for 33.6 percent of the city’s GRDP.

    “The breakthrough growth of four key industries -- food processing, chemistry-rubber engineering, electronics and information technology -- saw significant achievements with IIP 1.83 times higher than that of national industry,” Pham Thanh Kien, Director of the department, said.

    “Infrastructure for modern trade included an additional 18 supermarkets, three shopping malls, and 218 convenience shops compared with 2016. There was remarkable growth of online trade, which contributed to commodity retail and consumer service turnover,” he added.

    City authorities have launched many support policies for enterprises. Enterprises in the industry and supporting sectors can now borrow capital of up to 200 billion VND (8.9 million USD) per project, with preferential-loan interest periods lasting seven years.

    This year, the city organised 35 trade promotion campaigns by connecting international retail groups with local producers and helping enterprises expand market share in neighbouring provinces and international markets.

    Rapid establishment of new enterprises, with nearly 330,000 this year, an increase of 8.45 percent, also contributed to growth.

    However, most of the new enterprises were micro and small-sized companies, which have difficulty accessing preferential capital from the Government and banks.

    The supporting industry has gained initial achievements, but is not strong enough to meet material demand for local producers.

    “In the coming time, the trade and industry department will promote trade focusing on key markets with trade surpluses with Vietnam of over 1 billion USD, like China, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Taiwan (China) and Thailand,” Kien added.

    “We will focus on policies to help supporting enterprises so they can take advantage of free trade agreements, and develop technical barriers to minimise any negative impact from such agreements,” he added. 

    Economists have said that HCM City must identify its export advantages and focus all resources to promote key export industries like electronics, computers, software and digital content and services.

    VN food makers urged to up quality

    Vietnamese food producers need to focus on improving product quality, invest in new technologies and build brands to meet consumer demand and increase export value, experts said at the Vietnam Food Forum held in HCM City on November 16.

    With consumers increasingly concerned about product hygiene and food safety, more attention should be paid to the food chain’s different stages, where hazards can occur, according to Nguyen Song Ha, assistant chief representative of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the UN.

    Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) should be applied to improve safety and quality, he said.

    “Vietnamese businesses should invest more in GAP to enable our products to be more delicious and safer so as to improve our position in the world market,” Ha said.

    The volume of VietGap-certified products remains modest compared to market demand, he added.

    According to FAO’s forecast, consumption of high-quality food products will increase significantly until 2020, Ha noted.

    Speaking on the sidelines of the forum, Nguyen Huong Quynh, managing director of  Nielsen Vietnam, said consumers were willing to pay for high-quality, prestigious products.

    “Vietnamese food producers have paid a lot of attention to export markets and are selling products that they have, but haven’t focused on what consumers really need,” she said.

    Businesses should not forget that the domestic market has great potential and that many foreign players want to jump in, she added.

    Quynh suggested that they focus more on domestic consumer demand, develop suitable products and improve their technology and product designs.

    Speaking at the forum, Do Thang Hai, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade, said the food industry had greatly contributed to export revenue, creating jobs and improving workers’ incomes.

    Export of agricultural and food products were worth 29.6 billion USD last year, a year-on-year increase of 12.7 percent. But 90 percent of Vietnamese farm exports are raw products, with low added value.

    Leon Trujillo, an expert in branding, said: “Vietnam has become a food production powerhouse, but not every country is aware of this.”

    He urged Vietnam’s food sector to develop a brand identity that brings value to products, the country and its food producers.

    More investment in technologies is needed to raise the ratio of processed products, delegates said, adding that more research and development was necessary to increase competitiveness and add more value to products.

    Nguyen Trung Anh, R&D director of the PAN Group, said the company had developed a farm-food-family closed value chain to offer trusted and traceable products.

    It has also worked with local and foreign partners to transfer technologies, develop new products and automate production.

    In addition, it has invested in R&D and built linkages with farmers to develop its own material sources, he said.

    Deputy Minister Hai said the Ministry of Industry and Trade in collaboration with ministries, business associations and companies are implementing measures to develop markets, improve quality and build brands for Vietnamese food products to gradually raise the export value of products.

    At the forum, the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency (Vietrade) signed a memorandum of understanding with the Hong Kong Trade Development Council for cooperation in trade promotion between Hong Kong and Vietnamese businesses.

    Vietrade also signed an MoU with Nielsen Vietnam for cooperation in market research and development.

    At the event, Jocelyn Tran, from Walmart, also described how companies could become suppliers to Walmart.

    The forum included a business-to-business meeting between Vietnamese producers and foreign importing groups from France, the US, Italy, Japan and China, as well as local and foreign supermarkets and hypermarkets such as Walmart, CJ Group, Lotte, Central Group, Vinmart and Satra.

    Held on the sidelines of the Vietnam Foodexpo, the forum was organised by Vietrade, the FAO and VPBank.

    WEF to propose policies for Vietnam to seize 4IR opportunities

    The World Economic Forum (WEF) will build a report proposing policies for Vietnam to improve competitiveness and prepare all necessary conditions to optimise opportunities and benefits from the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).

    Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son revealed the information at a workshop held by his ministry and the WEF in Hanoi on November 17.

    He underlined the growing relations between Vietnam and the WEF over the past time and said the report will be built as part of the bilateral cooperation agreement on future-proofing economy in Vietnam signed in 2017.

    Justin Wood, head of the Asia Pacific region of WEF, said Vietnam has seen remarkable strides since 1980s from a low-income country to middle-income one. 

    Vietnam is striving to become a high-income nation in the future, he added.

    Addressing the event, Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue highlighted opportunities from the internet of things, which enable all individuals to start business and help promote inclusiveness. 

    Vietnam has obtained significant achievements in the field of telecommunication infrastructure, he said, adding that the country has over 130 million mobile phone subscribers and the 4G network has covered up to 99 percent of Vietnamese districts. Fifty-five percent of the population has been frequently connected with the internet, he noted.

    Besides opportunities, the 4IR also poses numerous challenges in increasing competitiveness and promoting inclusiveness in Vietnam such as changing business models and shifting labour forces – which have been occurring in some taxi firms and manufacturing and processing industries, Hue said.

    He affirmed that the Government will hold regular dialogues with the business community as well as domestic and foreign experts to remove barriers and tackle any arising issues stemmed from the fourth industrial revolution.

    The Government will also create a legal corridor and essential action programmes to support businesses as well as encourage the formation of start-up ecosystems based on science and technology and promote corporate social responsibility.

    HCM City steps up cooperation with IFC

    Ho Chi Minh City is committed to creating favourable conditions for the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to carry out joint projects based on current laws, stated Le Thanh Liem, Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee.

    Liem made the statement at a reception for Kyle F.Kelhofer, IFC Senior Country Manager for Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, in the southern city on November 17.

    While affirming that the IFC’s financial assistance and investment mobilisation have contributed significantly to the city’s development,  Liem asked for further support from the IFC, particularly in attracting, managing and effectively using foreign investments.

    For his part, Kelhofer said the IFC wants to assist HCM City in seeking and luring capital from investors and international financial partners for the city’s infrastructure development.

    He noted that cooperation programmes with the IFC could enable the southern economic hub to access diverse sources of funding with low interest rates. 

    Kelhofer told his host that the IFC is willing to share experiences with the city on how to effectively attract, manage and use foreign capital, and provide technical support to help the city implement public-private partnership (PPP) projects.

    At the working session, both sides agreed to boost relevant studies in a bid to soon turn their bilateral cooperation plans into practical and feasible projects.

    The IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, has operated in Vietnam since 1994. It has so far mobilised 5.6 billion USD to fund 123 projects in infrastructure development, agriculture, renewable energy and banking in the country.

    Management of product origin to be enhanced

    The General Department of Customs has ordered the management of origin and labels of imported products to be enhanced.

    The move comes in the wake of a probe into Khaisilk’s trade fraud of selling "Made-in-China" products under the Vietnamese brand, which caused a stir.

    Accordingly, customs departments across the country must enhance their management of product origin and labels following the Government’s Decree 19 on product origin, Decree 43 on labeling and Ministry of Finance’s Circular 38 on customs management procedures.

    Special attention must be paid to Vietnamese companies’ products that were produced abroad and then imported into the country.

    All violations must be reported to the General Department of Customs.

    According to current regulations, organisations and individuals placing goods in circulation must be in charge of labeling, and the labels must provide clear and accurate product information.

    The Khaisilk fraud was uncovered more than a week ago when a company which bought Khaisilk-branded scarves at a Khaisilk store on Hang Gai shop in Hanoi found one scarf with two tags – one with “Khaisilk Made in Vietnam” and the other with “Made in China.”

    Hoang Khai, chairman of the group which is considered a top Vietnamese silk brand, later admitted that the scarves were actually imported from China.

    On November 4, Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh asked the Ministry of Industry and Trade in coordination with relevant ministries to clarify violations of Khaisilk and report the findings before December 15.

    Customs’ statistics showed that imports of silk products from China were worth 1.2 million USD in the first nine months of this year, while the figures were 2.3 million USD in 2016 and 4 million USD in 2015. From 2015 to September 2017, Vietnam imported more than 8,800 silk scarves from China, worth some 35,800 USD.

    In another development, the Hanoi Department of Taxation recently reported on the tax payments of Khaisilk’s store on Hang Gai Street.

    Accordingly, the store, which is owned by Nguyen Thu Nga and began selling silk products from January 2004, earned revenue of 14 billion VND in the January-September period and paid tax of more than 200 million VND for the period.

    The company earned 15.6 billion VND in 2015 and 16.11 billion VND in 2016 as revenue, and paid taxes worth 234 million VND and 241 million VND, respectively.

    The tax department said that the store was not in arrears of taxes.

    Earlier, the General Department of Taxation had asked the municipal tax department to report on the performance of tax payment of Khaisilk Group and its stores in Hanoi.

    Hanoi prepares goods worth 1.14 billion USD for Tet

    Hanoi’s Department of Industry and Trade is partnering with firms and business households to prepare goods worth 26 trillion VND (1.14 billion USD) in total for the upcoming Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday. 

    This was a rise of 10 percent over last year’s plan due to an anticipated increase in consumption, the department said.

    Le Hong Thang, the department’s Director, said the department would keep a close watch on market supply and demand with a focus on essential items such as food products.

    Thang also asked district authorities to create conditions for firms and business households to accumulate goods for the Tet holiday and urged firms to actively study market demand and implement plans for production and goods purchase to ensure adequate supply and prevent scarcity of goods and unreasonable increase in prices.

    Demand for goods in the months ahead of Tet (from January 1, 2018 to February 28, 2018) is estimated to be 10-15 percent higher than other months, the department said.

    The volume of goods for the Tet holiday included 193,600 tonnes of rice, 50,000 tonnes of pork, 14,000 tonnes of chicken meet and 13,800 tonnes of beef, as well as 200 eggs, 220,000 tonnes of vegetables, 12,000 processed food products and 12,000 fishery products, along with 3,500 tonnes of dry agricultural products, 3,000 tonnes of confectionary products, 200 million litres of alcoholic and beverage products and 120,000cu.m of petrol and oil.

    Vietnam trade fair begins in Cambodia

    The Vietnam Trade Fair 2017 opened in Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia, on November 18, drawing more than 150 businesses of Vietnam and Cambodia.

    The event, the eighth edition, was co-organised by the Defence Ministry and Industry and Trade Ministry of Vietnam and the Defence Ministry and Commerce Ministry of Cambodia.

    It will run till November 22, with over 230 booths, covering an area of about 10,000 square metres. A forum to bolster Vietnam - Cambodia trade and investment will take place at the event, along with daily cultural performances.

    Speaking at the opening ceremony, Vietnamese Deputy Defence Minister Tran Don said Vietnam has to date launched 190 investment projects in Cambodia with total registered capital worth nearly 3 billion USD.

    Meanwhile, Cambodia’s investment in Vietnam is also on the rise, with 18 projects capitalizing at over 58 million USD. 

    Two-way trade hit 3 billion USD per year and the two countries are striving to raise the figure to 5 billion USD in upcoming years.

    The fair is an important political event that fosters the friendship between the two nations. It also offers opportunities for Vietnamese firms to enhance cooperation with their Cambodian counterparts and explore new markets, thus boosting export to ASEAN member countries and Cambodia in particular, Don added.

    For his part, Cambodian Secretary of State for Commerce Ok Boung said the event aims to consolidate and develop the traditional and comprehensive partnership between the two countries, celebrating the 50th founding anniversary of the diplomatic relations and the Vietnam – Cambodia Friendship Year 2017.

    The Cambodian officials voiced his hope that the fair will enhance business connection of the two countries as various contracts will be inked. He affirmed that the two sides will continue working in creating optimal conditions for business links for mutual interests.-

    VNPAY & Thang Long Transport sign MoU

    Representatives from the Vietnam Payment Solutions Joint Stock Company (VNPAY) and the Thang Long Transport Corp. have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on providing a new form of payment - VNPAYQR scanning on the mobile banking application.

    The payment form is expected to bring benefits to both customers and Thang Long Transport.

    General Director of VNPAY, Mr. Le Tanh, told the signing ceremony that VNPAY is one of the leading companies in the field and provides payment solutions to over 8,000 Vietnamese enterprises and has cooperation agreements with 31 banks in Vietnam.

    General Director of Thang Long Transport, Mr. Nguyen Tien Long emphasized that applying new technology, especially QR codes, has become necessary in recent times because it brings convenience to customers.

    “We will apply mobile payments through QR codes in Hanoi first and will then expand to other cities and provinces, especially Bac Ninh province,” he said. “Most foreign customers, such as those from Japan and South Korea, expected that we will adopt new payment solutions.”

    Thang Long has become a multi-business corporation, in passenger transport, transportation construction, and commercial business.

    In passenger transport, the company has 700 taxis and 800 employees, operating in the capital Hanoi and northern Bac Ninh and Bac Giang provinces.

    VNPAY was officially established in March 2007 by a team of experienced leaders in the field of banking and finance, information technology, and telecommunications.

    With the goal of becoming a leading company in the field of electronic payments in Vietnam, over the last four years VNPAY has cooperated with 31 banks, seven telecommunications companies, and more than 8,000 enterprises, providing payment solutions such as SMS Banking, the VnTopup phone recharge service, VnMart e-wallet, multi-SIM, and the VNPAYQR payment gateway.

    VNN


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  • 11/21/17--00:50: Article 3
  • Experts question Hanoi street repaving


    Several local experts have stirred their concerns over a project to use natural stone for paving in all of Hanoi’s 12 districts, saying that it would be a waste.

    The project is aimed to pave 936 streets in 12 districts across Hanoi from now until 2020 with natural stone with duration of 50-70 years.


     
    Hanoi aims to pave 936 streets in 12 districts with natural stone from now to 2020


    The move comes as the city’s pavement continues to show signs of degradation, hindering pedestrians to walk as well as worsening the image of the city.

    The work has been carried out in many streets in Hoan Kiem District such as Nguyen Du, Quang Trung and Ba Trieu.

    Architect Pham Thanh Tung from the Vietnam Association of Architects said that natural stone should be used at some certain areas of Hanoi such as the Old Quarter or pedestrian streets to save the costs and make the city more sophisticated.

    However the burying of utility cables and water pipes underground has not yet been finished on many streets while the city has implemented the natural stone pavement.

    Last year, the city finished putting utilities underground on 17 of 18 planned streets. So far this year, the work has been done on just 41 among the 56 targeted streets. The slow pace is attributed to difficulties related to licenses and budget.

    Architect Tran Thanh Binh said that in many cities in the world stone is used for streets. However, Hanoi needs to reconsider this as it would be useless to spend that money on the city’s pavements only for it to be illegally encroached upon by private businesses as at present.

    It is more vital for the capital city to focus on the urban infrastructure management instead of doing things which are not urgent, Binh said.

    TPO


    0 0
  • 11/21/17--01:11: Article 2
  • How machines and minds can reboot manufacturing


    Five Asian countries – Vietnam, Malaysia, India, Thailand, and Indonesia – are predicted to be among the 15 most competitive manufacturing countries in the world by 2020, according to the 2016 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index report.


     How machines and minds can reboot manufacturing, vietnam economy, business news, vn news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, vn news, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, Vietnam breaking news

    how machines and minds can reboot manufacturing hinh 0 The report was published by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu and the US Council on Competitiveness.

    In the report, these nations – called the Mighty 5 or MITI-V – represent a potential “new China” in terms of labour, agile manufacturing capabilities, favourable demographic profiles, and market and economic growth. But what will be the impact of technology on these new manufacturing centres?

    The rise of robots, automation, and additive technologies will impact manufacturing industries in both higher- and lower-cost countries, creating tensions through new potential jobs losses. Addressing these real concerns over automation and the future of work has been the focus of discussions at the APEC Economic Leaders’ Week in Danang.

    The potential economic and real human impact is enormous. By connecting machines and drawing insights from the ensuing data, the Industrial Internet could add $10 trillion to global GDP over the next 20 years. We estimate this impact is at least twice as great as the consumer internet. The challenge for governments and business leaders alike will be harnessing this profound change to deliver benefits to the society and people.

    Across the globe, countries and companies have demonstrated that they can benefit from new technology, while also securing high-impact, high-value jobs for their citizens. What we are seeing is that they are not eliminating jobs as people often fear, but are changing the jobs that workers are doing and bringing manufacturing into a sustainable future.

    A recent study by McKinsey found that half of all activities in the workplace could be automated by 2055, but that any productivity gains will rely on people working alongside machines. Success in this new context will not be determined by working more cheaply, but by working more intelligently.

    Highly automated factories

    Tapping into this enormous opportunity will require new ways of working, and of thinking about work.

    GE has a unique advantage here. Our 125 years of industrial know-how combined with digital expertise has acquired us in-depth understanding about the physics and the digital side of industrial assets as well as the structure of workplaces. To see how robots can and will transform manufacturing, let us take a look at two GE factories and how they are handling the integration of new technology.

    At GE, our factories vary widely in age. Our Bromont factory in Canada has been part of our company story for decades – and then we have new facilities like Haiphong in Vietnam, which we opened in 2011. What is the common equation across all our manufacturing operations? Investing in technology and workforce development in equal measure.

    We support up-skilling, reskilling, and changing mindsets to let employees take control of their systems and processes. In other words, we train our employees to manage robots and automation, not to resent them.

    Our newer facility in Haiphong does about $500 million in annual exports, making it a significant contributor to the Vietnamese economy. When things are going well, it is easy to get comfortable and stop innovating, but Haiphong gave themselves a couple of bold goals for the future: phasing out manually-intensive labour, paperwork, and non-value-adding jobs, along with eliminating waste and optimising manufacturing processes. 

    To achieve this, they have put in place welding robots, crane-free operations, and moving line manufacturing. Using digital tools to help welding increased efficiency from 12 to 30 per cent, while smart torque improved quality control in manufacturing and increased productivity by 5 per cent.

    Bromont, while a much older factory, has a similar robotics story. They introduced robots in their facility back in the 1990s, and now have 180 robots in place to do 50 million repetitive tasks that humans used to do by hand. By introducing robots, they have also been able to reduce their cycle time and scaled from making 4,500 aircraft engine parts in 1983 to more than 3.3 million parts in 2017 – while also increasing employee numbers.

    The factory has also witnessed a significant decrease in incidents with increased automation. Overall, Bromont has become one of our most productive sites and a hub for advanced robotic processes, software applications, and intellectual property that is exported around the world.

    The biggest change in both locations, however, has taken place in employees’ minds. In Haiphong, operators can identify and tackle waste. Engineers can analyse data and make decisions to improve safety and quality. 

    Maintenance can anticipate servicing and spare parts, while management can make more timely decisions. Overall productivity at the Haiphong factory has increased by 20 per cent. While in Canada, a participative management culture greatly contributed to the gains in Bromont. None of this would be possible without empowered employees who can see firsthand that technology can help them and will not take over their jobs.

    Employee-robot relations

    Whether we are looking at our operations in Vietnam, Canada, or elsewhere, it is important to note that the change in management required for robotics and automation has been participatory. Employees have not been replaced: they now manage robots and production lines.

    In order to make this possible, employees were involved in every stage of process improvement and production planning.

    Where facilities were once dominated by manual tasks, we now have production that only involves skilled labour. These changes in both technology and working practices underline why the next phase of manufacturing will involve a race to the top – and robots.

    Technology will have a defining impact on the entire manufacturing industry, in established and emerging locations.

    The critical decision for both companies and countries is how they manage this change. It will be companies that do not simply roll out the robots, automation, and other technology, but train and involve employees in this transformation who will survive – and thrive – in this new era.

    VIR


    0 0
  • 11/21/17--01:33: Article 1
  • HCM City gears towards smart city

    HCM City -Ho Chi Minh City and military telecom group Viettel signed an agreement on November 17 to develop the southern metropolis into a smart city during 2017-2020.


    A view of HCM City (Photo: VNA)

    Under the agreement, Viettel will focus on building an operation centre to control and monitor all of the activities in the city by collecting and analysing data.

    The centre will include many sub-centres such as a surveillance camera control centre to monitor streets for crime and traffic violations, an emergency call centre -- similar to the American 911 centre -- for fire and rescue services, an information security operations centre, a public administration centre and an information management centre for the media.

    Deputy General Director of Viettel Tong Viet Trung said that all of the information collected and carefully checked and analysed by the operation centre would help the city’s administration make better decisions.

    For example, the information management centre for press and media could monitor public reactions to the news to help local authorities act quickly to respond to the public and prevent cases of information crisis.

    The centre will ensure the highest security levels for all data collected, especially personal information, he added.

    Collaboration between the city and Viettel will also focus on R&D activities including designing and manufacturing microchips and building a start-up supporting centre at the Viettel tower in District 10.

    Accoridng to Nguyen Thanh Phong, Chairman of HCM City People’s Committee, collaborating with Viettel in building a smart city is vital to the city as it is working towards sustainable development based on high value-added industries.

    He said one of the challenges that hinder the development of HCM City is that the administration’s forecast capacity is quite low.

    Therefore, the application of technology in building a smart city would help solve some of the city’s biggest issues.

    HCM City’s plan for smart city development is expected to be publicised on November 25.

    The city will be organising an international forum on the integrated circuit industry in the coming time to call for investment in the sector.

    Regional cooperation

    While having to play many roles with limited capacity and resources, HCM City will be plagued with many issues of urban development if it could not strengthen cooperation with neighbouring cities and provinces, experts said.

    At a seminar titled "HCM City, towards building a livable city", Prof. Dr. Nguyen Trong Hoa, former Director of the city Department of Planning and Architecture, said HCM City should not try to solve all the urban development issues on its own, but instead reach out for regional cooperation.

    “I think HCM City does not have to become a megacity with 15-20 million citizens in the coming years. Instead, it should enhance regional cooperation to develop nearby urban areas.

    “If regional cooperation is strengthened, Binh Duong, Long An and Dong Nai provinces can offer great support. In these provinces, there are many social housing projects which cannot find customers. HCM City should not take on many things at the same time, which will lead to the increasing of migrant workers, thus putting more pressure on itself.”

    Dr. Nguyen Thi Hau, Deputy General Secretary of the Vietnam History Association, agreed with Prof. Hoa, adding that regional cooperation is hindered by differences in land ownership among HCM City and its neighbours.

    If the attitude is, “what I do on my land is not the business of others”, regional cooperation would be hard to achieve, she said.

    Le Quoc Hung, deputy head of Southern Institute for Spatial Planning, said that international experts from Europe and the US have suggested the city adopt a regional development and planning approach and should not only look within its administrative boundaries.

    Architect Khuong Van Muoi said the city should confront its weaknesses to adjust the development plan.

    At the moment, it should tackle the two issues of congestion and urban flooding.


    VNA


    0 0
  • 11/21/17--01:34: Article 0
  • Ho Chi Minh City police hunt for driver caught steering truck with feet

    The reckless act was captured in a video clip shared on social media


    ​Ho Chi Minh City police hunt for driver caught steering truck with feet 
    A driver steers his container truck with one foot on Phu My Bridge in District 7, Ho Chi Minh City.

     Police in Ho Chi Minh City are searching for a truck driver who was caught on camera steering his vehicle using his feet while answering a phone call.

    Lieutenant Colonel Nguyen Van Binh, chief of staff of the city’s traffic police division, confirmed on Monday that they are verifying the case and gathering further evidence of the violation.

    Preliminary information reveals that the container truck, bearing license plate No. 50LD-095.60, belongs to the Vietnam International Leasing Company based in District 3, Lt. Col. Binh said.

    The vehicle was traveling on Phu My Bridge, which connects District 2 and District 7, the police official added.

    The incident came to the attention of police officers after a video clip was shared on social media last Saturday.

    During the one-minute video, the driver of the container truck can be seen steering the wheel with his left foot while talking on the phone.

    Online viewers have expressed their anger over the driver’s negligence, and his disregard for the safety of himself and others.

    People also expressed their concern over the number of serious accidents involving container trucks on Phu My Bridge.

    Tuoi Tre News


    0 0
  • 11/21/17--19:15: Article 4
  • Wealthy Asian investors hunt for Vietnamese stocks


    Wealthy Asian investors have been bringing billions of dollars to Vietnam and hunting for big investment opportunities. 


     vietnam economy, business news, vn news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, vn news, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, Vietnam breaking news, VN Index, stock market, Asian investors
    The auction of Vinamilk shares, the most expected in 2017, was organized some days ago. A foreign investor paid $400 million (VND9 trillion) to buy 48.33 million shares, or 3.33 percent of charter capital.

    On the same day, foreign investors spent VND1.5 trillion to buy 8.6 million Vinamilk on the bourse at the price of VND173,800 per share, the ceiling price level of that day.

    Platinum Victory PTE, belonging to Jardine Cycle & Carriage, the leading Singaporean automobile distributor in South East Asia, is a big investor in Vinamilk, according to Nikkei. The investor bought a 5.53 percent of Vinamilk stake in total, from both SCIC at the auction and on the bourse, worth $616.6 million.

    Wealthy Asian investors have been bringing billions of dollars to Vietnam and hunting for big investment opportunities. 

    Some days ago, the Vietnamese stock market witnessed an unprecedented transaction where hundreds of millions of VRE shares of Vincom Retail, worth $0.7 billion, were transferred to foreign investors within one trading session.

    The value of shares sold was very small compared with demand - $2 billion, or three times higher than the offered value. The investors which bought shares included Avanda, Dragon Capital, Genesis, GIC Pte, HSBC, Karst Peak, Templeton Investments and TT International.

    Analysts commented that the thirst for Vietnamese stocks began in 2016 when a series of share purchase deals were made by Asian investors. These included JX Nippon Oil & Energy which spent VND4 trillion to acquire an 8 percent Petrolimex stake.

    Two foreign investment funds, the Hong Kong-based Magbi Fund Limited and Singapore-based Super Delta Pte Ltd, have spent VND2.4 trillion to buy a 40 percent stake of Traphaco, the largest Vietnamese pharmacy firm.

    Other pharmacy firms also have foreign investors: Domesco has Abbott, Hau Giang Pharmacy has Taisho Pharmaceutical, while Pymepharco has Stada Service Holding.

    In the banking sector, Japanese Shinsei has acquired a 49 percent stake of Mcredit, a finance company. Another Japanese investor bought half of the finance company belonging to HD Bank.

    Analysts said after the divestment from Vinamilk, SCIC would divest Vinaconex shares in 2017. Also, investors will have opportunities to buy into large plastics companies – Binh Minh and Tien Phong.

    The information about the SCIC divestments has pushed up prices of the shares. BMP, NTP, VCG and DMC have increased by 3.5-6 percent.

    Huynh Minh Tuan from VnDirect Securities commented that the demand is very high from foreign investors who will buy out all of the shares to be put on sale in the time to come. 

    M. Ha, VNN


    0 0
  • 11/21/17--23:48: Article 3
  • Social News in Brief


    First statue of Ho Chi Minh in Japan presented to Mimasaka city

    A statue of Vietnam’s late President Ho Chi Minh was presented to Mimasaka city of Japan’s Okayama prefecture on November 21.

    On behalf of the Party and State leaders of Vietnam, Chairman of the Vietnamese President Office Dao Viet Trung presented the statue, which depicts Ho Chi Minh reading newspaper, to representatives of the Mimasaka administration and people.

    The first Ho Chi Minh statue in Japan was presented when the two countries are preparing to celebrate the 45th founding anniversary of their diplomatic ties in 2018.

    Aside from the statue presentation, the “Vietnam – Ho Chi Minh Space” was also inaugurated at the Mimasaka City Museum.

    Chairman of the President Office Dao Viet Trung said the statue of Ho Chi Minh is a symbol of the two countries’ friendship and extensive strategic partnership for peace and prosperity in Asia.

    He also valued the Mimasaka Mayor and people’s sentiment towards the late President, acknowledging the cooperation between the city and its people and Vietnam’s relevant agencies in installing the statue and opening the space.

    Mayor Hajiwara Seiji said on behalf of the city’s administration and people, he had sent a letter to the Vietnamese Prime Minister to express their wish to have a statue of Vietnam’s beloved leader Ho Chi Minh, who is admired by Japanese people.

    Mimasaka is proud to be the first place in Japan to have a statue of the late President, he noted, voicing his belief that the statue and the Vietnam – Ho Chi Minh Space will help attract more Japanese and foreign tourists to the museum.

    Winners of Vietnam Cultural Heritage photo contest awarded


    First statue of Ho Chi Minh in Japan presented to Mimasaka city, Int’l experts applaud Vietnam’s reform achievements, Hanoi: Various activities held during HIV/AIDS prevention month

    The 16 winners of the Vietnam Heritage Photo Award 2017 were honoured at an award ceremony on November 21.

    Accordingly, Dinh Cong Tam, Ha Van Dong and Ngo Minh Phuong won the first prizes. Three second prizes, three third prizes and seven consolation prizes were also presented to the winners.

    Speaking at the ceremony, Hoang Trung Thuy, chairman of the jury board, said this year’s contest received 3,400 entries from photographers nationwide.

    The participants followed the content required by the organising board and expressed the topics through their eye-catching pictures, he said.

    The photos were divided into five categories: Nature (landscapes, marine resources, forest resources, geological resources, plants, wildlife, the environment), Tangible heritage (architecture, sculpture, art, crafts, cultural-historical relics, antiques, and national treasures), Intangible heritage (music, dance, festival, folk games, religion), Life (daily life scenes, customs, practices, portraits), and Markets.

    The category that received the most entries was Life, in which photographers portray daily life from many interesting angles.

    In the category Markets, the entrants brought viewers to markets in different regions nationwide and expressed the identity, culture and customs of local people in each place.

    The photo contest is held annually to celebrate the Vietnam National Heritage Day on November 23. 

    On the occasion, the organisers also handed over 100 photos to a charity group for a fundraising campaign, which will support people affected by recent floods.

    The same day, an exhibition on 100 photos comprising the winners of the Vietnam Heritage Photo Awards 2017 opened in Hanoi. Other exhibitions will be held in HCM City and the central city of Da Nang on November 22-23.

    Meanwhile, about 300 artefacts unearthed at various sites in the northern province of Hai Duong are on display at an exhibition at the provincial museum to mark Vietnam Culture Heritage Day.

    The objects date back to the Ly (1009-1225) and Tran (1226-1400) dynasties.

    The province has more than 2,000 sites where many tangible and intangible heritage values are preserved, including 220 belonging to the Ly and Tran dynasties, plus 700 traditional festivals and hundreds of traditional crafts.

    The exhibition runs until December 5.

    Christian Fellowship Church of Vietnam convenes 5th congress

    The Christian Fellowship Church of Vietnam (CFCV) convened its 5th congress in Thoi Tam Mon commune, Hoc Mon district, Ho Chi Minh City on November 21.

    The congress was attended by 500 delegates who are dignitaries and followers from 40 cities and provinces nationwide.

    Deputy Head of the Government’s Committee for Religious Affairs Tran Tuan Hung appraised efforts made by the Church in charitable work, poverty alleviation, and national development.

    He expressed his hope that CFCV dignities and followers will promote the sound achievements to develop the Church, making it a component of the national unity bloc.

    The congress will run until November 23.

    The CFCV was established in 1989 and received a certificate for operations from the Government’s Committee for Religious Affairs in 2007. The Church is the third largest Protestant organisation in the country.

    Austrian trade union visits Vietnam to boost ties

    The current visit to Vietnam by the Austrian Federation of Trade Unions marks an important milestone in the cooperative relations with the Vietnam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL).

    Head of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Central Committee’s Commission for External Relations Hoang Binh Quan made the statement at a reception for President of the Austrian federation Erich Foglar in Hanoi on November 21.

    Quan highly valued the cooperation activities between the two countries’ trade unions and said the Vietnamese Party and State pay much attention to enabling the VGCL to integrate into the international community and boost collaboration with the Austrian counterpart.

    He added that the CPV wants to enhance cooperation with the Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPO) and regards this as a political foundation for the bilateral relations in wide-ranging fields.

    Foglar stressed the need to strengthen cooperation and experience sharing between trade unions in the digital era and the fourth industrial revolution to ensure the legitimate rights and interests of workers.

    He hoped the CPV and the SPO will increase dialogues and information exchanges to bolster the bilateral relations.

    He affirmed effective measures will be implemented to propel the relations between Vietnamese and Austrian trade unions forward.

    Vietnam Buddhist Sangha eighth congress opens in Hanoi

    As many as 1,250 dignitaries, monks, nuns and followers attended the eighth congress of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) that opened in Hanoi on November 21.

    The event was attended by Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue, former Chairman of the National Assembly Nguyen Van An, former President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee Pham The Duyet, and his successor Tran Thanh Man, international religious delegates, among others.

    General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Central Committee Nguyen Phu Trong, President Tran Dai Quang, and Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc sent congratulatory flowers to the event.

    Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue and VFF President Tran Thanh Man presented flowers and congratulated Most Venerable Thich Pho Tue, Supreme Patriarch of the VBS on the occasion.

    Addressing the opening ceremony, Most Venerable Thich Thien Nhon, Chairman of the seventh tenure VBS Executive Council, highlighted that this congress upholds the goal of “wisdom, discipline, integration, and development”.

    That shows all Buddhist monks, nuns, and followers are determined to stay united to develop a strong VBS under the motto “Religion – Nation – Socialism”, he affirmed.

    The congress will look into nine targets set for the 2017-2022 tenure, continue revising the VBS Charter in accordance with the Law on Belief and Religion, and the development visions through 2030.

    He underlined the achievement the VBS has gained over the past 36 years, saying that its chapters have been established in all 63 localities nationwide. It has hosted numerous important religious events and festivals, including the 50th anniversary of Quang Duc bodhisattva lighting himself on fire, and the revolution of the southern Vietnamese Buddhists (1963); the 705th anniversary of the attainment of Nirvana of King-Monk Tran Nhan Tong.

    The VBS hosted successfully the UN International Day of Vesak 2014 under the theme “Buddhist Perspective towards Achieving the United Nations Millennium Development Goals'; inaugurated pagodas on Truong Sa (Spratly) Archipelago, in border areas in Cao Bang, Lang Son, and Quang Ninh provinces.

    In the past tenure, numerous delegations were sent abroad to help overseas Vietnamese communities and the Associations of Vietnamese Buddhists were set up in Japan, the Republic of Korea, Angola and Mozambique, while those in Laos and Cambodia have been consolidated.

    The VBS also raised billions of Dong for social, charity work during its past term, Most Venerable Thich Thien Nhon said.

    Addressing the event, Deputy PM Vuong Dinh Hue highlighted the Vietnamese Buddhism’s 2000-year journey of accompanying the nation and its significant contributions to the nation protection and building.

    Over the course, Buddhism has mingled with the daily life and inspired Vietnamese people to follow its good values, Hue said, adding that the history has attested the contributions the Vietnamese Buddhists have made to the nation.

    He attached significance to the eighth congress of the VBS, saying that it affirms the growth of the Vietnam Buddhism.

    The Party and State have acknowledged the role of the Vietnam Buddhism and its contributions to the national liberation and the current Doi moi (renewal), Hue said, calling on all dignitaries, monks, and nuns to continue showing the values of the religion.

    He expressed his hope that participants will select capable members for the next tenure of the VBS, while encouraging monks, nuns and all people continue observing policies of the Party, State, fulfilling their citizen obligations and responsibility, ensuring solidarity, peace and harmony among Buddhists, with other religions and all people.

    The VBS will continue to serve as a bridge connecting with the Associations of Vietnamese Buddhists, Vietnamese expats, so they will turn to the home country and join their hands in the national protection, building and development, Hue said.

    According to the Deputy PM, the State respects and ensures the freedom of religion and belief practice, acknowledges the contributors to the nation, facilitates religious people to practice and fulfill their citizen obligations.

    For his part, VFF Chairman Tran Thanh Man hailed the achievements Vietnamese Buddhists at home and abroad have made to the national great unity and national protection and building in the past tenure, hoping that they will continue doing so in the next term.

    He suggested that the VBS send more monks and nuns to assist the religion’s affairs in the northern mountainous provinces, the Central Highlands region, and the Khmer Theravada Buddhism in the Southwest and pay more attention to operations of the Associations of Vietnamese Buddhists overseas.

    At the occasion, dozens of dignitaries, individuals, and units were honoured for their outstanding contributions to the religion, and the nation-building efforts.

    Int’l experts applaud Vietnam’s reform achievements

    Vietnam has made progress after more than 30 years of doi moi (reform), with reduced poverty rate, increased income and changing life and career of residents, said international experts.

    They made the remark at the Vietnam Update 2017 conference, which took place at the Australian National University in Canberra on November 20 and 21 to examine the politics of life in Vietnam.

    During the function, 16 academic specialists analysed significant developments in the Southeast Asian country’s society, politics and international relations. 

    They said together with uncertainties in regional situation, human security in Vietnam is challenged by regional power disparities, social inequalities, environmental problems and state incapacity.

    The Vietnam Update is a series of annual conferences that focus on recent economic, political and social conditions in Vietnam and provide in-depth analyses on a select theme of particular relevance to Vietnam’s socio-economic development.

    The first Vietnam Update was organised in 1990 by ANU researchers at the university. In recent years, the conference series has been organised in conjunction with researchers from the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS) in Singapore, with financial assistance provided by the Australian Aid, ANU, ISEAS, and the Ford Foundation.

    VOV General Director pledges to popularise image of Laos

    Director General of the Radio the Voice of Vietnam (VOV) Nguyen The Ky has pledged to popularise the beauty, traditional customs and people of Laos during the Lao Tourism Year 2018. 

    During a reception hosted by Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith in Vientiane on November 21, Ky informed the host about the outcomes of talks between VOV and the Lao National Radio (LNR) a day earlier, saying that both sides have realised the 2015-2018 cooperation agreement, including popularising events during the Vietnam - Laos Year of Friendship and Solidarity 2017. 

    VOV will do its best to train LNR officials, reporters, technicians and managers and help the Lao broadcaster upgrade several television and audio equipment, he said. 

    The Lao PM spoke highly of collaboration between VOV and LNR over the past years, affirming that radio services play a significant role in disseminating news, especially in remote and mountainous areas. 

    On the occasion, he thanked the Vietnamese Party and State and VOV in particular for providing effective support for LNR, which he said further tightens ties between the two radio stations and between Laos and Vietnam in general. 

    During talks with the LNR delegation led by its Director General Phosy Keomanivong, Ky also agreed to send VOV reporters to Laos to share experience and cover the country’s images. 

    During the stay, the VOV leader paid a courtesy call to Secretary of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (LPRP) Central Committee and head of the LPRP Commission for Propaganda and Training Kikeo Khaykhamphithoune.

    Lý Trần artefacts on display

    About 300 artefacts unearthed at various sites in the northern province of Hải Dương are on display at an exhibition at the provincial museum to mark Việt Nam Culture Heritage Day (November 23).

    The objects date back to the Lý (1009-1225) and Trần (1226-1400) dynasties.

    The province has more than 200 sites where historical relics have been found, plus 700 traditional festivals with associated handicrafts

    More than 200 historical sites are dedicated to historical figures, of which 93 date back to the Lý dynasty and the rest to the Trần dynasty.

    The exhibition runs until December 5.

    Hoài wins fifth stage of cycling tournament

    Nguyễn Tấn Hoài of Domesco Phamarcy Đồng Tháp triumphed in the fifth stage of the Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa Cycling Tournament yesterday.

    Hoài won the 103km stage from Nha Trang to Đà Lạt City, which he completed in a time of 3:22.20.

    Mai Nguyễn Hưng of VUS-HCM City and Hoài’s teammate Phan Hoàng Thái were the runners-up.

    Thái won the red jersey award as the King of the Mountain with 17 points. He successfully conquered two mountain passes of Khánh Lê and Giang Ly during the race.

    Trần Thanh Điền of VUS-HCM City ranked seventh but still won the yellow jersey for best overall time of 18:10.02 after five stages. Trần Lê Minh Tuấn of Military Zone 7 and Nguyễn Nhật Nam of Domesco Phamarcy Đồng Tháp remained in second and third positions.

    Lê Nguyệt Minh of HCM City took the green jersey award as the best sprinter with 42 points, while Ngô Văn Phương of Gạo Hạt Ngọc Trời An Giang retained the white jersey as best young cyclist with a total time of 18:13.00.

    Seminar looks into development in ethnic minority groups

    A seminar was held in Hanoi on November 21 to announce data from a 2015 national survey on the socio-economic performance of 53 Vietnamese ethnic minority groups. 

    Speaking at the event, Irish Ambassador to Vietnam Cait Moran said Vietnam has made socio-economic and gender equality progress over the past two decades, but challenges remain. 

    Dinh Thi Tu, head of the Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs’ Department of Ethnic Minorities, said the rate of poor ethnic minority households was 23.1 percent in 2015, four times above the national average. In particular, 14 ethnic minority groups had at least 41 percent poor households while three others posted more than 70 percent, including La Hu (83.9 percent), Mang (79.5 percent) and Chut (75.3 percent). 

    Nearly 24,000 women were illiterate in the northern mountainous province of Ha Giang as of April 30, 2015. In 2014 alone, 10 out of 53 ethnic minority groups saw high rates of early marriage, amounting to 45 percent. In six ethnic minority groups, the rate was over 50 percent, namely Brau, Ro Mam, La ha, Xinh Mun, O du and Mong. 

    On personnel work, among the total number of officials and civil cadres working in the central, provincial, district and communal level, ethnic minority people only accounted for 7.51 percent as of April 30, 2015, reported the Ministry of Home Affairs. 

    Head of the UN Women Office Elisa Fernandez said Vietnamese government agencies, including the Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs, should strengthen resources and take creative measures to identify the socio-economic situation in ethnic minority groups.

    Can Tho – potential partner of Germany in Mekong Delta

    As an economic centre of the Mekong Delta, Can Tho city is a potential partner of Germany in several investment projects, including urban transport development, renewable energy application, environmental protection and climate change adaptation.

    Speaking at a working session with the municipal People’s Committee on November 21, Deputy Consul General of Germany in Ho Chi Minh City Daniela Scheetz said German businesses have described Can Tho as a potential market for investment in energy, technology, and smart city. 

    Can Tho boasts dynamic development, special position in the region, and competitive advantages of young and high-quality human resources and favourable investment policies and mechanisms, she added. 

    The German Consulate will implement more exchange and cooperation activities with the Mekong Delta city to further promote bilateral friendship, she affirmed. 

    In 2016, a delegation of experts from the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) began conducting fact-finding tours to collect information on the transport situation in Can Tho and to talk with local agencies about procedures in transport planning.

    As a result, Can Tho has been listed among cities in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to get German government support to develop the transport sector, with a project starting this year.

    The main purpose of the German transport development project is to help Can Tho avoid shortcomings in the field, especially traffic jams. It will be carried out over three years, starting from the end of this year, with total investment of about 3.8 million USD, including the transfer of technology to managerial officials, technical assistance, and human resources training in urban transport management and development. 

    Meanwhile, the German Technical Cooperation Agency (GTZ) will study and evaluate the development potential of different forms of renewable energy in Can Tho such as wind, solar and biogas energy.                                               

    The GTZ will also support the Mekong Delta city to pilot new technological application projects to produce renewable energy in hi-tech agriculture or aquatic processing. Effective models will be expanded to cities and provinces in the south western region. 

    The German agency will also work with Can Tho to implement clean air projects in Ninh Kieu and Binh Thuy districts and major processing and industrial parks such as Tra Noc 1 and 2, aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve water drainage management and waste treatment to increase the city’s resilience to climate change.

    Austrian trade unions ready to share experience with Vietnam

    President of the Vietnam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL) Bui Van Cuong had a working session on November 21 with President of the Austrian Trade Union Federation (OGB) Erich Foglar, who said the OGB is ready to share experience with its Vietnamese counterpart.

    At the event in Hanoi, VGCL President Cuong described the OGB’s working visit to Vietnam as historic and an important milestone in the relationship between the two sides.

    Both the VGCL and OGB can support each other’s activities with their experience, especially at grassroots level trade unions, helping protect workers’ rights and interests, improve working conditions, and ensure proper employment for all labourers, he said.

    He also briefed the Austrian guests about the VGCL and its priorities, adding that the 12th congress of Vietnam’s trade unions, slated for the third quarter of 2018, will discuss major plans and targets for the upcoming years, aiming to develop both Vietnamese trade unions in quantity and quality in order to better express workers’ aspirations, protect their rights and interests, and improve their income, living standards and working conditions.

    Foglar said there are 1.2 million trade union members in Austria, accounting for 35 percent of the country’s workforce. OGB is the only trade union centre representing Austrian workers and comprises seven sectoral trade unions.

    He noted that his federation is ready to support and share experience with the VGCL and provide information about services that OGB gives to its members. It will also help improve the capacity of Vietnamese trade unions’ staff, especially in the non-State sector, and boost exchanges with trade unions of corresponding sectors in Vietnam.

    Vietnamese, Chinese military officers hold exchange

    A delegation of young officers from the Vietnam People’s Army, led by lieutenant colonel Tran Viet Nang, is attending an exchange with their Chinese peers in Beijing from November 19 to 25.

    On November 20, the Vietnamese officers were received by Liu Zhong Bin, head of the Office for International Military Cooperation’s Asia division, under the Communist Party of China’s Central Military Commission.

    Liu said he believes the visit will help reinforce fruitful friendship between the two armies.

    Stressing sound outcomes resulted from collaboration between Vietnamese and Chinese young officers and armies, he hoped more exchanges will be held to enhance ties towards effectiveness. 

    For his part, Nang stated the visit of his delegation aims to boost friendship exchanges between the two armies and countries.

    The same day, the Vietnamese officers visited the 3rd Guard Division in Beijing to learn about its history, functions, structure, and arms.-VNA  

    Hanoi: Various activities held during HIV/AIDS prevention month

    Various activities are underway in Hanoi to promote early HIV testing so as to achieve the 90 – 90 – 90 targets by 2020, also the theme of this year’s action month for HIV/AIDS prevention and control from November 10 to December 10.

    Deputy Director of the municipal Preventive Medicine Centre La Thi Lan said during the month, Hanoi will hold conferences and workshops on community-based HIV testing and assess the implementation of the 90 – 90 – 90 targets. 

    These targets aim that by 2020, 90 percent of all people with HIV know their HIV status, 90 percent of all people with diagnosed HIV will receive sustained antiretroviral therapy, and 90 percent of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression.

    Different activities to help prevent HIV/AIDS and raise public awareness have been implemented across 30 districts and townships in Hanoi. They include the distribution of more than 1.7 million free syringes and more than 260,000 free condoms to female sex workers and gay men.

    Since the beginning of 2017, the local health sector has worked with non-Governmental organisations to expand HIV screening at the communal and ward level. There are 14 advisory offices on voluntary HIV testing at the district level currently.

    Lan said the municipal Department of Health will run communication activities to raise public awareness, focusing on eradicating HIV stigma and discrimination, the benefits of early HIV testing and periodic testing for high-risk groups, and the benefits of antiretroviral therapy and early access to HIV/AIDS treatment services.

    Eighteen establishments providing methadone treatment for HIV patients have worked effectively in Hanoi. As of the end of September, about 4,800 persons with HIV had received methadone treatment in the capital, Lan noted, adding that methadone replacement therapy has resulted in positive outcomes, helping improve drug abusers’ health and reduce the use of heroin.

    Hanoi recorded 982 new HIV cases in the first nine months of 2017. The Asian Epidemic Model forecasts the number of HIV-infected people in the city to exceed 27,000 by 2020.

    Floods kill one in Thua Thien-Hue Province

    Torrential rains over the last two days have caused serious flooding in Thua Thien-Hue Province and, as a result, many parts of roads in lowland areas are inundated and isolated.

    Floods also killed one person in Phu Loc town, Hue City and submerged nearly 10,000 houses.

    Nguyen Van Ty, president of Quang Nam-Da nang Railway Management Company, said the railroad running through Hai Van Pass was re-opened on the evening of November 20 and the Pass was cleared after 10-hour of traffic congestion. 

    However, huge mud and rock flows blocked the north-south railway again on the morning of November 21. Many trains had to stop at Kim Lien and Da Nang stations waiting for a solution to the incident.

    Vietnam launches project on alternative care for vulnerable children

    The Ministry of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs launched a 12-year project on alternative care for disadvantaged children on November 20. 

    Funded by the UK-based organisation Care for Children (CFC), the project consists of four stages, with the pilot stage running in Hanoi and Thai Nguyen in the north for 2017 – 2020.

    The organisation will collaborate with local agencies at different levels to provide personnel training for public social protection centres to be in charge of alternative care, including the selection of suitable foster families and assessment of fostering process. Care for Children will also design specific materials and training syllabuses for Vietnam.   

    Robert Glover, chief executive of Care for Children, said it aims to bring a better life for children.

    He noted that childcare centres are often costly, while the cost of fostering children within the community might be high at first, but will gradually decrease.

    Deputy Minister of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs Dao Hong Lan said the point is to replicate the model nationwide.

    The United Nations estimated that approximately 8 million children worldwide live in social centres. 

    Bac Kan tourism week promotes regional tourism cooperation

    The Ba Be - Bac Kan Tourism Week 2017 kicked off on November 18 at Ba Be Lake in the northern mountainous province of Bac Kan.

    The tourism week opened a series of cultural events that aim to strengthen tourism cooperation between the six participating provinces of Bac Kan, Cao Bang, Lang Son, Thai Nguyen, Tuyen Quang and Ha Giang.

    The week’s activities introduce and promote the historical and cultural relics, the landscape, people, food and culture of the northern mountainous provinces.

    Speaking at the launching ceremony, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Dang Thi Bich Lien said, “The northern provinces of Vietnam have several historical and cultural relics along with the spectacular landscape and unique cultural identity.  

    They are attracting an increasing number of both domestic and international tourists. However, the result has not yet reached its full potential.

    “The Ba Be-Bac Kan Tourism Week this year is important for the northern mountainous provinces in strengthening cooperation in tourism, promoting and attracting investment for tourism and the preservation of historical and cultural relics. The plan is to develop tourism into a spearhead of the local economy,” Lien added.

    More than one thousand of artists from the participating provinces joined the performances at the opening event. Activities included singing, dancing and “dan tinh” (the traditional gourd lute of the Tay ethnic people) performances.

    The event, which lasts till November 21, features traditional musical performances, a traditional costume show, food fair, folk and sports games, flower garlands and a photo exhibition featuring the landscape and people of the northern mountainous provinces. Festival-goers can also join a boat tour around the scenic Ba Be Lake.

    Ba Be National Park is a highlight of Bac Kan’s tourist destinations. About 70 kilometres from Bac Kan centre, Ba Be covers more than 23,000 ha and is home to more than 1,000 species of flora and fauna, a series of caves and a gigantic fresh water lake, which was recognised as the country’s third Ramsar Site, an indication of its international significance, by UNESCO in 2011.

    Ba Be Lake is located 145 metres above sea level and is said to have formed more than 200 million years ago.

    NA Vice Chairwoman meets UNICEF representative in Vietnam

    National Assembly (NA) Chairwoman Tong Thi Phong received UNICEF Representative in Vietnam Youssouf Abdel-Jelil in Hanoi on the occasion of Universal Children’s Day – November 20.

    Phong took note of Vietnam’s work to care for children, saying it was the first country in Asia and second in the world to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. 

    More attention is given to Vietnamese children in border, island and disadvantaged areas, she said, adding that there are still problems noticed in the implementation of children’s rights.

    She said the country will work harder to foster the younger generation comprehensively and organise more meetings for children to voice their concerns.

    Youssouf Abdel-Jelil lauded attention from Vietnamese NA leaders given to child policies.

    He stressed that the UNICEF is willing to stand side by side with Vietnam in tackling child-related issues. 

    Also attended the reception were Vietnamese children, who took part in the national children’s forum in late August.

    VNN


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  • 11/22/17--00:20: Article 2
  • BUSINESS IN BRIEF 22/11


    International conference on automation organised in HCM City

    The fourth International Conference and Exhibition on Automation and Industrial Equipment (VAAC 2017) will take place at the Sài Gòn Exhibition and Convention Centre, HCM City.

    The event is organised from November 29 to December 2. 

    The exhibition will be hosted by the Việt Nam Automation Association (VAA) with support from the HCM City University of Technology to provide a platform for connecting policy-makers, scientists and enterprises from Việt Nam and overseas. 

    The event will feature a series of conferences, exhibitions and business forums that focus on issues of common concern, such as smart city, smart transportation and automation in agriculture and forestry. 

    VAAC 2017 will highlight control and automation towards the fourth industrial revolution with the presentation of 115 scientific studies in cybernetics, automation and other topics. 

    The forum will host seminars and discussions on automation, renewable energy, smart city and startup innovation, as well as mechanics, chemical and printing technology. 

    Some 500 booths run by 310 exhibitors from 15 countries and territories will showcase latest products and advanced technologies in automation and chemicals, in line with machines and equipment, industrial products and materials.

    Hung Yen orange receives collective brand recognition

    Quang Chau orange in the northern province of Hung Yen was declared a collective trademark on November 21 by the National Office of Intellectual Properly under the Ministry of Science and Technology.

    Over the years, Quang Chau orange plants have been planted on a large-scale and are ten times as lucrative as rice, said Nguyen Van Biet, Director of Quang Chau orange cooperative.

    According to Le Thi Tham, Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Science and Technology, a project on developing Quang Chau orange brand in Hung Yen city has been run for a year. This move expanded consumptions markets and developed a set of criteria for brand recognition and made designs for the brand.

    The project aims to protect the rights of orange farmers to use the brand and to establish a brand management model to enhance the economic value of certified products.

    Nguyen Van Oanh, a local economic official, said the city has more than 144 hectares of orange, mostly in Quang Chau, Lam Son, Tan Hung, Hoang Hanh communes.

    Nearly 36 hectares in Quang Chau and Hoang Hanh are grown in line with VietGAP standards, producing nearly 500 tonnes of oranges this year.

    Nguyen Tuan Cuong, Chairman of the Hung Yen City People’s Committee said orange plants in Hien City produce more than 1,500 tonnes per year, worth over 40 billion VND, making them a key product in the city’s agriculture restructuring.|

    Areas have been zoned off in Quang Chau, Tan Hung, Lam Son, Hoang Hanh, Phu Cuong and Hung Cuong communes for planting oranges in line with VietGAP standards, Cuong said.

    He urged local orange farmers to connect with each other to develop large-scale orange areas to ensure product quality.

    Taiwanese firms eye investment in Binh Duong


     International conference on automation organised in HCM City, Taiwanese firms eye investment in Binh Duong, $35m aquatic feed plant opens in Dong Thap, SSI only securities company among 2016’s 100 largest taxpayers 

    Several Taiwanese firms (China) plan to explore investment opportunities in the southern province of Binh Duong, according to a Taiwanese official.

    During a meeting with the provincial People’s Committee on November 21, Guo You Ting, Head of the Association of Taiwanese Enterprises hailed the improved local investment climate, saying Binh Duong is an attractive destination for foreign investors.

    Speaking at the event, Tran Thanh Liem, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee lauded the projects and contribution of Taiwanese firms and the association in local socio-economic development.

    He updated his guests on the province’s investment attraction plans and its measures to improve the business climate, thus creating optimal conditions for enterprises.

    He expressed his hope that more Taiwanese companies will invest in the province.

    According to Liem, Taiwan is the province’s biggest investor, with 772 projects, worth more than 5.5 billion USD.

    Construction of a Taiwanese factory producing polyester will begin on November 24 on nearly 200 hectares in Bau Bang Industrial Park, Liem said.

    According to Liang Guang Zhong, Head of the Taipei Economic and Culture Office in HCM City, Taiwan is willing to work with the locality in implementing projects using official development assistance on flood prevention and waste treatment.

    Seminar promotes trade to Middle East, Africa

    A seminar to promote trade and exports to the Middle East and Africa was held in Hanoi on November 22. 

    According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Department of Asia-Africa (the Middle East – Africa Zone), Africa is a market with high export demand and less strict requirements, giving it potential.

    Vietnam has so far established ties with 53 out of 55 African countries and two-way trade has surged considerably over the past decade. 

    Vietnam’s exports to Africa soared from 610 million USD in 2006 to 3.2 billion USD in 2015 and 2.8 billion USD in 2016. 

    Last year, Africa’s imports neared 480 billion USD which is forecast to increase to about 1.2 trillion USD by 2020. In the Middle East, the figure was estimated at roughly 807 billion USD in 2016 and estimated at 1.5 trillion USD by 2020. 

    Lying in a strategic geographical location, the Middle East borders Asia, Europe and Africa, with Dubai being the world’s third largest transit market. 

    South African Ambassador to Vietnam Kgomotso Ruth Magau said Africa imports made-in-Vietnam goods such as rice, coffee, pepper, cashew nuts, footwear, apparel, household electric appliances, plastics, electronics, handicrafts and aquatic products. 

    The event affords both sides a chance to facilitate information sharing and technological transfer, she said. 

    Ly Quoc Thinh from the Department of Asia-Africa Market said the Middle East is home to 15 countries, huge oil reserves and mineral resources. Due to poor weather conditions, the Middle East’s agriculture, fisheries and consumer goods production are underdeveloped so the region must rely on imports. 

    However, Vietnamese exporters still face obstacles regarding competition with regional rivals, financial risks, public security and order, red tape and poor transport links. 

    Experts suggested reviewing business strategies and thoroughly learning about regional socio-culture before doing business in the region.

    $35m aquatic feed plant opens in Đồng Tháp

    Sao Mai Group on Tuesday put its aquatic feed processing plant, worth VNĐ800 billion (US$35 million), into operation in southern Đồng Tháp province’s Sao Mai Industrial Complex.

    With construction having begun in 2015, the feed mill comprises four production lines, providing 360,000 tonnes of products annually or accounting for one third of fish feed production capacity of the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta region.

    The plant is expected to not only make a breakthrough for the development of domestic tra fish industry but also help create more local jobs while contributing to foster the economic growth of the region, experts said.

    SSI only securities company among 2016’s 100 largest taxpayers     

    Saigon Securities Inc (SSI) is the only securities company among the top 100 leading corporate taxpayers in 2016.

    The General Department of Taxation recently announced the leading 1,000 corporate taxpayers of last year, with SSI ranking in 60th place.

    According to statistics from the General Department of Taxation, the total tax paid by the 1,000 largest corporate income taxpayers in Viet Nam was VND90 trillion (US$4 million), a year-on-year increase of 11.87 per cent.

    Last year was a successful year for SSI as it maintained the leading position in the security brokerage sector with a market share of 13.69 per cent at the HCM Stock Exchange (HSX) and 11.03 per cent at the Ha Noi Stock Exchange (HNX).

    SSI also achieved revenue of VND2.2 trillion, up 66 per cent by the end of last year.

    Its after-tax profit reached VND877 billion, the highest in SSI’s 18 years of operation and also the highest among securities companies last year, the thoibaotaichinhvietnam.vn quoted a SSI representative.

    SSI is one of the first private securities companies, operating in Viet Nam since 1999. The company has chartered capital of more than VND4.9 trillion as of January this year. 

    Real estate inventories taper off over 16%     

    Real estate inventories nationwide saw a reduction of over 16 per cent as of November 20, from the same time last year.

    This has dropped to an estimated value of over VND26 trillion (US$1.14 billion).The highest inventories were recorded in residential land. They were estimated at more than 3.1 million square metres and valued at VNĐ12.4 trillion.

    This was followed by town houses, with 3,129 units worth over VND7 trillion. Unsold apartments stood at 2,924 units, equivalent to some VND4.2 trillion, while commercial land was at 604,151 square metres, valued at nearly VND2.4 trillion.

    Unsold properties in HCM City were at VND4.78 trillion, while Hà Nội saw a total inventory value of VND5.3 trillion.

    The Ministry of Construction forecast that housing prices will remain stable in the short term and that the tourism property market will experience robust development in the time to come.

    Apartment prices in Ha Noi declined 0.5 per cent from the previous quarter and individual housing segments increased 0.13 per cent.

    In stark contrast, apartment prices in the southern hub went up 0.8 per cent; however, luxury units dropped 0.5 per cent in price. Individual housing segments escalated 1.65 per cent from the third quarter. 

    FLC Group meets over 400 South Korean investors     

    Property developer FLC Group on Monday held a meeting with more than 400 South Korean estate firms, investors, tourism agencies and investment funds during a large roadshow and seminar held in Seoul.

    Speaking at the event, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Vu Hong Nam said Viet Nam and South Korea have mutually beneficial cooperation as the two countries are located in two distinct climatic regions, which could support their economies, especially in the tourism, resort and golf industries.

    With the advantage of long and beautiful beaches, Viet Nam is an ideal location for tourists from cold countries looking to escape the winter. Notably, a large number of tourists from South Korea have visited Viet Nam in recent years.

    “FLC has become one of the strong brand names in Viet Nam, and is now expanding to foreign markets. In particular, its resort complexes, golf courses and villas have attracted attention from both local and foreign investors,” Nam added.

    Viet Nam Ambassador to South Korea Nguyen Vu Tu said this is the first time he has seen a Vietnamese firm actively seeking foreign partners.

    Nguyen Hoai An, from CBRE, said Việt Nam is being considered a new emerging tourism destination in South Korea in the resort property sector. Statistics showed that up to 30 per cent of tourists playing golf in Viet Nam come from South Korea.

    An said the ownership of a resort property in Viet Nam for foreigners has been allowed since 2015. Investors only need an eligible visa and are not limited in the number of properties they can purchase.

    Answering why South Korea was selected for the event, Trinh Van Quyet, FLC Group’s chairman, said South Korea has contributed a significant amount of FDI to Viet Nam. In addition, it has many similarities with Vietnamese culture. FLC has, therefore, made attracting investment from developed economies such as South Korea its priority.

    Further, the group’s estate products – resort and golf courses – have drawn much attention from South Korean investors.

    Investors from South Korea and other countries can purchase estate projects in Viet Nam as the country’s resort property has been developed well in the past few years.

    Dang Tat Thang, FLC’s deputy general director, said the group was seeking partners who are developing resort property and golf courses, as well as tourism companies bringing tourists to Viet Nam.

    "According to our survey, one out of 10 South Koreans plays golf and wants to experience hi-end golf courses. We are paying special attention to cooperation with South Korean investors,” Thang added.

    Chairman Quyet said the group planned to open three representative offices in Singapore, Japan and South Korea.

    “We organised roadshows in Singapore and Japan and established a representative office in Tokyo last month. We will open another office in Seoul in 2018,” he said.

    During the event, FLC Group signed a comprehensive cooperation agreement with KB Securities Viet Nam Joint Stock Company – a member of KB Securities – to provide financial products and services in Viet Nam and the international market.

    KB Securities of KB Financial Group is the third-largest securities company in South Korea in terms of assets, with total ownership capital of more than US$3.7 billion. 

    Differences in rates at large banks     

    In contrast to Vietcombank’s move to cut deposit interest rate a week ago, two other large State-owned commercial banks -- Vietinbank and BIDV -- this week announced they were raising the rate.

    According to BIDV’s latest interest rate list, the bank is offering interest rate of 4.8 per cent per year for one and two-month deposits, up 0.5 percentage points from the previous list.

    The rise was also seen for three-month deposits, up from 4.8 per cent to 5.2 per cent per year.

    Vietinbank also made a similar move, however, it was applicable for medium-term deposits. The bank raised the rate for six and nine-month deposits from 5.5 per cent and 5.7 per cent to 5.8 per cent per year and 12-month deposits from 6.5 per cent to 6.8 per cent per year.

    In contrast, earlier, Vietcombank cut the rate for all terms by 0.1 percentage points, making its deposit interest rate the lowest in the banking system.

    Vietcombank’s move is unexpected in the context that capital demand often rises sharply during the latter months of the year.

    According to Vietcombank, it cut the rate as its capital source is relatively abundant, adding that despite the low rate, the amount of deposits to the bank has remained high thanks to its good reputation.

    Commenting on the move, banking expert Nguyen Tri Hieu said the change in deposit interest rates among the banks probably comes from different capital needs.

    Some banks reduced the deposit interest rates to restructure their capital source, while others increased the rates due to strong demand for loans at the end of the year, he said.

    Besides this, the credit growth target for the banking industry this year is over 20 per cent, however, it grew by only 13.6 per cent until the end of October. It means banks will have to accelerate in the last two months of the year to meet the target, according to Hieu.

    In the inter-bank market, liquidity in the banking system also reduced over the past few weeks, pushing the inter-bank rate to a four-month high.

    A report on the currency market by SSI Retail Research showed that inter-bank interest rates have maintained an upward trend for a month with a strong increase.

    In the past week, the rate increased significantly by 20-34 basis points for all terms. Specifically, overnight rates increased by 26 basis points to 1.3 per cent, exceeding the 1 per cent threshold for the first time after four months.

    According to SSI’s analysts, similar to the same period in 2016, these developments are not surprising because liquidity demand will continue to rise as the peak season at the end of the year is approaching.

    On the Open Market Operation, the central bank last week issued bills worth VND1.9 trillion (US$83.7 million) against VND11 trillion in the previous week, while the maturity value was VND12.2 trillion.

    Vietbank unveils VNĐ7.2b Tet promotion     

    Vietnam Thuong Tin Commercial Joint Stock Bank (Vietbank) has launched a promotion for Tet (Lunar New Year holidays) next February with nearly 24,000 gifts worth a total of VND7.2 billion (US$317,180) on offer to individual depositors.

    People depositing at least VND30 million from now until February 10 will receive gifts like tableware, tea sets, porcelain sets, a set of two crystal glasses, and other gifts under the “Phuc Loc sum vay” promotion programme.

    Then they will go into a lucky draw at the end of the programme for a grand prize of 10 taels of gold, two first prizes of one tael of gold each, five second prizes of 0.2 tael of gold, and 30 third prizes of 0.1 tael.

    There are also three lucky prizes of an iPhone X for one customer in each of the country’s three regions. 

    Petrol price stabilisation fund balance surges to VND5.22 trillion     

    The balance of the petrol price stabilisation fund surged to more than VND5.22 trillion (some US$ 230 million) at the end of the third quarter of 2017, the Ministry of Finance reported on Monday.

    Of the total, the balance of the fund at Viet Nam National Petroleum Group (Petrolimex) was the highest with VND3.1 trillion. It was followed by PetroVitenam Oil Corporation (PV Oil) with VND457.6 billion, Military Petroleum Corporation (MIPECORP) with VND381.6 billion and One-Member Limited Liability Oil and Gas Company of HCM City with VND352.7 billion.

    However, there were five out of 27 petrol traders reporting negative fund balances. The highest negative fund balance was at Nam Viet Petro Refinery and Chemicals Company with over VND24.6 billion.

    The fund used VND1.47 trillion to stabilise petrol retail prices in the third quarter of the year.

    According to the ministry’s data, the fund’s balance has experienced significant growth since the beginning of this year. The amount was more than VND2.4 billion in the first quarter and VND3.97 trillion by the end of the second quarter, owing to the contribution made by petrol businesses. It jumped to over VND5.22 trillion in the third quarter. 

    Hung Yen orange receives collective brand recognition

    Quang Chau orange in the northern province of Hung Yen was declared a collective trademark on November 21 by the National Office of Intellectual Properly under the Ministry of Science and Technology.

    Over the years, Quang Chau orange plants have been planted on a large-scale and are ten times as lucrative as rice, said Nguyen Van Biet, Director of Quang Chau orange cooperative.

    According to Le Thi Tham, Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Science and Technology, a project on developing Quang Chau orange brand in Hung Yen city has been run for a year. This move expanded consumptions markets and developed a set of criteria for brand recognition and made designs for the brand.

    The project aims to protect the rights of orange farmers to use the brand and to establish a brand management model to enhance the economic value of certified products.

    Nguyen Van Oanh, a local economic official, said the city has more than 144 hectares of orange, mostly in Quang Chau, Lam Son, Tan Hung, Hoang Hanh communes.

    Nearly 36 hectares in Quang Chau and Hoang Hanh are grown in line with VietGAP standards, producing nearly 500 tonnes of oranges this year.

    Nguyen Tuan Cuong, Chairman of the Hung Yen City People’s Committee said orange plants in Hien City produce more than 1,500 tonnes per year, worth over 40 billion VND, making them a key product in the city’s agriculture restructuring.

    Areas have been zoned off in Quang Chau, Tan Hung, Lam Son, Hoang Hanh, Phu Cuong and Hung Cuong communes for planting oranges in line with VietGAP standards, Cuong said.

    He urged local orange farmers to connect with each other to develop large-scale orange areas to ensure product quality.

    Ford sees rising number of vehicle sales despite new tax policy

    Ford Vietnam saw an increase in October retail sales from the previous month to nearly 2,300 vehicles amid a slowdown in industry sales as customers delay purchases ahead of the new tax policy slated for January.

    Led by the Ranger, Transit, and EcoSport, the company’s year-to-date sales have risen slightly versus last year to more than 23,600 vehicles, representing a market share of 10.4 percent.

    “Our sales remained steady in October as the overall demand continued to slow ahead of the new tax policy’s implementation,” said Pham Van Dung, managing director for Ford Vietnam.

    The Ranger model delivered an exceptional month with retail sales rising 13 percent from the previous month to 1,425 vehicles. It continues to lead Vietnam’s pickup segment with year-to-date sales that have increased 7 percent to 12,159 vehicles.

    The popular Transit reached October sales of 360 vehicles and year-to-date sales of 4,929 vehicles.

    Both the EcoSport compact SUV and Explorer premium SUV continued to lead their respective segments.

    The EcoSport delivered October sales that rose 5 percent from the previous month to 280 vehicles, driving its year-to-date sales up to 3,205 vehicles. The Explorer recorded sales of 75 vehicles in October with year-to-date sales reaching 981 vehicles.

    Year-to-date sales of the sporty Focus increased 21 percent to 874 vehicles, including October sales of 74 vehicles.

    PVD sees opportunities from improved crude oil prices

    PetroVietnam Drilling and Well Services Corporation (PV Drilling) under the Vietnam Oil and Gas Group (PVN) has seen robust signs in its business activities when prices of crude oil improve and the oil drilling market becomes warmer.

    After the successful operation of its Drilling Rig 1 for Total E&P Myanmar, PVD has won contracts to provide offshore drilling rigs and related technical services in regional markets, including Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar and Thailand.

    Meanwhile, the domestic drilling market also opens up opportunities for PVD as the PetroVietnam is carrying out large oil exploration and drilling projects like Ca Rong Do (Red Emperor), Ca Voi Xanh (Blue Whale) and Block B-O Mon. Those projects are said to have the largest gas potential in Vietnam.

    Sao Vang-Dai Nguyet and other gas fields are being developed in parallel with the second phase of Su Tu Trang (White Lion) project to ensure sufficient gas supply for Nam Con Son 2 pipeline project’s second phase, an important project of PetroVietnam in the coming time.

    PVD’s post-tax profit was 25 billion VND (1.1 million USD) in the third quarter of this year, 2.5 times higher than the same period in 2016. Particularly, the company still maintained quality services for its customers with sound performance and achievement of zero Lost Time Injury (zero LTI) for many years.

    PVD Vice President Do Danh Rang said that in a bid to improve competitiveness in the drilling market, the company is focusing on restructuring and enhancing financial management to reduce costs during production, particularly cutting operation costs of its oil rigs.

    US benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude is being traded at 45.7 USD a barrel, up 28 percent from June. Price of London-traded Brent crude surges 35.7 percent to surpass 64 USD a barrel.

    Together with the recovery of oil prices, the drilling market also enjoys upbeat signs. According to a latest report from ODS-Petrodata, a market intelligence company specialised in the upstream offshore oil and gas industry, demand for jack-up rigs in 2018 is forecast at 34, as compared to 27 in the end of 2016.

    German businesses seek investment opportunities in Dong Nai

    German companies, with experience in engineering and environmental treatment, want to cooperate with the southern province of Dong Nai to build waste treatment systems.

    The information was heard at a working session between Dong Nai province’s leaders and a delegation of German enterprises on November 21.

    According to Tran Van Vinh, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, Dong Nai is a densely-populated locality with strong industrial development so it has prioritized investments in waste and wastewater treatment.

    He said the province is currently home to 35 industrial zones and some 1,300 foreign direct investment businesses, including those from Germany and other EU countries, are investing in the locality with total registered capital of over 30 billion USD.

    In the past years, Dong Nai has paid due attention to renovating administrative procedures to facilitate locals and enterprises as well, Vinh said, adding that the province pledged to create favourable conditions so that foreign companies can enjoy sound business in the province.

    According to representatives from German companies, besides cooperation in the environment, they are fostering collaboration with Vietnamese partners and Dong Nai young business association to promote trade and investment, aiming to popularise products and strengths of each side.

    Bac Ninh ranks second nationwide in export value

    The northern province of Bac Ninh has earned 29.85 billion USD from exports so far this year, ranking second nationwide in export revenue, following Ho Chi Minh City. 

    With that figure, Bac Ninh contributed 14.9 percent to the country’s total export value. 

    According to Nghiem Dinh Thuan, head of the provincial Statistics Office, Bac Ninh’s export revenue mainly came from the foreign direct investment (FDI) sector, with the most noteworthy Canon, Microsoft, Foxconn, Samsung Electronics Vietnam and Samsung Display Vietnam. 

    In February 2017, the Prime Minister gave a nod to an expansion project of Samsung Display Vietnam, raising the company’s accumulated investment in Vietnam to 6.5 billion USD. 

    Bac Ninh’s export value is expected to hit 30 billion USD in 2017.

    EU-Vietnam FTA needs to balance interests: Deputy PM

    The EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) needs to balance both sides’ interests and respects the articles that they have agreed on, Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue told Ambassador Bruno Angelet, head of the EU Delegation to Vietnam.

    At a working session in Hanoi on November 21, Hue affirmed that the EVFTA is important to both Vietnam and the EU, asking the two sides to coordinate to speed up the signing and ratification of the trade pact in the first half of 2018.

    The revision of economic cooperation contents should only relate to issues about the EU-Vietnam Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation (PCA), other fields such as human rights should not be added, he noted.

    He emphasised Vietnam’s policy of coordinating with the international community to better protect human rights on the basis of respect to historical and cultural differences and straightforward dialogue to narrow differences.

    The Deputy PM also expressed his regret at the EU’s issuance of a “yellow card” which warns Vietnam for illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. He noted that this issuance resulted in a more complicated environment amid the two sides’ enhancement of trade and investment cooperation.

    Vietnam appreciates the EU’s warning, which aims to help the country tackle IUU fishing, he said, adding that its agencies have been taking synchronous solutions to solve, prevent and minimise IUU fishing.

    Hue voiced his hope that the EU will soon remove the “yellow card” so as not to worry Vietnamese fishermen or affect the EVFTA signing.

    Ambassador Angelet said the EU will work closely with Vietnam to carry out necessary solutions in order to soon remove the “yellow card” for Vietnam’s fishery products.

    He also highly valued the Vietnamese Government’s activeness in directing ministries and sectors under the Vietnam-EU Joint Committee to take necessary steps to implement the EVFTA in 2018.

    The PCA is important to accelerating the EVFTA signing and ratification, he noted, adding that to implement the PCA, a Vietnam-EU human rights dialogue will be held next week, and this dialogue will help deepen mutual understanding and strengthen bilateral relations in the time ahead.

    Int’l conference, exhibition on automation to open in HCM City

    The fourth International Conference and Exhibition on Automation and Industrial Equipment (VAAC 2017) will take place at the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Centre, HCM City from November 29 to December 2.

    The exhibition will be hosted by the Vietnam Automation Association (VAA) under the support of the HCM City University of Technology to provide a platform for connecting policy-makers, scientists and enterprises from Vietnam and overseas.

    The event will feature a series of conferences, exhibitions and business forums focusing on issues of common concern such as smart city, smart transportation, and automation in agriculture and forestry.

    The VAAC Conference will highlight control and automation towards the fourth industrial revolution (Industry 4.0) with the presentation of 115 scientific studies in cybernetics, automation, and others.

    The VAAC Forum will host seminars and discussions on automation, renewable energy, smart city, startup innovation, mechanics, chemical and printing technology.

    About 500 booths run by 310 exhibitors from 15 countries and territories will showcase latest products and advanced technologies in automation and chemical, in line with machines and equipment; industrial products and materials.

    Canada holds promise for VN farms     

    Although Canada is a major producer of seafood, it still imports a variety of sea products from Viet Nam, especially black tiger shrimps.

    According to Viet Nam’s General Department of Customs, last year, Viet Nam’s seafood export turnover to Canada reached more than US$183 million. This was the highest figure for agricultural products exported to the Canadian market.

    In the first 10 months of this year, seafood exports to Canada have leapt significantly. Turnover so far is more than $186 million.

    Nguyen Nhu Tiep, director of the National Agro-Forestry Fisheries Quality Assurance Department (NAFIQAD), said Canada had one of the strictest import regulations for farm products, especially seafood.

    However, as it is a high value market, learning to comply with the system gives Viet Nam an advantage when selling to other countries.

    In terms of seafood, Tiep said Vietnamese shrimp products had the biggest sales opportunity in Canada because demand was quite large.

    The standard of many shrimp raising and processing enterprises in Viet Nam now meets the requirements of Canada. However, the same is not true for farming in general.

    In particular, Canada has shifted to management from the bottom up. Therefore, not only processing enterprises must be inspected, but also raw material areas must be assessed by Canadian authorities visiting Viet Nam to approve export licences.

    To promote Viet Nam shrimp exports, Canada recently backed a $15 million technical assistance project to help businesses and farmers control food safety.

    Nguyen Duc Hoa, Vietnamese Ambassador to Canada, said Canada is a country with favorable natural conditions for agriculture and the world’s leading agricultural technology. Therefore, there is optimism that Vietnamese businesses will soon be allowed to directly invest in Canada’s agricultural production.

    At present, a number of Vietnamese enterprises are visiting Canada to lease agricultural land. In addition, Canadian firms are interested in Viet Nam’s agriculture, including its adaptation to climate change.

    The biggest problem with the Canadian market is that information and two-way understanding between Vietnamese and Canadian companies is still limited, according to Hoa.

    Hoa suggested the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development should organise trips for delegations from Viet Nam to meet Canadian enterprises to seek specific co-operation opportunities. 

    Ha Nam province welcomes Japanese valve manufacturers

    The northern province of Ha Nam welcomes and creates all possible conditions for members of the Shiga prefectural valve manufacturers’ association to open factories in the locality.

    The assertion was made by Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Vu Dai Thang at a working session with the Japanese association in Ha Nam on November 17.

    He introduced his guests to the local potential and strength in economic development and investment attraction policies, saying that Ha Nam has trade advantages with neigbouring provinces, synchronous infrastructure and big incentives.

    Investors will be provided with the most favourable conditions such as electricity, water, recruitment support, security and order guarantee, he affirmed.

    The province prioritises drawing investment in the hi-tech industry and support industry, he said, adding that the Dong Van 3 support industrial park has favourable location and good infrastructure.

    Head of the Japanese delegation Nakagawa Satoshi said the association has over 30 members specialising in valve production to serve the water and gas transmission. They have opened factories in China, Malaysia, and the Philippines.

    Many are interested in opening factories in Vietnam, he said, adding that the association wants to study the situation in Ha Nam to map out appropriate investment orientations in the near future.

    The delegation later visited the Ha Nam Clean Water Joint Stock Company.

    Insurance market maintains stable growth rate

    The insurance market continued to maintain stable growth rate in the first 10 months of the year, according to the Ministry of Finance (MoF).

    The ministry said total insurance payment in the period reached more than VNĐ23.9 trillion (US$1.05 billion), of which total insurance payment from non-life insurance companies was estimated at VNĐ12.06 trillion.

    Insurance companies have ensured payment to buyers, it added.

    MoF’s report also revealed that the total premium collected by insurance firms in the market in the January-October period surged by 20 per cent to VNĐ84.2 trillion.

    During this period, insurance companies invested VNĐ236.1 trillion in the economy, a rise of 21.8 per cent compared with the corresponding period in 2016.

    Of the total sum, revenue from life insurance premiums was VNĐ199.8 trillion and from non-life insurance premiums was VNĐ36.3 trillion, increasing 32 per cent and 9 per cent respectively from the same period last year.

    The ministry said management and supervision in the market have been strengthened to improve transparency of insurance companies’ operations.

    In the near future, the ministry will continue to complete policies and mechanisms for the insurance industry. In addition, it will complete a draft decree on compulsory insurance for fire and explosion to replace Decree No 130/2006/NĐ-CP and a draft decree on penalties on violations of insurance operation.

    The MoF will also encourage insurance companies to diversify insurance products.

    The life insurance targeted a total premium revenue of VNĐ62.3 trillion this year, increasing 23.4 per cent while the non-life insurance targeted VNĐ40 trillion total premium or 9.4 per cent increase from last year. 

    Bình Thuận tourism and trade fair kicks off

    The tourism and trade fair 2017 in the southern province of Bình Thuận opened on Saturday, serving the needs of people visiting and shopping in the province.

    The fair has attracted nearly 400 booths from 180 domestic enterprises, displaying products such as food, processed food, garments and jewellery, as well as cosmetics, footwear, home appliances and electronics, in addition to agricultural machinery, pets and interior decoration.

    The exhibition also has a variety of booths, introducing typical products of the region such as Phan Thiết fish sauce, Đắk Lắk coffee, Sóc Trăng “pía” cake, Lý Sơn garlic and Đà Lạt jam cake.

    The Bình Thuận tourism and trade fair 2017 is an opportunity for businesses to introduce new products, transfer new scientific and technological advances to people and to help build and develop Việt Nam’s brands.

    In addition, enterprises have the chance to find partners for cooperation in order to expand their production and market.

    Besides booths for showcasing and selling products, the fair also has amusement parks, food and cultural exchange programmes, creating a sightseeing and shopping destination for consumers as well as tourists.

    The fair will end on November 26.

    Phone exports create October trade surplus record

    Vietnam obtained the highest ever trade surplus of US$2.18 billion in October, nearly double the value in September, thanks to high phone export turnover, according to General Department of Vietnam Custom. 

    While machines and equipment, usually posting the largest import value in previous months, continuously reduced from $3.45 billion in May to $2.53 billion in October.

    That has contributed to the October trade surplus increasing the value during the first ten months this year. Of these, foreign direct investment sector gained the trade surplus of $17.8 billion while domestic sector posted the trade deficit of $15.3 billion.

    Hanoi's budget revenue rises 15.8% against 2016

    Hanoi has posted a total budget revenue of nearly VND208 trillion (US$9.15 billion) since the beginning of this year, equivalent to 101.4% of the year's estimate and up 15.8% over the same period in 2016.

    The statistics were announced at a meeting of the municipal Party Committee, held on November 19, in the presence of Secretary of Hanoi municipal Party Committee Hoang Trung Hai.

    The city's economy was reported to grow steadily at 7.3%, with the poverty rate being reduced to just 1.71% in 2017. Hanoi also continued to take the lead in a number of areas such as education, healthcare, social welfare and sports in 2017.

    In 2018, the city will strive to improve its investment and business environment, enhance its competitiveness capacity and promote start-ups in order to achieve the target of having 50,000 newly-established enterprises.

    The city's gross regional domestic product (GRDP) is projected to grow by 7.3-7.8% in 2018, while the total investment capital for development purposes is expected to increase by 10.5-11% and export revenues are hoped to expand by 7.5-8% in 2018.

    Secretary Hoang Trung Hai emphasised that the targets set for 2018 are highly challenging, requiring the joint efforts of all of the relevant sectors and agencies to fulfil these targets.

    He also asked for further reform in the administrative procedures and apparatus organisation and the synchronous implementation of the code of conduct at public places and at State agencies.

    The Head of the municipal Party Committee also called for the settlement of complaints and denunciations, as well as the fight for red tape and corruption in sensitive areas such as land, construction, and the management of State capital and property, among others.

    Administrative reforms to better serve people, businesses

    Developing public administrative centers is part of Vietnam’s administrative reforms. Modern and friendly centers of this kind in Quang Ninh have created breakthroughs in streamlining administrative procedures.

    Le Thi Nga of Cam Trung ward came to the Public Administrative Center of Cam Pha City, Quang Ninh province, to receive her certificate of land use rights and house ownership.

    “I thought the procedures for transferring land use rights would be complicated and might take 1 to 2 months to complete, but it took me only 15 days. I’m very satisfied,” Nga said.

    The well-equipped center began operating in early 2014. Each month it handles more than 350 administrative procedures including public security, social insurance, and taxes.

    Doan Ngoc Quang, the center’s Director said, “All procedures are handled at the center and processed documents are returned at the reception counter. It’s different from the previous one-stop model.  Applying IT has shortened the time. We have developed a process that specifies which unit is responsible for each step and the time each step should take. In the first 9 months of this year, 99.6% of all procedures were completed on time or ahead of time.”

    Quang Ninh now has 14 district public administrative centers. The model was expanded based on the success of the provincial public administrative center, which was first piloted in 2014.

    The public administrative center is like a miniature administration involving all of the province’s departments and sectors, as well as branches of central agencies, in handling more than 100 administrative procedures.

    Following a principle of on-the-spot assessment and settlement, each unit must have a head or a deputy head or and an authorized specialist on duty.

    Nguyen Mai Ly who lives in Uong Bi City and wants to set up a business, said  “In the past, we must go to different agencies and departments to complete documents to set up a business. Since the center opened, every procedure has been simplified. All you need to do now is submit all the required documents to the center. After several days, you will get the result.”

    The Quang Ninh provincial Public Administrative Center has halved the time needed to handle administrative procedures. In the first nine months of 2017, almost every document was processed on time or ahead of time. 95% of individuals and businesses who have used the Center have said they were satisfied by its service quality.

    US organisation helps Quang Tri boost pepper production

    Authorities of the central province of Quang Tri met with representatives of US organisation Roots of Peace, pledging optimal conditions for it to help develop local agriculture, especially pepper production, according to Tai nguyen & Moi truong (Natural Resources & Environment) newspaper.

    Roots of Peace has assisted more than 2,100 households in Vinh Linh, Cam Lo, Gio Linh and Huong Hoa districts to take part in 63 pepper cultivation clubs.

    It has worked with the Mines Advisory Group (MAG) and Peace Tree organisation to clear unexploded ordnances from more than 45ha of land for more than 520 households to cultivate pepper. The organisation has also worked with the Korea International Cooperation Agency to mobilise 50,000 USD to help some 200 households in Cam Lo district farm pepper.

    At the meeting on November 16, founder and CEO of Roots of Peace Heidi Kuhn appreciated Quang Tri authorities and people’s support to her organisation. She said she wants to make the province’s Tieu Cua (Cua pepper) known across the world as it is the best pepper she has ever tasted.

    This could also be a symbol of peace as the pepper is produced in a formerly war-torn province, Kuhn added.

    Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Chinh lauded Roots of Peace’s activities in Quang Tri over the last years, helping the province reduce poverty and develop. The organisation has helped Quang Tri’s pepper be exported to the US and other countries, an encouraging sign for local agricultural brands.

    The Quang Tri People’s Committee pledges to create the best possible conditions for Roots of Peace to partner with local companies to develop agricultural activities and clear unexploded ordnances, he noted.

    US state promotes investment in Vietnam

    A high-level trade mission from the US state of Idaho recently visited Ho Chi Minh City to promote trade and investment activities in Vietnam and the southern economic hub in particular.

    This is the third working visit of the state to Vietnam over the last nine years, according to Cong Thuong (Industry & Trade) newspaper.

    Speaker of the Idaho House of Representatives Scott Bedke said the mission includes 15 businesses operating in cultivation, dairy production, and breeding. He added that the US firms see huge cooperation opportunities in Vietnam.

    Idaho has strengths in agricultural and food production, hi-tech industries, and semi-conductor industry. In 2016, Idaho exported 11.35 million USD worth of goods to Vietnam, up 55 percent year-on-year.

    Director at Idaho Department of Commerce Megan Ronk said many businesses from the state have upwards of 10-year-old working relationships in Vietnam. 

    She said that Idaho is the biggest dairy producer in the US with 25,000 farms.

    In the last two years, Vietnamese dairy companies and farms have imported more than 8,000 milk cows from the US’s western states, including Idaho. Therefore, Idaho wants to seek more cooperation opportunities and share development experience with Vietnamese businesses.

    The state’s government is also accelerating activities to draw foreign direct investment from Vietnam, she said.

    She noted that projects worth 500,000 USD or more and generating jobs for at least 10 workers are eligible to enjoy the state’s incentives.

    Binh Phuoc approves Indian-invested solar power project

    The southern province of Binh Phuoc announced on November 17 that it has approved an investment plan for a 54 million USD solar power plant project funded by Indian Tata Power Company.

    The 49 megawatt plant will span 55 hectares in Loc Tan commune, Loc Ninh district.

    Shenbagam Manthiram, Chief Representative Officer of Tata Power Company in Vietnam, said that the locality has good conditions for the company to carry out the project, including many sunny hours, convenient transport links and national grid connections.

    Tata Power is asking the province to facilitate the project so that it can complete it before June, 2019, he added.

    Lauding the project, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Nguyen Van Tram said he has asked local Department of Industry and Trade and relevant agencies to support the company with legal assistance so all necessary procedures can be finalised as soon as possible.

    He noted that the province will convert more than 20,000 hectares of forest land and rubber cultivation areas with low economic efficiency into land for solar power development in Loc Ninh district.

    This will be made in tandem with branching out land funds to attract hi-tech agriculture development, Tram stressed, adding that the province is prioritising investment in renewable power and clean power.

    VNN


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  • 11/22/17--01:53: Article 1
  • 474 firms and individuals in Vietnam named in the Paradise Papers


     474 individuals and organisations in Vietnam have been found in the Paradise Papers published by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) as of November 21.


     

    Firms in Vietnam named in the Paradise Papers


    The Paradise Papers were published on the offshoreleaks.icij.org website on which the Panama Papers were published last year.

    About 14 firms in Vietnam have headquarters in the British Virgin Islands, 11 firms in Cayman and seven are in Panama, Bahamas and Cook Islands, all of which are considered tax havens due to low tax rates and easy procedures to set up companies.

    Some of the most notable names found are Furama International Hoteliers Limited and Best City Finance companies owned by Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, director of Vietjet Air. Several companies such as the Penwood International Inc. have also been named in the Panama Papers last year.

    The paper also exposed 214 individuals, 23 middle parties and 205 addresses in Vietnam.

    Several well-known businessmen in Vietnam named in the list include Don Lam, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder VinaCapital, Louis Nguyen, Chairman and CEO of Saigon Asset Management, and Quang Hien - Vu, director of AC Housing Development.

     

    Individuals linked to Vietnam named in the Paradise Papers


    The Paradise Papers are the leak of 13.4 million documents relating to offshore investments. Over 120 politicians and billionaires in the world were exposed to have been avoiding taxes. The papers were leaked to the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung.

    dtinews.vn


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  • 11/22/17--02:16: Article 0
  • Saigon water bus to launch this weekend with free-ticket campaign

    Commuters can try the waterway bus for free from November 25


    ​Saigon water bus to launch this weekend with free-ticket campaign
    The maiden Saigon river bus is ready for its November 25 launch.


    The much-awaited river bus service, the first of its kind in Ho Chi Minh City, is set to launch on November 25, with a ten-day free ticket promotional campaign to attract passengers.

    Following three months of technical setup and a survey trip earlier this month, the waterway bus will officially launch this Saturday, its operator, Thuong Nhat Co Ltd, said on Monday.

    The 10.8-kilometer route is set to connect Bach Dang Port in District 1 with Linh Dong Ward in the outlying district of Thu Duc, running along the Saigon River and Thanh Da Canal.

    The water bus will pick up passengers at three stops along the 30-minute route, namely Binh An (District 2), Thanh Da (Binh Thanh District) and Hiep Binh Chanh (Thu Duc District).

    The service will be available for free for the first ten days of launch, Thuong Nhat Co. director Nguyen Kim Toan was quoted by Nguoi Lao Dong (Laborer) newspaper as saying.

    “The promotional program is intended to attract passengers and to create the habit of traveling by water bus among local residents,” Toan said.

    Normal fares will cost VND15,000 (U$0.66) per person per trip, with ticket booths installed at the service’s two terminals and stops.

    Toan said five water buses, capable of carrying 80 passengers each, will be deployed for the Bach Dang-Linh Dong service.

    The Bach Dang-Linh Dong route is the first of two waterway bus services Thuong Nhat plans to develop, realizing a dream the company has held on to for decades.

    The second service, connecting Bach Dang with Lo Gom in District 6, began development at the same time as the Bach Dang-Ling Dong route, but is yet to be completed as a sewer construction is blocking the waterway near Ben Nghe Canal, according to Nguoi Lao Dong.

    Thuong Nhat Co. is calling on the developer of the sewer to speed up construction so it can put its’ second river bus route into service next year.

    Tuoi Tre News


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  • 11/22/17--23:44: Article 1
  • BUSINESS IN BRIEF 23/11


    Japanese market shows interest in Vietnamese seedless limes


     VN firms urged to trade with HK, Vietnamese spend US$8 billion holidays abroad, Vietnam Airlines offers discount tickets to Asia, Vietnam sets sights on Middle East for tuna exports, Can Tho to host Int’l Agriculture Fair 2017

    There is tremendous opportunity for Vietnamese seedless limes, cultivated in Ben Luc District in the Mekong Delta province of Long An, to be exported to Japan, a fastidious market.

    This was stated at an agricultural promotion conference recently held in Wakayama Prefecture, Japan.

    At the event, Yoshinobu Nisaka, governor of Wakayama Prefecture, said he was interested in agricultural cooperation between Viet Nam and Japan in general and Wakayama and Long An in particular. Long An can send labourers to Wakayama to support agricultural production there, he said.

    Japan wants to purchase Vietnamese seedless lime and lime products, such as pure lime powder, instant lime powder, canned lime juice and lime seasoning powder, agricultural expert Kha Chan Tuyen said.

    He noted that desiccated lime slices, lime leaves, dried lime peel, and especially lime essential oil, are all favoured by the Japanese, who found that these products are made of stable and quality materials.

    Nguyen Van Hien, chairman of the Chanh Viet Trading and Investment Joint Stock Company, said agricultural experts are supporting his company and local farmers with techniques to cultivate quality seedless limes.

    Fresh limes and lime products of Ben Luc locals would gain a foothold in the Japanese market, he believed.

    Earlier, Chanh Viet Trading and Investment JSC exported its products to some European countries. Seedless lime products have also drawn attention from Muslim markets.

    Vietnamese spend US$8 billion holidays abroad

    Around 6.5 million Vietnamese people holidayed abroad last year, spending US$7-8 billion, according to the Vietnam Tourism Association.

    The most popular destinations included Thailand, Singapore, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and China.

    In addition to booked tours, Vietnamese people are enjoying self-arranged holidays, booking their own air tickets and hotels, especially via the Internet.

    To meet the increasing demand of Vietnamese holiday-makers, businesses are offering diverse services through different channels, especially on the websites of airlines and hotels.

    Vietnam Airlines offers discount tickets to Asia

    The national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines has launched a promotional campaign for flights from Vietnam to a variety of Asian destinations, including China, Hong Kong, Taiwan (China), Thailand, Singapore, Myanmar, and Cambodia.

    The offer runs from now to December 29, and passengers can get 20% off tickets bought on their website www.vietnamairlines.com or using the Vietnam Airlines mobile apps every Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

    Vietnam Airlines will offer discounted tickets to different destinations each week, and send the latest promotional news via email to members of the Golden Lotus program or those who have registered to receive emails on its website.

    At present, the airline conducts flights to destinations throughout Asia with 4-star service quality.

    Vietnam sets sights on Middle East for tuna exports

    Domestic tuna exporters have seen the Middle East as an alternative market in a bid to move closer to this year’s US$524 million export target, 8% higher than a year earlier after the European Commission (EC) has issued a "yellow card" warning to Vietnam. 

    During the first three quarters of this year, tuna exports nearly reached US$430 million up 21.2% against the same period last year. As a result, tuna exports are likely to surpass the set export target of roughly US$50 million. However, shrinking exports due to the European Union (EU)’s issuance of ‘yellow card’ has raised great concerns for other major importers. In these difficult circumstances, exporters have found a market that has huge potential to replace the demanding EU market.

    According to Vietnam Customs, nine-month tuna exports to the US hit US$168.77 million, accounting for 39.3% of the total export revenue and up 16.8% over last year’s corresponding period. The US remained the leading consumer of Vietnamese tuna products. Processed and canned Vietnamese tuna products made up a large proportion of the tuna imported into the highly lucrative market.

    Globefish reported that the import price of canned tuna averages US$4.5-5 per kg, which is higher than two years ago. The prices of products imported from Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines are nearly equal and close to the average prices in the US.

    Over the same period of time, frozen tuna fillet continued to be the key export product of domestic businesses to the EU, constituting 40% of total export value, trailed by canned tuna products at 32%. Germany, Italy and the Netherlands were the three largest EU importers of Vietnamese tuna.

    In the three quarters of 2017, tuna exports to most EU countries increased when compared to the same period last year, for instance exports to Germany were up 38.3% and exports to the Netherlands saw an increase of 67.2%.

    With an impressive export growth of 109.3% to almost US$35 million in the period, Israel gradually replaced ASEAN to become Vietnam’s third largest importer. Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines are the biggest tuna suppliers of Israel, in which Israel imports a big volume of canned tuna products from Vietnam, making the country become the second largest exporter to Israel after Thailand. For Israel’s market segment of frozen tuna, Vietnam is dominating the Israeli market with hardly any significant rivals.

    In the current climate that has seen exports to traditional markets such as the EU and the US grind to a halt, the Middle East, particularly Israel, has emerged as the best choice for domestic exporters.

    Tuna imports to the Middle East have displayed a consistent upward trend over recent years, from US$286 million to US$791 million the last decade alone, of which Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Israel are the three largest importers.

    Last year, Vietnam earned US$41.55 million from exporting tuna to the Middle East, representing a significant rise of 29%.

    With the high consumption demand of around 200,000 tons annually and a low import duty of 5% when compared to the US and EU, and free duty frozen tuna fillets the Middle East is considered a profitable market for Vietnamese tuna exporters.

    Tuna exports to the market; in particular Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia are forecast to increase sharply in the remaining months of 2017.

    Experts said despite being surrounded by seven coastal areas, the region is still dependent on importing tuna form elsewhere because of its limited seafood exploitation.

    The Middle East is emerging as the choice market for tuna exporters in the current circumstances, the markets Vietnam has traditionally exported to, the US and EU, have imposed strict regulations on illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.

    Can Tho to host Int’l Agriculture Fair 2017

    More than 200 exhibitors have registered to partake in the International Agriculture Fair 2017 in Can Tho City on November 23-27.

    According to organizers, domestic businesses and those from the Republic of Korea, Japan, India, the UK, China, Taiwan, Germany, the US and others will showcase their products on 330 stands with a focus on machines, equipment, agricultural mechanics and materials, plant varieties, processing agricultural products and models for safe and clean agriculture.

    Diverse activities will be held during the fair to facilitate farming in the Mekong Delta region. They include a production agriculture seminar, a consultation workshop on agricultural equipment and products, a training workshop on farming techniques, art exchanges, trade promotion and introduction of agriculture start-up projects in Can Tho.

    The fair is part of the national trade promotion program 2017. 

    Hai Phong to develop 5,800 hectares of hi-tech farms by 2030

    Hai Phong city has adopted a resolution to zone off nearly 5,800 hectares for hi-tech farms over the next 13 years.

    In the first phase from 2017-2020, Hai Phong will develop three hi-tech agricultural parks on 590 hectares and 17 hi-tech farming zones, stretching across more than 2,000 hectares. 

    The northern city also plans to build 16 hi-tech agricultural zones on an area of 1,900 hectares from 2021-2025 and nine others covering a combined 1,300 hectares from 2026-2030.

    The city will need more than VND11.88 trillion (US$522.9 million) for the projects.

    Director of the local Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Pham Van Lap said the city is offering incentives in land and funding and other support in technology and distribution to attract enterprises to join the projects.

    VinEco established the city’s first hi-tech farm on 46 hectares in Tan Lien and Tam Da communes in Vinh Bao district and aims to expand it to 250 hectares. Currently, the farm produces 3,000 – 3,500 kg of fruit and vegetables daily and provides about 130 jobs.

    The city is now home to about 300 hectares of hi-tech farms run by seven firms, including DaBaCo, Thuan Loi, Chau Giang, Giang Son and Luong Hue besides VinEco.

    Some 12 other firms are planning to invest a total of VND8.6 trillion (US$378.4 million) in hi-tech farming projects on more than 1,300 hectares.

    Ba Ria-Vung Tau plans $4 billion FDI attraction for 2017-2020

    The Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province targets to attract US$4 billion worth of foreign direct investment (FDI) in 80 projects for 2017-2020. 

    Cai Mep – Thi Vai port complex is the only port complex in Vietnam from where container ships can sail directly to Europe and America

    Among the total, VND100 trillion will come from domestic investment in 90 projects and VND15 trillion in 15 public-private partnership projects.

    To attract investors, the province has made active efforts to put in place mechanisms and removed investment hurdles that could have prevented it from achieving the “big dreams, big ambitions” Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc wants it to have.

    “Ba Ria-Vung Tau will try to reduce the time taken for granting investment licenses and building permits, modernize customs to reduce clearance time, and at the same time build a transparent and investor-friendly government,” Nguyen Van Trinh, chairman of the province People’s Committee, said.

    Nguyen Hong Linh, member of the Central Party Committee, secretary of the province Party Committee and chairman of the province People’s Council, affirmed that the province is committed to building a facilitating government and actively improving policies to turn the province into an attractive place for well-intentioned local and foreign investors.

    “The province’s vision is to attract investors selectively, with a focus on large projects, modern technology, high value-addition in the fields of industry, ports, port services and logistics, tourism, and high-tech agriculture,” Linh said.

    The province has attracted more than $27 billion worth of foreign investment in over 300 projects and VND250 trillion from Vietnamese firms in nearly 500 projects.

    Besides 14 general industrial parks with comprehensive infrastructure, the province also has two industrial parks specializing in supporting industries: Phu My 3 and Da Bac.

    With its Cai Mep – Thi Vai port complex, ranked among the top ports in Southeast Asia and one of only 19 in the world that can handle 190,000 dead weight tonnage (DWT) vessels, the province will be a gateway for international trade and trans-shipment in Southeast Asia.

    This is also the only port complex in Vietnam from where container ships can sail directly to Europe and America.

    Work on the $5.4 billion Long Son Petrochemical Complex will start soon and it is expected to go on stream in 2022, providing a big push for the province’s economic development.

    The province has also approved a program for high-tech agricultural development for up to 2020 with a vision to 2025, which envisages setting aside more than 5,000ha in various localities for high-tech agriculture.

    In tourism, besides continuing to exploit existing attractions like Con Dao and Binh Chau Hot Spring, the province plans to develop some world-class sites. It has so far completed the coastal road from Vung Tau City to Xuyen Moc District, forming a unique beach tourism route with luxury hotels and resorts along the pristine coast. But there are still many sites where investors can develop classy tourism projects.

    Hilton expands in HCMC & Vung Tau

    Hilton has announced a further expansion of its Vietnamese portfolio by signing two management agreements with two affiliates of the BRG Group for DoubleTree by Hilton Vung Tau in Vung Tau and Hilton Garden Inn Saigon in Ho Chi Minh City, both of which are scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2022.

    “DoubleTree by Hilton Vung Tau and Hilton Garden Inn Saigon are significant additions to our expanding footprint in Vietnam,’ said Mr. Guy Phillips, Senior Vice President, Development - Asia & Australasia at Hilton. “Signing three deals in the past three months, including these hotels, not only demonstrates Hilton’s growth momentum in Vietnam but also the huge potential for more developments across established and upcoming destinations in the country. Furthermore, we are thrilled to build on our successful alliance with the BRG Group and its affiliates and remain committed to delivering exceptional returns to our owners.”

    With the signing of the two hotels, Hilton now has a total of eleven operating or under development in Vietnam, eight of which are owned by the BRG Group.

    The 250-room DoubleTree by Hilton Vung Tau is located in the heart of Vung Tau, a popular coastal destination near Ho Chi Minh City known for its long stretches of beaches, lakes, and thermal springs. The hotel is an 800-meter walk from the famous Bai Truoc Beach and a short drive away from the Dong Xuyen Industrial Park. Offering more than 1,700 sq m of meeting space, including a ballroom, the hotel will have four dining and bar outlets, a swimming pool, a fitness center, and a spa.

    Hilton Garden Inn Saigon, meanwhile, is located in District 1, home to most administrative offices, consulates, and multinational companies in Ho Chi Minh City. The 160-room hotel is within 1.5 km of key attractions such as the Opera House, Reunification Palace, and Notre-Dame Cathedral. The hotel will offer two dining and bar outlets, a fitness center, and a swimming pool.

    “We are proud to have the best performing hotel brands in the world and delighted to be expanding the presence of DoubleTree by Hilton and Hilton Garden Inn in Vietnam,” said Mr. Sean Wooden, Regional Head of Brand Management, Asia Pacific. “Our aim is to be everywhere our customers want to be. In bringing our mid-market brand to Ho Chi Minh City and DoubleTree by Hilton to thriving tourism destinations such as Vung Tau, we are doing just that.”

    According to Ms. Nguyen Thi Nga, Chairwoman of the BRG Group, DoubleTree by Hilton Vung Tau and Hilton Garden Inn Saigon are the results of the long-term partnership between the Group and Hilton. “The two new hotels will be outstanding products that attract both domestic and foreign tourists to the south of Vietnam,” she said.

    As part of the Hilton portfolio, DoubleTree by Hilton Vung Tau and Hilton Garden Inn Saigon will participate in Hilton Honors, the award-winning loyalty program for Hilton’s 14 distinct hotel brands. Hilton Honors members receive an exclusive member’s rate along with Honors Points, free standard wi-fi, digital check-in, and free bookings when booking directly through Hilton.

    Online Friday to offer guaranteed products     

    Online Friday 2017, the largest annual event for the e-commerce business and consumer communities in Viet Nam, will label 5,000 guaranteed products this year.

    According to the Viet Nam E-commerce and Information Technology Agency (Vecita) under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the event’s organiser, the Online Friday sale will take place on the first Friday of December, with hundreds of thousands of products.

    The organiser will bring positive changes to ensure consumers’ rights this year. Accordingly, guaranteed products will must have certificates of origin. In addition, they will not be allowed to increase listed prices before the sale.

    Vecita said customers can easily shop and interact with businesses through online and offline activities, along with many available surprise promotional offers.

    In addition, to increase the quality of products and promotions, the organisers have decided to focus on attracting the participation of large enterprises.

    Well-known businesses will participate, including Adayroi, Lazada, Shopee and Nagakawa, as well as Sunhouse, Anbico, Sendo and Leflair.

    Last year, the total sales of 30 large companies at Online Friday 2016, held on December 2, reached VND664 billion (US$28 million), tripling the sales of the previous year. 

    TTCS announces name change     

    The Thanh Thanh Cong Sugar Joint Stock Company (TTCS), stock code SBT, held its 2016 – 2017 annual shareholders’ meeting on Monday, the first since its merger earlier this month with Bien Hoa Sugar Joint Stock Company (BHS), stock code BHS.

    The TTCS’ Board of Directors (BoD) submitted a proposal to change the company name to Thanh Thanh Cong – Bien Hoa Joint Stock Company (TTC Sugar) and proposed to increase the number of board members from five to six, as well as electing two new members for the 2017-2022 terms.

    The meeting on Monday also introduced changes to the company’s business plan, including an adjustment of foreign investors’ ownership ratio, redemption of treasury shares, and tackling the fact that a number of existing shareholders have been transferring over 25 per cent of total outstanding shares without making public tender offers.

    On another note, the BoD announced a purchase of more than 83.5 million treasury shares, equivalent to 15 per cent of TTCS’ current charter capital, using the order matching method within the HCM Stock Exchange’s (HOSE) permissive range in the next six months.

    They also submitted a plan to issue more than 33.41 million new shares to pay dividends to existing shareholders at an annual rate of 6 per cent.

    Remarkably, the BoD mentioned two plans to increase charter capital through private securities offering in 2018.

    One such plan involves the issuance of more than VND885 billion ($39.4 million) worth of convertible bonds with maturity dates of two to five years and an annual yield of up to 10 per cent. This plan can be substituted with the issuance of about 88.5 million common shares at the current price of VND21,500 ($0.957) per share.

    Back in May 2017, TTCS’ shareholders agreed to the merger between TTCS and BHS, and the plan to swap all BHS shares in circulation with additionally issued SBT shares, which is considered a strategic step to improve both companies’ productivity and competitiveness.

    Since then, TTCS had issued more than 303 million shares in lieu of BHS existing shares under the merger plan. Through this issuance, the company’s charter capital increased from VND2.53 trillion (US$112.6 million) to VND5.57 trillion ($247.9 million), equivalent to more than 557 million shares and a total market capitalisation of over VND15 trillion ($667.8 million).

    SBT shares are currently trading on the HOSE at $0.957 per share, with total shares at 2 million as of Monday.

    Binh Thuan tourism and trade fair kicks off     

    The tourism and trade fair 2017 in the southern province of Binh Thuan opened on Saturday, serving the needs of people visiting and shopping in the province.

    The fair has attracted nearly 400 booths from 180 domestic enterprises, displaying products such as food, processed food, garments and jewellery, as well as cosmetics, footwear, home appliances and electronics, in addition to agricultural machinery, pets and interior decoration.

    The exhibition also has a variety of booths, introducing typical products of the region such as Phan Thiet fish sauce, Dak Lak coffee, Soc Trang “pia” cake, Ly Son garlic and Da Lat jam cake.

    The Binh Thuan tourism and trade fair 2017 is an opportunity for businesses to introduce new products, transfer new scientific and technological advances to people and to help build and develop Viet Nam’s brands.

    In addition, enterprises have the chance to find partners for cooperation in order to expand their production and market.

    Besides booths for showcasing and selling products, the fair also has amusement parks, food and cultural exchange programmes, creating a sightseeing and shopping destination for consumers as well as tourists.

    The fair will end on November 26. 

    HCMC exports to top $35b this year     

    HCM City is likely to achieve exports of US$35.2 billion this year, a 15.1 per cent increase from last year, and imports of $43.1 billion, a 13.2 per cent rise.

    The city accounts for 72 per cent of the Southern Key Economic Zone’s total imports and exports and 19.4 per cent of Viet Nam’s.

    An import-export gateway for the southern region, a lot of the city’s imports make their way to neighbouring provinces such as Dong Nai, Binh Duong and Long An, often to serve production for exports.

    The provinces enjoy large trade surpluses – Binh Duong $4 billion, Dong Nai $2 billion and Long An $500 million.

    Pham Thanh Kien, head of the Department of Trade and Industry, said his department is boosting trade promotion in key markets that buy more than $1 billion worth of goods – such as mainland China, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and South Korea – to reduce the trade deficit.

    It is developing a plan to enhance exports in 2017-20, he said.

    The plan would guide policy making for increasing export of high value-added items like computers and parts, software and digital products. 

    Ca Mau strives to earn 1.1 billion USD from aquatic export this year

    The southernmost province of Ca Mau is striving to achieve its goal of earning 1.1 billion USD from exporting aquatic products this year. 

    As of mid-November, the figure neared 900 million USD, up 8.5 percent annually, a positive signal as the shrimp sector faces a tough global market. 

    Chau Cong Bang, Vice Director of the provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, attributed the growth to rising materials supply that meets nearly 60 percent of total output of shrimp processing for export.

    The province’s industrial shrimp farming area now covers more than 9,600ha. Thanks to technological adoption, shrimp production accounts for 80 – 100 tonnes per ha each crop, raising the total to roughly 150,000 tonnes since the beginning of this year. 

    Local authorities are working to promote sustainable shrimp farming by spreading intensive farming models in tandem with environmental protection, closely controlling quality, issuing regulations to improve the management of shrimp farming, waste treatment and breeding shrimp quarantine. 

    Concerned agencies have also paid attention to technical training and epidemic control.

    Hai Phong to develop 5,800 hectares of hi-tech farms by 2030

    Hai Phong city has adopted a resolution to zone off nearly 5,800 hectares for hi-tech farms over the next 13 years.

    In the first phase from 2017-2020, Hai Phong will develop three hi-tech agricultural parks on 590 hectares and 17 hi-tech farming zones, stretching across more than 2,000 hectares. The northern city also plans to build 16 hi-tech agricultural zones on an area of 1,900 hectares from 2021-2025 and nine others covering a combined 1,300 hectares from 2026-2030.

    The city will need more than 11.88 trillion VND (522.9 million USD) for the projects.

    Director of the local Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Pham Van Lap said the city is offering incentives in land and funding and other support in technology and distribution to attract enterprises to join the projects.

    VinEco established the city’s first hi-tech farm on 46 hectares in Tan Lien and Tam Da communes in Vinh Bao district and aims to expand it to 250 hectares. Currently, the farm produces 3,000 – 3,500 kg of fruit and vegetables daily and provides about 130 jobs.

    The city is now home to about 300 hectares of hi-tech farms run by seven firms, including DaBaCo, Thuan Loi, Chau Giang, Giang Son and Luong Hue besides VinEco.

    Some 12 other firms are planning to invest a total of 8.6 trillion VND (378.4 million USD) in hi-tech farming projects on more than 1,300 hectares.

    La Residence in Thua Thien-Hue among world’s best hotels

    La Residence Hotel & Spa in Vietnam’s central province of Thua Thien-Hue has been ranked by the US’s Conde Nast Traveler magazine as the eighth best hotel in Asia.

    This is the fourth consecutive time the hotel has received the magazine’s Readers’ Choice Awards, one of the most prestigious awards for hostels, resorts, cities, islands, airlines, and cruise lines in the world.

    La Residence Hue is a boutique hotel on the banks of the Huong (Perfume) River overlooking the former Imperial Citadel, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

    The hotel was painstakingly restored in 2005 and redeveloped as an exceptional design hotel, with architectural features of the the 1920’s Streamline Moderne school of art-deco architecture.

    Real estate inventories taper off over 16 percent

    Real estate inventories nationwide saw a reduction of over 16 percent as of November 20, from the same time last year, to an estimated value of over 26 trillion VND (1.14 billion USD).

    Highest inventories were recorded in residential land. They were estimated at more than 3.1 million square metres and valued at 12.4 trillion VND (544.8 million USD).

    This was followed by town house with 3,129 units worth over 7 trillion VND (307.5 million USD). Unsold apartments stood at 2,924 units, equivalent to about 4.2 trillion VND (184.7 million USD) while that of commercial land was at 604,151 square metres valued at nearly 2.4 trillion VND (105.5 million USD).

    Unsold properties in Ho Chi Minh City were 4.78 trillion VND (210.1 million USD) while Hanoi saw a total inventory value of 5.3 trillion VND (232.9 million USD).

    The Ministry of Construction forecast that housing price is stable in the short term and the tourism property market will experience robust development in the coming time.

    Apartment prices in Hanoi declined 0.5 percent from the previous quarter and individual housing segment increased 0.13 percent.

    In stark contrast, apartment prices in the southern hub went up 0.8 percent, however, luxury units dropped 0.5 percent in their prices. Individual housing segment escalated 1.65 percent from Quarter 3.

    Petrol prices increase by over 400 VND per litre

    The Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Ministry of Finance decided to increase the retail price of RON 92 petrol by 434 VND to a maximum of 18,580 VND (0.82 USD) per litre from 3:00pm on November 20.

    Following a joint decision by the Ministries, the price of E5 bio-fuel rose by 385 VND to a maximum 18,243 VND (0.8 USD) per litre, while the prices of diesel and kerosene up 408 VND and 419 VND to 15,019 VND (0.66 USD) a litre and 13,617 VND (0.6 USD) a litre, respectively.

    This is the 22nd adjustment of fuel prices this year, with nine falls and nine increases.

    The two ministries also decided to keep using the price stabilisation fund for RON92 petrol and E5 biofuel at 600 VND per litre.

    Meanwhile, the use of the fund for diesel was 300 VND per litre.

    Vietnamese seedless lime sees great chance to enter Japanese market

    Vietnamese seedless lime cultivated in Ben Luc district, the Mekong Delta province of Long An, sees a great opportunity to be exported to Japan, a fastidious market, heard an agricultural promotion conference recently held in Wakayama prefecture, Japan.

    At the event, Yoshinobu Nisaka, Governor of Wakayama prefecture, said he is interested in agricultural cooperation between Vietnam and Japan in general and between Wakayama and Long An in particular.

    Long An can send labourers to Wakayama to support agricultural production there, he said.

    Japan wants to purchase Vietnamese seedless lime and lime products like pure lime powder, instant lime powder, canned lime juice, and lime seasoning powder, said agricultural expert Kha Chan Tuyen.

    He highlighted that desiccated lime slices, lime leaves, dried lime peel, and especially lime essential oil are all favoured by the Japanese side after they found that these products are made of stable and quality materials.

    Nguyen Van Hien, Chairman of the Chanh Viet Trading & Investment Joint Stock Company, highlighted that agricultural experts are supporting his company and local farmers with techniques to cultivate quality seedless limes.

    He believed that fresh limes and lime products of Ben Luc locals will gain a foothold in the Japanese market.

    Earlier, Chanh Viet Trading &Investment JSC exported its products to some European countries. Seedless lime products have also drawn attention from Muslim markets.

    VN-Cambodia Trade and Investment Forum opens in Phnom Penh

    The Vietnam-Cambodia Trade and Investment Forum 2017 was held in Phnom Penh on November 20, drawing around 300 delegates and representatives from 250 businesses of both countries.

    Chargé d’affaires at the Vietnamese Embassy in Cambodia Nguyen Trac Toan said that bilateral trade reached over 3.1 billion USD in the first 10 months of 2017, up 31.5 percent year-on-year. The figure is forecast to hit 3.5 billion USD this year.

    Vietnam is currently running 196 investment projects in Cambodia with the registered capital of 2.94 billion USD, making it among the five biggest investors in the country.

    For years, Vietnam has also ranked first in terms of the number of tourists to Cambodia with nearly 1 million arrivals each year, Toan added.

    He believed that this forum would help the two countries fully tap their cooperation potential through the provision of the latest information about trade and investment policies and incentives for both sides’ enterprises.

    It was also a chance for participating enterprises to meet, share experience and make proposals to authorised agencies, he said.

    Ho Sivyong, Director of the Export-Import Department under the Cambodian Ministry of Commerce, affirmed that Cambodia still maintains its open investment policy that allows operations of foreign-invested businesses and is carrying out intensive reforms to facilitate investment and business activities in the country.

    Vietnamese companies will surely benefit from these reforms, he emphasised.

    At the forum, representatives from Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade and Ministry of Planning and Investment shared that the Government is implementing measures synchronously to push up investment cooperation between the two countries, including simplifying administrative procedures, negotiating and signing treaties and agreements with Cambodia, and upgrading roads linking to the neighbour.

    Participating enterprises suggested both sides cooperate closely in investment promotion activities and state management over investment activities, regularly hold dialogues between Vietnamese businesses and the two countries’ competent offices to timely solve difficulties.

    They also urged the signing of an agreement on double taxation avoidance, together with improvement in administrative procedure reforms.

    Vietnam-Tatarstan Business Forum opens in Ho Chi Minh City

    The Vietnam – Tatarstan Business Forum took place in Ho Chi Minh City on November 20, attracting nearly 50 business representatives from the two countries. 

    Speaking at the event, President of the Republic of Tatarstan, Russia, Rustam Minnikhanov said Tatarstan and Vietnam, especially Ho Chi Minh City, have room for cooperation, especially in fields of Tatarstan’s strength and Ho Chi Minh City’s demand such as machinery engineering, high technology, trade, tourism, education, culture and sports. 

    Standing Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Le Thanh Liem lauded the initiative to hold the event in order to strengthen bilateral ties. 

    He said the city highly appreciates foreign investment in four key areas, including food processing, chemicals-rubber, engineering, and electronics - high technology. 

    Russian Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City Aleksey Popov said Tatarstani President’s visit will facilitate trade and long-term collaboration between Russia’s Tatarstan and the city. 

    On the occasion, the municipal chapter of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Tatarstani Chamber of Commerce signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation, under which both sides will step up the signing of economic and trade deals, explore the possibility of trade exchange and share information about manufacturing, export and economic regulations in each country.

    VN firms urged to trade with HK     

    As one of the leading trade and financial centres of the world, Hong Kong would be a gateway for Vietnamese enterprises to enter the Chinese mainland market and other regional and global markets, the deputy executive director of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) said.

    Speaking at a press luncheon in HCM City on Friday held by HKTDC and the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Benjamin Chau said Viet Nam was Hong Kong’s third largest trading partner in ASEAN and its ninth largest trading partner worldwide, with bilateral trade reaching US$13 billion in the first ninth months of the year, a year-on-year increase of 11.6 per cent.

    “Viet Nam was the most important export market for Hong Kong’s merchandise in ASEAN,” with its exports to Viet Nam amounted to $7.4 billion, an increase of 11 per cent, he said.

    Meanwhile, import to Hong Kong from Viet Nam reached $5.7 billion, up 12 per cent over the same period last year.

    Bilateral trade had been fruitful for many years, he said, adding that he hopes Vietnamese companies “make more use” of the Hong Kong platform to further promote their businesses in the local market as well as the international market.

    Chau also encouraged Vietnamese firms to participate in fairs organised by the council as exhibitors, which is a great chance for them to introduce their products and services to other countries.

    Last year, more than 38,000 exhibitors from 88 countries and regions as well as nearly 770,000 buyers from 200 countries and regions visited more than 30 of the Hong Kong council’s trade fairs, he said.

    However, only 40 exhibitors from Viet Nam joined fairs, while the figure was more than 500 from Thailand and over 1,000 from Japan, he said.

    Tina Phan, Director of Indochina at HKTDC, said Viet Nam was the producer and exporter of many fruits and vegetables, garments, handicrafts, and other products. Therefore, exhibitions on food, house-wares, or gifts are very suitable for Vietnamese firms to promote their products to international buyers.

    Many international buyers had increasingly sought goods from Viet Nam through the council’s fairs, she said.

    “Leveraging on our advantages, Vietnamese companies can expand businesses into the Chinese mainland and the world,” Chau said.

    Chau said HKTDC and the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency on November 16 signed a memorandum of understanding for co-operation on trade promotion.

    Under the MoU, the two sides will co-operate in exchanging market information so that companies in Hong Kong and Viet Nam can know the market situation better, organise trade missions and capacity training programmes, encourage Vietnamese companies to utilise digital channels such as its www.hktdc.com in business transaction, and to participate in HKTDC trade fairs to tap into the Hong Kong and world markets, he said.

    In addition, the ASEAN-Hong Kong Free Trade Agreement, which was signed on November 12 and is expected to come into effect in January 2019, would further increase trade in goods, services, and investment between ASEAN countries and Hong Kong, as well as trade between Viet Nam and Hong Kong in particular, he added. 

    Viet Nam trade fair underway in Cambodia     

    More than 150 Vietnamese and Cambodian businesses are showcasing their products at the Viet Nam Trade Fair 2017, which opened last week in Phnom Penh, the capital city of Cambodia.

    Of them, 120 enterprises from Viet Nam introduce to local customers a wide range of products.

    Co-organised by the Defence Ministry and Industry and Trade Ministry of Viet Nam and the Cambodian ministries of defence and commerce, the event includes over 230 booths, covering an area of about 10,000 square metres. It will run until Wednesday.

    Speaking at the opening ceremony, Cambodian Secretary of State for Commerce Ok Boung said the two countries enjoy significant potential to develop bilateral trade in the future, as Vietnamese goods are now favoured by many Camdodian customers thanks to their good quality, attractive designs and affordable prizes.

    The Cambodian official voiced his hope that the fair will enhance the business connection of the two countries as various contracts will be inked. He affirmed that the two sides will continue working to create optimal conditions for business links. 

    VN firms attend Asia-Pacific food fair in Singapore     

    A dozen or so Vietnamese businesses are displaying their products at the ongoing Asia-Pacific Food Expo (APFE) in Singapore.

    The four-day expo, which ends today, is seen as a good opportunity for Vietnamese firms to identify new partners and expand partnerships to expand exports to Singapore and other markets in the region.

    Participating firms are focused mostly on trading in rice, coffee, seafood, vegetables, fruits and food products.

    Organised by the Singapore Food Manufacturers’ Association, this year’s event has drawn the participation of firms from 10 countries and territories: China, India, Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Japan, Australia, Thailand, Viet Nam and Taiwan.

    The expo features nearly 200 booths on a 12,500sq.m area, presenting a wide range of processed food, beverages, confectionery, frozen food, ice cream, milk products, food materials, tea, coffee, seafood, poultry products, vegetables and fruits, and spices.

    Organisers expect the expo to attract 400,000 visitors. 

    Thaco rolls out new model of Mazda CX-5

    Truong Hai Automobile Joint-Stock Company (Thaco) launched its new Crossover Utility Vehicle (CUV) Model, the Mazda New CX-5, at Chu Lai-Truong Hai Industrial Complex in Nui Thanh district, the central coastal province of Quang Nam on November 18.

    With G-Vectoring Control (GVC) which improves stability and increases traction, the CX-5 is expected to offer a more comfortable and enjoyable ride.

    Mazda is the leading Japanese car brand in Vietnam, with the CUV CX-5, Mazda 3, and Mazda 2, in addition to Mazda 2 and 3 All-New, and Mazda 6.

    Huynh Khanh Toan, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee noted that most Vietnamese automobile assembly companies import Completely Built Units (CBU) from ASEAN countries as some taxes on CBUs will fall to zero from 2018. However, Thaco still produces Completely Knocked Down vehicles, affirming its efforts to develop the locally assembled car industry.

    Thaco, established in 1997, focuses on the production, assembly and distribution of commercial cars for Kia (the Republic of Korea), Mazda (Japan) and Peugeot (the EU).

    It will be an official dealer of BMW and MINI models in Vietnam from January 1, 2018. 

    The company’s production base covers 400 hectares in Chu Lai Open Economic Zone, Quang Nam province with six automobile assembling facilities, 12 support industry plants and one research and development centre.

    Thaco leads in car sales in Vietnam, occupying 40-42 percent of market share from 2015-2017.

    Bao Loc – Lam Dong poses new tourism potential

    Talking about the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong, tourists will immediately think about Da Lat city which has long been the most popular location in the region for hundreds of years ago. However, many tourists have discovered more beautiful places such as Dambri waterfall of Bao Loc city, tea plantation or Linh Quy Phap An which is known as a pagoda in the clouds, a sunset for the soul.

    To experience a new face of tourism in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong, from Bao Loc city to Dambri waterfall ecological tourism area, tourists can stop over at the locality’s famous tea plantation to make their own fragranced tea in a peaceful and quiet atmosphere.

    Tran Thi Tra My, a tourist from Bao Loc town said she hoped more people would come there to enjoy its atmosphere, added that she was working in the city which was very crowded and stressful, so whenever she came, she felt very comfortable.

    "In the future, the plantation will become an agricultural tourism area which plant organic tea, vegetable gardens, and flower hills which aim to increase value of Tan Chau’s tea trade name", said Nguyen Huu Chuc – Deputy Director of Tam Chau tea plantation, Lam Dong province.

    Dambri is the most imposing waterfall in the Central Highlands. The waterfall attaches with legend stories and unique cultural characteristics of ethnic people in the region.

    Nghiem Xuan Duc, Deputy Chairman of People’s Committee of Bao Loc City said "Bao Loc and neighbouring areas like Bao Lam district are home of many ethnic people such as Co Ho and Chau Ma, and Gong culture, it’s an special characteristics to develop community tourism. Local government will continue to call for investors and entrepreneurs to invest more in these areas in order to create more tourism products in the time ahead."

    Linh Quy Phap An pagoda was built in 2006 but it’s only known since the last two years, the pagoda features breathtaking views from the mountaintop and a Sangri-La-like atmosphere.

    Many beautiful tourism spots of the locality are waiting for tourists to discover.

    Startup movement helps increase new enterprises

    According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the number of newly registered businesses in the first 10 months of this year reached 100,000. Experts have acknowledged that besides efforts to improve business climate, timely support for the startup movement has also contributed to the positive outcome.

    Despite being newly established, this enterprise has achieved remarkable successes from its initial idea of designing home-made beansprouts equipment.

    Thanks to supporting policies for startups, enterprises like this have been helped to pursue their initiatives to make market debut

    Statistics on business registration in the first 10 months of this year showed the number of newly registered businesses reached more than 100,000, nearly equal to the total number of 2016.

    According to experts, the startup movement has spurred many business activities in Vietnam

    According to Phan Duc Hieu, Deputy Director of Central Institute for Economic Management, instead of striving for a seat at a public agency, there are more young people who want to affirm themselves by starting their own businesses.

    Besides, the business environment in Vietnam has been improved significantly by policies introduced by the State, government, ministries, and sectors as well as brighter outlook from both domestic and international markets.

    Tran Thi Hong Minh, Director of Agency of Business Registration said "The implementation of the Law on investment and the law on businesses as well as efforts of ministries and sectors have helped to generate the figure."

    "Thriving in the world market has helped enterprises take the initiative in starting their own businesses", said Phan Duc Hieu, Deputy Director of Central Institute for Economic Management.

    Recently, ministries and sectors have introduced reforms in business and  investment conditions, including exempting several business conditions. The move is expected to create more favourable conditions for people and enterprises to start businesses, helping to boost the country’s economy.

    VNA/VNS/VOV/SGT/SGGP/TT/TN/Dantri/VNEVET


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  • 11/22/17--23:47: Article 0
  • Social News 22/11


    New drama theater inaugurated in HCMC

    A new drama theater has been inaugurated at 81 Tran Quoc Thao Street in Ho Chi Minh City’s District 3 on November 18.

    Quoc Thao Theater is co-invested by the Center of art literature experimenting and training under the Ho Chi Minh City Union of Literature and Arts Associations; and the Th Entertainment Company by actors Quoc Thao and Quoc Thuan.

    The theater includes an experimental stage, a practice stage, and a 250-seat main stage. It is a venue for performances and acting courses for drama students.

    The first acting class will open in December, said actor Quoc Thuan.

    Building preschools for workers’ kids should be expanded nationwide


     New drama theater inaugurated in HCMC, Building preschools for workers’ kids should be expanded nationwide, Common eider salvation for Mekong delta farmers in climate change, Hanoi City to build more overpasses and tunnels

    Building modern preschools for workers’ children in the southern province of Dong Nai should be praised and expanded nationwide because there are not schools for employees’ kids in industrial parks and export processing zones at present. 

    When Nguyen Thi Phuong who is a worker hailing from the central province of Nghe An in Dong Nai province’s Xuan Loc District finishes her work at 4PM everyday, she is hurriedly going to pick up her kid in preschool Dona Standard.

    She is happy to see the kid playing with classmates. She said that she felt assured sending her child to the preschool. Before, she fretted to send her kid to unlicensed private preschools for fearing accidents and ill-treatment.

    US$ 3 million Dona Standard preschool located in Xuan Loc Industrial Park invested by Phong Thai Corporation opened in August , 2016 to take care of workers’ children. The school covers 2.4 hectare of land with tend of class, playground and other rooms. It is keeping 1,000 kids from 6.30 Am to 8 Pm; accordingly, workers feel assured working at the companies in the park. Workers just pay school tuition fee of VND430,000 per month.

    Before, Phong Thai Corporation had spent $1 million on building a preschool for workers’ kids in Song May Industrial Park in Trang Bom District. Parents just pay tuition fee of VND300,000 a month.

    In 2016, the corporation announced it has invested $14 million for building accommodation for workers and preschools for their kids. A corporation representative said that to help workers feel assured while working, the company builds these schools. It hopes to train good kids for the country’s future also.

    Deputy Head of the province Labor Union Nguyen Thi Nhu Y said that as per the Prime Minister’s instruction on beefing up construction of preschools in industrial parks, the People’s Committee facilitated enterprises in building these schools.

    She continued that administration called for social contribution in building preschools; accordingly, not only big enterprises in industrial parks but also other small companies in the province poured capital in building schools. For instance, Hwaseung Vina built a VND5 billion school in Hiep Phuoc Commune and planned to build one more VND3 billion school in Long Tho Commune.

    Eclat Vietnam Garment and Textile Company also paid VND5 billion for constructing a school in Hiep Phuoc Commune while Hyosung Vietnam asked for permission to build an over VND1 billion school in the commune.

    Last year, Tae Kwang Vina invested $43 million building Thai Quang preschool in Agtex Long Binh Industrial Park in Bien Hoa city in the area of 7,500 meter square to take care of 1,000 kids.

    In 2013, Pou Chen Vietnam in Bien Hoa Town also opened Green World preschool to keep kids aged 2 to 5.

    This helps workers feel assured while working and their children’s education is better. Therefore, it should be expanded in the country.

    Forty-eight dutiful children in HCMC honored

    The Youth Union and the Women Union in Ho Chi Minh City yesterday jointly held a ceremony to honor filial children in the city. 

    Forty-eight people were selected from outstanding sons and daughters. They are those who take heed to take care their sick parents and grandparents and join in movements in localities.

    The selection of dutiful children movement receive overwhelming response of all walks of life. This helps change people’s behaviors to parents and raise people’s awareness of children’s duty to parents and grandfathers.

    Common eider salvation for Mekong delta farmers in climate change

    Saltwater intrusion in the Mekong Delta due to climate change badly affects poultry breeding. At present, common eider has been becoming major animals which brings good profits for farmers in the region. 

    In the meeting named “Developing eider in Mekong delta to adapt to climate change” , experts said that the waterfowls are easily bred in all freshwater, brackish water, salt water and eggs, meat quality is the same with fresh duck in the country.

    As per the General Statistics Office (GSO) of Vietnam, total number of duck nationwide is 72 million and 26 millions of duck are bred in the Mekong delta accounting for 37 percent. The number of duck in Tra Vinh Province in Mekong delta dropped from 2.4 million to 1.4 million because of salinity.

    According to the Institute for Husbandry, the number of waterfowl would fall in the future because saltwater intrusion continued meanwhile the delta's eight coastal provinces namely Long An, Tien Giang, Ben Tre, Tra Vinh, Soc Trang, Bac Lieu, Kien Giang, and Hau Giang are suitable for farming sea duck.

    Some sea ducks had been raised in saltwater intrusion areas in pilot in three years; and the result is quite pleased as the animal was duplicated. Especially, the animal can be bred in brackish water, coastal areas or islets. Sea ducks have also been bred in some drought and salty water-hit areas such as Kien Giang, Tien Giang, and Bac Lieu.

    Director of Institute of Animals Sciences for Southern Vietnam under the National Institute of Animals Sciences Duong Xuan Tuyen said that sea ducks, a salt-tolerant animal species, are well-resistant to diseases and adaptable to salty and brackish water environment; accordingly, the center is carrying out sea duck farming in 12 provinces in the Mekong delta in a piloted program.

    A sea duck weighs 2.8 kilogram in nine week and they lay 240 eggs a year. However, it needs further studies on the animal to select and duplicate them for breeding in islets and salt water intrusion areas.

    The encourage agricultural expansion center in Long An and Soc Trang provinces followed suit to raise the animal for two years realizing that the animal is bred in nature to make full advantage of natural food sources rich in nutrients.

    The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in Hau Giang Province where raises 2.5 million ducks. In 2016, half of its land was intruded by salt water causing loss for duck breeding.

    Therefore, the local authority has piloted to breed sea duck in salt intruded communes generating high profit for farmers. Farmer Mai Van Duong in Tra Vinh is feeding 800 sea ducks saying that egg and meat quality is very good but farmers is facing difficulties in consumption because customers are not used to the new animal.

    Many encourage agricultural expansion centers said volatile markets of sea duck get farmers down despite good quality of egg and meat. The government should increase information of the animal to make consumers know more about the animal and work out plan to avoid abundant supply.

    In fact, Deputy Head of the Department of Husbandry under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Van Trong said , sea duck has been raised in islands and coastal districts a few years ago in pilot. To have high productivity, the Department has provided technique and baby ducks to farmers. Nevertheless, the piloted program faces difficulties in consuming.

    Deputy Chief of the National Encourage Agricultural Expansion center Ms. Ha Thuy Hanh said four years ago, the center piloted to raise the animal in coastal communes in the northern province of Quang Ninh and got success. Price of sea duck egg is sold higher than normal duck in the North and the supply fell behind market expectations. Subsequently, it is potential in the Mekong delta.

    Crack appears on Vam Cong Bridge girder

    A crack measuring about four centimeters in width and two meters in length has been detected on a girder of the under-construction Vam Cong Bridge connecting Can Tho City and Dong Thap Province, according to a statement of the Ministry of Transport.

    Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Nhat on November 17 chaired a meeting between the ministry’s inspection team and the parties involved to find a solution for the crack on the girder on top of pier P29. 

    The ministry asked Cuu Long Corporation for Investment, Development and Project Management of Infrastructure (Cuu Long CIPM), the developer of the bridge, to suspend construction work and take necessary measures to ensure safety.

    An inspection team manned by the Transport Engineering Construction and Quality Management Bureau, the Department of Science and Technology and experts has been sent to the construction site to examine the crack and find a coping solution. No specific solution has been announced.

    The contractor and supervision agency have examined technical conditions of the bridge, including geometric measurements of girders, piers and cables. Results showed that there are no other cracks or faults on the bridge, and the structure is stable for now.

    Vam Cong Bridge crossing the Hau River in the Mekong Delta has a total investment of more than US$271 million, funded by official development assistance (ODA) of South Korea.

    The construction work is being supervised by South Korean consortium Dasan-Kunhwa-Pyunghwa, and executed by a consortium comprising GS Engineering & Construction Corp and Hanshin.

    With its construction beginning in September 2013, the bridge is nearly three kilometers long and 24.5 meters wide, with six lanes and a maximum speed of 80 kilometers an hour.

    Hanoi  to build more overpasses and tunnels

    Hanoi has announced plans to develop three overpass and tunnel projects and adjust some other projects to bolster social and economic development, the Government news website reports.

    The city will build an overpass between Hoang Quoc Viet and Nguyen Van Huyen streets, and complete work on Nguyen Van Huyen Street. This project costs VND503 billion (US$22.1 million), funded by the city budget.

    The second project is to build a tunnel between Ring Road 2.5 and Giai Phong Street in Hoang Mai Province at an estimated cost of VND672 billion (US$29.5 million), also funded by the city budget.

    The third is to develop a VND550 billion (US$24.2 million) tunnel from Le Van Luong Intersection to Ring Road 3 under the build-operate (BT) investment format. The investor is Tasco JSC.

    The city will also adjust some projects. Four urban railway projects will be financed by the city budget and the local private sector under the BT format, instead of official development assistance (ODA) loans.

    But for Urban Railway No.2 from Tran Hung Dao in Hoan Kiem District to Thuong Dinh Street in Thanh Xuan District, and Urban Railway No.3 from Hanoi Station to Hoang Mai District, their investment formats are kept unchanged.

    Three BOT projects – Thuong Cat Bridge, Ring Road 4 from National Highway 32 to Phap Van-Cau Gie Highway, Duong 2 Bridge, and a road leading to neighboring Bac Ninh Province – will be developed under either BOT or BT format.

    More patients trust district-level, private hospitals

    There have been more patients visiting private and district-level hospitals in HCMC for medical examination and treatment, easing the pressure on hospitals at higher levels.

    This is evident in a slight fall in patients at city-level hospitals in the first nine months of the year.

    According to the HCMC Department of Health, the number of patients visiting city-level hospitals made up 48.3% in the nine-month period, down 2.7% year-on-year, while district-level and private hospitals saw respective increases of 1.1% and 3.1% to 27.2% and 18.7%.

    In addition to the hospitals of districts 2, Thu Duc, Tan Phu, Binh Thanh and Binh Tan, patients at Cu Chi District Hospital grew more than 70%, District 11 Hospital 20%, and the hospitals of districts 9, 5, 1, Nha Be and Binh Chanh over 10% over the year-ago period.

    More people have come to lower-level hospitals thanks to cooperation between public and private hospitals. For example, Children’s Hospital No. 1 offers medical services at the private Trieu An Hospital and Children’s Hospital No. 2 also has representatives at the private Hong Duc Hospital.

    The HCMC Oncological Hospital provides goiter treatment services at the oncological ward of the Hong Duc Hospital and People’s Hospital 115 cooperates with the private City International Hospital.

    The examination departments of district-level hospitals providing services at ward-level clinics have attracted more patients. The presence of Thu Duc District Hospital’s examination department at Binh Chieu Ward’s medical center and that of Tan Phu District Hospital at Tay Thanh Ward’s medical center help bring in 100 and 30 patients a day respectively.

    Vietnam shines bright at Asian Golf Awards

    The 18th Asian Golf Awards were organized for the first time in Da Nang on the night of November 16, where representatives from Vietnam’s golf industry wore a path to the winner’s circle.

    In addition to Vietnam itself claiming “Asia Pacific’s Best Golf Destination”, BRG Kings Island Golf Resort overcame Ba Na Hills Golf Club and Montgomerie Links to be named “Best Golf Course in Vietnam”.

    “What a night, and what a month,” said Mr. Tim Haddon, General Manager of Ba Na Hills. “For us, these accolades are testament to the hard work and dedication that our team puts into making our guests happy and excited to come back again and again.”

    The Asian Golf Awards, which are billed as the regional golf industry’s equivalent of the Oscars, was the final act of the 11th Asia Pacific Golf Summit (APGS), a three-day conference that attracted leaders from the golf business all around the world.

    Representatives from high-profile brands such as Nicklaus Companies, PXG, and Topgolf gave keynote speeches at the forum, which took place at the new Sheraton Danang Resort.

    Most of the Asian Golf Awards winners were determined by an online survey conducted over a three-month period, beginning in May. Others were selected based on contributions or achievements deemed worthy of acknowledgment by the program’s owner and producer, the Asia Pacific Golf Group.

    This year, 100,024 votes were cast covering 51 categories; all-time records for the Asian Golf Awards - the only continent-wide poll of the golf industry in Asia.

    Prime Minister asks information sector to solve existing issues

    Minister and Head of the Government Office Mai Tien Dung has conveyed a request from Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to the Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) to explain and set out measures to resolve four issues.

    Minster Dung led a governmental working mission on November 22 to inspect the implementation of tasks set by the Government and the PM at the MIC. Since the beginning of the year, the MIC has been assigned a total of 528 tasks. It has completed 308 tasks, 216 are being implemented while four tasks remain unfinished.

    Regarding the state management and planning of the press, Minister Mai Tien Dung pointed out the overlapping condition, the low quality of certain press agencies, and violations of the law and professional ethics by some press agencies and journalists.

    Minister Dung also asked the sector to further focus on a number of issues related to the development of IT industry, e-government, digital economy, and the construction of smart cities.

    The Ministry was also urged to devise more drastic measures to solve problems related to unregistered SIM cards, and enhance inspection to prevent false information in order to create a clean and healthy telecommunication and internet environment in Vietnam.

    The head of the Government Office also mentioned the inadequacies in the regulations on printing activities, the provisions of import licenses for radio transmitters and receivers, among others.

    The head of the working group also emphasised that the PM and the people expect more efforts as well as radical long-term measures to solve existing problems.

    Dr. Good-for-nothings

    Questions and suspicions are awash when the Ministry of Education and Training last week put forth a scheme for improving the quality of lecturers at higher education institutions, the key component of which is to have an additional 9,000 holders of doctorate degrees between now and 2025. In explanations, the ministry states that the scheme is aimed to enhance the quality of education so as to improve the human resource meeting the economy’s greater demands during the new era of globalization when competition is tougher.

    Under the scheme, VND12 trillion, or roughly US$550 million, will be spent, with 94% to be sourced from the State budget. If the scheme is realized, the number of doctorate degree holders among lecturers at such education institutions nationwide will reach 35%, still lower than the level in regional countries.

    The ministry’s scheme, however, has stirred up controversy, with more objection than approval, according to local media. Criticisms largely center on the quantitative content of the scheme, with many stressing the bigger number of doctorate degree holders does not mean higher quality for the country’s education.

    Vietnam has seen “inflation” in doctorate programs, with many a doctorate thesis containing little practical values and having mainly been used as decorations or locked in a folder for good, says Lao Dong. According to the paper, there are over 24,000 doctorate degree holders nationwide, and in the education sector alone, there are over 16,000 doctorate degree holders out of nearly 73,000 lecturers. Despite such a sizeable number of high-degree scholars, Vietnam’s scientific research capacity lags far behind regional countries.

    More specifically, Dan Viet, citing the education ministry, says that despite having over 24,000 doctorate degree holders, Vietnam still trails far behind other regional countries in terms of scientific research. The online paper points out that between 1996 and 2005, Vietnamese scientists including doctorate degree holders had 3,456 studies approved for publishing in science journals worldwide, and such a number equaled only one-fifth of Thailand’s, one-third of Malaysia’s, and one-fourteenth of Singapore’s.

    Newspapers agree that the quality of doctorate degree holders in Vietnam is low, as training has been centered on the quantity, with little attention paid to the practical value. “Recently, there have been so many questions about the quality of doctorate degree holders,” says Lao Dong. “There have lately been several weird theses defended by doctorate degree holders that have little significance, such as a thesis on ‘Characteristics in commune-level chairpersons’ interactions with citizens’ or a thesis on “Flattering in the Vietnamese language’ or “The art of typography in book cover designs’ among others,” says the paper.

    Nguoi Lao Dong, in a commentary, says a doctorate degree should not be a decoration or a passport for gaining material value. Rather, such learned people must have scientific studies useful to society. In 2015 when councils were convened to confer the titles of professors and associate professors, it was revealed that only scholars in three out of 28 councils had been internationally recognized for their studies, all in natural sciences like physics, mathematics or information technology. Meanwhile, there were up to 10 out of 28 councils where none of the scholars had ever had an international-acclaimed study, according to the paper.

    The education ministry must “give answers to the public on the contributions of doctorate degree holders to society,” says Nguoi Lao Dong. Otherwise, the sum of VND12 trillion contributed by taxpayers cannot be wasted.

    Professor Duong Duc Tien, a lecturer at the Hanoi-based University of Natural Sciences, says on Dat Viet that excessive training of doctorate degree holders in terms of quantity does not help resolve problems facing the country. “Our number of doctorate degree holders is not small, but their contributions to help change the country for the better is minimal, if nothing. It is a shame,” he comments.

    Professor Nguyen Dinh Duc of the Vietnam National University in Hanoi asserts on Dan Tri that the education sector must urgently have more scholars to replenish intellectual manpower at universities, but such scholars must have qualifications demanded for by society. The professor says that Vietnam should attend more to training scholars in natural sciences, as the country is facing an imbalance now, with doctorate degree holders for the most part are those in social sciences.

    “The number of doctorate researchers in natural sciences is currently equal to only one-fifth of that in social sciences,” the professor is quoted in Dan Tri as saying.

    The scheme to have 9,000 more doctorate degree holders in the next few years can be a good vision, if the education ministry can tightly control the quality of academic programs, says Dan Tri, citing experts on education.

    According to Tuoi Tre, the public has not approved the education ministry’s scheme due to the low quality of scholars in reality. There have been comparisons between farmers who have managed to have inventions useful for their workaday businesses, and so-called scholars who have created little academic value, says the paper.

    Nonetheless, says Tuoi Tre, enhancing the intellectual capacity of lecturers, specifically the aim to have more doctorate degree holders, is imperative to improve the quality of manpower in the coming time, if the country is to grasp opportunities and make the most of scientific and technological advancements.

    And, in order to instill public confidence, there should be solutions to provide training for scholars with real talent to benefit the country, rather than to create a huge number of Dr. Good-for-nothings.

    Ao Dai collection to be showcased at Vietnam Film Festival

    As many as 20 traditional Vietnamese dresses (Aodai) designed by Nhat Dung will be showcased at the 20th Vietnam Film Festival on November 27.

    The collection, titled “Vietnam, Land and People”, features Vietnamese culture and natural heritages.

    All designs are made of silk with the images of Galaxy Waterfall and Thien Duong Cave in Quang Binh province printed on them.

    Various activities will be held during the Vietnam Film Festival, including Golden Lotus Awards,  ASEAN Film Awards, a seminar on Vietnam and ASEAN film industry development, a film screening week, an exhibition on the Vietnamese cinema, and art exchanges.

    Can Tho, India seek partnership in agriculture, training

    Chairman of the People’s Committee of Can Tho city Vo Thanh Thong had a meeting with Indian Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City Srikar Reddy in the Mekong Delta city on November 20, during which the two sides show hope to forge partnership in agriculture and training.

    Thong said that Can Tho is an agricultural hub of the region with high production and quality of farm produce. 

    However, the city has still face high post-harvest loss and low price, as well as difficulties in exporting agricultural products to choosy markets, he said, pointing to the need to renovate technology in producing, preserving and processing of the products.

    He proposed that the Indian diplomat help connect high-tech agricultural firms between the two sides in biotechnology and variety production.

    For his part, Srikar Reddy lauded the development of Can Tho, highlighting that Indian enterprises hope to cooperate with Can Tho in high quality human resource training.

    India has supported Can Tho in upgrading professional capacity for the Can Tho University of Engineering and Technology, he noted, expressing his hope that more students of Can Tho would choose India for their further training.

    He also pledged to introduce more Indian firms to Can Tho to seek partnership.

    According to the Can Tho Department of Foreign Affairs, as of November 2017, Can Tho exported 1.5 million USD worth of goods to India, mostly seafood, garment and textile, agricultural products. The city also imported goods valuing 1.7 million USD from India, including medical material, fabric and chemicals.

    Vietnam attends 14th Congress of Brazilian Communist Party

    Deputy head of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Central Committee’s Commission for External Relations Tran Dac Loi attended the 14th Congress of the Communist Party of Brazil (PCdoB) which took place in Brasilia on November 17-19.

    The congress, bringing together about 700 delegates, discussed global and regional issues and today’s political situation in Brazil. It highlighted achievements and lessons learned from failures of the country’s left-wing government over the past decade, thus setting forth its goals in the time ahead.

    The congress adopted the resolution, namely “The Broad Front: The New Path for Brazil – Democracy, Independence, Development and Social Progress”, to prepare for the Brazilian presidential election for the 2019-2022 term.

    It also adopted the revised version of the PCdoB’s Charter to reinforce and develop its power in an effort to protect social welfare policies and improve people’s living standard, as well as towards peace, independence, freedom, prosperity, democracy and social progress in Brazil.

    Luciana Santos was re-elected as the PCdoC chairwoman.

    Speaking at a meeting with Loi, Santos thanked the CPV for sending a delegation to attend the congress and affirmed her hope to strengthen friendship and cooperation between the two parties and people of Vietnam and Brazil in the future.-

    Leaders send greetings to teachers on Teachers’ Day

    President Tran Dai Quang on November 20 sent greeting flowers to two veteran teachers, Prof. Vu Khieu and pianist Thai Thi Lien, on the occasion of the Vietnamese Teachers’ Day.

    Prof. Vu Khieu, who is more than 100 years old, is a well-known scholar specialised in Vietnamese culture. During the anti-French resistant war, he served as director of the Culture Department of Zone 10 in Viet Bac and Tay Bac (northern mountainous region). 

    After Hanoi Liberation in 1954, Khieu held many important positions, including Deputy General Secretary of the Vietnam News Agency.

    He was presented with the Ho Chi Minh Award in 1996.

    Thai Thi Lien, 94, is one of the first piano teachers of Vietnam and seven founding teachers of the Vietnam School of Music, which is now the Vietnam Academy of Music (VAM). She worked as head of the Piano Faculty of the academy until 1980.

    The same day, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc visited and extended greetings to some outstanding teachers who have made great contributions to the development of the education and training sector of Vietnam.

    Visiting pianist Thai Thi Lien, PM Phuc thanked the artist for training many famous artists for Vietnam, including her two talented offspring, renowned pianists Dang Thai Son and Tran Thu Ha who is former director of the VAM.

    During a visit to writer Vu Tu Nam who has been awarded with the State Award of Literature and Art, the Government leader hailed Nam’s effort in nurturing many writers for Vietnam and setting a good example for younger generations.

    Meeting Sculptor Ta Quang Bao, another owner of the State Award of Literature and Art, the OM highlighted some significant sculptures by Vietnamese artists, including the statue of Chu Van An, a well-known Confucian teacher of Vietnam.

    PM Phuc also affirmed that the Government is seeking suitable policies to support teachers and artists to create more favourable conditions for them to make more contributions to the development of the country’s education-training, literature and art.

    Photo exhibition highlights Buddhist achievements

    As many as 450 photos featuring standout achievements of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) during 2012-2017 are on display at the Friendship Cultural Palace in Hanoi.

    The exhibition, which opened on November 20, is part of the activities to welcome the eighth Congress of the VBS for 2017-2022 tenure.

    The VBS’s activities, including Vesak festival, requiems for the peace of the souls of war martyrs, traffic accident victims, and war victims through history and summer retreats, are depicted through the event.

    The exhibition also introduced the VBS’s voluntary activities like blood donation and gift presenting to soldiers and locals in Truong Sa island district.

    Monk Thich Trung Hau, head of the Culture Board of the VBS Central Committee, highlighted that the sangha has gained numerous achievements in various sectors since its establishment in 1981. 

    The VBS now has branches in all 63 cities and provinces nationwide, he said, adding that it has set up associations of Vietnamese Buddhists in many countries and territories.

    On the occasion, Buddhist followers in Hanoi also displayed images of Buddhist cultural heritages in India- homeland of Phat Thich Ca Mau Ni (Sakyamuni Buddha).

    National Congress of Vietnam Buddhist Sangha to open

    The eighth National Congress of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) for the 2017-2022 tenure will open in Hanoi on November 21. 

    Up to 250 delegates are expected to attend the event, including VBS dignitaries, monks and nuns, leaders and former leaders of the Party, State and Vietnam Fatherland Front, chief representatives of international organisations based in Hanoi, and Buddhist dignitaries from China, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand, Japan and the Republic of Korea. 

    The Congress is due to reach consensus on achieving nine goals for the tenure, review VBS’s activities for 2012-2017 and discuss work for 2017-2022, adopt amendments to the sixth Charter, and elect members to the VBS’s Executive Board for the tenure and several other important issues.

    Laos provides relief to Phu Yen’s storm victims

    The Government of Laos has provided 20 tonnes of rice and a tonne of dried pork and beef in aid for people hit by Typhoon Damrey in the central coastal province of Phu Yen.

    The relief demonstrates the close ties between the people of Laos and Vietnam in difficulties, said Intha Vong Pha Chanh, Lao Deputy Consul General in Da Nang, at an event to hand over the goods on November 20.

    Secretary of the province’s Party Committee Huynh Tan Viet thanked the Lao Government for its urgent support and vowed to deliver the relief to those in need as soon as possible.

    After the event, all the goods were dispatched to people living in mountainous districts of Dong Xuan, Song Hinh and Son Hoa.

    Prior to this, tonnes of goods, including sugar, milk and canned foods, sent by Russia to aid flood recovery in Vietnam have been allocated to districts in the province.

    Typhoon Damrey, the 12th major storm in the East Sea, hit Vietnam’s south central coast on November 4, claiming 89 lives and left 18 missing and 174 others injured in central and Central Highlands localities, according to the National Committee for Search and Rescue.

    Journalism training course opens in Laos

    A training course to improve Lao journalists’ public relations (PR) and professional skills, the 20th of its kind, opened in Vientiane on November 20. 

    The five-day course was a joint effort of the Vietnamese Ministry of Information and Communications (MIC) and the Lao Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, attracting 40 reporters and editors from the Lao central and local press outlets. 

    Speaking at the event, Vice Director of the MIC’s Authority of Press Nguyen Thai Phien said the event aims to share professional experience among journalists from the two countries, especially PR skills. 

    Director of the Lao Institute of Information, Culture and Tourism Vilaythong Sisanone said after 19 courses with 19 practical themes, hundreds of Lao journalists have been trained and covered helpful news in service of the public. 

    He also took the occasion to thank the MIC for assisting the Lao press sector over the past years.

    HCM City seeks cooperation with Russia’s Tatarstan Republic

    Ho Chi Minh City wishes to cooperate with Russia’s autonomous Republic of Tatarstan in machinery manufacturing and high technology, said Vice Standing Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Le Thanh Liem. 

    At a meeting with Tatarstan President Rustam Minnikhanov in the city on November 20, Liem said the Vietnamese southern metropolis is looking towards a smart city and interested in the manufacturing industry. 

    HCM City will intensify investment and trade links with Russia, including Tatarstan, aiming to raise Vietnam-Russia trade value to 20 billion USD in 2020, the official promised. 

    Liem emphasised that the attention of the two sides’ authorities will make the bilateral economic and trade cooperation successful. 

    HCM City stands ready to step up collaboration with Tatarstan in delegation exchanges and people-to-people diplomacy activities, contributing to enhancing the bilateral economic and trade ties, he said. 

    Rustam Minnikhanov held that on the basis of the Vietnam-Russia relationship, relations between Tatarstan and Vietnam in general and HCM City in particular will be tightened, bringing pragmatic interests to people of both sides. 

    HCM City and Tatarstan hold a lot of potential for cooperation in economy and trade, he said, adding that the two sides have advantages that can support each other, particularly in high-tech and machinery manufacturing. 

    Tatarstan wishes to beef up its diverse cooperation with HCM City, especially in trade, investment, education-training, culture and sports, he said. 

    During his stay in Vietnam, Rustam Minnikhanov attended the Vietnam-Tatarstan Business Forum and visited the Saigon Hi-tech Park and a number of historical relic sites in the city.

    Capital records fewer dengue fever cases

    Half of Hanoi’s 30 districts reported fewer people infected with dengue fever last week, while the figure for the remaining half was unchanged compared to the previous week.

    According to the Hanoi Department of Health, the number of new dengue fever cases amounted to 448 from November 13 to 19.

    From the beginning of 2017, the capital has recorded 36,793 dengue fever cases, causing seven deaths. The city now has 113 dengue fever outbreaks.

    Young Vietnamese army officers join exchange in Cambodia

    A delegation of young officers from the Vietnam People’s Army (VPA) joined an exchange with staff, lecturers and students of an officer training school for the Royal Cambodian Army (RCA) on November 20. 

    The delegation was led by head of the Military Youth Board under the VPA’s General Department of Politics Dinh Quoc Hung. 

    Both sides recalled difficulties overcome by the VPA and RCA during their struggles for national independence. 

    Hung called on the two countries’ young army officers to enhance friendship and exchanges. 

    The Vietnamese officers will share experience with several units of the RCA. 

    The exchange programme will last till November 25.

    Exchange introduces Vietnam to Ukraine students

    The Vietnamese Embassy in Ukraine held a cultural exchange in Kiev on November 20 gathering 40 teachers and students in Kremenchuk city of Poltava province.

    Addressing the event, Vietnamese Ambassador to Ukraine Nguyen Anh Tuan introduced Vietnam as a country, its achievements and its role in the world arena, especially after the successful APEC Year 2017.

    He noted that this year, the two countries have celebrated the 25th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations, holding various activities to strengthen ties.

    A number of leaders of both sides, including the meeting between Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Ukraine President Petr Poroshenko at the Davos World Economic Forum in January 2017, as well as the 14th meeting of the Inter-Governmental Committee in October showed the efforts of the two countries in forging stronger relations in economy, trade, science-technology, defence and education, he said.

    Meanwhile, Andrey Melnik, Director of the Kremenchuk centre for international relations and economic development, lauded the goodwill of the Vietnamese Embassy in Ukraine and Ambassador Nguyen Tuan Anh in organising the event.

    He reviewed activities boosting the partnership between Vietnam and Ukraine this year.

    During the event, the embassy also held a photo exhibition and film screening spotlighting the nation and people of Vietnam as well as the life of late President Ho Chi Minh.

    Participants also enjoyed music and dance performances by Kremenchuk city students.

    Vietnam launches project on alternative care for vulnerable children

    The Ministry of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs launched a 12-year project on alternative care for disadvantaged children on November 20. 

    Funded by the UK-based organisation Care for Children (CFC), the project consists of four stages, with the pilot stage running in Hanoi and Thai Nguyen in the north for 2017 – 2020.

    The organisation will collaborate with local agencies at different levels to provide personnel training for public social protection centres to be in charge of alternative care, including the selection of suitable foster families and assessment of fostering process. Care for Children will also design specific materials and training syllabuses for Vietnam.     

    Robert Glover, chief executive of Care for Children, said it aims to bring a better life for children.

    He noted that childcare centres are often costly, while the cost of fostering children within the community might be high at first, but will gradually decrease.

    Deputy Minister of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs Dao Hong Lan said the point is to replicate the model nationwide.

    The United Nations estimated that approximately 8 million children worldwide live in social centres. 

    Student art display on Book Street explores UK rivers

    Six works of art by students from Hà Nội secondary schools are on display at the Rivers of the World exhibition on Book Street, also known as December 19 Street.

    The Rivers of the World project is an 11 year-old UK initiative that has asked schools in 28 countries to spend a year researching and creating art about local rivers. The following year, the schools are partnered with peers in the UK to research British rivers. In 2017, 69 artworks have been produced by 69 schools from Ethiopia; Zambia; Nigeria; Sierra Leone; Nepal; Việt Nam and the UK.

    The artwork on display was previously shown at the project’s global exhibition, which was held in London as one of the marquee events at the Thames Festival from September 1 to 30.

    In Việt Nam, the British Council has worked with the Ministry of Education and Training to implement the project for two years, bringing local artists to encourage pupils as they learn about local rivers in the first year and their partner’s river in the second.

    With instruction from artist Nguyễn Hoàng Giang, pupils from Gia Thụy; Đông Thái; Lương Thế Vinh; Phương Mai; Nguyễn Du and Trâu Quỳ created pieces reflecting current environmental concerns, while drawing on historical events such as The Great Stink of 1858, when the Thames River was severely polluted by sewage.

    At Trâu Quỳ Secondary School, the pupils looked at the history of Cutty Sark, one of the most iconic tea clippers in the UK’s trading history. They gathered information about the ship’s figurehead, characteristics and important people in its history. They then produced paper puppets depicting the individuals.

    "We learn a lot through researching the Cutty Sark, exchanging ideas with our UK partner school, giving a presentation and certainly making artwork. We are happy that we participated in the project," said pupil Phạm Ngọc Minh.

    The UK’s tea culture was chosen by the pupils from Phương Mai Secondary School to be this year’s theme, as tea is enjoyed in both Vietnamese and British cultures. The pupils looked at the history of tea in the UK and cultural practices around this special beverage. They also compared their findings with tea culture in Việt Nam. They assembled paper teapots and decorated them with images of London for their final artwork.

    "The River of the World project gave me an opportunity to learn about the UK’s rivers but also their tea culture. I learned that the way they drink tea is a bit different from ours," said pupil Phan Minh Nghĩa.

    Following a recommendation from their partner school, Gia Thụy School’s pupils researched the Great Stink of 1858 and its consequences. They watched a short documentary about how improved hygiene conditions resolved the river’s garbage problem. The pupils learned water transfer printing and created their own representations of the polluted Thames using discarded plastic bottles and cups.

    “This is the second year that our students participated in the project,” said teacher Nguyễn Thị Hiền. “Throughout the process, our students have learnt a great deal about team work, research and art. But most importantly, the project raised their awareness of the need to protect our environment.”

    At Lương Thế Vinh Secondary School, the pupils were inspired by the Thames Barrier, a structure that prevents London from experiencing annual floods. They watched documentaries and produced stencil prints showing London safe from floods due to the Thames Barrier.

    The students at Đông Thái Secondary School researched the Thames salmon initiative. They learnt that the Thames was heavily polluted by industrial activities, making it impossible for many fish species, especially salmon, to survive. In recent years, however thanks to some initiatives by the UK government, the water quality has improved significantly and fish have returned to their natural habitats. Taking inspiration from this, the pupils made collages depicting an optimistic future for the health of the Thames.

    The exhibition will run until November 30.

    Sơn wins fourth stage of cycling race

    Hà Văn Sơn took the lead in the final metres to win the fourth stage of the Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa Cycling Tournament yesterday.

    Sơn of BTV Đại Nam Bình Dương won the 195km stage from Buôn Ma Thuột to Nha Trang City in a time of 5:24.48.

    Nguyễn Trúc Xinh of Bến Tre and Sơn’s teammate, Nguyễn Minh Việt came second and third.

    Although Trần Thanh Điền of VUS-HCM City didn’t finish in the top three, he retained the yellow jersey for best overall time of 14:46.44 after four stages. Trần Lê Minh Tuấn of Military Zone 7 and Nguyễn Nhật Nam of Domesco Phamarcy Đồng Tháp were the runners-up.

    The green jersey for best sprinter went to Lê Nguyệt Minh of HCM City with 42 points. Việt and Điền are behind with 32 points and 29 points, respectively.

    Meanwhile, Ngô Văn Phương of Gạo Hạt Ngọc Trời An Giang holds the white jersey as best young cyclist with a total time of 14:49.41.

    In the team rankings, Domesco Phamarcy Đồng Tháp lead with a time of 44:29.05, followed by VUS-HCM City and the Military Zone 7.

    Today, cyclists will compete in the fifth stage from Nha Trang to Đà Lạt City lasting 98km.

    Round 12 sees goalless tie at football championship

    Phong Phú Hà Nam tied goalless with Hà Nội 1 in round 12 of the National Women’s Football Championship held in the northern province of Hà Nam.

    The Capital team dominated the game, held on November 19, since the referee blew her whistle. The hosts, Hà Nam, encountered many difficulties to break the Capital team’s defence line. However, no goals were scored in the first half.

    After the break, Hà Nam made every effort to seek goals, but the visiting side were quick to stop their attacks.

    With the sharp attacks of the strikers, Hà Nội 1 had many chances to open the scores but failed to do so.

    In another match, Việt Nam Coal and Mineral defeated Hà Nội 2 1-0.

    The event’s only goal belonged to Dương Thị Vân in the 23rd minute.

    With this win, Coal and Mineral are third in the rankings, with 25 points. HCM City 1 and Hà Nam are on top, with 30 points and 27 points, respectively.

    VNN


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  • 11/23/17--01:33: Article 1
  • Vietnam to investigate report of worker mistreatment at Samsung factories

    A report released this week details workplace violations by the South Korean electronics giant


    ​Vietnam to investigate report of worker mistreatment at Samsung factories
    A worker goes through security scan before leaving a Samsung factory in Vietnam. Photo: Tuoi Tre

     Vietnam’s Ministry of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA) will work with the International Labor Organization (ILO) in Hanoi to investigate a recent report that claims female workers at two Samsung factories in the country are victims of health and workplace violations by the South Korean electronics giant.

    The report was released earlier this week by the Hanoi-based Research Center for Gender, Family and Environment in Development (CGFED) and IPEN, a global network of environment and health non-governmental organizations (NGOs) working to reduce the use of harmful chemicals throughout the world.

    “The ILO in Hanoi has received the report and acknowledged the seriousness of its claims,” Nguyen Anh Tho, a labor safety official from MOLISA told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on Wednesday.

    Extremely fatigued workers?

    The report combines industrial sector research and qualitative narratives of 45 workers at two Samsung Electronics factories in Vietnam.

    Its key findings include that extreme fatigue, fainting, and dizziness were reported by all workers in its sample.  It also found that miscarriages amongst the Samsung Electronics factory workers were reported as “extremely common” and “even expected.”

    Workers at the two factories are expected to stand throughout their 8-to-12-hour shifts and many are kept on alternating day and night shift schedules, regardless of weekends, according to the report.

    The report also claims that salary deductions were taken from workers who take breaks, including pregnant workers.  During the few short, limited breaks allowed by the company, workers must request special passes to use the restroom.

    Workers also reported problems with eyesight, nose bleeds, and stomach aches, as well as bone, joint, and leg pain.

    The report also proposes the need for further research regarding chemical exposure, considering that assembly line workers are stationed in open factory settings where other workers use a variety of substances.

    Tuoi Tre’s could not reach the CGFED researchers for comment on the report.



    Samsung factory workers in Vietnam leave work. Photo: Tuoi Tre


    Samsung’s response

    In an official statement sent to Tuoi Tre, Samsung Electronics Vietnam dismissed all claims made in the report, saying they “regretted” that IPEN and CGFED had done their research without actually having visited the factories or verifying claims with company officials.

    A Samsung representative said all workers at its factories have signed labor contracts and are treated in accordance with Vietnam’s law on labor, including provisions on working hours and meal times.

    The company has also established a center for musculoskeletal and joint care that is responsible for the study of workplace ergonomics to ensure that workers are able to relieve tension built up from from performing the same movements for long periods of time.

    Assembly line workers at the factories are also equipped with protective gear to prevent chemical exposure and a ventilation system installed at the factory ensures that little chemical residue escapes into the air, the representative said.

    Samsung is committed to conducting environmental assessments twice a year to maintain a safe working environment for all employees, the representative added.

    Immediate investigation

    Speaking with Tuoi Tre on Wednesday, Nguyen Anh Tho, a labor safety official from MOLISA, said he had yet to read the CGFRED report.

    However, Tho acknowledged that the ILO had made contact with the ministry to look into the report’s claims.

    “We will definitely launch an immediate investigation into Samsumg upon receiving the official report,” Tho said.

    According to the official, the ministry conducts yearly inspections at the Samsung factories and found no violations as serious those claimed by CGFRED.

    “We will need to reevaluate the time and scale of the survey,” Tho said.

    Leaders of labor unions in the northern provinces of Bac Ninh and Thai Nguyen, where the Samsung factories are based, said on Wednesday afternoon they had not yet received any reports or complaints about the working conditions at the factories.

    Tuoi Tre News


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  • 11/23/17--01:37: Article 0
  • NA approves $5.27b for North-South road

    HÀ NỘI - The National Assembly deputies yesterday passed an investment plan for the construction of the eastern North-South Expressway at the 14th parliament’s fourth session.

     
    The National Assembly deputies yesterday passed an investment plan for the construction of the eastern North-South Expressway at the 14th parliament’s fourth session. - VNA/VNS Photo
     

    With the approval of 83.1 per cent of the deputies, some eastern sections of North-South Expressway with a total length of 654km will be built during the 2017-2020 period.

    Specifically, sections from Cao Bồ (Nam Định Province) to Bãi Vọt (Hà Tĩnh Province), Cam Lộ (Quảng Trị Province) to La Sơn (Thừa Thiên-Huế Province), Nha Trang (Khánh Hòa Province) to Dầu Giây (Đồng Nai Province) and the Mỹ Thuận 2 Bridge will be built and put into operation during this period.

    The 2021-2025 period will see the completion of the Bãi Vọt (Hà Tĩnh Province) - Cam Lộ (Quảng Trị Province) and Quảng Ngãi Province -Nha Trang sections and the widening of the La Sơn (Thừa Thiên Huế ) - Túy Loan (Đà Nẵng) section to a four–lane road. The section from Cần Thơ to Cà Mau City will be put into operation after 2025.

    NA Deputy Secretary-General Lê Bộ Lĩnh said the project would require 3,736ha of land, including 1,037ha of land used for rice cultivation. The land clearance will be implemented in the form of a six-lane road on all parts of the project, except for the Cam Lộ-La Sơn section, which will have four lanes.

    It is estimated that the total investment for the project in 2017-2020 period will be VNĐ118.7 trillion (US$5.27 billion), including VNĐ55 trillion ($2.4 billion) from Government and the remainder from investors.

    It is divided into 11 sub-projects and will apply modern technology to ensure safety, quality and efficiency.

    Transport minister Nguyễn Văn Thể said at a discussion on the project held on Tuesday that due to limited capital investment, a number of sections would be prioritised for development to meet rising passenger and cargo demand in the coming years.

    Yesterday the National Assembly also discussed the draft Law on State Secrets Protection.

    While most NA deputies agreed that the Law on State Secret Protection is necessary to ensure national security as well as information accession in conformity with state regulations, they proposed changes to improve its efficiency.

    Deputy Dương Tấn Quân from Bà Rịa - Vũng Tàu Province asserted that state secrets are national assets. To enhance the protection work, he suggested that the compiling committee supplement the specific regulation on the responsibilities of the persons assigned to draft the law and the persons approaching State Secrets on his mission as well as after they relieve from that duty and retire. Due punishment should be imposed on persons who disclose State Secrets, he said.

    According to Lê Thị Nga, a deputy from Thái Nguyên Province and also chairman of the NA’s Judiciary Committee, a number of pieces of information have not been publicised in some ministries, agencies and localities because of concerns that disseminating the information could violate the State Secret policies.

    The abuse of State Secret protection policies could severely affect the State, citizens and anti-corruption work, she said.

    Many deputies urged a broader definition of “State Secrets”, beyond the current definition of only physical objects.

    Deputy Âu Thị Mai from Tuyên Quang Province said people can now easily seize state secrets with modern technology. Therefore, it is necessary to install anti-theft devices and other equipment to prevent fires at places where State Secrets were kept.

    Regarding the time window for maintaining the State Secret classification on a given piece of information, Mai suggested the compiling committee create provisions to allow some State Secrets to remain secret for a long time or indefinitely, not just 10, 20 or 30 years.

    Sharing Mai’s opinion, Quân emphasised the need to amend the draft law to maintain the State Secret classification on national security-related information for a longer period of time.  

    Responding to deputies’ suggestions, Senior Lieutenant General Tô Lâm, the Minister of Public Security, said the draft Law on State Secrets Protection should be completed and that the definition of State Secrets should be clarified.

     VNS


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  • 11/24/17--00:42: Article 2
  • Social News 23/11


    Poland’s President to pay State visit to Vietnam


     Poland’s President to pay State visit to Vietnam, VN wants Canada’s group to engage in more infrastructure projects, Initiative launched to end violence against children, Two workers die after scaffolding collapses
    President of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Duda (Photo: Dziennik)


    President of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Duda and his spouse will pay a State visit to Vietnam from November 27-30.

    They are guests of President Tran Dai Quang, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    VN wants Canada’s group to engage in more infrastructure projects

    Vietnam hopes Canada’s Transportation Vision Group (VTG) will launch more transport infrastructure projects in the country, including the construction of the North-South high-speed railway, said Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung.

    Dung told Chairman and CEO of the VTG Richard Courey at a meeting in Hanoi on November 22 that the Vietnamese Government welcomes and values determination of potential and experienced international partners to join infrastructure projects in the country.  

    Lauding the VTG’s experience in infrastructure development, he said that Vietnam is mobilising social resources for investment in infrastructure serving socio-economic development. 

    The Vietnamese Government is improving its investment and business environment, completing institutions and creating favourable conditions for foreign and domestic businesses to expand investment, he added.

    For his part, Richard Courey noted that the VTG has proposed Hanoi and the Vietnamese Government, ministries and agencies launch the urban railway project No.2 that connects the Noi Bai International Airport and the West Lake in the form of Public Private Partnership. 

    He showed confidence that his firm is competent in successfully implementing the project.

    Deputy PM Dung suggested the VTG work in detail with Hanoi and relevant ministries and agencies before submitting a thorough report to the Government.

    Relief aid provided for flood victims in Thua Thien-Hue

    The Vietnam Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Agribank) has presented 1.2 billion VND (52,800 USD) to flood-hit residents in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue.  

    The money will be distributed to the needy through the Vietnam Fatherland Front’s chapter in the province. 

    Apart from Agribank, many other organisations have also handed over gifts to households affected by the recent floods, helping them soon stabilise their lives. 

    Thua Thien-Hue has, to date, received more than 5.3 billion VND (233,200 USD) from organisations, units, businesses and individuals both at home and abroad to support natural disaster-hit residents. 

    Nguyen Van Phuong, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, said downpours and floods from November 20-22 left two people dead, one missing and another injured, and inundated 7,966 houses in the locality.

    War veterans to convene 6th congress

    The 6th National Congress of the Vietnam War Veterans’ Association (VWVA) will take place from December 13-15, heard a press conference held in Hanoi on November 22.

    According to VWVA Vice Chairman Lieutenant General Nguyen Song Phi, the congress will draw the participation of 510 delegates representing more than 3 million members nationwide.

    It is set to review and evaluate results achieved in the implementation of the 5th Congress’s resolution while focusing discussion on orientations, tasks, standards and solutions in the new tenure, and electing a new executive board for the 2017-2022 tenure.

    In the previous tenure, the association and its chapters at all levels made efforts to reduce poverty sustainably, promote charity activities and help each other improve livelihoods, making contributions to the nation’s socio-economic development.

    In addition, the VWVA’s chapters worked closely with localities to consolidate the political system at grassroots level and develop a pure and strong association. They also contributed to preventing corruption and social misbehaviours and defeating all “peace evolution” schemes to ensure political stability and social order.

    Vietnam attends int’l workshop on socialism in Laos

    The fifth international workshop on socialism, themed “Applying Marxism-Leninism Doctrine in socialism building”, took place in Vientiane, Laos on November 22, attracting more than 100 delegates from Vietnam, China, Cuba and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. 

    In his opening speech, President of the Lao National Institute for Social Sciences Soukkongseng Sayaleuth affirmed that socialism is a great achievement of Marxism-Leninism, adding that this year marks the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution of Russia and the birth of the first socialist country. 

    Though the Soviet Union and socialist countries in Eastern Europe collapsed, other socialist nations are still consistent with socialist ideals and goals and further prosper, proved by achievements in reform and socialism building in China, Vietnam and Laos, he said. 

    He urged socialist nations to strengthen solidarity amid complicated developments in the world in order to continue reaping successes in socialism building. 

    Vice President of the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences Pham Van Duc suggested developing and flexibly applying new concepts and basic principles of Marxism-Leninism in countries in each stage. 

    During the two-day event, delegates will attend four sessions on the role of Marxism-Leninism in building the people’s democratic States, Marxism-Leninism’s leadership role in developing political system and uniting solidarity, Marxism-Leninism theory in developing socialist-oriented economy in each nation. 

    They will also hear 19 reports to be delivered by delegates from Vietnam, China and Laos.

    Meeting spotlights contribution of Vietnam Red Cross Society

    The Vietnam Red Cross Society (VRCS) has worked to spread humanitarian spirit in society, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam said.

    He addressed a meeting in Hanoi on November 22 to mark the VRCS’s 60-year membership in the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) (November 4, 1957) and its 71st founding anniversary (November 23, 1946).

    He said the association has become familiar to people from all walks of life through its engagements in humanitarian aid, climate change adaptation, and poverty alleviation.

    The Government and Party assign the Vietnam Red Cross to make contributions to the IFRC and expect the collaboration to grow stronger, the official stressed.

    As of June 2017, the VRCS had nearly 8.5 million members and volunteers working across 17,000 chapters.

    Between 2012 and 2017, it has run various humanitarian programmes, including sending gifts to the poor on the Lunar New Year holiday, giving cows to 21,600 needy households, and providing free health treatment and medicine for 1.4 million people.

    In the past five years, it received an average funding of more than 9.5 trillion VND (418 million USD), while implementing 20 foreign-funded projects worth over 510 billion VND (22.44 million USD), per year.

    Vietnam Buddhist Sangha’s 8th congress concludes in Hanoi

    The eighth congress of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) concluded in Hanoi on November 22, with Most Venerable Thich Pho Tue re-honoured as Supreme Patriarch of the VBS. 

    The closing ceremony was attended by 1,250 Buddhist dignitaries, monks, nuns and followers both at home and abroad. 

    The congress also elected 96 members of the Patronage Council with Most Venerable Thich Pho Tue as the Patriarch of the council’s standing board, along with 225 official members and 45 alternate members of the Executive Council headed by Most Venerable Thich Thien Nhon for the 2017-2022 tenure. 

    The participants reviewed the operation of the Sangha from 2012-2017 and set out an operational programme for the next five years. 

    Accordingly, the VBS will maintain and promote values of Vietnamese Buddhism with a combination of tradition and modernity, expand multilateral foreign relations and intensify communications work. 

    The VBS has chapters in all 63 cities and provinces, and Associations of Vietnamese Buddhists in 11 countries worldwide. There are four Buddhism universities, eight college-level training programmes and 34 primary Buddhism schools.

    Dr. Bui Huu Duoc, head of the Buddhism Department of the Government Committee for Religious Affairs, said Buddhism has been growing fast, with the number of Buddhist followers rising to nearly 40 million people, making up more than 40 percent of the nation’s population.

    Vietnamese expats in Algeria support flood victims

    Vietnamese expatriates in Algeria have joined hands to support people in the central and Central Highlands provinces that were devastated by floods caused by typhoon Damrey early this month.

    The Vietnamese Embassy in Algeria launched fund-raising drive on November 22.

    Officials and staff from the Embassy and Vietnamese agencies donated at least one-day’s salary to the fund.

    According to Ambassador Pham Quoc Tru, the charity activity is expected to help flood victims recover and stabilise their lives soon.

    Typhoon Damrey made landfall in Vietnam on November 4 with winds of up to 135 km/hour, 50 km south of Nha Trang (Khanh Hoa province), and became one of the worst storms to strike Vietnam’s southern coastal region in years. 

    The typhoon and subsequent floods claimed 89 lives and left 18 missing and 174 others injured in central and Central Highlands localities as of November 7. 

    More than 1,480 houses collapsed while 119,200 others were damaged. Nearly 8,000ha of rice and 14,600ha of other crops were flooded.

    Camp for People with Disabilities to be held at Suối Tiên Theme Park

    More than 6,000 people with disabilities in HCM City and 16 neighbouring cities and provinces will take part in the 18th Camp for People with Disabilities at Suối Tiên Theme Park in HCM City’s District 9 on December 2.

    The event, held by HCM City’s Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, aims to celebrate International Day of Persons with Disabilities that falls on December 3.

    It will feature entertainment activities as well as a culinary festival.

    People with disabilities will visit architectural works of history, culture and entertainment, enjoy art performances and comedy music programmes, and join various kinds of games.

    Phương Nam (Southern) Art Theatre will present water puppetry shows to entertain visitors.

    Nearly 800 volunteers from universities and 1,000 staff at Suối Tiên Theme Park will work during the camp.

    Initiative launched to end violence against children

    An initiative to end physical violence against children at home and at school was launched on Wednesday morning.

    The event, organised by the World Vision (WV) Việt Nam and the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA), aimed at raising people’s awareness and encouraging the community to join hands in building a safe atmosphere for children.

    The event was in response to the five-year global initiative on ending physical violence against children started by the International WV.

    During the event, representatives shared information and experiences about physical violence against children and measures to protect them against such violence at home and in school, the two places that are especially important for the development and personality-forming of children.

    The experts agreed that in recent times, Vietnamese people have made significant changes and are more aware about the issue. Many parents and teachers have also put in a lot of effort to apply modern educational methods. However, the changes are not equal across different social backgrounds.

    The latest report of the Department of Child Care and Protection under the MoLISA showed that from 2012 to May this year, 698 cases of violence against children were reported, and more than 90 per cent of them were cases of physical violence.

    Nearly 51 per cent of the victims were under the age of 10 and as many as 63 per cent of the victims faced violence from within their families.

    Warren Climenhaga, an expert from the WV, said that physical violence could not be sold by any single organisation or individual, and that it needed the co-operation of everybody.

    Trần Thu Huyền, national director for WV Việt Nam, said, “When parents and teachers are careful in their behaviour while dealing with children, the effectiveness will spread to the society, and the society will become safer for the children to grow up in.”

    Lương Thị Quỳnh, ambassador children of the initiative, said, “Rods make us more taciturn and hard-headed. I’m afraid that later, children will imitate the behavior of adults in using violence to resolve problems. I hope that parents and teachers will use advice to encourage children, instead of rods.”

    Project launched to enhance financial access for people

    People in 14 provinces across Việt Nam will get access to various financial products and services in the next three years.

    Seventy-five People’s Credit Funds (PCFs) in the provinces will receive support in developing financial products and services from now until March 2021 through a collaboration project with Canada.

    The project on strengthening the PCFs network, known as the STEP project, was launched on Wednesday morning in Hà Nội.

    Its goal is to strengthen the capacity of the Cooperative Bank of Vietnam (Co-op Bank) and its network of PCFs by providing them with support and advice in the areas of credit and risk management, new financial products and services, information technology and internal control, as well as governance, gender and environment and safety fund issues.

    The project is funded with CAD17.7 million (US$13.9 million) by the Canadian government. It will be carried out from now until March 2021 by Co-op Bank, in collaboration with the Canadian organisation Développement international Desjardins (DID).

    It targets the PFCs in Hà Nội; four northern provinces of Hưng Yên, Hà Nam, Hải Phòng and Ninh Bình; three central provinces of Thanh Hóa, Nghệ An and Hà Tĩnh; and six southern provinces of Đồng Tháp, An Giang, Kiên Giang, Cần Thơ, Sóc Trăng and Trà Vinh. 

    Speaking at the launch ceremony, Trần Quang Khánh, chairman of Co-op Bank, said that the project will greatly contribute to the process of sustainable rural and economic development of the country.

    “By helping the PFCs to diversify financial products and services, the project will provide people in rural areas with direct and comprehensive financial access and more employment opportunities,” he said.

    As a head unit of the nationwide PFCs network, Co-op Bank will do it best in rolling out the project’s activities to the network members, he added.

    Ping Kitnicone, Canadian Ambassador to Việt Nam, said that the Canadian government is proud to continue to support Việt Nam in providing access to financial services to rural areas.

    “I am pleased to see that the Vietnamese Government has recognised the importance of financial inclusion,” she said.

    “An active and stable banking system is an important foundation for sustained economic growth that affects all citizens,” she added.

    A people’s credit fund is a type of cooperative credit institution operating on the principles of voluntary participation, self-management, and self-responsibility for its operating results, fulfilling the basic objectives of providing mutual assistance between members to develop the strength of the collective, according to the Việt Nam Economic Times monthly newspaper.

    The network of PCFs was set up in Việt Nam in July 1993. There were more than 1,200 PCFs in the country by the end of 2015, according to the newspaper.

    BOT road project in Đồng Tháp-Tiền Giang stopped

    Minister of Transport Nguyễn Văn Thể decided to stop the project on expanding part of National Highway No 30, running through the southern provinces of Đồng Tháp and Tiền Giang.

    The project was approved in 2015 and was to be implemented under the Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) contract but work was yet to start because of changes in investors and conflicts in relevant regulations.

    Vice Chairman of Đồng Tháp Province People’s Committee, Nguyễn Thanh Hùng, told Thể at a meeting on Tuesday that according to the National Assembly Standing Committee (NASC)’s Resolution 437 dated last month, a road project was eligible to be constructed under the BOT contract if the project involved opening a new road and if road users had an alternative one, meaning that road users should have a choice on whether to use the BOT road or not.

    However, since the National Highway No 30 is the only existing road, once it is expanded under the BOT contract, people will have to use it. In other words, people will not have a choice but to pay a fee to travel on the road, Hùng said.

    Lê Minh Hoan, secretary of the provincial Party Committee, said that with the modest State budget, it was reasonable to have National Highway No 30 expanded under the BOT contract.

    The project had been approved in 2015 before the NASC’s resolution took effect, so it could be carried out without going against the National Assembly Standing Committee’s resolution.

    Thể said that investors were still preparing procedures and work had not started, so it was the right time to stop the project.

    He asked relevant State agencies to negotiate with the project investors to terminate the contract.

    “In the long-term, a new road parallel to National Highway No 30 should be opened to reduce traffic pressure on the national highway,” Thể said.

    Bids must be floated for the new road project to select experienced, competent investors, he said.

    Once the new road is competed, people will have options to choose, which will help prevent public anger. Those who don’t want to pay a fee can go via National Highway No 30. Those who want to travel faster, can choose the new road and pay a fee.

    BOT road projects have caused concerns among the public in Việt Nam, especially when road users had to pay high fees, while the quality of the BOT roads failed to meet their expectations. In certain cases, road users had to pay fees even if they did not use BOT roads because toll stations were placed unreasonably.

    Two workers die after scaffolding collapses

    Two men died after a 7-metre-high scaffolding collapsed at a construction site in Tân Phong Ward, in the southern city of Biên Hòa on Tuesday afternoon.

    The workers were reportedly standing on the scaffolding to move building materials up, when the accident occurred.

    They were unconscious and taken to Đồng Nai General Hospital, but died in the evening on the same day.

    Biên Hòa City Police said on Wednesday that they were co-operating with relevant agencies to examine the construction site at a local resident’s house and find out the cause of the scaffolding collapse.

    Programme for women, girls subjected to violence launched

    An essential services package for women and girls subjected to violence was launched on Wednesday by the United Nations in Việt Nam and the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.

    The essential services package forms part of the United Nations Joint Global Programme on Essential Services for Women and Girls Subjected to Violence. This programme is a partnership between the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), United Nations Population Fund, World Health Organisation (WHO) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and aims to provide greater access to a coordinated set of essential and quality multi-sectoral services for all women and girls who have experienced gender-based violence.

    The programme identifies the essential services to be provided by the health, social services, police and justice sectors, as well as guidelines for the co-ordination of essential services and the governance of coordination processes and mechanism.

    Violence against women and girls is widespread, systemic and culturally entrenched. According to a 2013 global review by WHO, 35 per cent of women worldwide have experienced physical and/or intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence. It is estimated that one in five girls has been abused in childhood with estimates from some countries as high as one in three.

    In Việt Nam, the National Study on Domestic Violence against Women, released by the General Statistics Office and the United Nations in Việt Nam in 2010, showed that 58 per cent of ever-married women had experienced at least one form of violence – physical, mental or sexual – at some point in their lives. Some 50 per cent of victims did not tell anyone about the violence they endured and 87 per cent did not seek help from public services.

    Speaking at the launch workshop, Elisa Fernandez, UN Women’s head of office in Việt Nam stated, “Violence against women and girls is not inevitable. The good news is that there are many ways to prevent violence in the first place and to stop cycles of violence repeating.”

    “The provision, coordination and governance of essential health, police, justice and social services can significantly mitigate the consequences that violence has on the wellbeing, health and safety of women and girls’ lives,” she said.

    “The guidelines will help to ensure that the range of services across different sectors can provide the necessary level of support and response to everyone with no exceptions,” she added.

    VNRC urged to expand humanitarian role: Deputy PM

    Deputy Prime Minister Vũ Đức Đam has urged the Việt Nam Red Cross Society (VNRC) and its members to continuously expand their humanitarian role and value in the domestic and international communities.

    Đam said this at a meeting in Hà Nội on Wednesday to mark the 60th anniversary of VNRC’s membership of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

    “We’ve often seen images of VNRC and its members not only in situations of war and natural disasters, but also during blood donation, livelihood and after-disaster rehabilitation,” Đam said.

    “The society has made its mark in most of the country’s regions and development history. Side by side with the Party and Government, VNRC has been an active member in humanitarian movements in Việt Nam and the world,” the deputy PM said.

    Praising the contribution of VNRC and its members in humanitarian activities over the past years, Deputy PM Đam suggested the society continue to strengthen its role and position in the country and in international communities.

    Speaking at the event, Beat Schweizer, head of Regional Delegation of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent (ICRC), said VNRC played a very active role in regional and worldwide activities of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

    “Việt Nam has unfortunately significant experience in dealing with the consequences of armed conflict and natural disasters. This experience can be very valuable for Red Cross activities in other parts of the world,” Schweizer said.

    Schweizer encouraged VNRC to further strengthen its active co-operation within the movement, adding that Việt Nam can count on ICRC’s support to respond to all kinds of disasters and further its capacity to provide assistance to those in need.

    “We are looking forward to co-operating with the leadership of VNRC to strengthen its legal basis and the protection of the emblem of the Red Cross in Việt Nam,” Schweizer added.

    VNRC President Nguyễn Thị Xuân Thu said VNRC had made great contributions to the two resistant wars and the country’s socio-economy development cause over the past 60 years.

    Thu said VNRC will focus its activities on enhancing its organisation capacity, improving communication activities and reforming methods of mobilisation of sources of help and programme implementation, such as first aid, blood donation and care of the elderly.

    The society will also expand its cooperation activities with local and international organisations in humanitarian programmes and propose proper policies and mechanisms to the Party and Government following seven basic principles of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement.

    Nghĩa wins sixth stage of cycling race

    With a strong finish, Huỳnh Minh Nghĩa won the sixth stage of the Nam Kỳ Khởi Nghĩa Cycling Tournament yesterday.

    Nghĩa of Việt Nam Youth won in a time of 2:13.12 in the 98km race from Đà Lạt to Bảo Lộc City.

    The runners-up were Hà Văn Sơn of BTV Đại Nam Bình Dương and Nguyễn Dương Hồ Vũ of HCM City.

    The owner of the yellow jersey for best overall time was unchanged, with Trần Thanh Điền of VUS- HCM City clocking in at 20:24.07, followed by Trần Lê Minh Tuấn of the Military Zone 7 and Nguyễn Nhật Nam of Domesco Phamarcy Đồng Tháp.

    Phan Hoàng Thái of Domesco Phamarcy Đồng Tháp clinched the red jersey as King of Mountain with 17 points, as his opponents are too far behind to catch his point total in the final stage.

    Domesco Phamarcy Đồng Tháp still top the team rankings with 61:20.02. VUS-HCM City and the Military Zone 7 are second and third.

    Today, cyclists will compete in the last stage from Bảo Lộc to HCM City.

    HCM City desires for broader cooperation on economics, environment with Osaka

    Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Nguyen Thanh Phong has affirmed the city’s desire to advance cooperative ties with the Japanese city of Osaka by fully tapping the strengths and potential of each side.

    At a November 22 reception for chairman of Osaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry Hiroshi Ozaki and his delegation, Mr Phong said he hopes that Osaka businesses will expand investment in important fields such as transport, health care, and high quality human resource training.

    Osaka is one of the localities to provide consultancy and methods of environmental research for HCM City.

    Osaka has organized 11 trade seminars and exchanges with Vietnam, Hiroshi Ozaki said while reiterating his Chamber’s readiness to facilitate Osaka businesses’ investment in Vietnam. Since early this year, its members have poured US$6 billion of investment into the country, he added.

    Mr Ozaki told his host that the Chamber has paid special attention to the environment in economic development, stating he wishes to beef up cooperation in the development of support technology with HCM City to help reduce pollution and protect the environment.

    Experts discuss finance in digital era

    The function of finance has developed remarkably in recent times to meet the constant changes brought about by technological evolution, a seminar heard in HCM City on November 22.

    “Finance now is not only controlling or saving expenditure but also has a very important effect on businesses strategy,” Hiroaki Endo, Asia President of the International Association of Financial Executives Institutes, said in his opening speech at the ninth annual Vietnam CFO Forum.

    “There are many enterprises that have adopted new technologies including artificial intelligent (AI). But the future of finance in the digital era needs to be discussed more.”

    Nguyen Xuan Thanh, lecturer in public policy, Fulbright University Vietnam, spoke about the Asian and Vietnamese economic outlook.

    “This year global economic activity has been strengthened. In Asia, higher domestic demand sustains growth in China. Indian growth suffers from currency demonetisation and tax reform while strong external demand boosts growth in ASEAN.”

    In Việt Nam, after a slowdown in the first quarter, the economy grew strongly in third quarter, at 7.5 per cent year-on-year. The economy is expected to grow by 6.7 per cent this year, he said.

    “However, Vietnamese economic growth is underpinned by strong FDI-led manufacturing activity and services.”

    Its manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) indicated strong manufacturing performance compared to other economies in the region, he said.

    The economic growth is driven by both strong private consumption and exports, he said.

    “Private consumption rose by 7.3 per cent year-on-year in the first nine months of this year while exports went up 20 per cent.”

    Low inflation and the stable exchange rate are other reasons for the high economic growth, he said.

    “Headline inflation rose early this year due to adjustments made to government administered prices (in health and education), while core inflation remains low at 1.3 per cent.

    “The exchange rate has remained stable while strong FDI flows and remittances have increased foreign exchange reserves to US$45 billion from $39 billion late last year.”

    But the limited fiscal space is a big problem for the economy.

    “The government has been running a budget deficit of around 6 per cent of GDP in the last five years, public debt as a percentage of GDP is approaching the 65 per cent statutory ceiling, and some fiscal consolidation is expected in 2017 with a target for the primary deficit of 3.5 per cent.

    “The 6.7 per cent GDP growth this year will help reduce the public debt level to 62.6 per cent of GDP (down from 63.6 per cent in 2016).”

    To stimulate growth, the Government has an accommodative monetary policy, he said.

    “The pressure on the Government to achieve the growth target with limited fiscal space means monetary policy has to be very accommodative with policy interest rate already cut by 0.25 per cent and lending rate by 0.5 per cent while the credit growth target has been revised up from 18 to 21 per cent.”

    Next year the Government hopes to achieve GDP growth of 6.5 – 6.7 per cent, and could also hike taxes to compensate for the narrow fiscal space, he said.

    Chun Wee Chiew, head of policy at the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) spoke about ethics in the digital age.

    “Eighty nine per cent of people who were asked [in a global survey] believed that strong ethics will become more important in the digital age.

    “Ninety four per cent agreed that the fundamental principles for accountants established by the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants still apply and remain relevant in the digital age.”

    These principles are integrity, objectivity, professional competence and due care, confidentiality, and professional behaviour.

    Chun listed three action points required by professional accountants: acquiring knowledge of emerging technologies and digital issues, combining process control with a strategic view and evaluating mechanisms for reporting unethical behaviour.

    The conference was organised by the Vietnam Chief Finance Officers Club in co-operation with the Japan Association for Chief Financial Officers (JACFO) and the ACCA, and over 300 CFOs took part.

    Winners of Practical Money Skills 2017 announced

    Students from six universities were announced as the winners of Practical Money Skills 2017, a financial literacy programme designed to help young Vietnamese adults learn how to budget, save, and spend responsibly.

    Run by global payments technology company Visa and the Central Committee of Vietnam Students’ Association (CCVSA), this year’s programme tasked students with using the medium of photography to share their personal stories of overcoming difficulties they have faced in managing their finances.

    After six months, the programme has reached millions of students across Vietnam and other countries in the region. The winners will share a prize pool of VND29,000,000 ($1,300), including flights to Singapore—to experience life in one of the biggest financial centres in Southeast Asia.

    “We’re very pleased that the programme has continued to reach new heights in its sixth year—this is testament to the work of CCVSA, who have been unwavering in their support for this programme in their commitment to providing the next generation of Vietnamese adults with important life skills,” said Sean Preston, Visa country manager for Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos.

    Under the topic “Every cent worth challenge,” the 2017 programme was run in two main phases. Starting in May, the first phase received nearly 1,000 entries from 46 universities in 20 provinces, cities, as well as from Vietnamese students studying abroad in the US, Germany, Korea, and Australia.

    The 50 best submissions entered the second phase, in which six exhibitions and financial literacy workshops were held in six universities across the country.

    Nguyen Minh Triet, permanent vice chairman of the CCVSA, said, “With the goal of continuing to create a platform for students to experience, test, and learn more about practical money skills, the new 2017 programme promotes creativity through the sharing of students’ experiences in life, work, and startups. The 2017 programme saw a marked increase in the number of submissions, as well as visits to the fanpage and the website of the programme, as well as received the participation of Vietnamese students studying abroad."

    Running annually since 2012, Practical Money Skills has used a range of different formats to teach students about a topic that, while important, is often challenging to engage.

    In previous years, students have been tasked with everything from running discussion forums, designing posters, developing media plans and messages to creating videos.

    Each year, the programme seeks to expand its geographical reach. In 2017, Visa and CCVSA expanded the programme outside the country, opening it to overseas Vietnamese students.

    In addition to reaching approximately 20,000 students through a chain of workshops and exhibitions, this year the programme’s Facebook fanpage garnered 29,000 fans and more than 500,000 engagements. Similarly, the official Practical Money Skills website had more than 52,000 visitors, and the programme’s YouTube channel achieved nearly 1.9 million views.

    As part of the programme, Visa also gave away 5,000 copies of “The Guardians of the Galaxy” financial literacy themed comic book. The comic pairs Marvel’s iconic superheroes with Visa’s financial smarts, which makes learning about finance management fun and entertaining for students.

    A range of resources are available on the programme’s Facebook page, Instagram, and YouTube to teach students the basic concepts of spending responsibly while learning to save and budget wisely.

    The official programme website (kynangquanlytaichinh.com.vn) continues to provide useful advice from programme mascot Mr. Pocket, together with handy financial formulas and other tools.

    International conference on automation organised in HCM City     

    The fourth International Conference and Exhibition on Automation and Industrial Equipment (VAAC 2017) will take place at the Sai Gon Exhibition and Convention Centre, HCM City.

    The event is organised from November 29 to December 2.

    The exhibition will be hosted by the Viet Nam Automation Association (VAA) with support from the HCM City University of Technology to provide a platform for connecting policy-makers, scientists and enterprises from Viet Nam and overseas.

    The event will feature a series of conferences, exhibitions and business forums that focus on issues of common concern, such as smart city, smart transportation and automation in agriculture and forestry.

    VAAC 2017 will highlight control and automation towards the fourth industrial revolution with the presentation of 115 scientific studies in cybernetics, automation and other topics.

    The forum will host seminars and discussions on automation, renewable energy, smart city and startup innovation, as well as mechanics, chemical and printing technology.

    Some 500 booths run by 310 exhibitors from 15 countries and territories will showcase latest products and advanced technologies in automation and chemicals, in line with machines and equipment, industrial products and materials.

    VNN


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  • 11/24/17--00:49: Article 1
  • BUSINESS IN BRIEF 24/11


    VMware launches new solution at VForum

         

     VMware launches new solution at VForum, Group focuses on trust in VN food, No more alcohol tax hikes, forum pleads, Farmers emulate high-quality Japanese fruit, Africa full of potential for Vietnamese firms

    VMware, a global provider of cloud infrastructure and business mobility, announced its new business partnerships and digital solution products at its annual Vforum held in HCM City on Monday.

    The company said that it had demonstrated how enterprises can achieve business outcomes with a portfolio of solutions that help modernize date centres, integrate public clouds and empower digital workspaces.

    It is partnering with companies around the world, including Telstra, M1, Vodafone, NTT, AT&T, Deutsche Telekom and most major telcos in Viet Nam to help them transform their journey across the digital value chain, including new connected ecosystems, new business models, new networks and new clouds.

    Vmware solutions for transformation include Integrated OpenStack 4.0, VMware vRealize Network Insight and new vSAN offerings to reduce the cost and complexity of collecting, storing and processing data and support Internet of Things (IoT) initiatives.

    At VForum, the company also announced its new vision of the cloud called edge computing, where the physical world meets the digital. It introduced the VMware Cloud Foundation, a simple, agile, and secure cloud infrastructure.

    A new approach to cyber security, VMware Appdefense, was also introduced.

    “Digital transformation is providing tangible results for businesses, and it is encouraging to see more organisations leveraging technology to push the boundaries of what’s possible, We have committed to equip organisations with the right tools to run, manage, connect and secure any application on any cloud to any device, enabling them to take full advantage of opportunities before them,” said Adrian Hia, general manager of Nascent Markets and Viet Nam VMware. 

    MyVIB Social Keyboard makes debut    

    The Vietnam International Bank (VIB) on Wednesday launched its new application – MyVIB Social Keyboard – enabling customers to transfer money on social networks in just five minutes.

    Accordingly, if customers who are having a conversation with someone on social networks such as Facebook Messenger, Viber, Zalo, Whatsapp, Twitter and Snapchat want to transfer money to the person, they can switch to “MyVIB Keyboard-MyVIB” mode. They can then transfer money without having to open any other application.

    Developed by VIB and Fintech Weezi Digital Co, the new application will help customers save time required to transfer money when chatting because they do not need to exit the screen to log onto MyVIB – the bank’s internet banking. Both internal and external bank transfers will take place on the "MyVIB Social Keyboard" at the chat screen and avoid sending money to incorrect recipients.

    For security purposes, each transfer request must be authenticated via the OTP code sent to the sender’s phone, VIB said it its statement.

    "Today, more and more people prefer texting instead of making phone calls and online shopping is gradually replacing traditional shopping," Tran Nhat Minh, VIB deputy general director said, expecting that the new application will bring customers who want to shop and transfer money via social networks exciting experiences of online banking services but also push up the development of non-cash payments in Viet Nam, he said. 

    Group focuses on trust in VN food     

    The Association of Food Transparency (AFT) made its debut in HCM City on Wednesday with the aim of connecting responsible players in the food production chain for the benefit of society and the environment.

    AFT will also work to raise prestige and protect and create a favourable environment for producers and traders who offer safe, healthy food with transparency standards with the aim of expanding market share for the products at home and abroad.

    AFT will also work to protect the interests of consumers and public health, as well as improve food production industry by promoting safe and transparent products.

    Nguyen Thi Hong Minh, chairwoman of the Advocacy Committee for the establishment of AFT, said AFT includes 59 individuals and organisations, including owners of farms, co-operatives, agricultural startups, manufacturers, retailers, raw materials suppliers, and service providers.

    AFT members who are safe-food producers will be transparent in offering information to consumers, with the aim of ensuring people’s health and future generations, she said.

    Enterprises participating in AFT must have certification related to product quality such as HACCP, GLOBAL GAP, VIETGAP, organic certification, food safety and hygiene certification.

    All members must also commit to provide transparent information about their products, protect people and community health, maintain prestige and quality of Vietnamese food, protect and develop brands and not compromise the association’s common interests or legitimate interests of other members.

    Minh said “unsafe food was still widespread in the market, affecting people’s health.”

    The use of plant protection chemicals in farming, antibiotics in animal breeding and preservatives in foodstuff is still common, and authorised agencies appear unable to control it, she said.

    Many people remain concerned about what is safe to eat and drink, she said.

    Dr Vu Trong Khai, member of the Viet Nam Agricultural Alliance, said many companies had invested in producing safe food products, but consumers do not trust them because inspection and certification systems have problems.

    If the association can recover consumer trust, it will be a great success, he said.

    Minh said the agricultural sector would not develop in a sustainable manner if producers did not work together to meet basic standards, quality and brand development in line with socio-economic development and consumer demand.

    Safe food producers need to collaborate to market their products to win consumer trust, she added.

    Huynh Thi Kim Cuc, deputy head of the Food Safety Management Board of HCM City, praised the establishment of the AFT, which she encouraged to work with State management agencies to help restore consumer trust in locally-made products as well as help consumers realise which products are safe.

    At the event, Minh was elected the chairwoman of the AFT. 

    No more alcohol tax hikes, forum pleads     

    Taxes on alcohol and soft drinks should not be hiked again in the next few years since successive hikes in special consumption tax have had a strong impact on the market, a round table organised by the Viet Nam Beer, Alcohol and Beverage Association heard in HCM City on Wednesday.

    Since 2013 the special consumption tax on alcoholic beverages and beer has been raised four times.

    From next year it will be 65 per cent.

    Speaking to Viet Nam News on the sidelines of the forum, Nguyen Van Viet, the association chairman, said the growth of the beverages market in the first eight months of this year was 7 per cent, the same level as previous years.

    “The growth was mainly due to soft drinks, which have not been affected by the tax. Alcoholic drinks saw no growth while beer witnessed low and steady growth.”

    The impact of the tax hikes would be clearer a year or two down the line and so the growth next year would not be higher than in 2017, he said.

    Experts cited the example of Japan, which takes around 10 years to bring in a new policy, saying Viet Nam too should be consistency in policy making.

    The tax on beer and spirits has been increased by 20 per cent in just five years, they lamented.

    Trieu Quang Thin, vice chairman of the Ha Noi Association for Anti-counterfeiting and Trademark Protection, warned that as the huge tax hikes push up prices, consumption would decline and companies would look for ways to evade taxes.

    Furthermore, it could give rise to smuggling and fake products, he said.

    Shivam Misra of the EuroCham Wine and Spirits Sector Committee concurred with him, telling the forum the Government could actually lose revenues due to the tax hikes.

    Higher taxes would give rise to illegal products, he explained.

    But assuring they would not evade taxes, delegates called for a road map with taxes hiked at a slower rate so that companies have time to prepare and avoid shocks.

    The beverages sector is one of the biggest in the country and accounts for 5 per cent of the Government’s revenues.

    The sector has grown consistently for many years, and exports many products.

    Farmers emulate high-quality Japanese fruit     

    Japanese netted melon, a nutritious fruit with a seductive flavour, has been successfully and profitably grown in Viet Nam thanks to the application of high-tech cultivation methods.

    Recently, at the Ha Nam Hi-tech Agriculture Zone in northern Ha Nam Province, the Viet Nam National Seeds Joint Stock Company (Vinaseed) successfully planted the fruit.

    “Ha Nam Hi-tech Park, with an area of 21.59 hectares, possesses one of the most modern cultivation infrastructures in the country. Using a specialised hot house with sun-proof roof, automatic irrigation, a water treatment system and processing and packing technology, the park is fully qualified to grow the specialty," said Do Ba Vong, deputy director of Vinaseed, told Government portal chinhphu.vn.

    Japanese netted melon is rich in vitamins A and C and contains anti-oxidants and elements that help fight osteoporosis and cancer, Vong said.

    But he added that the fruit was hard to grow in the open as its skin cracked easily, enabling it be penetrated by bacteria and fungus. Fruit quality totally depends on temperature, light, humidity and irrigation, so it needs to be grown in modern hot houses using high technology.

    Netted melons grown in Ha Nam Hi-Tech Park are round and weigh from 1.5 to 1.8kg each. They are crisp and sweet.

    Vu Van Vuong, deputy director of Ha Nam High-tech Park claimed that the fruit grown at the park was the same quality as in Japan, but fetched only one-tenth of the prices of melons imported from Japan.

    “Melons are being produced all year round, meeting the demands of the domestic market and others in Europe and the US,” Vuong said.

    According to Tasima Hisashi from the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) in HCM City, high-tech agriculture can help enterprises and co-operatives increase productivity by 30 per cent.

    He said the core purpose of high-tech applications was to produce quality products in large quantities to make the highest profits.

    Regarding the vegetable and fruits industry in general, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Nguyen Xuan Cuong, said that the industry had great development potential. In the Government’s agricultural restructure scheme, vegetables and fruit were identified as key agricultural products for export.

    Currently, the global annual demand for fruit and vegetables is about US$650 billion, which indicates a great opportunity for Viet Nam.

    The minister proposed the Government adopt policies to remove difficulties in land, credit and science technology to support enterprises expand and accelerate hi-tech applications for farming.

    “In the future, our vegetable and fruit products will be growing fast. Besides applying high technology, we also need to focus on all stages from breeding, production to processing and market expansion,” Cuong said. 

    Africa full of potential for Vietnamese firms     

    Africa is a market with high export demand and less strict requirements, giving it potential, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Department of Asia-Africa (the Middle East – Africa Zone).

    Nguyen Minh Phuong from the department told a seminar to promote trade and exports to the Middle East and Africa, held in Ha Noi on Tuesday, that Viet Nam has so far established ties with 53 out of 55 African countries and two-way trade has surged considerably over the past decade.

    Viet Nam’s exports to Africa soared from US$610 million in 2006 to $3.2 billion in 2015 and $2.8 billion in 2016.

    Last year, Africa’s imports neared $480 billion, which is forecast to increase to about $1.2 trillion by 2020. In the Middle East, the figure was estimated at roughly $807 billion in 2016 and at $1.5 trillion by 2020.

    Lying in a strategic geographical location, the Middle East borders Asia, Europe and Africa, with Dubai being the world’s third largest transit market, Phuong said.

    South African Ambassador to Viet Nam, Kgomotso Ruth Magau, said Africa imports made-in-Viet Nam goods such as rice, coffee, pepper, cashew nuts, footwear, apparel, household electric appliances, plastics, electronics, handicrafts and aquatic products.

    The event affords both sides a chance to facilitate information sharing and technological transfer, she said.

    Ly Quoc Thinh from the Department of Asia-Africa Market said the Middle East is home to 15 countries, huge oil reserves and mineral resources. Due to poor weather conditions, the Middle East’s agriculture, fisheries and consumer goods production is underdeveloped so the region must rely on imports.

    However, Vietnamese exporters still face obstacles regarding competition with regional rivals, financial risks, public security and order, red tape and poor transport links.

    Experts suggested reviewing business strategies and thoroughly learning about regional socio-culture before doing business in the region. 

    Urbanisation jumps 10 per cent     

    The urbanisation rate in Viet Nam has grown from 30 per cent in 2007 to 40 per cent in 2017, according to Singapore-based United Morning Post.

    In an article about Viet Nam’s economic reform and hosting of APEC Year 2017, the newspaper cited data demonstrating the country’s progress since the beginning of reforms in 1986.

    Viet Nam’s growth rate was 2.79 per cent in 1986, soared to 7.36 per cent three years later and now consistently hovers around 7 per cent.

    The paper said by hosting the APEC 2017 Economic Leaders’ Week in Da Nang, Viet Nam introduced a dynamic city to international friends.

    Da Nang is a small image of Viet Nam, reflecting the achievements the country has obtained from reforms and economic integration in the past 10 years, it noted.

    The article also pointed to a number of challenges facing ViEt Nam, such as uneven socio-economic development, outdated infrastructure, corruption, and inflation. In conclusion, it attributed the country’s robust growth to its progress in regional and global integration.

    Since 1990, Viet Nam has become members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and the World Trade Organisation (WTO). 

    HCM City calls for Malaysian investment in Tay Bac urban area

    An investment promotion event was held in Kuala Lumpur on November 22 to call for investment in Tay Bac urban area in Ho Chi Minh City.

    Dinh Khac Huy, head of the project’s Management Board introduced the major features of the area to Malaysian firms and its plan to become a modern satellite urban area with full living, working and entertainment facilities.

    Covering about 9,000 hectares spanning Cu Chi and Hoc Mon districts of Ho Chi Minh City, the area is designed for 450 residents. Currently, it needs investment in technical and social infrastructure, and housing development.

    Huy said that by 2020, the city needs billions of USD to improve its infrastructure, a challenge for the city as the budget will only meet about 20 percent of the figure.

    He called for investors to engage in infrastructure and housing projects in both Tay Bac urban area and Ho Chi Minh City in general.

    He also vowed to create the best conditions for Malaysian firms to seek opportunities in the city, while calling for ideas from Malaysian businesses in building Tay Bac urban area.

    Meanwhile, Vietnamese Ambassador to Malaysia Le Quy Quynh noted that Vietnam and Malaysia have enjoyed rapid growth of economic, trade and investment cooperation with two-way trade exceeding 10 billion USD in 2016. Malaysia is one of the leading foreign investors of Vietnam with many big firms operating in the country.

    The diplomat said that the booming development of the real estate sector in Vietnam has opened up new opportunities for both domestic and foreign investors.

    Ambassador Quynh pledged that the Vietnamese Embassy will back trade and investment activities of Vietnamese and Malaysian investors in each country.

    Rusiah Mohamed from the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) lauded Vietnam’s efforts to promote investment in Malaysia, offering a good chance for local firms to access information to serve their business plans.

    MATRADE will work closely with and support Vietnamese side to encourage Malaysian investment in not only real estate but other fields in Vietnam, she said.

    At the event, Ho Chi Minh City authorities also answered questions from Malaysian firms.

    VN aims for 3% agriculture growth

    Việt Nam targets a GDP growth rate for agriculture at 3 per cent per year by 2020 following an agricultural restructure plan that has been approved by Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc.

    Under the plan, set during the 2017-20 period, the annual average income of farmers will increase at least 1.8 times by 2020, in comparison to that of 2015.

    The average labour productivity is expected to expand 3.5 per cent per year and the rate of workers in agriculture who receive training is expected to rise to 22 per cent.

    Fifty per cent of communes are hoped to become new rural areas, while 15,000 cooperatives and unions of agricultural cooperatives are estimated to be operational. The plan also targets to provide most residents in rural areas with access to hygienic water. 

    The restructure plan will classify agricultural products into three main groups, including the group of key national products, the group of key provincial products and the group of local specialities.

    The group of key national products includes pork, poultry meat and products that have an export turnover above US$1 billion such as rice, vegetables and fruits, rubber, cashew nuts, wood and fisheries.

    The focus will be on reviewing related plans and strategies, building large-scale and concentrated production zones and applying advanced science and technology for this group of products.

    The group of key provincial products will be selected based on market demand and advantages of each locality. Polices and measures will be developed to help expand scale and competitiveness for these products.

    Local specialities will have specific geographic indications and will be developed together with the development of new-style rural areas.

    In cultivation, the country will shift to growing crops adaptive to climate change and suited to each region, develop concentrated and large-scale production areas, adopt chain production for national key products and encourage the development of clean and organic agriculture. 

    The plan also calls for more application of science and technology in the sector to create high-quality varieties, adopting intensive farming, reducing the use of pesticides, replacing ineffective rice cultivation land to grow other crops and promoting aquatic breeding. 

    The country will also develop household livestock, organic and ecological animal husbandry, and value production chains, in addition to building brands, reorganising the slaughtering system to ensure food safety, hygiene and environmental protection, inspecting and controlling diseases effectively and tightening the examination of the use of veterinary drugs and additives in the field. The livestock industry aims for an annual production growth of 4.5-5 per cent.

     Meanwhile, the seafood sector will promote offshore fishing and invest in modernising processing equipment and storage on board to reduce losses, with a growth of 4.5-5 per cent per year expected.

    Bến Tre ponders pomelos, rambutans

    Representatives of farming co-ops and the Cultivation and Plant Protection Division under Bến Tre Department of Agriculture and Rural Development this week discussed measures for sustainable development of  green-skin pomelos and rambutans in the province at a seminar.

    Bến Tre has more than 5,600ha under rambutan, mainly in the districts of Chợ Lách and Châu Thành. A fifth of the total area grows the fruit, and produces more than 107,000 tonnes a year.

    Three rambutan processing firms have been set up in the province in the past few years, and recently Bến Tre rambutan were exported to China, the United States and Europe.

    But the Châu Thành-headquartered Tropical Fruit Export Ltd. is the only firm to sign a contract to buy the fruit, the partner being a local co-operative.

    Sơn Định Commune in Chợ Lách District has one farming co-operative and 17 co-operative teams growing the fruit over 500ha, but they have signed no agreements to sell their output.

    According to Lý Tấn Phương, chairman of the Sơn Định Commune Farmers’ Association, it is difficult to sign sales contracts for Sơn Định rambutan because of price volatility. The prices vary from VNĐ5,000 – VNĐ6,000 per kilogramme at harvest time to VNĐ20,000-30,000 in other seasons.

    Nguyễn Thị Hồng Thu, director of rambutan export company Chánh Thu Ltd., said no long-term contracts had been signed between farmers and buyers because prices changed greatly and the fruit could not be preserved for long.

    With 27,700ha of fruit orchards, Bến Tre grows many iconic fruits of the Mekong Delta, including the green-skin pomelo.

    It has over 7,200ha under this fruit, mainly in Bến Tre City and the districts of Châu Thành, Giồng Trôm and Mỏ Cày Bắc, and produces 57,000 tonnes a year. But only 35.4ha of orchards grow the fruit for export.

    Đàm Văn Hưng, head of Hương Miền Tây Ltd., said the export of the famous Bến Tre green skin pomelo faced challenges because the small scale of production led to inconsistent quality.

    Lâm Văn Lĩnh, deputy head of the Bến Tre Cultivation and Plant Protection Division, said green skin pomelo and rambutan were mainly consumed in the domestic market and their exports faced challenges due to buyers’ stringent requirements.

    Green skin pomelo and rambutan are mainly consumed as fresh fruit with only a small proportion of pomelos being used to make juices, jams, wines and other kinds of foods. This is why their value has not been fully exploited yet, Lĩnh said.

    Hưng said, “Collaboration (between growers and buyers) is a necessary condition for rambutan production and consumption.”

    The huge demand for rambutan in the local market has not been met, he said.

    Hương Miền Tây has signed contracts to buy nearly 1,238 tonnes of green skin pomelo a year on 277ha in Bến Tre Province.

    It plans to establish a quality management team to help co-operatives develop a production process and quality standards to meet market needs.

    It will sign purchase contracts with growers at market prices while demanding that they ensure clean standards and steady output.            

    The province’s cultivation and plant protection division has co-ordinated with district authorities and other relevant agencies to establish green skin pomelo and rambutan co-operatives. In Bến Tre, there are now 109 co-operatives growing pomelo and 42 growing rambutans.

    Sixteen contracts have been signed by processors to buy the pomelos, but farmers growing 13,500 tonnes of the fruit on nearly 500ha have yet to sign up.

    Not a single contract has been signed with rambutan farmers, Hưng said.

    According to Phan Thị Thu Sương, deputy director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, only a few contracts have been signed between Bến Tre farmers and firms due to the small scale of farms and the inconsistent quality of the fruit.

    Next year the department will ask the Bến Tre People’s Committee to estimate market demand for fruit and draw up production plans.

    Vietnamese food, beverages introduced in Indonesia

    Vietnamese products are being displayed to international importers and retailers at the Salon International d’almentation (SIAL) InterFood 2017 that is underway in Jakarta, Indonesia. 

    Vietnamese businesses brought cashew nuts, pepper, rice, coffee, tea and dried dragon fruit to the fair, which lasts from November 22-25. 

    Le Anh Tuan, from Hanoi Trade Corporation (Hapro), said SIAL Interfood offers a big opportunity for participating companies to access Indonesian and global markets. 

    Dinh Thi Thu Hang, from Richy Food JSC, said her company aims to introduce competitive products at the fair and promote exports to markets in ASEAN, including Indonesia.

    The annual Jakarta event is the largest international food and beverage fair in Southeast Asia. This year’s event brings together 1,100 booths of nearly 30 countries and territories around the world. 

    Within the framework of the event, there will be workshops and exchanges between participating enterprises, along with product promotion programmes.

    HCM City eyes stronger economic ties with Japanese prefecture

    Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Nguyen Thanh Phong said his city wants to enhance cooperation with Japan’s Osaka prefecture, especially in economy, trade and investment, while receiving Chairman of the Osaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry Hiroshi Ozaki on November 22.

    Phong highlighted flourishing Vietnam-Japan relations in different pheres, noting that recent visits by the two countries’ leaders illustrate their determination to bolster ties.

    He expressed his belief that bilateral relations will make great strides in the near future, particularly in 2018 when the two sides will mark 45 years of diplomatic ties.

    HCM City pledges to create optimal conditions for foreign businesses, including those from Osaka, to invest in priority fields such as high-tech waste treatment, renewable energy, health care, and pharmaceuticals, he added.

    Phong also asked the Osaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry to connect enterprises of Kansai region, where the prefecture is located, and HCM City, step up locality-to-locality cooperation and implement signed agreements.

    At the meeting, Ozaki said many Osaka companies are doing business in HCM City and other parts of Vietnam. Their success in HCM City is partly thanks to local authorities’ support, which has created a favourable investment and business environment.

    Noting Osaka firms’ advantages, he said some of them have experiences in solving urban issues facing HCM City, including ensuring economic growth alongside environmental protection. They are ready to assist the southern hub of Vietnam to improve its manpower capacity and technology in pollution treatment, renewable energy, health care and pharmaceutical.

    He promised that his chamber will hold business networking and investment promotion programmes to help foster cooperation between Osaka and HCM City, as well as between Japan and Vietnam.

    Thanh Hoa, Japan discuss progress of Nghi Son refinery project

    Central Thanh Hoa province will put more focus on solving problems for Nghi Son Oil Refinery project to soon put it into use, said Secretary of the provincial Party Committee Trinh Van Chien on November 21.

    Chien made the statement while meeting with Yota Ona, Director-General of the Natural Resources and Fuel Department of Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) to discuss the construction progress of Vietnam’s largest refinery and petrochemical complex.

    The complex is expected to play a significant role in the province’s economic development as, once in operation, it is set to contribute about 30 trillion VND (over 1.32 billion USD) to the local budget annually, Chien told his guest.

    The secretary urged Japanese contractors to fast-track the project, stressing the need to also build a lake for treatment of effluent waters from refining to prevent pollution.

    He also asked Ono to introduce investment opportunities in Thanh Hoa to more Japanese investors with an emphasis on the fields of industry, seaport, transportation, and mining.

    The Japanese official, for his part, asked the provincial government to continue providing favourable conditions for the project and support Japanese investors in the province.

    The 9.2-billion-USD Nghi Son Refinery will be the second oil refinery in Vietnam, located in Tinh Gia district of Thanh Hoa, about 200 km south of Hanoi. Construction began in October 2013 and refinery operations are slated for the last quarter of 2017. 

    The complex is designed to refine about 10 million tonnes of crude oil per year. It received the first batch of crude oil from Kuwait in August, 2017.

    Cao Bang, Chinese entrepreneurs to strengthen cooperation

    Young entrepreneurs of Cao Bang province and Chongzuo city of China’s Guangxi province have agreed to cooperate in farm produce production and sales, tourism and transport.

    The deal was reached at a meeting in the Vietnamese northern mountainous province on November 21 between the provincial Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union and a youth and entrepreneur delegation from Chongzuo.

    Tang Yu Ling, deputy head of the Standing Committee of the Chongzuo municipal People's Congress, lauded the two sides’ cooperation prospects.

    Vietnam is Guangxi’s largest trade partner and accounts for more than 50 percent of the province’s import-export volume.

    Trade turnover between Guangxi and Cao Bang exceeded 12 billion USD in the first nine months of this year, up 20 percent year-on-year.

    As Guangxi has potential to develop tourism and hi-tech agriculture, it wants to intensify collaboration with Cao Bang in these fields, she added.

    APEC 2017: Singapore press hails Vietnam’s economic reform

    The urbanisation rate in Vietnam grew rapidly in the past decade from 30 percent in 2007 to 40 percent in 2017, according to Singapore-based United Morning Post.

    In an article about Vietnam’s economic reform and hosting of APEC Year 2017, the newspaper cited data demonstrating the country’s progress since the beginning of reforms in 1986. Vietnam’s growth rate was 2.79 percent in 1986, soared to 7.36 percent three years later and now consistently hovers around 7 percent.  

    The paper said by hosting the APEC 2017 Economic Leaders’ Week in Da Nang, Vietnam introduced to international friends a dynamic and vibrant city. Da Nang is a small image of Vietnam, reflecting the achievements the country has obtained from reforms and economic integration in the past ten years, it noted.

    The article also pointed to a number of challenges facing Vietnam, such as uneven socio-economic development, outdated infrastructure, corruption, and inflation.

    In conclusion, it attributed the country’s robust growth to its progress in regional and global integration. Since 1990, Vietnam has become members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

    Workshop talks co-management of aquatic resource protection

    Regulations on co-management of aquatic resource protection and management of marine protected areas in Vietnam were discussed at a workshop in Hanoi on November 22.

    The Directorate of Fisheries at the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Centre for Marinelife Conservation and Community Development (MCD) held a national consultation workshop discussing regulations on co-management of aquatic resource protection and management of marine protected areas in reference to the revised Law on Fisheries that was adopted by the National Assembly on November 21.

    The workshop aimed to collect feedback from attendees to develop guidelines for the enforcement of the law and enhance information sharing and participation of stakeholders in the matter, said deputy head of the Directorate of Fisheries Tran Dinh Luan

    This is the first time the concept of “co-management” has been regulated in the Law on Fisheries, he noted, adding that it is intended to encourage community participation in management of aquatic resource protection.

    MCD Director Nguyen Thu Hue said she expects the workshop will be a good start for the consultation process to translate the law into reality. The process needs to be promoted in a consistent fashion with the participation of all stakeholders, she noted.

    The workshop saw representatives from cities and provinces sharing their experience and giving ideas for drafting guidelines for co-management in protecting and developing aquatic resources. The delegates also discussed amendments made in the revised regulations on management of marine protected areas in Vietnam.

    Sakura Color Products Vietnam launches factory in Binh Duong

    Sakura Color Products Vietnam inaugurated its factory producing crayons and pens in the southern province of Binh Duong on November 22.

    The factory has a total investment of over 800 million JPY (7.14 million USD), funded by Sakura Color Products Vietnam, a subsidiary of Japanese Sakura Group. It sits on 1.5 hectares in the Vietnam – Singapore Industrial Park II.

    The company is expected to earn 100 million JPY (862,600 USD) in 2018, and 700 million JPY (6.25 million USD) in 2021.

    The first batch of crayons and pens is expected to be shipped to Japan and regional nations in February, 2018.

    Yamashita Takanori, Director of Sakura Color Products Vietnam highlighted Vietnam’s favourable conditions for Japanese investors, saying that it is a member of the World Trade Organisation and has numerous trade agreements with Japan. He suggested Vietnam improve infrastructure.

    Vietnamese labourers are young and industrious, he said, but, pointing to the fact that the rate of workers quitting jobs before their contracts expire is high.

    Tran Thanh Liem, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee hailed the company’s investment, expressing his belief that it will expand operation in the locality.

    He hoped that it will encourage more investors, particularly those from Japan to run business in Binh Duong.

    Liem pledged to offer favourable conditions for investors in general and the company in particular to operate effectively.

    Workshop talks co-management of aquatic resource protection

    Regulations on co-management of aquatic resource protection and management of marine protected areas in Vietnam were discussed at a workshop in Hanoi on November 22.

    The Directorate of Fisheries at the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Centre for Marinelife Conservation and Community Development (MCD) held a national consultation workshop discussing regulations on co-management of aquatic resource protection and management of marine protected areas in reference to the revised Law on Fisheries that was adopted by the National Assembly on November 21.

    The workshop aimed to collect feedback from attendees to develop guidelines for the enforcement of the law and enhance information sharing and participation of stakeholders in the matter, said deputy head of the Directorate of Fisheries Tran Dinh Luan

    This is the first time the concept of “co-management” has been regulated in the Law on Fisheries, he noted, adding that it is intended to encourage community participation in management of aquatic resource protection.

    MCD Director Nguyen Thu Hue said she expects the workshop will be a good start for the consultation process to translate the law into reality. The process needs to be promoted in a consistent fashion with the participation of all stakeholders, she noted.

    The workshop saw representatives from cities and provinces sharing their experience and giving ideas for drafting guidelines for co-management in protecting and developing aquatic resources. The delegates also discussed amendments made in the revised regulations on management of marine protected areas in Vietnam.

    Use of Industry 4.0 technologies in aquaculture discussed

    A conference took place in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho on November 22 to discuss the application of Industry 4.0 and advanced technologies in aquaculture in Vietnam.

    The event was held by the management board of the EU-funded “Sustainable and Equitable Shrimp Production and Value Chain Development” project in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), bringing together policy makers and nearly 400 farmers and businesses in the aquaculture and seafood processing industries across the Mekong Delta.

    During the conference, businesses and researchers shared their experience in use of Industry 4.0 technologies in aquaculture and advanced techniques and methods for safe and sustainable shrimp farming; and proposed solutions for technical and environment-related challenges in shrimp farming and potential policies for the industry’s development.

    Use of the Industry 4.0 technologies has significantly increased in agriculture and aquaculture in countries like Israel, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Taiwan (China), Thailand and American and European countries, said Dinh Xuan Lap, Deputy Director of the International Collaborating Centre for Aquaculture and Fisheries Sustainability.

    They allow farmers to create more added values, prove origin of the products, reduce risks and cost in production and become more adaptive to changes in weather and environment, he added.

    Aquaculture has contributed to over 60 percent of the country’s fishery outputs and created jobs for more than one million people in Vietnam.

    Vietnam, China augment cooperation along economic corridor

    A conference opened in Hai Phong city on November 22 with a view to promoting cooperation along the economic corridor of Vietnam’s Lao Cai province, Hanoi, Hai Phong city and Quang Ninh province and China’s Yunnan province.

    The corridor’s 8th cooperation conference attracted more than 200 delegates, including representatives of the Consulate General of Vietnam in Yunnan’s Kunming city, the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry, the Chinese Embassy in Vietnam, authorities of the Vietnamese localities, and many businesses.

    Chairman of the Hai Phong municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Van Tung said the conference is an initiative that aims to create prerequisites for diverse friendly exchanges and cooperation activities, especially in economy, between Vietnamese and Chinese localities.

    He added the three-day event focuses on transport connection and cooperation in logistics development; trade and investment cooperation; tourism, educational and health care cooperation; and cooperation in currency and insurance works.

    It is also hoped to witness the signing of cooperation documents on finance-currency, e-commerce and tourism between Vietnamese and Chinese companies. Notably, Hai Phong and Yunnan expect to reach consensus on an air route linking the Vietnamese city with Kunming and an express train connecting Hai Phong, Hanoi, Lao Cai and Kunming.

    Chairman Tung said these are the most practical actions to realise the outcomes of the recent talks between General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Nguyen Phu Trong and General Secretary of the Communist Party of China and President of China Xi Jinping.

    Enhanced transport connectivity is among the outcomes recorded since the economic corridor’s 7th cooperation conference in 2015. Hanoi-Hai Phong expressway and Tan Vu-Lach Huyen highway and sea-crossing bridge have been put into operation. These two transport projects are also connected to Hanoi-Lao Cai expressway, forming an expressway route from the mountainous province of Lao Cai to Hai Phong port.

    When the construction of Hai Phong-Ha Long expressway completes in 2018, it will create an expressway network from Kunming to Ha Long, thus facilitating goods transport and tourism.

    The Vietnamese Ministry of Transport is planning a rail route traversing Lao Cai, Hanoi and Hai Phong. It is also negotiating with China about connecting Lao Cai and Hekou North railway stations.

    In terms of trade and investment cooperation, Lao Cai and Yunnan provinces have rotationally hosted the Vietnam-China border trade fairs. Businesses of the Vietnamese localities have also taken part in international fairs in China such as the Vietnam-China border trade fair, the China-South Asia Expo, and the Kunming Import & Export Commodities Fair.

    Universities and educational establishments of Lao Cai, Hai Phong and Yunnan have maintained exchanges. Meanwhile, the provinces and cities along the corridors have also coordinated in promoting tourism. 

    Eight of the 11 commercial banks of Lao Cai have inked agreements on cross-border trade payment with six commercial banks and credit cooperatives of Yunnan. Their cooperation has strongly supported businesses with import and export activities via Lao Cai International Border Gate, the conference heard.

    Vietnam beer hits Israel supermarket shelves

    Saigon beer has been recommended to customers at the first Asia food fair in Tel Aviv, Israel by Israel’s leading sales and distribution company for global consumer brands, cosmetics and food, the Rakuto Diplomat International.

    The fair held in mid-November aims to promote food and drink from India, Thailand, Japan, Tibet (China), the Republic of Korea, and Vietnam.

    President and CEO of Diplomat, Roni Bornstein said he was impressed by the showcased Vietnamese products. The company decided to import Saigon beer into Israel because of its best quality and beautiful design.

    Diplomat had spent two years persuading Israel management agencies to allow the import of Saigon beer. Currently all labels of Saigon beer are printed in Hebrew language according to Koser standards, said Mr Bornstein.

    He revealed that the first batch of Saigon beer imported into the country had been sold out at the fair.

    Vietnamese Ambassador to Israel Cao Hoang Quoc Hai said to help Saigon beer enter the market, the embassy was actively accelerating the completion of import procedures and product promotion.

    The fair provided a good chance for Vietnam to advertise its beverage industry in Israel and help local businesses and customers access Vietnamese famous food and drink, said ambassador Hai.

    Vietnam attends Sirha trade fair in Istanbul

    Sixteen Vietnamese businesses have showcased their agricultural products like rice, cinnamon, cashew nuts, pepper and coffee at the Sirha trade fair in Istanbul, Turkey.

    At the opening ceremony on November 16, Vietnamese Ambassador Pham Anh Tuan spoke highly of domestic businesses’ efforts to help Vietnam farm products enter Turkey. He encouraged them to strengthen connectivity to boost exports to the potential market. 

    During the fair on November 16-17, Vietnamese businesses joined a Business-to-Business (B2B) forum co-organized by the Vietnam Trade Office and the Foreign Economic Relations Board of Turkey (DEIK). Some of them succeeded in signing trade deals at the event. 

    vietnam attends sirha trade fair in istanbul hinh 2 Ambassador Pham Anh Tuan held a working session with DEIK president Nail Opak, who affirmed that DEIK will serve as a bridge to further foster economic cooperation between the two countries.

    Mr Tuan expressed his hope that DEIK and the embassy continue to regularly exchange information to further promote their roles in supporting businesses of both sides.

    Sembcorp increases stake in VSIPPL

    Sembcorp Industries’ wholly-owned subsidiary Sembcorp Development has entered into a sale and purchase agreement that will increase its interest in Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park Pte., Ltd. from 92.9 to 96.6 per cent.

    According to the firm's press release, the share acquisition in Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park Pte., Ltd. (VSIPPL) from a minority shareholder is expected to be completed by the end of November 2017. The total purchase consideration of $6.9 million was calculated based on the net asset value of VSIPPL as of September 30, 2017.

    VSIPPL represents the Singaporean consortium which holds a 51 per cent stake in Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park Joint Venture Co., the developer of Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park projects in Vietnam.

    The acquisition will be funded internally and is not expected to have a material impact on the earnings per share and net asset value per share of Sembcorp Industries for the financial year ending on December 31, 2017

    Since 1996, Sembcorp has been a partner to the Vietnamese government to create integrated townships and industrial parks in the country that are complete work-live-play environments. There are seven VSIPs in Vietnam's southern, northern, and central regions.

    These projects uniquely integrate industrial, commercial, and residential solutions localised to suit the demands of Vietnam's rapid urbanisation and industrialisation.

    Fibre segment to beat $3-billion export target

    Bypassing the concerns that the application of anti-dumping tariffs in some export markets might cast a negative impact on export performance, the fibre sector is solid on its way to beat the 2017 export value of $3.1 billion.

    According to preliminary figures from the Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association (Vitas), Vietnam raked in $2.8 billion from fibre exports in the first ten months of this year, a 23 per cent jump on-year.

    As the fibre sector is encountering anti-dumping tariffs in some major export markets like Turkey, India, and Brazil, this outcome proves encouraging.

    According to Vitas chairman Vu Duc Giang, after Turkey imposed anti-dumping tariffs on several types of export fibre, such as draw textured yarn (DTY) and synthetic fibre in 2016, local export firms have been successful in finding alternative markets, which was the factor behind the more than 20 per cent jump in the fibre sector’s ten-month export value.

    Soi The Ky JSC (STK), a major player in the local fibre industry, is one of the businesses whose export operations were affected by Turkey’s tax imposition, as the company had exported DTY there.

    Via effective market expansion activities, in the first nine months of this year the company reaped VND1.45 trillion ($66 million) in total export value, a big jump compared to the VND972 billion ($44 million) it posted in 2016’s similar period.

    The company’s net revenue rose by VND206 billion ($9.3 million) in 2017’s third quarter alone, up 67 per cent on-year.

    According to an STK source, the company’s soaring revenue came on the back of effective sales promotion activities, particularly successes in finding new markets and customers.

    With such upbeat results, STK is confident in reaching the full-year revenue and after-tax profit targets of VND1.9 trillion ($87 million) and VND87 billion ($3.9 million) by the end of the year.

    The Vietnamese fibre sector has carved itself a place in the global fibre map and is well positioned to compete with big foreign rivals like India, China, Turkey, and Middle Eastern countries on equal footing.

    The export prospects of local businesses in the rest of the year and next year are forecast to be bright.

    According to Nguyen Minh Dao, head of the Fibre Business Department of Vinatex Nam Dinh Spinning Factory, a member of state textile and garment conglomerate Vinatex, with a monthly export value averaging at $1.1 million, they are confident in reaching 2017’s export target of $15 million.

    For a plant which only commenced operations a little over a year ago, not having unsold stock and counting stable export value is deemed as fair business results.  

    VNN


    0 0
  • 11/24/17--01:20: Article 0
  • Banks divesting shares to clear cross-ownership status



    Many divestment deals have been made by commercial banks this month. Most of the businesses in which banks have withdrawn capital have made only modest profits and have had unsatisfactory business results. 

     vietnam economy, business news, vn news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, vn news, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, Vietnam breaking news, SCIC, Sabeco, Vietcombank

    According to the Hanoi Stock Exchange (HNX), three share auctions were organized by banks on November 20.

    Vietcombank sold 6.6 million shares, or 10.9 percent of charter capital of the Cement Finance Company (CFC), at the starting price of VND11,549 per share. The bank also put 13.25 million shares of SaigonBank, or 4.3 percent of charter capital, into auction on the same day at the starting price of VND12,550 per share.

    Meanwhile, OceanBank registered to sell 4 million shares, or 8 percent of circulating shares of PetroVietnam - SSG Real Estate JSC at the starting price of VND10,638 per share.

    Analysts noted that many commercial banks plan to divest shares. In mid-2016, SeABank registered to auction 416,300 shares, or 6.24 percent, of PV Oil Nam Dinh. Prior to that, a representative of Military Bank told the bank it would complete capital withdrawal from MBLand in 2017.

    The divestment is a move to pursue the State Bank’s Circular 36 which sets limits on capital contribution to ensure safe operation for banks. However, there is another important reason behind the divestment: capital contributions don’t bring satisfactory profits.

    The divestment is a move to pursue the State Bank’s Circular 36 which sets limits on capital contribution to ensure safe operation for banks. 

    PetroVietnam - SSG Real Estate, for example, has seen profit decreasing in the last two years. In 2016, its post-tax profit dropped by half from VND58 million in 2015 to VND30 million. The company doesn’t intend to pay dividends in 2017.

    The same situation can be seen at CFC. Its shareholders cannot receive dividends for many years. The company was established in 2008 with three founding shareholders, including Vietcombank.

    In 2016, CFC’s post-tax profit dropped dramatically by 88.98 percent compared with 2015. However, the profit increased again by 32 percent in the first half of 2017.

    Vietcombank’s capital contribution in Saigon Bank brings better profit as Saigon Bank’s profit in 2016 increased by 223.3 percent over 2015. However, Saigon Bank’s problem lies in bad debt with the non-performing loan ratio reaching 2.75 percent, near the ceiling level of 3 percent set by the central bank.

    SBV Governor Le Minh Hung, speaking about banks’ cross-ownership at the ongoing NA session, said SBV has been urging banks to divest shares to clear cross-ownership status.

    No more individuals hold more than 5 percent of charter capital of banks. The number of commercial banks which hold each other’s shares decreased from seven in 2012 to two.  The number of banks and businesses which hold each other’s shares has dropped from 56 to two.

    Mai Chi, VNN  


    0 0
  • 11/27/17--01:39: Article 3
  • Social News 27/11


    Vietnamese expatriates raise funds to support typhoon victims

    The Vietnamese Embassy in Mexico has organised a fund-raising drive to support people in central and Central Highlands provinces that were devastated by floods caused by typhoon Damrey earlier this month.

    The event drew the participation of the embassy’s staff, representatives of the Vietnam News Agency (VNA)’s Bureau and Vietnamese people community in the host country.

    Vietnamese Ambassador to Mexico Nguyen Hoai Duong thanked Vietnamese expatriates in Mexico for their practical contributions to help victims of natural disasters in the past years.

    The Vietnamese Embassy in Laos also joined efforts to support typhoon victims by launching a fund-raising campaign on November 25. This was the third time in 2017 the embassy has raised funds to aid people affected by natural disasters in the home country.

    The third drive, which will run until December 1, collected 6,830 USD on the first day. Earlier, Vietnamese people in Laos donated 10,000 USD to support flood-hit people in central and Central Highlands provinces.

    Typhoon Damrey made landfall in Vietnam on November 4 with winds of up to 135 km/hour, 50 km south of Nha Trang (Khanh Hoa province), and became one of the worst storms to strike Vietnam’s southern coastal region in years. 

    The typhoon and subsequent floods claimed 89 lives and left 18 missing and 174 others injured in central and Central Highlands localities as of November 7. 

    More than 1,480 houses collapsed while 119,200 others were damaged. Nearly 8,000ha of rice and 14,600ha of other crops were flooded.

    Vietnamese wastewater workers complete German training programme


     Vietnamese expatriates raise funds to support typhoon victims, Vietnamese wastewater workers complete German training programme, Illegal sand exploitation increasingly complicated in HCMC
    Twenty three lecturers at the College of Technology II and 17 workers of six wastewater companies receive the Certificates of Equivalence to the German standard at a graduation ceremony held on November 25 in HCM City. Photo courtesy of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) 

    Twenty three lecturers at the College of Technology II and 17 workers at six wastewater companies have received certificates of German standard equivalence after completing a training programme for sewage engineering technicians.

    The training programme titled “Vocational Training for Skilled Workers in the Wastewater Sector” is part of the Vietnamese-German “Reform Programme of Technical and Vocational Education and Training in Việt Nam” that is being implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

    The involvement of six companies and the Việt Nam Water Supply and Sewerage Association ensures demand for the training and thus the employability of the graduates.

    From 2014 to 2017, six lecturers and 17 in-company trainers of wastewater companies in HCM City, Cần Thơ City and Bình Dương, Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu, Đồng Nai, and Khánh Hòa provinces have been qualified to follow the intensive training that was conducted by German experts from the Chamber of Industry and Commerce Dresden (IHK Dresden), the Dresden Sewage Company (SEED Dresden) and the Pirna Vocational Training Centre of Technology and Economy.

    In September and October, after three years of receiving training, trainers took the final proficiency examination oriented to the German standard of sewerage engineering technicians.

    All the trainers passed the exam, which means they have qualifications equivalent to those trained and recognised technicians in Germany.

    The cooperative training programme for sewage engineering technicians is a cooperation model of a vocational college, an association and enterprises in the field of water supply and sewerage, said Ass. Prof. Lê Quân, Deputy Minister of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs.

    “The success of this model has proven that cooperative vocational training with the business sector is an indispensable, feasible and effective trend.”

    Trainers receiving the Certificates of Equivalence to the German standard will be the core officials at vocational schools and businesses to contribute to the development of a skilled workforce in the wastewater sector in the future, he said at a graduation ceremony held last Saturday in HCM City.

    Wastewater drainage and treatment is an important field of green economic development in Việt Nam.

    In order to achieve the Vietnamese Government’s ambitious goal of increasing the share of treated wastewater to 60 per cent, a skilled workforce for the wastewater sector is needed.

    By 2020, it is estimated that Việt Nam will need more than 8,000 qualified technicians to operate and maintain the infrastructure in the wastewater sector, according to a report released by GIZ.

    Illegal sand exploitation increasingly complicated in HCMC

    Illegal mineral exploitation has been more and more complicated in HCMC especially in areas adjacent to neighboring provinces, reported the Department of Natural Resources and Environment.

    At a meeting with Economics-Budget Committee under HCMC People’s Council yesterday about management and exploitation of minerals in the city in the period of 2015-2016, the department said that police and border military forces have spotted and penalized many illicit sand dredging cases since early this year.

    Specifically, waterway police units have detected 25 cases, captured 118 offenders, 43 sand mining means, three barges and nearly 15,000 cubic meters of sand with the total fine of VND6 billion ($264,000).

    Meantime, border military forces have spotted 37 cases, handled 91 violators and seized 89 means and 14,240 cubic meters of sand with the total penalty of VND1.9 billion ($84,000).

    Violators have used more sophisticated tricks and been more reckless, raising much difficulty for authorized agencies to inspect and handle.

    At the meeting, delegates said that HCMC should step up cooperation with neighboring provinces of Dong Nai, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Ben Tre and Long An to tackle the issue. In addition, city agencies should work together more synchronously.

    The city should propose the Government to supplement regulations against transport of unclear origin minerals and increase fines on illegal mineral exploitation.

    Hanoi builds plan of four underground parking lots

    The Prime Minister has approved a proposal by the Ministry of Planning and Investment to choose consultant firms to build a 1:2000 scale plan of underground parking lots in four districts Hoan Kiem, Ba Dinh, Dong Da and Hai Ba Trung in Hanoi.

    While implementing the plan, the People’s Committee of Hanoi city will get opinions of the Ministry of Construction and the Ministry of Justice.

    According to the committee, Hanoi had 5.9 milion vehicles last year with the average growth rate reaching 4.6 percent a year.

    Urban construction area approximates 3,861 hectares with parking lot area accounting for 15.6 percent in the four inner districts. So the area for static traffic is only 0.4 percent while it must be 2-3 percent to meet requirements.

    At present, building more parking lots on the ground is unfeasible so implementation of the plan is suitable.

    Hanoi, Vientiane strengthen multifaceted cooperation

    Hanoi always gives high priority to promoting multifaceted cooperation with Vientiane for the development of the two cities as well as the special traditional friendship between the two Parties, States and people, said Secretary of the Hanoi municipal Party Committee Hoang Trung Hai.

    During his talks with Secretary of the Party Committee and Mayor of Vientiane Sinlavong Khutphaythoune in the Lao capital on November 25, Hai said that it was the first time high-ranking delegations of the two cities have paid mutual visits in a year.

    Khutphaythoune hailed Hai’s visit which took place as the two countries are celebrating the 55th anniversary of diplomatic ties and the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Vietnam-Laos Treaty of Amity and Cooperation.

    They noted with satisfaction the bilateral comprehensive links over the past years with a number of effective projects, adding that Hanoi assisted Vientiane in building the Vientiane Politics – Public Administration School and the traditional house of the Vientiane Military Command, as well as launching joint agriculture projects.

    The two officials expressed their wish to continue stepping up cooperative activities in different areas.

    The two sides signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation for the 2017-2020 period, under which the two cities will continue the exchange of visits by high-ranking delegations and strengthen coordination between departments and agencies. Hanoi will help Vientiane with administrative management and technological application in State administrative agencies.

    The cities agreed to boost trade and exports and consider a project to build Hanoi trade and tourism centre in Vientiane and a similar one of Vientiane in Hanoi.

    The two officials vowed to strengthen the traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive partnership between Vietnam and Laos.

    On the occasion, the Vietnamese delegation presented 20 sets of computers to the municipal Party Committee and administration of Vientiane.

    Charity event for children with cancer held in Hà Nội, HCM City 

     Vietnamese expatriates raise funds to support typhoon victims, Vietnamese wastewater workers complete German training programme, Illegal sand exploitation increasingly complicated in HCMC
    Volunteers make sunflowers at Sunflower Charity Day last year. 

    The 10th Sunflower Charity Day hosted by Tuổi Trẻ (Youth) newspaper will take place in HCM City and Hà Nội on November 26.

    The annual event commemorates the death of Lê Thanh Thúy, a high school girl famous for her long fight against bone cancer before she died on November 2, 2007, as well as the establishment of the newspaper’s “Thúy’s Dream Foundation” to support children with cancer.

    The event features many activities such as blood donations, an exhibition to auction paintings by child patients, a flea market, traditional games, and music and dance performances among others.

    On the sidelines of the event, a marathon will be held on November 25 at Đầm Sen Amusement Park in HCM City’s District 11  to raise funds for child cancer patients.

    Marathon participants can have free access to the park, with tickets available at the park and Tuổi Trẻ’s office in District 11.

    Local medical firm ECO Pharma JSC commits a donation of VNĐ50,000 per person taking part in the marathon and VNĐ30,000 for each sunflower painting and posted on Facebook with hashtag #ngayhoihoahuongduonglan10 and #10namuocmocuathuy.

    At the gala night of the event, the organisers will award 150 scholarships to children who have recovered from cancer and a thousand gifts to child patients, and recognise the contributions of donors and volunteers over the last 10 years organising the event.

    Deputy PM urges greater efforts for UN 90-90-90 Goals

    Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam has called on the entire society to join hands for the United Nations 90-90-90 Goals by 2020.

    Dam made the call during a meeting held in the northern province of Hai Duong on November 26 in response to the National Action Month for HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control (November 10 – December 10) and World AIDS Day (December 1).

    The UN 90-90-90 Goals mean that by 2020, 90 percent of all people living with HIV will know their HIV status, 90 percent of all people with a diagnosed HIV infection will receive sustained antiretroviral (ARV) therapy while 90 percent of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy will have viral suppression.

    In his speech, Dam said the HIV/AIDS epidemics appeared for the first time in the world 35 years ago and was discovered in Vietnam 25 years ago with 250,000 infection cases and over 90,000 deaths reported.

    Thanks to efforts of departments, agencies and mass organisations, HIV/AIDS infections and deaths have kept falling in recent years. Apart from international support, the Vietnamese government will allocate more finance for the fight against the epidemic and issue health insurance of HIV patients, Dam noted.

    Vietnam is the first country in the Asia-Pacific region to commit to the UN 90-90-90 Goals, he said, adding that awareness campaigns should be enhanced to make it easier for HIV carriers to be treated with ARV and protect them from discrimination.

    According to the Health Ministry’s Vietnam Authority of HIV/AIDS Control, the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS reported that there are more than 36.7 million living HIV carriers now and around 35 million have died from the disease.

    2017 is the 10th consecutive year that Vietnam has seen reductions in the number of newly-discovered HIV infections, the number of transmissions to full-blown AIDS and the number of AIDS-caused deaths. Each year, about 10,000 new HIV infection cases are discovered in the country, mostly via sex.

    After the meeting, students and members of armed forces joined a parade to call on mass organisations and people to join the fight against HIV/AIDS.

    On the occasion, the Health Ministry’s Fund in Support of HIV/AISD Patients granted VND200,000 to each of the 60 children under treatment in the provincial Centre for HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control.

    Representatives from organisations and businesses also offered gifts to local children living with HIV.

    HCMC University of Architecture wins two first Loa Thanh prizes

    The Vietnam Federation of Civil Engineering Associations in co-ordination with the Ministry of Construction, the Vietnam Association of Architects and the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union yesterday presented Loa Thanh Awards to 48 winners at Van Mieu - Quoc Tu Giam (Temple of Literature) in Ha Noi.

    The organizer has selected 48 prizes amongst 114 entries from 23 universities nationwide including four first prizes, 19 second prizes and 25 third prizes.

    According to the organizers, the quality of participant projects is improve gradually and the idea of design is from real social demand. Especially, this year, architecture schools in the south captured high prize thanks to their innovation.

    The award showcases the talents of the best fifth-year architecture students from Vietnam’s schools of architecture. The University of Architecture in HCMC won two first prizes. Student Tang Vinh Anh Duy of the school won the prize with project “ Semi-desert natural south-central coastal museum” with negative space of sandy hills, the design falling in line with nature , giving impression to viewers.

    Student Le Kien Quoc won the competition with ornamental tree in Sa Dec District in the Mekong delta province of Dong Thap representing specific space of local wharf.

    Amongst second prizes, the project “ Museum without number “ of student Dang Tran Con of Construction school in the Central Vietnam is also impressive.

    Annual Loa Thanh Award is the competition organized for students who specialize in civil engineering and architecture by Vietnamese Association for Civil Engineering, Vietnamese Association for Architects, Central Board of Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union and the Ministry of Construction. The competition aims to improve training quality in architecture and construction.

    French consulate general honors teachers of French

    More than 100 teachers of the French language at high schools and universities in HCMC and Can Tho City on Tuesday night attended a meeting at the French consul general’s residence in District 1, HCMC on the occasion of the Vietnam Teachers’ Day.

    Since 2015, the French consulate general in HCMC has teamed up with the French Institute in Vietnam to host a special day for Vietnamese teachers to honor their contributions to teaching French in the country.

    The event was marked by the launch of fresh projects for French language teachers and schools with bilingual classes. Especially, an intensive French training program called “BELC ASEAN” is scheduled to be implemented in March next year in the city for 150 French language teachers in Vietnam and other regional countries.

    Consul General of France in HCMC Vincent Floreani expressed appreciation of the effective operation of the association for French-teaching people (FIEF) under the umbrella of the Vietnam-France Friendship Union in HCMC and Can Tho where French language teachers can meet up and share their experiences in teaching.

    The French consul general told the Daily in an interview that there are around 6,500 Vietnamese students in France and that some 1,400 new students come to France a year. This is obvious evidence that the French language has grown popular in Vietnam, he said.  

    “Promoting the development of the French language in Vietnam is our main priority as France has been trying to spur cultural exchanges, academic programs and economic cooperation between the two countries in the coming time.”

    The French Institute in Vietnam is rolling up its sleeves to develop “Espace France” in provinces and cities throughout the country to support cooperation and cultural exchange.

    Pham Hong Thien Phuc, a 12th grader at Le Hong Phong High School for the Gifted in District 5, HCMC, told the Daily at the meeting that he dreams of becoming a French language teacher in the future so he began pursuing French courses at the Institute of Cultural Exchanges with France (Idecaf) in District 1 when he was still in junior high school as a preparatory step to fulfill his dream.

    “The love for French culture and lifestyle urged me to stick to the French language though the language is much harder to learn than English,” the 18-year-old added.

    Dang Ngoc Nhu Quynh, a teacher of French at Nguyen Thi Minh Khai High School in District 3, said that she has been teaching French for more than four years and it is her joy to introduce French culture and language to the young Vietnamese generation.

    “No words could express my joyful feelings as the French agencies in the country have paid much attention and praised Vietnamese teachers’ efforts and contributions to the teaching of French,” Quynh shared.

    Last year, the French consulate general in HCMC also launched IFprofs, a social network for teachers of French, to assist teachers to gain easy access to teaching materials and methods.

    IFprofs, developed by the French Institute in Paris, has heaped praise from around 4,500 members in 29 countries in the world, with 186 of them Vietnamese.

    Nguyen Hong Son runs music concert to raise funds for Truong Sa

    Major General/Musician Nguyen Hong Son, who serves as director of Military Hospital 175, will organize a concert to raise funds for Vietnam’s Truong Sa islands off Khanh Hoa Province at the Army Theater in HCMC’s Tan Binh District on December 2 and at the Hanoi Opera House on December 10.

    The first part of the concert is expected to feature songs praising the love for the country and Vietnamese people, performed by some famous artists such as People’s Artist Tran Hieu, People’s Artist Quang Tho, Meritorious Artist Quang Huy, and Meritorious Artist Ta Minh Tam among others.

    During the rest of the show, audiences can listen to the songs composed by musician Nguyen Hong Son himself, who has used music as a means to express his love for the country’s seas and islands.

    All the proceeds raised from the concert will be used to purchase medical equipment for Truong Sa medical center.

    Thai Binh hairstylist wins first prize at L’Oreal contest

    Tran Thi Hau from the northern province of Thai Binh has defeated 25 other contestants to bag first prize on the final gala night of a hair-dressing contest called “Colors of Life Trophy” launched by the cosmetics company L’Oreal Vietnam.

    As part of the community project titled “Beauty for a Better Living” initiated in 2009 to mark the 100th anniversary of the company, the competition was designed for hairstylists with underprivileged background families around the country to nurture the passion for the career of hair styling and honor their efforts to overcome the challenges in life to lead a meaningful life.

    More than 200 candidates from across the country had registered for the contest, and 26 best contestants were chosen to compete in the final round which took place on November 20 and 21.

    At an award ceremony on Wednesday night in HCMC’s District 10, Tran Thi Hoai Linh from HCMC was named as the second winner of the hair-styling contest while the third prize went to Tran Thi Bich Tran from the capital city of Hanoi.

    Rebecca Brent, a professional hairdresser from New Zealand with more than ten years of experience in hair-dressing, showed up in Vietnam to serve as head of the judging panel of the contest and introduce her latest collection of hair fashions to young Vietnamese people.

    Over the past eight years, L’Oreal has spent a total of VND14 billion on building the free hair design training project in many provinces and cities across the country such as HCMC, Hanoi, Nghe An, Quang Binh and Can Tho and gave support to more than 1,500 underprivileged women and students nationwide to establish a new way of life.

    The program focuses on providing practical skills for learners to meet the demand for skilled labor in the hair-styling industry and enable them to open their own business after graduation. Especially, the community program is dedicated to assist the learners in gaining self-esteem and securing a stable job to earn their daily bread by their own efforts.

    HCM City seeks stronger trade, investment ties with Slovakia

    Chairman of the People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City Nguyen Thanh Phong on November 25 received Peter Pellegrini, Slovakian Deputy Prime Minister for Investments and Informatization, who is paying an official visit to Vietnam from November 25-29.

    At the meeting, Phong said Pellegrini’s visit will enhance the traditional cooperation between the two countries in general and between HCM City and Slovakian localities in particular.

    As the traditional cooperation between Vietnam and Slovakia has been consolidated, relations between HCM City and Slovakian localities, including Kosice city, are also being enhanced, he said.

    HCM City will create optimal conditions for Slovakian companies to promote trade, investment cooperation and do long-term business in fields that the city has high demand such as chemical industry, smart solutions, sustainable development, food industry and health, Phong added.

    He asked the Slovakian Deputy PM to encourage Slovakian firms to foster trade and investment cooperation with Vietnam and HCM City in particular, contributing to the sustainable development of bilateral relations between Vietnam and Slovakia.

    Lauding the traditional friendship, Pellegrini said that Vietnam and Slovakia, as well as HCM City and Slovakian localities, hold huge potentials to strengthen cooperation, especially in economy, trade and investment.

    He thanked the city for its support towards the construction of a Vietnam-Slovakia friendship building, a symbol for the two countries’ sound traditional friendship, and also called for the city’s businesses to explore Slovakia’s investment climate as a gateway towards entering the European market.

    More patients trust district-level, private hospitals

    There have been more patients visiting private and district-level hospitals in HCMC for medical examination and treatment, easing the pressure on hospitals at higher levels.

    This is evident in a slight fall in patients at city-level hospitals in the first nine months of the year.

    According to the HCMC Department of Health, the number of patients visiting city-level hospitals made up 48.3% in the nine-month period, down 2.7% year-on-year, while district-level and private hospitals saw respective increases of 1.1% and 3.1% to 27.2% and 18.7%.

    In addition to the hospitals of districts 2, Thu Duc, Tan Phu, Binh Thanh and Binh Tan, patients at Cu Chi District Hospital grew more than 70%, District 11 Hospital 20%, and the hospitals of districts 9, 5, 1, Nha Be and Binh Chanh over 10% over the year-ago period.

    More people have come to lower-level hospitals thanks to cooperation between public and private hospitals. For example, Children’s Hospital No. 1 offers medical services at the private Trieu An Hospital and Children’s Hospital No. 2 also has representatives at the private Hong Duc Hospital.

    The HCMC Oncological Hospital provides goiter treatment services at the oncological ward of the Hong Duc Hospital and People’s Hospital 115 cooperates with the private City International Hospital.

    The examination departments of district-level hospitals providing services at ward-level clinics have attracted more patients. The presence of Thu Duc District Hospital’s examination department at Binh Chieu Ward’s medical center and that of Tan Phu District Hospital at Tay Thanh Ward’s medical center help bring in 100 and 30 patients a day respectively.

    VNN


    0 0
  • 11/27/17--01:50: Article 2
  • With prices escalating, Vietnam stocks no longer cheap


    The VN Index increased by 35.8 percent by November 20 compared with the 2016 closing trading session, making the stock market one of the fastest growing markets in the world. 


    vietnam economy, business news, vn news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, vn news, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, Vietnam breaking news, Vn Index, Rong Viet, SSC 
    The VN Index surpassed the 900 point threshold on November 20 

    The VN Index surpassed the 900 point threshold on November 20, while one year ago, the record high was 664.87 points. 

    Vietnam attracted VND22 trillion worth of foreign capital this year. However, according to Rong Viet Securities, though the stock index is on a sharp rise, few investors are excited about the market. 

    Rong Viet’s analysts believe that the most brilliant period of the stock market was mid-year when the stock index increased to the 800-820 point threshold. 

    After the period, the index continued to rise thanks to the strong rise of ROS (construction & real estate), SAB (brewer) and bluechips such as VNM (Vinamilk) and VIC (Vingroup).

    As the VN Index rose, the P/E (price/earnings ratio) has reached 17.7x, a very high level since 2012. If compared with other regional markets and the P/E of a frontier market, the P/E of the VN Index is no longer the ‘cheapest in the region’.

    As the VN Index rose, the P/E (price/earnings ratio) has reached 17.7x, a very high level since 2012. If compared with other regional markets and the P/E of a frontier market, the P/E of the VN Index is no longer the ‘cheapest in the region’.

    An analyst said the P/E once climbed to a record high of 35x in 2007 and 23x in 2009 when the credit growth rate was high at 37.7 percent, which ‘exaggerated’ the P/E.

    In recent years, the P/E escalated to 17x in 2014, but the illegal deployment of the Chinese HD-981 oil rig and the collapse of the crude oil price, which led to the fall of a series of shares later, forced the P/E down. It took the VN Index three years to bounce back to the 17x P/E.

    The analyst said Vietnam is in stable and favorable macroeconomic condition, but the new  P/E index doesn’t reflect the performance of the market.

    He cited a report as saying that many shares of the top 50 companies in terms of capitalization value now have an abnormally high P/E. 

    The top 50 companies have seen P/E increase very sharply, by 20 percent on average this year. Rong Viet believes that stocks have become more expensive compared with other markets. 

    The KSE Index of the Pakistani market once increased sharply from 10x to 16x due to information that the market would be upgraded from frontier to emerging in 2017. If the upgrading also occurs to Vietnam, the P/E will continue to rise.

     Thanh Mai, VNN


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