Thứ Tư, 2 tháng 8, 2017

Social News 2/8

Phan Thiet Airport to lengthen runway

Phan Thiet Airport to lengthen runway, Tien Giang collects toll fees on new bypass, Japanese tourists plant mangroves in Can Gio, Vietnam responds to World Breastfeeding Week 2017 

The runway of Phan Thiet Airport in the south-central province of Binh Thuan will be lengthened from 2,400 to 3,050 meters to ensure sustainable development and enhance the effectiveness of the airport which is still under construction.
The Transport Department of Binh Thuan Province said the central Government has approved a scheme to upgrade the airport from level 4C to 4E.
Currently, relevant agencies are making preparations for the upgrade such as completing design work and investment procedures.
The Transport Department said site clearance for the airport project, whose construction began nearly three years ago, has not been completed, as a company has not handed over 98.58 hectares of land to implement the project due to an ongoing compensation dispute. Site clearance is expected for completion next month.
Roads leading to the airport will be also built at the end of the year.
The construction of Phan Thiet Airport was commenced in January 2015 on a total area of 543 hectares including a 150-hectare area for the air force, a 145.6-hectare civil aviation area and a 247.4-hectare shared area. Up to 48 households and six organizations were asked for relocation.
The airport was planned to be used for both civil and military flights. It was initially designed to handle 500,000 passengers by 2020 using ATR 72, F70 and other small aircraft, and one million passengers by 2030 using A320 and A321 airplanes.
The two-phase project includes a 2,400-meter-long runway on a 360-hectare area and a 5,000-square-meter terminal to serve 500,000 passengers and 10,000 tons of cargo a year.
However, air carriers have replaced small planes with bigger ones due to the rapid development of the market, so the airport needs upgrading to receive medium and large planes such as Airbus A320s and A321s.
Phan Thiet Airport was expected to be opened in 2017. However, the project is falling behind schedule after three years of construction.
In a related development, Dien Bien Airport in the north is also having its design adjusted. In February, the Ministry of Transport assigned the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam to adjust the plan for the airport in 2017-2020 with a vision towards 2030.
Under the plan, Dien Bien Airport will be upgraded to accommodate A320 and A321 aircraft.
Tien Giang collects toll fees on new bypass
National Highway No.1 Tien Giang Investment Co Ltd begins on August 1 to collect toll fees on a new bypass around the town of Cai Lay in the Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang, said Huynh Van Nguyen, director of Tien Giang Province’s Transport Department.
The toll station which is located at KM 1999+300 is scheduled to collect fees within six years and four months, starting from on August 1.
The toll for vehicles of fewer than 12 seats, trucks of less than two tons, and commuter buses is VND35,000 per trip. The monthly toll is VND1.05 million, and the quarterly toll is around VND2.8 million.
The tolls for vehicles of 12-30 seats and trucks of 2-4 tons are VND50,000 per trip, VND1.5 million per month and VND4.05 million per quarter.
The tolls stand at VND60,000 per trip, VND1.8 million per month and VND4.8 million per quarter for vehicles of 31 seats and more, and trucks of 4-10 tons. Trucks of 10-18 tons and 20-foot semi-trailers pay VND100,000 per trip, VND3 million per month and VND8.1 million per quarter.
Especially, trucks weighing over 18 tons, or carrying a 40-foot container are charged at VND180,000 per trip, VND5.4 million per month and about VND14.6 million per quarter.
The bypass project includes a 12-kilometer section around the Cai Lay Town, and an improved section of National Highway 1 spanning 26 kilometers across Tien Giang Province.
The VND1.4-trillion project, which got off the ground under the build-operate-transfer format in 2014, was developed by a joint venture between Bac Ai Construction Investment Consultation JSC and Transport Construction and Investment Trading JSC No.1.
Japanese tourists plant mangroves in Can Gio
A group of employees of Japan’s Fuji Film Holdings Corporation on July 31 traveled to the coastal district of Can Gio in HCMC to plant mangroves as part of a tour program combined with community activity.
Arranged by Fiditour, one of the leading tour operators in the city, the four-day tour program started on Sunday. Apart from mangrove planting, the group will tour popular places of interest in the outlying district and the city center.
Nao Ogata, a 27-year-old staff member of the company, said the tour could help her learn more about the ecosystem, war consequences and the importance of planting trees to increase green coverage of the locality.
Tran The Dung, deputy general director of Fiditour, said the number of foreign tourists joining such volunteer tours at the company has grown around 15% a year. Most of these tourists come from major source markets like Singapore, Japan and Australia.
Dung expects more foreign companies would choose Vietnam as a destination for tours combined with community activity.
Ninh Thuan: charity programme saves 400 children with heart diseases
The Association for Sponsorship of Poor Patients of Ninh Thuan Province has supported 401 children with congenital heart diseases over the past nine years.
The figure was released by president of the association Hoang Thi Ut Lan at a conference to review the surgery programme for local children with congenital heart diseases from 2008 – 2017 on August 1.
The operations, 393 conducted domestically and eight in the Republic of Korea, cost a total 29.5 billion VND (1.3 million USD).
Addressing the event, Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Le Van Binh called on organisations, units and individuals from the province and other localities to aid poor and needy patients, particularly children with congenital heart diseases.
On the occasion, more than 1.3 billion VND (57,200 USD) was raised to help more needy child patients.
Nine units and six individuals were honoured during the event for their contributions to the charity work.
The association also presented 20 scholarships and some 200 gifts to needy children.
Tay Ninh, Cambodian military strengthen coordination
The Military High Command of southern Tay Ninh province and the Military Sub-regions of Cambodia’s Svay Rieng, Tbong Khmun, Oddar Meancheay and Prey Vieng provinces held a conference in Svay Rieng on August 1 to discuss cooperation for the rest of 2017.
Since the beginning of this year, the sides have coordinated in sharing information and solving seven cases of border security violations.
Together with cultural and sport exchange activities, Tay Ninh’s Military High Command provided 1.4 billion VND (61,600 USD) for the military sub-regions to improve infrastructure, while the Cambodian side helped search for and repatriate the remains of 674 Vietnamese soldiers who died in the country.
At the conference, participants discussed measures to tighten ties, with a focus on making plans, intensifying information sharing to prevent crime and coordinating in protecting border markers and in border demarcation.
ASEAN youths work for regional economic progress
Representatives from the Vietnamese Government, the US Embassy and various ASEAN nations came together on August 1 and addressed the importance of a growing ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and Vietnam–US trade relations.
At the opening ceremony of the 2017 Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) in Hanoi, Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Education and Training Nguyen Thi Nghia welcomed Ambassadors to Vietnam and 80 young delegates from ASEAN countries, saying it was an excellent occasion to remind all of the opportunities that AEC provides its members, and to overcome economic development challenges.
Nghia also expressed hope that ASEAN youths would learn more about AEC and contribute to its growth.
US Ambassador to Vietnam Ted Osius remarked that the US was interested in the success of ASEAN and the AEC, as it is one of the leading investors in this region. He also said the US was committed to creating the most favourable conditions for the region and its youth to develop.
Through discussions and panel talks, the event aimed to spread better understanding and share experience in balancing economic growth with sustainable development.
According the ASEAN Secretariat’s data, ASEAN is the sixth largest economy in the world with 630 million people and nearly 2.6 trillion USD in gross domestic production at the end of 2016.
Nghia suggested that "education is a leading solution in terms of both efficiency and sustainability in order to face rising socio-economic, environmental and non-traditional security challenges in the region". 
She went on to list the eight ASEAN millennium development goals, including eradicating poverty, advocating education, gender equality, health, environment and global partnerships.
Spanning four days from August 1 to August 4, the fourth annual YSEALI focuses on the AEC, the future for ASEAN economic cooperation and policy initiation. The event gathered outstanding youths from all countries in the region in a bid to enhance leadership and connection.
Vietnam responds to World Breastfeeding Week 2017
The Vietnam National Institute of Nutrition, the Alive and Thrive project and the Hanoi University of Technology launched an online training programme on child care to respond to the World Breastfeeding Week 2017 that runs from August 1-7.
The 48-hour programme aims to strengthen the capacity of healthcare staff on supporting mothers in breastfeeding and weaning.
This year, World Breastfeeding Week is themed “Sustainable Breastfeeding Together,” highlighting the significance of cooperation among governments, non-government organisations, research institutes, development partners and the private sector in promoting policies to increase the number of breastfed children.
According to Le Danh Tuyen, Director of the Vietnam National Institute of Nutrition, breastfeeding is not just the job of the mother, as it requires support from many parties, including healthcare staff, family members, employers and policy-makers.
He stressed that the institute is willing to work with all partners to create a favourable environment for the health of women and children.
Research shows that breastfeeding significantly contributes to strengthening maternal and child health, while promoting economic growth. According to Lancet magazine, breastfeeding helps reduce healthcare costs and builds a stronger labour force.
A report from UNICEF and the Alive and Thrive project said that optimal breastfeeding can save 23.36 million USD in spending for hospitals in Vietnam.
New research also said that in Vietnam, increasing breastfeeding could save the lives of more than 2,000 children each year and contribute to reducing fatality among under-five children.
Minh, Trâm win national blitz chess championship
Lê Tuấn Minh of Bình Dương won the blitz chess event at the National Chess Team Championship in HCM City yesterday.
Minh bagged eight points after nine rounds to take first place. Nguyễn Anh Khôi and Phạm Chương of HCM City were the runners-up with 7.5 and seven points.
On the women’s side, Hoàng Thị Bảo Trâm of HCM City defeated more than 100 players to triumph with 8.5 points, followed by Nguyễn Thị Mai Hưng and Võ Thị Kim Phụng of Bắc Giang with 7.5 points each.
Earlier, Trâm also won the women’s rapid chess category, while Tô Nhật Minh of Hà Nội won the men’s title.
Following this tournament, the National Junior Chess Tournament is scheduled to be held in the northern port city of Hải Phòng on August 10-18. 
Quang Tri: Turtle at risk of extinction released into wild
The Con Co Island Marine Protected Area in the central province of Quang Tri and a local fisherman released an endangered green turtle into the sea on August 1.
Tran Van Long, a fisherman in Cua Tung town, found the 70-kilogramme sea turtle stuck in his net while fishing in waters off Vinh Linh commune. The turtle is aged 35-40 and is one metre long. 
Identified as a rare species, the turtle was tagged and released to the sea off Cua Tung town.
This is the eighth species rescued by the management board of the  Con Co Island Marine Protected Area so far this year.
New TV show aims to give fresh perspective on gender role
A new TV programme offering a different view on gender roles is scheduled to make its debut this Sunday at 9pm on VTV2.
“Cooking is easy” will feature Vietnamese husbands and boyfriends, with the guidance of a professional cook, attempting to prepare a meal for their loved ones.
The show’s producers hope it will also help strengthen bonds between family members and encourage Vietnamese men to enter the kitchen and cook for the family, a task that is almost exclusively taken up by females in Việt Nam. 
The show will provide homemakers with information on how to select the best ingredients, how to thoroughly purify and safely prepare family meals. It will also feature Western style dining etiquette and a basic introduction to wine selection and tasting.
Regular couples as well as several celebrities are to make appearances on the show. The show’s producer, Truong Thanh Communication Company, said it had plans to produce up to 52 episodes or one for each week during the first year.
Bắc Kạn cultural fest celebrates unity
The Bắc Kạn cultural village festival 2017 has been held at the provincial cultural centre.  
The two-day festival, which ends today, is organised by the province’s steering committee and themed “all citizens unite to build a cultural life”.
It aims to popularise the state policy on creating a space for all quintessential cultural villages in the area. It will give groups a chance to meet, exchange and study each other’s experiences, allowing them to honour the outstanding faces in the movement; consolidate the achievements, and develop the culture and theVietnamese people.
“The main content of the festival include the introduction of specific cultural beauties and outstanding faces and families of the villages, praising the reservation and promotion of typical cultural values of the country and the preclusion of social evils, superstition and unsound customs, as well as building the new countryside,” said Đinh Quang Tuyên, chairman of Bắc Kạn city’s people committee.
Eight outstanding hamlets and villages are attending the festival. 
Specific support needed for disadvantaged labourers
Policies that aim to support disadvantaged labourers should cater to each type of labourer in society, experts have said.
Some 13 million disadvantaged labourers were recorded in the country until the end of last year, accounting for 25 per cent of the total labour force, according to the Institute of Workers and Trade Union.
Out of those 13 million, some 4.2 million are labourers with disabilities, 6.5 million are poor and one million are migrant workers. Some 180,000 have HIV/AIDS and 190,000 others are drug addicts and sex workers.
Eighty per cent of disadvantaged labourers in Việt Nam reside in rural areas, with low education levels and no vocational training. Some 21.8 per cent are illiterate and 40 per cent have never had a job, Dr Vũ Minh Tiến, vice director of the union, said.
“Without stable jobs, income and business capital, their lives are approaching a dead-end,” he said at a conference on policy recommendations to ensure the livelihoods of disadvantaged labourers in the 2015-30 period and beyond on Monday in HCM City.
Despite the State’s loan support policies, there were no markets for the products produced by these disadvantaged labourers, hence they got stuck in the vicious circle of debt, unemployment and poverty, Võ Văn Tấn, chairman of the labour federation of the city’s Cần Giờ District, said.
The migrant workers were having trouble with household registration policies, lecturer Vũ Văn Hiệu from Tôn Đức Thắng University said.
“The household registration book should not be used as a tool to classify citizens, discriminating against migrant workers and preventing them from approaching job opportunities and basic social services,” he said.
The vulnerability of disadvantaged labourers should be the central point of policies that aim to support and sustain their livelihoods, according to experts.
Occupations provided for these labourers should be recoverable from occurrences, not dependent on outside support, and able to yield sustainable productivity and long-term benefits, they said.
Court hands out tough sentences to heroin traffickers
The Hà Nội People’s Court on Monday handed the death penalty to one drug trafficker and a life sentence to another in two cases.
In the first case, the accused, Phan Văn Hùng, 36, a resident of the northern mountainous province of Lạng Sơn, received the death sentence for illegally trading heroin.
On December 29, 2016, the Hà Đông District Police in Hà Nội caught Hùng transporting around 1.7kg of heroin in two nylon bags in a five-seater car. The police also seized two more nylon bags containing around 1.8kg of methamphetamine.
Hùng confessed that he had been hired by a Chinese man to transport five bags of heroin and methamphetamine from Lạng Sơn Province to the northern Bắc Giang Province and Hà Nội, for which he would be paid VNĐ10 million (US$400) per bag. Before being caught, Hùng had delivered one bag with 900g of heroin to a man in Bắc Giang.
In the second case, the court sentenced Chu Văn Phi, 46, a resident of Hà Nội’s Ba Vì District, to life, and Nguyễn Quang Ước, 33, a resident of Hà Nội’s Đống Đa District, to 18 years’ imprisonment for transporting heroin.
On October 15, 2016, the Hà Nội Police caught Ước with around 145g of ketamine while he was driving his motorbike in Hai Bà Trưng District’s Minh Khai Ward.
Ước revealed that while he was serving his earlier prison sentence, he became friends with Phi, who asked him to deliver the ketamine to an acquaintance.
The police conducted a search of Phi’s house and confiscated another 1.1kg of heroin.
Two companies stopped from exploiting sand from river
The Hòa Bình People’s Committee on Monday temporarily stopped two companies from exploiting sand and gravel from the Đà River in Kỳ Sơn District.
The two companies are Sahara Mineral Exploitation Joint-stock Company and Hùng Yến Co Ltd.
The People’s Committee also asked the provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment to join hands with concerned organisations to prepare documents about the two companies’ violations in mineral exploitation, check the quantity of sand and gravel being exploited by the two companies and monitor the situation on the ground to consider letting the companies restart their activities.
Inspectors should patrol Hợp Thành and Hợp Thịnh communes in Kỳ Sơn District in the morning and at night to receive reports from residents and ensure timely action against violations by organisations and individuals exploiting and transporting sand and gravel from the Đà River.
Earlier, last Wednesday, Nguyễn Văn Quang, chairman of Hòa Bình People’s Committee, met residents of Hợp Thịnh and Hợp Thành communes to resolve problems related to sand and gravel exploitation by the two companies.
During the meeting, many residents asked the committee to withdraw licences for sand exploitation by the two companies following their violations.
Repair fishing vessels post-haste: Deputy PM
Repairing newly-built substandard offshore fishing vessels is a matter of great economic, political and social significance that should be done immediately, Deputy Prime Minister Trịnh Đình Dũng said yesterday.
Speaking at a conference held in Hà Nội to review implementation of the 2014 Government decree on development of the fisheries sector, the Deputy PM asked central and local leaders to focus on removing its limitations.
The Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development (MARD) should review the fishing vessel registration process to ensure the ships are in good condition. Supervision of the shipbuilding process and the people involved should be stepped up, he said.
He also wanted commercial banks to untangle loan procedures for fishermen.
“Disciplinary action should be taken against individuals and organisations involved in the faulty implementation of the decree,” he said.
The Deputy PM also called for changes to the decree that should be made public within the fourth quarter of this year and go into effect at the beginning of next year.
Evaluating overall implementation of the decree in recent years, Deputy PM Dũng said it was a groundbreaking, comprehensive policy that served the needs of fishermen and contributed to the development of the country’s marine economy.
Under Decree 67 (dated July 7, 2014), ship owners building steel or ships with new material (other than wood) with engine capacities between 400CV and 800CV can borrow up to 90 per cent of the total cost at the interest rate of 7 per cent per year.
Reports from localities show that under the Decree, ship owners in 27 of 28 coastal provinces and cities had borrowed money to build and/or renovate 1,948 – or 85 per cent – of the total 2,284 fishing ships.
As of July 31, some 760 vessels had been pressed into service. Of these 460 were newly-built (301 steel-clad ships, 53 composite and 407 wooden) and 105 others renovated.
Earlier in May, some 40 ships built in the central provinces of Bình Định, Phú Yên, Thanh Hóa and Quảng Nam were reported to be in bad condition, their shells rusty, machines broken and equipment malfunctioning.
Repairs of these vessels are expected to be completed by the end of next month.
Deputy Agricultural Minister Vũ Văn Tám said there were shortcomings in the selection of shipbuilding companies, design consultation and construction supervision, since it was the first time fishermen were taking part in building steel-ships.
This time, MARD would oversee the repairs and bring the vessels back into operation as soon as possible, he said. He asked fishermen to conduct periodical renovations and repairs.
Tám also highlighted high interest rate on loans as a drawback of Decree 67. “Its loan mechanism is unsuitable for fishermen, and there is no risk management mechanism for commercial banks, which discourages fishermen from borrowing money and banks from providing loans,” he said. 
VN, neighbours discuss migrant work
Ensuring social security, knowledge and stable incomes for workers is a top priority for Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Việt Nam, Deputy Minister of  Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, Doãn Mậu Diệp, said yesterday.
He spoke at the opening of a Senior Officials Meeting (SOM) from these countries in central Đà Nẵng City.
He said the meeting of the so-called CLMTV (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Việt Nam) forum played an important role in the context of the rising number of migrant workers in the five countries.
“The co-operation among CLMTV nations has achieved sustainable prosperity goals and boosted integration and economic connections. Migrant workers make considerable contributions to countries’ economic growth and sustainable development, but it also presents challenges for nations in dealing with human resources management and training, as well as related problems,” Diệp said.
Việt Nam hopes representatives of the relevant countries, the International Labour Organisation and the International Organisation of Migration will discuss and review achievements in vocational training, prevention of human trafficking and illegal migrant labour, as well as legal support and worker protection.
Diệp said the meeting would be an opportunity to focus on migrant worker safety and related challenges ahead of the Ministerial Declaration at today’s CLMTV Ministers Meeting.
Acording to Dr Nguyễn Hổng Minh from Việt Nam’s General Department of Vocational Training Việt Nam has 53 million employees, 22 per cent of them are trained workers with diplomas or certificates.
But the rate of skilled workers with vocational training is only 38.5 per cent, considered low. According to a report issued last year, the country had nearly 2,000 vocational training centres in which 2.2 million students were enrolled.
Participants also joined discussions on promotion of legal cross-border employment and bilateral agreements, addressing the root causes of irregular migration and unprotected migrant workers.
Participants agreed on the need to raise awareness of their people of safe labour immigration, rights, benefits, responsibilities and obligations. Migrant workers should undergo courses on employment contracts, language, culture, discipline, and laws in destination countries. 
Judicial Affairs Committee starts 6th plenary session
Yesterday in HCM City, the National Assembly’s Judicial Affairs Committee opened its 6th plenary session (lasting 2 days) to discuss reports and proposals from directors of Supreme People’s Procuracies, Chief Justice of the Supreme People’s Court, and amendments to the Judicial Records Act.
On the first working day, the committee reviewed a proposal by the head of the People’s Procuracy on a job scheme in the Procuracy branch – which would include 226 positions at all levels, with a total of at least 17,516 employees on the state payroll (10.4 per cent higher than the current number of 15,860).
The assessment council of the committee said that the necessity for increased employment must be studied further, and the proposed scheme would be submitted to the National Assembly’s Standing Committee for feedback, as the Party is advocating for streamlined civil service.
Also, the committee discussed a proposal by the Chief Justice of the Supreme People’s Court in which regulations on dress code – including materials and forms for the black robe, and ornamental linings indicating ranks/seniority – of the judges of People’s Courts are put forth.
Lê Thị Nga, Chairwoman of the committee, basically concurred with the proposal, saying that a court dress protocol for judges is a necessity and in line with international practices as “the presiding judges act on behalf of the State, serving justice.”
Previously, on June 13, 2016, the NA issued Resolution 1214 on piloting the dress code, and the People’s Supreme Court has implemented the regulations in some provinces and cities, and high satisfaction was reported.
This time, the Judicial Committee unanimously agreed to submit the bill to the NA’s Standing Committee for review and passing, in which the new uniform requirement will be enforced starting from the beginning of 2018, 2 black robes will be issued for each judge for each of their five-year terms.
Golf tournament connects Vietnamese in Europe
Golfers from 11 European countries and Vietnam recently teed off at Sweden Open 2017 at the 45-hole Barsebäck Golf & Country Club, considered one of Europe's most beautiful and best golf facilities.
It is part of the Golf Championship of the European Vietnamese Golf Association.
Golfer Nguyen Gia Bao from Russia said the Vietnamese community in Europe is united through the golf tournament, which started about eight years ago.
This golf tournament is big and helps Vietnamese expatriates become closer to each other. 
PM approves national health target programme
Vietnam aims to curb the annual ratio of infections and fatalities due to dengue below 0.09 percent by 2020 and early detect oral, breast, cervical and colorectal cancer in nearly 20 percent of people.
More than 95 percent of under one-year-old children will be fully vaccinated while all centrally-run cities and provinces will have markets ensuring food safety.
These were mentioned in the Prime Minister’s approved national target programme on healthcare and population for 2016-2020. 
The programme will be carried out in provinces and cities nationwide at a total expense of 19.38 trillion VND (852.72 million USD).
It comprises eight sub-projects on preventing communicable diseases and common incommunicable ones, expanded vaccination, population and development, food safety and HIV/AIDS prevention.
The programme also aims to prevent haematological diseases, as well as provide healthcare services for army and people in sea, island, border areas and key security defence regions, while evaluating healthcare communications.
PM approves dissemination about global integration events
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has recently approved a plan to promote dissemination work on global integration events in 2017-2020. 
The plan aims to popularise images of Vietnam, its culture and people at home and abroad, contributing to improving Vietnam’s stature in the international arena. 
It targets ministries, ministry-level agencies and those from the central to local level, socio-political-economic organisations, businesses, foreign entities operating in Vietnam, researchers, students, workers, citizens from ASEAN member states, Vietnam’s strategic partners and countries that signed free trade agreements with Vietnam. 
The work will focus on the Party’s policies and guidelines, State laws on global integration, Vietnam’s achievements in politics, national defence-security, socio-economy, education-training, science-technology, bilateral and multilateral cooperation with countries and international organisations. 
Information will be regularly disseminated via mass media such as Vietnam News Agency, Vietnam Television, Radio the Voice of Vietnam, Nhan dan newspaper, grassroots media and prestigious news websites.
Between now and 2020, Vietnam will assume a number of positions such as host of APEC Year 2017, ASEAN Chair in 2020 and bid for non-permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council for 2020-2021. The country is due to deliver on international commitments regarding entry to the World Trade Organisation by 2018 and embark on several free trade agreements.
Exhibition on Cham culture in An Giang, Ninh Thuan opens
An exhibition themed “Cham culture in An Giang and Ninh Thuan provinces” kicked off in the Mekong Delta province of An Giang on August 1.
The event was held in the lead up to the 72nd anniversary of the August Revolution and National Day (Sept. 2).
As many as 131 photos and nearly 250 exhibits are on display, including ancient tools, Bau Truc pottery products, My Nghiep woven products, traditional music instruments and costumes of Cham people in Ninh Thuan province, among others.
The event aimed to introduce the unique culture of the Cham ethnic minority group in An Giang and Ninh Thuan provinces.
The exhibition runs until September 29 at the An Giang Museum.
Int’l conference promotes sea-island tourism development
Tapping huge potential of sea and island tourism coupled with preserving natural landscapes was discussed at an international conference jointly held by Ton Duc Thang University and the National Penghu University of Science and Technology, Taiwan (China) on August 1.
The event drew the participation of over 40 researchers, lecturers as well as tourism students from Australia, Austria, Canada, Japan, Taiwan, the UK and the US.
Experience in sea tourism model development as well as education activities on environmental protection were shared at the conference. Some researchers also analysed impacts of tourism development on the socio-economy and local livelihoods while highlighting public efforts to develop tourism sustainably.
Speaking at the event, Tran Trong Dao, Vice Rector of Ton Duc Thang University, underlined that Vietnam boasts huge potential for sea tourism development, however, unprofessional investment in human resources and shortage of highly-competitive tourism products have hampered the development.
Meanwhile, Chun-Chieh Hu from the National Penghu University of Science and Technology said that sea tourism development strategies are built based on scientific research evaluating the influence of technology on natural environment and local residents.
Other participants also agreed that enhancing quality of high-ranking tourism managers plays a key role in developing sea-island tourism in line with global trend.-
Lao national arrested for smuggling 10,000 drug pills into Vietnam
A 49-year-old Lao national was arrested in Ngoc Hoi district, the Central Highlands province of Kon Tum on July 31 for allegedly attempting to smuggle over 10,000 drug pills into Vietnam.
Thao Ef from Laos’ Bolikhamxay province was caught red-handed transporting 10,020 methamphetamine pills by anti-drug police and border guards at Iec hamlet of Bo Y commune which shares the border with Laos.
The authorities also discovered him possessing many knives of different sizes and other types of weapons which were used to resist arrest.
ASEAN Cultural Day opens in Vinh Phuc
ASEAN Cultural Day took place in the northern province of Vinh Phuc on August 1 to celebrate the 50th founding anniversary of the bloc with the participation of representatives from the embassies of the ASEAN member countries in Vietnam.
Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Vu Viet Van said the event offers participants a chance to learn more about special cultural values of the ASEAN member states, and hoped that it will also foster friendship and economic and cultural exchanges between Vinh Phuc and the ASEAN nations as well as build the ASEAN Community of peace, prosperity and sustainability. 
Speaking at the event, Indonesia’s Ambassador to Vietnam Ibnu Hadi said in recent years, Vinh Phuc has become an attractive destination for foreign investors from Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. 
Indonesia is now among top 20 investors in Vietnam, with Japfa Comfeed Vietnam being one of the 500 largest enterprises in the country. 
The province currently records 27 projects by ASEAN investors with a total registered capital of over 500 million USD. 
In education - training, Vinh Phuc has assisted Laos in training hundreds of tertiary and post-tertiary students. 
Meanwhile, Singapore and the Philippines have helped Vinh Phuc train hundreds of English teachers under the government’s project on teaching and studying foreign languages in the national education system for the 2008-2020 period. 
During the event, a music exchange between the  ASEAN member states and an exhibition themed “ASEAN – Peace and Development” were organised.

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