Social News 9/7
HCM City marks US Independence Day
A ceremony to mark the 240th anniversary of the United States Independence Day was held in HCM City on July 8 by the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations and the HCM City Vietnam-US Friendship Association.
On behalf of HCM City’s people, Nguyen Thi Ngoc Phuong, President of the HCM City Vietnam-US Friendship Association, extended congratulations to the US people, while highlighting the increasing relationship between the two countries.
She said with its role, the association will make positive contributions to sustainably developing the two countries’ relationship, as well as effectively implementing cooperation programmes.
Addressing the event, Tim Liston, Deputy Consul General of the US in HCM City thanked the people of Vietnam in general and HCM City people in particular for their affection and hospitality.
He said the two countries signed a number of agreements during President Barrack Obama’s trip to Vietnam.
Vietnam is leading ASEAN in exports to the US with two-way trade hitting 46 billion USD in 2015. In the first four months of 2016, Vietnam exported goods worth 13.92 billion USD to the US market.
Besides economic ties, cooperation in education, social activities and cultural exchanges between the two countries have also been strengthened.
New album honors pilots, soldiers killed in crashes
Bana singer Y Jang Tuyn
A new album honoring soldiers and 10 pilots on missing military aircraft has been released in HCM City.
Những Đôi Cánh Thiên Thần (Angel Wings) features 10 songs with music by Quỳnh Hợp and lyrics by poets Bùi Phương Thảo, Thái Thăng Long and Đỗ Quyên.
Nine military personnel on a CASA 212 turboprop plane were found dead after the aircraft went missing on June 16 during a search operation for a Su-30MK2 fighter jet with two pilots on board, which crashed off the central province of Nghệ An.
Search and rescue teams found the debris of the CASA-212 in the southwest of Bạch Long Vĩ Island near the delimitation line in the Tonkin Gulf.
One of the two pilots on Su-30MK2, Major Nguyễn Hữu Cường, was rescued, but the other, Lt. Col. Trần Quang Khải, 43, was found dead at sea and was brought ashore.
“Những Đôi Cánh Thiên Thần stands for our love for pilots and soliders of the Việt Nam Air Defense–Air Force,” said the album’s composer and producer Hợp, who spent 10 years working for the Air Defense-Air Force’s Arts Troupe.
“Through the album, we also want to encourage love for the country and soldiers among young people,” she said.
The album features singers such as Vân Khánh, Hà My, Trang Nhung and Y Jang Tuyn.
Its highlighted songs include Đồng Đội Ơi (Dear Brothers) and Su Đi Thật Rồi Sao (Are You Really Gone), written by Lt. Hoàng Hải Lý of the Việt Nam Air Force Officer Training School in Nha Trang, and journalist Đỗ Quyên of the Việt Nam News Agency.
Đồng Đội Ơi reminds listeners of the Vietnamese soldiers who devoted their life to the country and its people.
It features the voice of Bana singer Tuyn, who works for the Voice of HCM City radio station.
Tuyn, 34, who began his career in 1993, has earned several top prizes at national singing contests.
In Đồng Đội Ơi he faced the challenge of singing ballads rather than rock.
“I cried while recording the album,” said Tuyn, adding that he and other singers are proud of participating in the project.
Su Đi Thật Rồi Sao highlights the Su-30MK2 fighter pilot Khải, a friend of both Hợp and Quyên, the composer of the song.
The album is available at online music websites such as Zingmp3.vn and Nhaccuatui.com. —
National Women’s Open Cycling Tournament to kick off
The National Women’s Open Cycling Tournament for the An Giang Television Cup is scheduled to kick off on Sunday.
The tournament will attract the participation of 13 domestic and foreign teams, including Hạt Ngọc Trời An Giang, BVTV An Giang, South Korea’s Seoul cycling team, Indonesia’s customs cycling club, and Thailand’s team.
The annual bicycle race consists of six stages covering 532km. It passes through cities and provinces such as Đắk Nông, Bình Phước, Bình Dương, HCM City and Long An and finishes in An Giang province.
The event will run until July 15.
The six-day event provides a good opportunity for female Vietnamese cyclists to gain skills and experience for coming tournaments.
Tree-made fence planned to stop pollution in Nha Trang
The People’s Committee of Nha Trang City will take over more than 17,700 sq.m of land of 64 households to fence off Đắc Lộc Industrial Zone from the residential area.
The move is aimed at preventing the dust, noise and horrible smell from Khánh Hòa Khatoco Tobacco Factory from affecting households living nearby. These 64 households were the most affected as they were located next to the factory, the Committee said.
Many households opposed the operation of the Khánh Hòa Khatoco Tobacco Factory a short while after it was put into operation in 2013. They had come together and demanded that the factory to close down as the dust, noise and smell from the factory had seriously affected their lives and health.
The provincial People’s Committee has organised a dialogue with affected local households, and decided to move them to new places. Two resettlement areas have also been built.
However, Mai Văn Thắng, deputy director of the provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment said that the industrial zone was located right next to the residential area. Thus, building a green tree-fence measuring 1,500 metres with a width of 50 metres, was necessary to avoid pollution.
More trees should be planted right on the campus of the industrial zone, he added.
Đắc Lộc Industrial Zone began operations in 2010 on an area of more than 34 hectares. A large amount of dust was discharged from the zone, together with noise and smell, seriously affecting residential areas nearby.
Reports from authorised agencies in the past several years showed that the environmental index was below the allowed index, but local residents kept complaining about the pollution.
Bắc Giang firm faces inspection over environment violation
The Environment General Department working with relevant agencies will inspect the violation of environment law on protection and minerals by Á Cường Minerals Joint Stock Company in Bắc Giang.
Natural Resources and Environment minister Trần Hồng Hà issued the instructions following the reports in the media about the company directly discharging untreated wastewater into Cẩm Đàn River in Sơn Động District’s Cẩm Đàn Commune, in the northern province of Bắc Giang, causing serious environment pollution.
The company would face heavy fines if the results of tests showed that any violation had caused environment pollution, as the media had reported.
The company would be forced to suspend operations, its minerals exploitation licence and wastewater discharge permission would be revoked, and it would have to repair the damage.
Since 2014, the company has suffered many administrative punishments for discharging untreated wastewater to the river worth hundreds of millions of đồng, but the company continued to poison the river.
According to the observations of Dân Trí online newspaper, the company’s wastewater pipe is 30m long and flows directly into Cẩm Đàn river.
The discharge is milky wastewater, while the land around the sewage mouth has turned white and grey and emits an unpleasant smell, the newspaper reported.
The recent inspection by local inspectors and police found that the wastewater of the company contained dark coloured mud and was not treated as required by regulations.
The agencies were asked to report the inspection to the minister before July 20.
Millions of jobs in Southeast Asia to be lost to automation: ILO
More than half of workers in five Southeast Asian countries, including Vietnam, are at high risk of losing their jobs to automation in the next two decades, with those in the garment industry being the most vulnerable, according to an International Labour Organisation (ILO) report.
The report showed that about 137 million workers or 56 percent of the salaried workforce from Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam fall into the high-risk category.
Deborah France-Massin, director for the ILO’s bureau for employers’ activities, suggested countries that compete on cheap labour must change themselves as price advantage is no longer enough.
Labourers have to be trained to work effectively alongside digitalised machines, said the report.
Southeast Asia is home to more than 630 million people and is a hub for several manufacturing sectors, including textiles and automobiles.
Of the 9 million people working in the region’s textiles, clothing and footwear industries, 86 percent of Vietnamese workers are at high risk of losing their jobs to automation. The percentages in Cambodia and Indonesia are 88 percent and 64 percent, respectively.
HCM City seeks approval to build bridge to replace Cat Lai ferry
The People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City has just sought the Government’s approval for a project to build a bridge to replace the Cat Lai ferry to be included in the city’s transport development master plan towards 2020 with a vision after 2020.
The project aims to ease the load of the Cat Lai ferry, which is a key link in the route from HCM City’s eastern areas to Dong Nai and Ba Ria-Vung Tau provinces.
The project will be implemented with the build-operate-transfer (BOT) method by the 194 Construction Investment Corporation at a total estimated cost of over 5.7 trillion VND (256.5 million USD).
Previously, the southern province of Dong Nai expressed support of the project.
According to the master plan, which was approved by the Prime Minister in Decision No.568/QD-TTg dated April 8, 2013, the transportation network connecting District 2 to Nhon Trach district includes the Ho Chi Minh City – Long Thanh – Dau Giay highway, the Ben Luc – Long Thanh highway, and the HCM City beltway No. 3, among others.
The Cat Lai ferry carries an average of 50,000 passengers a day and 100,000 on peak days.
Peruvian culture promoted in Vietnam
The Peruvian Embassy in Vietnam on July 7 organised a string of activities to promote the culture of Peru in the Southeast Asian nation and forge trade and tourism ties between the two countries.
Joining the activities marking the 195th National Day of Peru (1821-2016) and the 22 nd anniversary of Vietnam-Peru diplomatic ties (1994-2016), visitors had a chance to learn more about Peru as the world’ leading exporter of organic coffee.
Also, at a conference on the Peruvian tourism market, participants were updated with information about the land and people of Peru and guided how to get a visa to visit the South American nation.
There was also a culinary festival which took place on the background of Peru’s traditional dances.
Chargé d'affaires of the Peruvian Embassy Luis Tsuboyama stressed that Peru is blessed with beautiful landscapes and boasts strong infrastructure.
He added that the activities aim to introduce the Peruvian land and people to Vietnamese people, especially vacationers who are keen on tourism experiences and exploration.-
Dak Lak: Dengue fever patients surge in rainy season
The number of people catching dengue fever sharply increased in the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak in the rainy season, according to the province’s Preventive Medical Centre.
Figures from the centre showed in the past six months, the entire province had 1,268 dengue fever patients, a four-fold increase against the same period last year. Of which, 700 are new cases discovered in the first month of the rainy season (from May to June).
Dengue fever cases spread to 13 out of 15 districts, towns and cities in the province with Ea H’leo, Buon Don and Buon Ma Thuot city having the most patients.
A dengue fever patient named Hoang Thi Nguyet, 40, in hamlet 3, Hoa Thuan commune, Buon Ma Thuot city, died on June 30.
Nguyet got fever on June 26 and was treated at a private medical facility close to her home before being taken to Dak Lak General Hospital where she died.
The centre sent Nguyet’s blood samples to the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology’s office in the Central Highlands for tests and results showed she died of dengue fever.
Doctor Pham Van Lao, Director of the province’s Preventive Medical Centre, said the main reason behind the rapid rise of dengue fever patients is due to people’s tendency to store water in the rainy season which provides optimal conditions for the development of mosquito larvae.
Another reason worsening the situation is the poor implementation of public communications campaigns in the localities.
Dak Lak’s medical sector is spraying larvae-killing chemicals in populous areas and has sent medical staff to monitor and technically assist localities in the fight against dengue fever.
First simulation training lab for anesthesia opens in Vietnam
The first national simulation training lab for anesthesia and intensive care has been inaugurated in Hanoi.
The 300,000-USD facility includes anesthesia machines, patient monitors, ventilators and basic simulation equipment provided by GE Healthcare – a medical equipment provider in the US and the Viet Health Service Trading Company (Viet Medical).
Located in the Viet Duc Hospital, the lab is expected to train 400 anesthesia students and doctors on a yearly basis.
The inaugural event was held on July 6 by the Vietnam Society of Anesthesiologists (VSA) and the Viet Duc Hospital.
International conference discusses green marine economy
A conference on solutions to developing a green maritime economy was held in the central province of Khanh Hoa’s Nha Trang city on July 8, gathering 50 representatives from State agencies and international organisations.
As heard at the discussion, environmental incidents are on the rise in Vietnam under the impact of climate change and human overexploitation of marine resources. As a result, large-scale coral reefs and seagrass have been damaged, and a significant number of species are on the verge of extinction.
Shared at the conference were effective farming models applied in Vietnam, including ecological shrimp farms in Ca Mau or aquatic farming and mangrove forest planting in Ben Tre and Tra Vinh.
Associate Professor Nguyen Chu Hoi from the Hanoi-based Vietnam National University said Vietnam, as part of its strategy toward green growth, opts for the improvement of the marine ecosystem, which will benefit the country in both the short and long terms.
Nguyen Thi Phuong Dung from the Directorate of Fisheries pointed to the fishery co-management, a pilot community-based coastal fishery resources management model, in which authorities and communities share the responsibility.
To make the model effective, a legal framework and strong budget are necessary, she said.
Ca Mau’s climate change response supported
Save the Children Vietnam has decided to grant a financial support worth 5.1 billion VND (228,700 USD) for the Mekong delta province of Ca Mau to carry out a programme in response to climate change.
The programme will be implemented in Tan An and Tan An Tay communes (Ngoc Hien district), Lam Hai commune (Nam Can district) and Khanh Hai commune (Tran Van Thoi district).
Some 320 local poor and near-poor households will get access to drinkable water while 40 near-poor families receive aid to build hygienic latrines. Meanwhile, hand-washing facilities and sanitary latrines will be built for 4,200 local students.
In addition, nearly 10,000 residents will be well prepared for adaptation to climate change and natural calamities.
Earlier, Save the Children gave nearly 1 billion VND (44,840 USD) in support for Khanh Hai and Khanh Binh Tay communes (Tran Van Thoi district) to buy 160 water containers and 200 ceramic water filters and build 200 hygienic latrines.
Ca Mau has three sea-facing sides with a total length of 252 kilometres, accounting for one third of the Mekong Delta coast line. The locality is considered one of the provinces hardest hit by climate change and rising sea levels.
According to a climate change scenario, if sea level is estimated to rise 0.5 meters each year, thousands of hectares of land and thousands of homes in the locality will be submerged a decade from now.
Vietjet cancels flights to Taiwan over mega typhoon
Low-cost carrier Vietjet Air announced it cancelled flights to and from Taiwan (China) on July 7, as super typhoon Nepartak bore down on the island territory.
The cancelled flights are VJ858/859, VJ842/843 and VJ840/841, which are scheduled to travel between Ho Chi Minh City and Taipei and Tainan cities.
Affected passengers will be rescheduled for other flights or get refunds.
The airline is also keeping track of flights bound for the Republic of Korea in line with the typhoon’s path to deliver prompt announcements if there is any change to related flight schedules.
July and August are a common period for storms every year, which cost the aviation sector dear, said a Vietjet Air representative, adding that passenger safety needs to be put first.
Farming sector attracts more FDI
Foreign investors have pledged to invest US$53.1 million in eight new projects and the same number of ongoing ones in agri-forestry and fisheries in the first half of this year, up 86.5% in invested capital and 62.5% in the number of projects against the same period last year.
However, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) said FDI in the sector remained modest, just accounting for 1.2% of the total value of foreign investment and 0.052% of the total number of FDI projects in Vietnam.
FDI was principally attracted to cultivation, aquaculture and agro-forestry product processing. The MARD has proposed that the Government issues relevant mechanisms and policies to attract more FDI in agriculture and rural development.
Vientiane to issue temporary working permit for migrant workers
The administration of Laos’ capital city of Vientiane will start the granting of temporary working permit to migrant foreign labourers in order to better manage illegal foreign workers here.
Under the plan, announced on July 7, migrant workers can register for a temporary working permit from July 17 to August 17 in nine districts of Vientiane, through which the government will collect information of the total illegal foreign labourers and classify them for efficient management.
The Vientiane administration also assigned ward and district authorised agencies to coordinate with the police as well as labour and social welfare bodies to implement the plan.
Accordingly, foreign workers will be divided into two groups. The first comprising merchants or those who are running business lines allowed by the country’s law, or working for a business or services facilities, investment projects and special economic zones, will be granted a six-month working permit.
Meanwhile, vendors, livestock breeders, or those who are managing beauty spas, coffee, karaoke or game shops, which are not eligible for foreigners in Laos, will get a permit with three-month validity.
Over the past years, Vientiane and other Lao localities have faced the increasing number of illegal migrant workers.
To deal with the problem, in December 2015, the Lao government asked localities nationwide to issue temporary working permit for illegal foreign workers as part of efforts to manage them.
Vietnamese doctors give blood to save pregnant woman
Three doctors in north-central Vietnam transfused their own blood to rescue a pregnant woman and perform an emergency c-section after the mother suffered heavy blood loss during surgery.
Vo Thi Luong, 26, in Ky Anh District, was hospitalized on July 6 in critical condition, half-conscious with pale skin and high heart rate, doctor Nguyen Viet Dong, director of Ha Tinh General Hospital, said.
The fetal heartbeat from her unborn child was weak when the mother arrived at the hospital and severe blood loss from a surgery performed later the same day put both the mother and child at risk, according to the doctor.
Doctors from the obstetrics department decided to give her intravenous fluids and perform a caesarean to rescue her and her unborn child.
After losing so much blood during the surgery, Luong needed to be transfused with five O-typed blood units, doctors said.
There were only two blood units of such type left in the hospital while none of the patient’s relatives’ had the said blood type, according to the hospital.
Having the required blood type, doctors Nguyen Viet Tho, Lam Phuc Cong, from the obstetrics department and Truong Ngoc Anh from the anesthetic department immediately performed blood transfusion to Luong and secured the life of the mother and her newborn.
Currently, both the mother and the baby are recovering being taken care of in the hospital, Dr. Dong said.
Vietnam’s vocational education and international integration
As Vietnam integrates regionally and globally, vocational education is urgently needed to meet the demands of Vietnam’s diverse labor markets.
Vietnam had approximately 2,200 vocational training centers and colleges as of 2015. Vietnam has created vocational training incentives to improve the quality of its labor force.
Dao Hong Lan, Deputy Minister of Labor, Invalids, and Social Affairs said, “Universities and vocational training centers should equip students with the necessary knowledge and skills to adapt quickly to any business situation. Cooperation between vocational training centers and businesses is mentioned in the Law on Vocational Training, which will be the legal basis for vocational training.”
8.6 million workers have been trained in Vietnam over the last 5 years, raising the percentage of trained workers to 51.6%, up 11.6% from 2010.
Approximately 70% of the graduates of vocational training centers have found jobs or have started their own businesses.
But in a time of international integration Vietnamese workers need soft skills as well as vocational training in order to find a job.
To reform and develop vocational training between now and 2020, Vietnam is encouraging private investment in vocational training and developing 40 high-quality training centers.
Exhibit on Vietnam’s NA opens in HCM City
An exhibit opened in Ho Chi Minh city on July 7 praising the 70-year history of the Vietnam National Assembly and its contributions to Vietnam’s development.
The event celebrates the 70th anniversary of the Vietnam National Assembly and the success of the election of deputies to the 14th National Assembly and People’s Council for the 2016-2021 tenure.
300 photos, documents, and artifacts are divided into 3 topics: the first ever general election, the unified Vietnam National Assembly, and 40 years after Sai Gon – Gia Dinh was renamed Ho Chi Minh City.
The exhibit highlights the political, economic, and cultural achievements of Ho Chi Minh city during the last 40 years.
Ha Long Bay promoted as clean, friendly destination
The northern province of Quang Ninh on July 7 launched a tourism programme to promote Ha Long Bay as a clean, beautiful and friendly destination in response to the Vietnam Tourism Day (July 9, 1960).
Deputy Director of the provincial Department of Tourism Trinh Dang Thanh called on organisations, individuals and businesses to join hands in environmental protection, contributing to building Quang Ninh into a safe and friendly destination for domestic and international tourists.
He revealed that the province is focusing on improving the quality of tourism activities and services as well as preserving natural resources and protecting the environment, especially in Ha Long Bay – the world heritage site.
In recent years, the locality has employed a number of measures to develop tourism such as promoting social engagement in environmental protection, enhancing environmental inspection on travel companies, and opening courses to popularise the Law on Tourism and Law on Environment, he noted.
It also restored and expanded the area for growing trees along the coast, while encouraging investors to build eco-tourism sites and create environmentally-friendly tourism products.
The province is carrying the “Smiles of Ha Long” programme to attract visitors.
In 2015, Quang Ninh welcomed 7.7 million tourist arrivals. In the first six months of 2016, it greeted 5.4 million tourists, including 2 million from abroad, a year-on-year increase of 52%.
Toyota Vietnam starts football camp for kids in HCM City
Toyota Motor Vietnam (TMV) has held a preliminary qualification round of Toyota Junior Football Clinic & Camp 2016 in HCM City, with over 700 children aged between nine and 11 attending.
After three football skills competitions, six were chosen to represent HCM City in the final round, in which 24 others from Hanoi, Nghe An and Danang will be competing.
The preliminary round also took place in each of Hanoi, Nghe An Province’s Vinh City, and Danang City, with a combined 1,500 kids participating.
The final round will feature 30 junior football players in HCM City from July 16 to 22. The top 18 will join TMV’s football team to compete with Thai and Japanese squads at the Toyota International Junior Football Cup 2016, slated for August 23-29 in Japan.
This is the second consecutive year TMV has organized the summer football camp in Vietnam. Last year’s event attracted over 2,000 children. It is aimed at looking for young football talent and help them realize their dream of becoming football professionals.
Polluted river blamed on local authority inaction
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment has ordered an urgent inspection of A Cuong Minerals JSC which is accused of discharging untreated waste water into Cam Dan River in Bac Giang Province.
On July 7, Minister Tran Hong Ha asked the Vietnam Environment Administration to work with the General Department of Geology and Minerals, provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment and the police to carry out inspection and punishment.
A Cuong Minerals JSC could have their operations suspended or have their permit for mineral exploitation revoked if they are found to have violated regulations and damaged the environment. Results of the inspection must be submitted to the ministry by July 20.
A Cuong has received warnings and been fined hundreds of millions of VND for discharging untreated water since 2014. The inspection teams have asked the company multiple times to stop polluting the river and to treat the waste properly before discharging.
The discharge pipe is located openly by Highway 31, on the route to An Chau Town. The 30 metre-long pipe leads directly to Cam Dan River.
Dinh Quang Hiep, head of the police force in Son Dong District, said A Cuong were fined previously by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment but they paid the fines and then continued discharging waste.
Most recently, after finding out that the untreated waste water and mud are still being discharged into the river on June 25 from two of A Cuong Minerals JSC’s copper refineries, the inspection team from Cam Dan Commune People's Committee and the Department of Natural Resources and Environment in Son Dong District demanded the company to stop and dredge the river. The company was also asked to conduct an environmental impact assessment and propose solutions.
However, as nothing has been done effectively, public disquiet has intensified and the inaction of the local authorities has become particularly noteworthy.
Japanese manga on children with autism released in Vietnamese
The entire 15 volumes of a Japanese manga entitled ‘Di Cung Anh Sang’ (With the Light: Raising an Autistic Child) by Japanese author Keiko Tobe have been released in Vietnamese, announced Vietnam’s Kim Dong Publishing House on July 7.
The series depicts the struggle of a young Japanese mother, Sachiko Azuma, raising her autistic son Hikaru.
Presented in simple brushes and reader-friendly lines, the manga explores the daily life of children with autism, the troubles they may have at school or during puberty, as well as how they manage their social relations.
It also provides basic knowledge on autism and suggests early treatment for autistic children.
The series received an Excellence Prize for manga at the 2004 Japan Media Arts Festival. It was adapted as a television drama and won several awards at Japan's 41st Television Drama Academy Awards, including ‘Best Drama’.
The first volumes of the series were introduced to Vietnamese readers on Vietnam Family Day on June 28. The publication of the manga was supported by the Japan Foundation Center for Cultural Exchange in Vietnam and the Vietnam Autism Network.
Youths invited to make positive changes in community
The International Association of Students in Economic and Commercial Sciences (AIESEC) in Vietnam, in cooperation with the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), has begun YouthSpeak 2016 project for people aged between 18 and 24 in HCMC.
YouthSpeak 2016 aims to create a platform for young people to make positive changes in the community, AIESEC Vietnam chair Thao Thai said. The project also helps raise youth’s awareness about a United Nations plan for the world’s sustainable development until 2030.
It will feature four major activities, including a campaign to elect 17 ambassadors who have taken part in community projects, and a contest for young people to raise their voice for the community by submitting projects to deal with the nation’s social issues.
Members of the team that wins this contest will receive a total of VND15 million (US$672.5) in prize money and the top two members will be invited to Malaysia to present the team’s project at the YouthSpeak Forum Kuala Lumpur in November.
The two other activities are a forum for young people to discuss what they can do and a festival for them to show what they would do for a better future.