Vietnamese students win scholarships
As many as 270 Vietnamese scholars were granted scholarships on the Ford Foundation International Fellowship Programme (IFP) over the past 12 years, according to the Center for Education Exchange with Viet Nam (CEEVN).
These outstanding academics, who mostly came from disadvantaged and ethnic minority areas, have been able to pursue postgraduate courses in 10 different countries across the world.
The programme is set to conclude after running in 22 countries over the world, enabling over 4,000 scholars to pursue advanced degrees at nearly 650 universities worldwide.-
Illegally imported weapons seized
HCM City Customs seized a batch of bayonets on Thursday which were illegally imported as non-trade items.
The weapons were made in the United States and had a total value of US$856, according to the customs declaration. Initial investigation showed the products were being sent to a resident in central Da Nang Province’s Nguyen Du Street.
Minimum salary increases since July 1
A new minimum wage band which will be up to VND100,000 (US$4.6) more than the current rate per month, will be applied from July 1, 2013, according to the government’s decision No. 66/2013/ND-CP.
This means their salary will be from VND1,050,000 ($50) per month at present to VND1,150,000 ($54.7) a month. The wage is applicable to officers of state-run companies and those working in army forces.
The country now has different wage brackets covering four regional zones, ranked according to the level of socio-economic development in each zone.
Wage scale and other allowances set forth by enterprises should be based on the minimum wage, according to the decree. In addition, operational expenditure and fringe benefits will be calculated on minimum salary also. Salary of each employees is different on the basis of their grade, job title, seniority and rank.
The Ministry of Home Affairs’ calculation, total spending for this increase of minimum salary will be VND21,7 trillion. The spending is planned in budget expenditure plan of wage reform of 2013 .
Hau Giang confirms first A/H1N1 death
A 58-year-old man in Long My district has been killed by deadly strain virus A/H1N1, the district Department of Preventive Medicine reported on June 28.
Ly Van Thanh was admitted to a local clinic for treatment on June 18 after showing flu-like symptoms such as high temperatures and prolonged coughing.
A week later he was brought to the Long My district general hospital which then carried him to a general hospital in Can Tho city the same day because of poor health conditions.
Despite doctors’ efforts, Thanh passed away on June 27.
On June 28 the HCM City-based Pasteur Institute announced that Thanh tested positive for A/H1N1 virus.
The patient was said to have stayed in his house in village 12, Vinh Vien commune, Long My district before he contracted the disease.
The Long My district veterinary agency took blood samples of Thanh’s relatives and sent them to the Pasteur Institute for testing.
Latest technologies could see pineapple exports soar
Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces should make zoning plans for pineapple cultivation and ensure there is a stable market for the fruit, delegates told a forum held in Hau Giang Province on Tuesday.
Dr Mai Thanh Phung, chief of the National Agriculture Extension Centre’s HCM City office, said pineapple is among the world’s most important fruits and has an output of 20 million tonnes a year, half of this grown in Asia.
“Though Viet Nam is among the top 10 pineapple producing countries, it does not figure in the list of pineapple exporting countries.”
He attributed this to the lack of post-harvest and processing technologies in the country and inconsistent quality.
The country has around 40,000ha under pineapple, which yield more than 500,000 tonnes a year, with the south accounting for 90 per cent of the area, he said.
Many farmers in Vi Thanh City and Long My District of Hau Giang, and Tan Phuoc District of Tien Giang Province have benefited from growing the fruit.
Nguyen Van Dam of the Tan Phuoc agriculture extension office said pineapple is grown on 14,800ha in the province, mostly in his district.
With an average yield of 20 tonnes per hectare, farmers earn a profit of VND25 million per hectare a year, he said.
“The province plans to expand the area under pineapple to 16,000ha and increase application of VietGap standards in growing the fruit.”
But delegates agreed that the lack of stable markets for the fruit, volatile prices, diseases, and poor post-harvest and processing technologies threaten sustainable development.
Nguyen Trinh Nhat Hang of the Southern Fruit Research Institute said local authorities should co-operate with related agencies to provide pineapple farmers with market information and advanced farming techniques, and create a sustainable consumption strategy for the fruit.
Provinces should make zoning plans for VietGap pineapple cultivation areas and adopt policies to encourage farmers to apply VietGap standards, which will improve the fruit quality and enable the country to meet large export orders, she said.
Phung urged agricultural extension centres to organise training courses to raise awareness among farmers about GAP and instruct them in GAP production techniques.
“Scientists should strengthen research to create new high quality seedlings and improve cultivation practices,” he said.
He called for establishing closer links between enterprises and farmers, with the former ensuring outlets for the fruit.
Vo Mai, deputy chairwoman of the Viet Nam Gardening Association, urged businesses to focus on developing brands for Vietnamese pineapple.
Farmers called on the Government to give them preferential loans and build more pineapple processing factories to enable exports so that they could feel more secure.
Villa sale to fund new city HQ
Da Lat City plans to sell 16 State-owned villas at auction and lease eight others later this year.
The plan aims to help fund the costly and large-scale administrative hub project for the well known resort city in Central Highlands Lam Dong Province.
The villas are among 32 facilities being used as the headquarters of provincial agencies and departments.
The city has 212 State-owned French style villas across a total area of more than 562,663sqm.
These are classified into three groups based on their historical and cultural value, architectural characteristics, preservation capacity and profit-making ability.
The first group consists of five villas which have both historical and cultural value and are seen to represent a unique style of architecture.
Users of these villas are not allowed to reconstruct or alter any parts of their interior design or architectural structure.
The second group includes 77 villas which hold some historical and cultural value, and users of these villas are only allowed to refurbish the interior to meet usage demand while being banned altogether from changing the outside.
The remaining group consists of 96 villas which either hold little historical and cultural value, have had their style altered or have deteriorated. These villas can be demolished and replaced by new constructions for attracting investment and tourism development.
Villas in the third group are those to be offered for sale, while villas in the second group will be offered for lease, said Deputy Director of the provincial construction department Le Quang Trung.
The sale and lease proposal has already been approved by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and the first auction session is expected to start next month. New villa owners would receive the houses 30 days after the auction, Trung said.
“Price appraisal is being carried out for the villas before they are put under the hammer for sale and lease,” he added.
“The funds from this venture are expected to be around VND500 billion (US$23.8 million), and will go towards the construction of the province’s administrative centre project.”
This ambitious project, covering 3.5ha in Tran Phu street, will become the headquarters for all agencies and departments in the city.
It has received total investment capital of more than VND1 trillion ($47.6 million) and is expected to become operational in the first quarter of 2014.
Overloaded trucks face crackdown
Nineteen exceedingly overloaded trucks were detected by HCM City inspectors and stopped as a six-month crackdown began in the city on Thursday night.
The drivers of the trucks were fined millions of dong and had their driving licences temporarily withdrawn.
Tran Hong Minh, deputy head of the HCM City Road and Railway Police Department, said that inspections are going to be conducted regularly, especially during the night.
Police and transport inspectors will be stationed at ports including Cat Lai and Tan Thuan and at large stores across the city, checking the loading capacity of trucks transporting cargo in and out, he said.
The operation has been launched in response to the serious sinking of roads in these areas, caused by the overwhelming presence of overloaded trucks.
According to HCM City’s Transport Department, all of the lawbreaking trucks detected in the first night were carrying 30 per cent more goods than their capacity.
In past inspection efforts, few violations were spotted as officials did not check the roads at night, which is when the majority of these trucks go to work, the department claimed.
Minh said that an excess of 30 per cent or more on a truck leads to an automatic 60-day driving suspension and a fine of VND4 million. An excess of 5-29 per cent will result in a 30-day suspension and a VND1 million fine.
Other agencies throughout the country are also making efforts to take overloaded trucks off the roads.
The Viet Nam Road Administration has just asked leaders of people’s committees in the five provinces of Vinh Phuc, Tuyen Quang, Hoa Binh, Son La and Dien Bien to co-operate with each other in a wide-scale operation to punish truck drivers operating illegally on national highways and local roads.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Transport is drafting regulations applying criminal punishments to overloaded vehicles which cause serious consequences.
Nguyen Van Thanh, chairman of the Viet Nam Automobile Transport Association, supported the increase in inspections and said drivers of overloaded vehicles causing damage to roads should considered criminals destroying a national asset.
Such violations in many countries lead to imprisonment, he said.
Food products from Taiwan found with high chemical content
The Department of Food Safety under the Ministry of Health has just issued a warning that some food products from Taiwan (China) have chemical contents far in excess of permissible limits.
After testing tapioca starch products taken randomly from markets in Hai Ba Trung and Hoang Mai Districts and from Dong Xuan Market in Hanoi, food watchdogs found many products with high preservative and chemical content in them.
For instance, Kali Sorbat was found with 1,410-2,430mg higher than permissible level of 1.000 mg a product and Sacarin had 105-120mg higher content while the permissible level is 100mg per kilogram.
The Department of Food Safety in Hanoi and related agencies will further supervise and check sales of such products as well as issue severe penalties on violators.
Lam Dong police bust drug den
Police in Duc Trong District in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong yesterday busted a den of drug traffickers, seizing nearly 290 packages of heroin and synthetic drug powder.
The exact amount of the drugs has yet been calculated.
The drugs were found at the home of a local resident in Lien Nghia town who confessed to buy the drugs from HCM City to resell to drug addicts.
All the drugs were confiscated and the case is under further investigation.
Slow growth prompts new agricultural model
A new growth model for agriculture development was introduced as Government officials and local authorities gathered for the monthly cabinet meeting in Ha Noi on Thursday.
A report from the Ministry of Planning and Investment showed that in the first six months of the year, total production of the agriculture, forestry and fishery sectors witnessed an estimated growth of only 2.4 per cent, the lowest rise in the 10 years.
Deputy PM Nguyen Thien Nhan said it was time for the sector to improve the quality of products by following market demand while applying science and technology, marketing, and trademark building to boost efficiency.
Nhan urged the struggling sectors to shift to the proposed growth model instead of simply improving productivity and capital flows as before.
“The growth in production value of the agriculture, forestry and fishery sector (in recent months) has been slowed down due to various reasons, including decreased purchasing power caused by economic difficulties,” he said.
Explaining the reasons for their difficulties, local representatives blamed price fluctuations and low quality agricultural products being illegally smuggled into the country that were causing negative effects on agricultural production.
They called for tightened management on the imported agricultural products and a review of the products Viet Nam can produce. They suggested that products, especially those from husbandry, needed to be limited due to technical barriers.
“It’s necessary to halt products with unknown origins and imported agricultural products that can also be produced domestically,” said Secretary of the Party Committee of central Thanh Hoa Province Mai Van Ninh.
Discussing why output of Viet Nam’s agricultural products such as rice did not increase, slowing the sector’s growth rate, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat said the sector should pay more attention to the market, especially for exports.
“Most of the products can only maintain their prices or gain high growth rates through exports,” he said, adding that temporary storage of rice was just a provisional solution.
The sector head said the Government had urged ministries and sectors to support enterprises in solving barriers to export markets, also to co-ordinate with localities in controlling imports and fighting smuggling.
Sharing his opinion on issues facing the agriculture sector, Deputy PM Vu Van Ninh asked for re-structuring, research on demand and supply, as well as the building of inter-regional co-operation for development.
“Rice producers must aim to ensure national food security first,” he said. “If it is productive then we can export, but if it is not, we need to quickly shift to other plants and animals,” he stressed
Poverty reduction strategy reviewed
A seminar was held in Hanoi on June 28 to review ten years of implementing Vietnam’s comprehensive strategy on poverty reduction.
The event was organisied jointly by the Communist Party of Vietnam Magazine, the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development as one of the activities to mark the 65th anniversary of late President Ho Chi Minh’s appeal for the national patriotic emulation movement.
Participants at the seminar highlighted significant achievements in poverty reduction and comprehensive growth as a result of great efforts by the nation’s people and political system. These impressive results have also won applause from international organizations.
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) recently hosted a special event to recognize prominent poverty reduction achievements in 38 countries, including Vietnam.
Vietnam was among 18 certificate recipients recognizing its successful implementation of the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), one of which is halving the poverty rate ahead of the 2015 schedule.
This illustrates the effectiveness of Vietnam’s comprehensive strategy for poverty reduction and economic growth, and affirms that is in line with the global trend.
Delegates shared experiences and exchanged updated information on implementing national strategies to narrow the development gap between urban and rural areas in accordance with the Party’s guidelines.
They stressed the need to continue carrying out the poverty reduction strategy to ensure its sustainable development in the long term.
They also proposed measures to boost the dissemination of information on Party and State policies and encourage ministries, agencies and localities to become more active in devising sustainable ways to reduce poverty.
Meeting promotes family’s role in society
Family creates a source of strength for the nation to overcome hardship and reap success, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Thien Nhan said.
Addressing a meeting in Hanoi on June 28 to mark Vietnam Family Day (June 28), Nhan highlighted family’s role as the basic unit of society and that the health and happiness of families are reflected in society’s sustainable development.
He noted that the Vietnamese family has been a place to preserve and promote traditions and positive cultural values for thousands of years, perpetuating wisdom like “when drinking water remember the source”, patriotism, industriousness, persistence, bravery, and caring for the young and disadvantaged.
Building wealthy, progressive and happy families is a primary goal of the Party and State, Nhan affirmed.
The Deputy PM asked the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MCST) to work closely with relevant ministries and agencies to effectively implement Party and State policies on family affairs.
Accordingly, the MCST should submit the Government the national action programme on anti-domestic violence for approval. Meanwhile, the education and training sector should incorporate family-related issues into learning curricula.
MCST Deputy Minister Huynh Vinh Ai said industrialization, international integration, and the pressure of modern life have changed traditional Vietnamese family structures. Contemporary Vietnamese families encounter divorce, separation, homosexual and lesbian marriages, and foreign spouses. Domestic violence is a stubborn blight and intergenerational gaps complicate existing points of contention even further.
June 28 has been observed as Vietnam Family Day since 2001, and 2003 was selected as Vietnam Family Year.
The Vietnam Family Day Festival and Vietnam Family Year aim to encourage families to gather and discuss these potential sources of discord and address them before they impact the health of society.
The Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam (Vietcombank) presented VND100 million to 20 disadvantaged families in 10 provinces and cities as part of Family Day celebrations.
More jobs created in six months
About 722,500 workers have found jobs in the first half of the year, up 98% from a year earlier, according to the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
Of them, 40,000 have gone to work overseas, down 4% year-on-year.
Unemployment is estimated at 2.28% for the first half of the year – 3.85% in urban areas and 1.57% in rural areas.
During this period, about 10.9 million people have participated in compulsory social insurance schemes, up 7.1 percent year-on-year.
Meanwhile, about 163,000 people have participated in voluntary social insurance schemes, up 20.7% against the same period last year.
About 182,300 people applied for unemployment insurance in the first half of the year.
Labour disputes relating to salary, bonus and food allowance have been reduced significantly over last year.
Meeting gathers Khmer Theravada Buddhists
The Steering Committee for the Southwestern Region on June 28 held a meeting for the executive boards of Khmer Theravada Buddhist pagodas in the southern province of Soc Trang.
The meeting was attended by the steering committee’s deputy head Bui Ngoc Suong and permanent member Dr. To Minh Gioi, along with 150 Khmer Theravada Buddhist pagoda executive board members and the Khmer community in the province.
Gioi introduced participants the religious and ethnic situations of the country in general and the region in particular, the Party and State’s viewpoints on religious and ethnic policies, and features of Khmer Theravada Buddhism.
He warned them of schemes of hostile forces that want to take advantage of ethnic and religious issues to divide the great national unity, cause social instability and violate national security.
Results of social welfare policies, projects and programmes targeting ethnic minority groups, especially Khmer people, were also highlighted at the meeting.
At the event, Suong praised the unity of Khmer Theravada Buddhist dignitaries and followers and the Khmer community in Soc Trang province, urging them to continue promoting the great national unity and work together to build and defend the country.
Laos honours Vietnam’s publishing house
The Lao State has awarded the Labour Order, Labour Medal and certificates of merit to the Vietnam National Political Publishing House and some of its officials in recognition of their contributions and support for the Lao National Publishing House.
On behalf of the Lao government, Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism Bosengkham Vongdara presented the decorations at a ceremony in Hanoi on June 28.
Besides its cooperation with the Lao National Publishing and Book Distribution House in publishing activities, the Vietnam National Political Publishing House joined a project to publish a set of 38 books on the special relations between Vietnam and Laos in 1930-2007, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the two countries’ diplomatic ties and the 35 th year since the signing of the Vietnam-Laos friendship and cooperation treaty.
The publishing house also oversaw the building of a new office building for the Lao National Publishing and Book Distribution House, which was inaugurated earlier this month.
Under their cooperation agreement, the Vietnam National Political Publishing House also helps train staff of the Lao partner in professional skills.-
Families’ Day exhibition opens in HCM City
Nearly 100 photos are on display at an exhibition in Ho Chi Minh City in response to Vietnamese Families’ Day which falls on June 28.
The exhibition, themed “Family’s Happiness – Joyfulness for Community”, aims to honour the fine and traditional values of happiness, progressiveness and prosperity, which have been nurtured by generations of Vietnamese families – a firm ground for building a healthy and sustainable society.
One half of the exhibition is dedicated to photos of family-related activities that call for an end to family evils for improved family life. The other highlights families that set good examples for social and political conduct in 2013.
The event, which is organised by the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism in collaboration with the Women’s Association, will run until July 7 at Lam Son Park in District 1.-
JICA finances Vietnam to develop heavy chemical industry
The Record of Discussions of JICA’s Project for Human Resources Development (HRD) for Heavy-Chemical Industry at Industrial University of Ho Chi Minh City (IUH) was signed at the office of Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) on June 27.
After the signing ceremony, the 3-year Project will start soon this year, with the major purpose to support IUH in developing a new HRD model which provides practical and creative engineers for the development of Vietnam’s heavy-chemical industry, Quan doi Nhan dan reported.
Within the framework of this Project, the capacity of IUH Campus in Thanh Hoa province (IUH Thanh Hoa Campus) will be strengthened in order to provide more practical and creative engineers in the fields of heavy-chemical industry, especially refinery industry, as pilot HRD model.
This model is expected to become the reference for the Government agencies, other education and training institutions and Vietnamese society to promote desirable model of HRD meeting the needs of industrial sector. The Project also aims at establishing the collaboration network between IUH and local industries, local communities for HRD.
The operation of large-scale plants in heavy-chemical industry in Thanh Hoa and neighboring provinces including the future Nghi Son Oil Refinery Plant requires huge number of employees. However, in these areas, the development of human resources fails to meet the industrial sector’s needs for employees, especially the source of practical and creative engineers, who can take initiative and work independently rather than working under the supervision and direction.
In this context, in response to the request of the Government of Vietnam, the Government of Japan decided to support this Project to develop human resources with the expectation to contribute to not only refinery sector but also heavy-chemical industries and others. Beneficiaries are not only limited to IUH Thanh Hoa Campus but also the whole system of IUH and other education and training institutions.
Military-run Viettel helps more poor get free health exams
The Military-run Telecom Group (Viettel) will launch a medical check-up program for communities in industrial parks and poor provinces in the Northwestern region, the Central Highlands and the Southwestern region from June 29 to August 24.
Accordingly, Viettel will work with central and local general hospitals to organize health examinations and consultancy and deliver medicines free of charge for 4,000 workers, poor people and families of revolutionary contributors.
These beneficiaries are from the provinces of Dong Nai, Vinh Phuc, Cao Bang, Bac Kan, Dak Lak, Gia Lai, Bac Lieu and Ca Mau. Through such activities, Viettel hopes to join the nation’s efforts to help people weather difficulties they face in life.
PM urges progress of southern power line
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has urged southern and central highlands localities to ensure the construction progress of the 500kV power system which will supply electricity for the whole southern region.
The power line runs through Ho Chi Minh City , Gia Lai, Dak Lak, Dak Nong, Binh Phuoc, Binh Duong, Dong Nai and Ba Ria-Vung Tau.
He asked the provincial People’s Committees of Gia Lai, Dak Nong, Binh Phuoc, Binh Duong and HCM City to speed up land clearance to free space for the Pleiku-My Phuoc-Cau Bong line before July 15 and finish compensating displaced residents before August 15, so that the construction of the line and the Song May-Tan Dinh – O Mon line can be completed by the end of 2013.
Meanwhile, Dong Nai, Binh Duong and Ba Ria-Vung Tau provinces must complete land clearance for the Song May-Tan Dinh line before July 15 and the Phu My-Song May line within July, while HCM City has to finish clearance for the Phu Lam-O Mon line within July and conclude the compensation phase within August, he asked.-
Education development project praised
Education and training experts applauded the positive outcomes of a 2013 project on secondary school teaching development at a meeting in Hanoi on June 27.
Dean of Thai Nguyen University Pham Hong Quang said that his university has enjoyed new developments in infrastructure, and teacher and student competence through the project’s training courses, seminars and access to a new teaching method, and coherence between secondary school and university education in particular to achieve more sustainable and effective training.
Head of the Department of Education and Training in the southern city of Can Tho Tran Trong Khiem praised the project, acknowledging that staff competence has been elevated in the locality.
At the event, held by the Ministry of Education and Training in collaboration with the Asia Development Bank, targeted education units reported that the project has brought in an array of benefits including designing a framework for teaching staff development, ensuring training quality via examinations and an evaluation process, and enhancing the capacity of education planning and management among others.
Training focuses on sea, island dissemination
The southern central coastal province of Phu Yen on June 27 opened training classes on foreign news services and dissemination on national seas and islands for officials at 56 coastal communes.
Trainees heard reports on disputes in the East Sea, State management and measures to disseminate foreign information, and some forms of grassroots-level dissemination.
The classes aim to educate people about the position and importance of seas and islands of Vietnam and Phu Yen province in particular, international laws on seas and islands and the major contents of Vietnam’s law on protection of marine resources and environment and fishing activities.
Economic potential, especially that of the maritime economy, as well as the province’s policies to attract foreign investment and activities to increase the community’s awareness of sea and islands were also discussed during the classes.
In addition to the classes, the provincial Border Guard also introduced the above-mentioned contents to people living in 27 coastal communes and wards.
- Cystic fibrosis: the patients facing shorter lives due to drug's expense
- How to be entitled: can Debrett’s help outsiders join Britain’s elite?
- Iraqi forces kill four protesters, cleric warns of crisis
- 'Sleep should be prescribed': what those late nights out could be costing you
- The 100 best movies of the 2010s
- Edinburgh festival 2017: the shows we recommend
- State of the Union 2019: President Donald Trump calls for unity, renews pledge to build wall
- The silencing of Malta's anti-corruption campaigner
- This Is The Best Fiction Of 2018
- U.S. has world's highest rate of children in detention: U.N. study
- Simon Cheng: Former UK consulate worker says he was tortured in China
- 'Who says FullFact is the final arbiter of what the public get to see?': Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab lays into 'independent' checking service run by former Hacked Off chief and part funded by Google and George Soros
- Mass shooting at Orlando gay club: The latest
- Every Samuel L. Jackson Performance, Ranked From Worst to Best
- Cold war 2.0: how Russia and the west reheated a historic struggle
- Trump approaches 100-day milestone, but what progress has he made on his agenda?
- Independent MLAs want royal commission before there is 'no road back' for Northern Territory
- 50 world-changing people -- and 3 nonhumans -- we lost in the 2010s
- All Five FCC Commissioners Have Come Out Against The Nationalization Of 5G
SOCIETY IN BRIEF 29/6 have 4746 words, post on at June 29, 2013. This is cached page on Europe Breaking News. If you want remove this page, please contact us.