VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)

Most wards in HCMC exceed permissible limits on population

Top legislator hosts outgoing Cuban ambassador

VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)
National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan (right) and Cuban Ambassador Lianys Torres Rivera

National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan on November 27 lauded contributions by Cuban Ambassador Lianys Torres Rivera to consolidating and developing the traditional friendship and special cooperation between Vietnam and Cuba over the past time.

At a reception for the outgoing ambassador in Hanoi, Ngan said the bilateral political ties have been continuously enhanced through the regular exchange of all-level delegations, especially those at the high level, via Party, State and parliament channels, as well as exchanges between ministries, agencies and localities.

She recalled the Vietnam visits by Chairman of the Cuban National Assembly Esteban Lazo Hernandez in 2017, and President of the Council of State and Council of Ministers of Cuba Miguel Diaz Canel Bermudez in 2018.

Apart from the bilateral ties, the two countries have also maintained mutual support at multilateral forums, the top legislator went on.

Vietnam always remembers and keeps good sentiments towards the land and people of Cuba, she said, commending the Vietnam-Cuba Friendship Association for its contributions to people-to-people diplomacy between the two countries.

Ngan used the occasion to thank Cuba for sending its medical experts to help Vietnam contain COVID-19 when the pandemic broke out in the central city of Da Nang.

For her part, the Cuban diplomat said she was impressed by Vietnam’s socio-economic achievements amidst the COVID-19, and congratulated the country on its successes in performing the ASEAN Chairmanship 2020 and the AIPA 41 Chairmanship, saying the country has helped promote women’s role in ASEAN.

Hailing Vietnam’s efforts in the COVID-19 combat, she thanked the Vietnamese legislature for its support to Cuba in the pandemic fight.

The ambassador promised that she, in any position, will contribute more to strengthening the special solidarity between Vietnam and Cuba.

Vietnam-Russia parliamentary ties enjoy positive progress: top legislator

The Vietnam-Russia parliamentary relations have enjoyed positive progress over the recent past, Chairwoman of the National Assembly Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said on November 27.

She made the remark while hosting a reception in Hanoi for outgoing Russian Ambassador to Vietnam Konstantin Vnukov and spoke highly of the diplomat’s contributions to strengthening the Vietnam-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership.

Ngan also sent her regards and gratitude to Chairwoman of the Federation Council V. Matviyenko and Chairman of the State Duma V. Volodin for receiving a high-ranking delegation of the Vietnamese NA during its Russia visit last December.

She noted that the exchange of parliamentary delegations has been maintained, thereby fostering collaboration and sharing of information and legislative experience, and raising the efficiency of each country’s assembly operations, as well as the implementation of bilateral cooperation deals.

Ngan pointed out that economic cooperation has made strides in the recent past, with two-way trade surging to 4.5 billion USD last year from 2.5 billion USD in 2014. Bilateral trade maintains growth despite the impact of COVID-19, she emphasised.

The leader affirmed that the Vietnamese NA is always in favour of promoting the multifaceted relations with Russia in the spirit of the comprehensive strategic partnership, pledging that Vietnam’s NA and Russia’s State Duma will maintain and foster sessions of the Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation Commission in an effort to turn it into an effective cooperation channel between the countries.

As the Chair of ASEAN and the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) in 2020, Vietnam continues to support and push ahead the ASEAN-Russia strategic partnership, Ngan said, voicing her gratitude for the Russian President and leaders for working with Vietnam to fulfill it role as the ASEAN Chair, a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for 2020-21 and the AIPA Chair.

She hoped that the two nations will keep up close cooperation in carrying out foreign policies and handling respective issues in tandem with common interests.

For his part, Vnukov said members of both houses of the Russian Assembly have paid attention to and supported sound cooperation with Vietnam.

The Russian side is preparing for an official Vietnam visit by Chairman of the State Duma Volodin, in which he is to attend the second meeting of the Vietnam-Russia Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation Committee slated for next year, the diplomat said.

He took the occasion to congratulate Vietnam for successfully fulfilling its role as the Chair of ASEAN and AIPA 41 amid complexities brought by COVID-19, confirming that ASEAN is a trusted and prioritised partner of Russia in Asia-Pacific.

Vietnam is a role model in COVID-19 prevention and control, he underlined, adding that Russia will send a delegation of doctors to work with Vietnam in tackling the disease.

He also vowed to further contribute to the bilateral ties in his future position.

Party inspections must be comprehensive, cautious: Top leader

Party General Secretary and State President Nguyen Phu Trong said on November 27 that Party inspection and supervision work must be carried out regularly, comprehensively, openly, democratically, and cautiously.

Speaking at a national conference on the work held in Hanoi by the Secretariat of the Party Central Committee, he called for more all-round inspections of the degradation in political ideology, morality, and lifestyle.

Due attention must be paid to officials who are corrupt as well as to issues of public concern, the leader asked.

He highlighted the role of all-level Party Committees, particularly leaders, in the task, and asked the Party Central Committee’s Inspection Commission to closely monitor the performance of lower-level inspection boards in this regard.

Party inspection and supervision work should be conducted in tandem with auditing, investigations, prosecutions, and settlements, Trong said, suggesting mechanisms to promote the role of the Vietnam Fatherland Front, socio-political organisations, the media, press agencies, and the people in inspection and supervision work.

The most important job is to further improve the skills of inspection officials who should be able to meet requirements and tasks in the new circumstances, he said, adding that the fight against bad deeds must take place right in agencies and among inspection officials.

Inspection and supervision work are a leadership method and a task of the Party, and all Party organisations and officials match the Party’s discipline, the leader stressed.

He ordered the further building and perfecting of regulations of the Party and the laws of the State to improve the quality and efficiency of inspection and supervision work.

The Inspection Commission reported that over the past tenure, all-level Party Committees and organisations and inspection boards conducted inspections of millions of Party members and disciplined more than 87,000, including high-ranking Party and State leaders and officers in the armed forces, both retired and active.

This reflects the political resolve of the Party Central Committee, the Politburo, and the Secretariat, as well as the mettle of the inspection sector in rectifying and building a pure and strong Party, the Inspection Commission’s report said.

Trong said all-level inspection commissions have played a significant role in anti-corruption, making it a major task and an important part of the inspection and supervision work.

He also lauded the performance of inspection officials, particularly members of the Party Central Committee’s Inspection Commission, in clarifying complex cases and providing advice for the Party Central Committee, the Politburo, and the Secretariat regarding settlement work.

Australian Governor-General highlights strategic partnership with Vietnam

The Vietnam-Australia strategic partnership has created a framework to advance the bilateral ties, particularly in politics, economy, security, education and environment, Australian Governor-General David Hurley said on November 27.

At a reception for Vietnamese Ambassador Nguyen Tat Thanh who came to present his credentials, Hurley expressed his hope that the bilateral relationship will be elevated to a new high.

He congratulated Vietnam on successfully performing its ASEAN Chairmanship 2020, containing the COVID-19 pandemic, and maintaining positive growth this year.

The Governor-General urged the ambassador to make active contributions to expanding and deepening the bilateral relations.

Thanh, in reply, conveyed greetings from Party General Secretary and State President Nguyen Phu Trong to the Governor-General and his spouse, and thanked Australian leaders for extending support and sympathies to Vietnam over the losses in the central region over the past time.

He suggested the two countries enhance the sharing of experience in COVID-19 prevention and control, and post-pandemic economic development.

The ambassador pledged that he will make all-out efforts to promote the relations between Vietnam and Australia, both bilaterally and multilaterally, for common interests and for cooperation and development in the region./.

Two imported COVID-19 cases, nine recoveries reported on Nov 28

VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)
Medical workers handle samples collected for COVID-19 testing

Two Vietnamese people returning from aboard were confirmed as the latest coronavirus patients in the country on November 28, according to the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control.

The 23-year-old man arrived at Cam Ranh Airport in the central province of Khanh Hoa on Flight VJ8650 from Japan on November 13. The other, a 20-year-old woman, boarded Flight QH9195 from Russia to this airport on November 24.

Both have been quarantined upon their arrival and are undergoing treatment at the Khanh Hoa Hospital for Tropical Diseases.

So far, the country has recorded 1,341 cases of COVID-19.

Meanwhile, nine patients were declared to have recovered from the disease on November 28, raising the total recoveries to 1,179. The number of related deaths is still kept at 35.

Among those still under treatment, six have tested negative for the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 once, seven others twice, and 12 thrice. No patients are in critical condition at present, the sub-committee for treatment said.

There are 15,994 people having close contact with COVID-19 patients or coming from pandemic-hit regions under quarantine now, including 184 in hospitals, 14,935 in other quarantine sites, and 875 at home or accommodation facilities.

Most wards in HCMC exceed permissible limits on population

In its report about arrangement of administrative units at commune and district levels in the 2019-2021 period and establishment of Thu Duc District, the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee said that most wards in the city do not meet the standards on natural area according to the National Assembly Standing Committee’s resolution 1211/2016 as they are thickly populated.

In the report, city authorities pointed out typical factors that no more administrative units can be merged into nine wards after arrangement. Six of the nine wards have not met half of the standard on natural area while two of them are so heavily populated; therefore, they fail the population standard.

For instance, ward 13 of District 4 has just been merged from ward 12 and ward 13 but it has just met 15.4 percent of the standard whereas its population density is 123.5 percent. The two wards locate in the corridor of Saigon Port, share the same border and part of their area being planned for the city's 930 hectare downtown area. This will facilitate urban management and development as well as local dwellers’ activities.

The municipal People’s Committee also reported that that the establishment of Thu Duc City has satisfied 4 out of 5 criteria as per regulations.

Presently, the city's authorities is speeding up general planning to adjust the city’s design with the vision to 2030 and 2050. The design will be carried out simultaneously with the planning of eastern innovative city ( Thu Duc City) and the design of Thu Duc City will be part of the city’s general planning.

90 percent of residents in HCMC to have electronic health record by 2025

The health sector in Ho Chi Minh City aimed that 90 percent of city dwellers will have electronic health records managed by medical clinics in districts where patients live by 2025, said Deputy Director of the municipal Department of Health Associate Professor Tang Chi Thuong.

He made the statement at a yesterday meeting between a delegation from the Ministry of Health and the Department upon implementation of electronic health record software in health stations in districts connecting with the Ministry’s portal.

Touring around the city, inspectors dropped by a health center in ward 15 in Tan Binh District where is managing 300 electronic health records. The center is one of 110 first grass root medical stations in the city applying the e-health record software for over one year.

Head of the center Dr. Chau Quang Khai said that the software has facilitated staffs in the center much. Staffs have no more wasted their time searching for patients’ paper records. Administrative staffs find it easy in keeping patients’ medical records after applying the e-health record.

It is scheduled that the city will finish e-health record software synchronously in 319 grass root medical facilities after one year implementation.

Ha Anh Duc from the Ministry of Health said that some 11,600 of grass root medical clinics in the country have been using the e-health record software.

Electronic health records contain a patient’s medical history, diagnoses, medications, treatment plans, immunization dates, allergies, radiology images, and laboratory and test results; allow access to evidence-based tools that providers can use to make decisions about a patient’s care and automate and streamline provider workflow

Face masks presented to aid Vietnamese in Laos in COVID-19 fight

As many as 75,000 medical masks as a gift from the Government of Vietnam were presented to Vietnamese people in Laos on November 28 with a view to assisting them in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic that remains complicated around the world.

At the handover ceremony in Vientiane, Trinh Thi Tam from the Vietnamese Embassy in Laos said despite COVID-19 spreading around the globe, thanks to its Government and people’s resolve, Vietnam has been assessed as one of the countries containing this outbreak well.

Although both countries have managed to curb the coronavirus outbreak, the pandemic remains complex in the world. Given this, the 75,000 face masks offered by the Vietnamese Government is meant to help the Vietnamese community in Laos with the pandemic combat, she noted, adding that they reflect the homeland’s attention and sentiment towards the expatriates.

Appreciating the support from the Party, State, Government, and people in the homeland, Vice Chairman of the General Association of Vietnamese People in Laos Pham Van Hung said the masks will be distributed to all Vietnamese in the country.

They will work harder to become more united and stand side by side with compatriots in the homeland in the COVID-19 combat, while intensifying the Vietnam-Laos friendship and solidarity, he affirmed./.

Close to 370 citizens brought home from Macau (China)

As many as 368 Vietnamese citizens in Macau (China) were flown home safely aboard a Vietnam Airlines flight on November 28.

The passengers included children under 2, pregnant women, the ill and workers with expired contracts.

In-flight safety and preventive measures against the COVID-19 pandemic were rigorously enforced to protect the passengers’ health and prevent the spread of the disease.

Upon arrival at Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi, all the passengers and crew members received medical check-ups and were sent to quarantine in line with regulations.

The repatriation of Vietnamese citizens in disadvantaged circumstances abroad will continue to be conducted in line with their wishes, the developments of the COVID-19 pandemic, and quarantine capacity in Vietnam./.

Citizens with major contributions to community honoured

VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)

National Assembly Chairwoman attended a ceremony hosted by the Ministry of Labour Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA) in Hanoi on November 28 to honour outstanding organisations and individuals who made major contributions to the community.

On behalf of the Party and State, NA Chairwoman Ngan presented the “Labour Hero in Renewal Period” title to the National Fund for Vietnamese Children (NFVC) and two individuals in recognition of their outstanding achievements in labour and creativity in 2009- 2019 period, contributing to the cause of socialism building and national safeguarding.

Over the past 28 years, the NFVC and its chapters mobilised nearly 7.2 trillion VND, providing support for more than 33 million children in especially difficult circumstances across the country.

At the event, Vice State President Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh praised and thanked organisations and individuals for their dedication to voluntary work and social welfare activities nationwide.

Currently, there are many people that are in need of assistance in the country, including 6.4 million people living with disabilities, nearly 2 million children in difficult circumstances and other vulnerable groups, she said.

Thinh called for more attention and assistance from the community to the work, towards bringing poor and disadvantaged people a better life.

The Vice President suggested completing laws and policies related to social welfare.

Binh Dinh restores agriculture post-flooding

Many mountainous localities in the south-central province of Binh Dinh were hit by the recent heavy storms and flooding, with a number of irrigation works being seriously damaged. Local authorities and people are working around the clock to overcome the consequences of the natural disasters and prepare for a new crop.

Garbage, hay, tree branches, and mud lay strewn around fields after the recent floods in An Hoa commune in An Lao district, Binh Dinh province. Though the winter-spring rice crop will start in a month, local farmers have been working hard to prepare the land for the new crop.

Fields and irrigation works in Hoa An district were severely damaged. In preparation for the new crop, the district has assigned staff to repair the damage and asked farmers to shift to other crops.

During the upcoming winter-spring crop, Binh Dinh province plans to sow nearly 48,000 ha of rice and over 20,000 ha of other crops. Local authorities are providing support to farmers to overcome the consequences of the flooding and improve productivity.

45th National Day of Laos celebrated in Thai Nguyen province

A ceremony was held in northern Thai Nguyen province on November 27 to mark the 45th National Day of Laos (December 2) and the 100th birth anniversary of the country’s late President Kaysone Phomvihane (December 13).

Since its foundation on December 2, 1975, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic has obtained a number of enormous and comprehensive achievements, from economic, social, and diplomatic aspects to security - defence.

Over the past years, the Lao economy has recorded relatively stable growth, about 6.2 percent annually, while people’s material and spiritual lives have been improved. The country has continually promoted economic integration into and cooperation with the world, attracting more than 4,500 investment projects worth over 22 billion USD from 54 countries and territories.

Vietnam is currently the second largest investor in Laos, with over 400 projects with total capital of about 7 billion USD. Bilateral trade is estimated at 5 billion USD this year.

Besides, cooperation in education, training, and human resource development has also been expanded. There are about 14,000 Lao students at 140 schools in Vietnam now, including nearly 2,000 at high schools and higher-level educational establishments in Thai Nguyen.

At the celebration, Minister Counsellor of the Lao Embassy in Vietnam Chanthaphon said the two countries’ great friendship, special relations, and comprehensive cooperation, founded and nurtured by late Presidents Ho Chi Minh, Kaysone Phomvihane, and Souphanouvong, are the valuable heritage of both nations.

They have continued to be developed and become fruitful in all fields, from politics, defence - security, economy, culture, and health care to science - technology, by generations of the countries’ leaders and people, according to him.

Highlighting efforts to promote bilateral ties by the Vietnam-Laos Friendship Association of Thai Nguyen, Chairman of the association Nguyen Doan Kinh said this organisation will continue helping to strengthen the two peoples’ friendship via communications about the countries’ special relations, assistance for Lao students in the province, and people-to-people exchanges./.

HCM City looks to beef up cooperation with Germany

Ho Chi Minh City attaches importance to and pledges to further foster cooperation with Germany in the time to come, said a local official.

Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Vo Van Hoan made the statement at a festival to promote German culture in HCM City on November 28, which is part of activities to mark the 45th anniversary of Vietnam – Germany diplomatic ties.

In his remarks, Hoan highlighted the development of all-around cooperation between the two countries, especially when Vietnam and Germany upgraded their ties to strategic partnership in 2011.

Germany is an important and reliable partner of Vietnam, and a leading trade partner of the Southeast Asian country in the European Union (EU), he said.

HCM City has contributed importantly to the bilateral relationship, with trade turnover between the city and Germany reaching 2 billion USD in 2019 and over 1.4 billion USD in the first 10 months of 2020.

Germany currently has 171 investment projects in HCM City in areas such as processing industry, manufacturing, science and technology, transportation and warehouse.

HCM City is also home to major cooperation projects of the two nations such as Metro line 2, German House, and German International School.

Cooperation and exchanges in art, cultural and social areas between the two sides have been regularly organised, contributing to promoting friendship and understanding between people of HCM City and Germany, Hoan stressed.

HCM City established relations with the German cities of Leipzig and Frankfurt, with a series of cooperation activities being carried out effectively, he added.

German Consul General in HCM City Josefine Wallat said the festival aims to introduce to HCM City people, especially those that are interested in Germany, unique culture, traditional cuisine, education, and technology of Germany.

She thanked the local authorities for their support and facilitation for operations of German enterprises and the German community investing in the city.

The festival, which features a wide range of activities such as introducing German books, language and food, and art performance programmes, was jointly organised by the German Consulate General in HCM City, the German Business Association, the Chamber of Industry and Commerce of Germany in Vietnam and German House.

Hanoi Party Committee convenes 2nd meeting


The 2nd meeting of the 17th Party Committee of Hanoi City was held on November 28 under the chair by its Secretary Vuong Dinh Hue.

The meeting focused discussions on reports relating to the city’s socio-economic development in the 2021-2025 period, budget estimates and distribution in 2021, and public investment plan for the next five years, among other important issues.

Addressing the event Hue, who is also Political Bureau member and head of the city's NA deputy delegation, emphasised the importance of the meeting to ensure the success of the Resolution of the 17th Congress of the municipal Party Organisation.

He highlighted achievements the capital city has recorded in 2020, with positive economic growth despite the COVID-19 pandemic. The city has also obtained outcomes in several sectors such as agriculture and services, and ensured social welfare.

He asked participants to focus on weaknesses and shortcomings such as ineffective performance of State-owned enterprises (SOEs) operating in the city, environmental pollution and traffic congestion, so as to propose solutions to the issues.

Most participants expressed their high consensus with drafts and reports presented at the meeting./.

Measures sought to revive tourism sector amid COVID-19

The National Conference on Tourism 2020 themed "Linking, Action and Development" took place in the central province of Quang Nam on November 28, focusing on solutions to recover the tourism industry amid difficulties posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the conference, representatives of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) gave forecasts on new trends in tourism demand in the region and the adaptability of the Vietnamese tourism sector.

Meanwhile, representatives from travel firms proposed strategic measures to raise competitiveness of the tourism industry during and after the pandemic, as well as policies to accelerate restructuring of the sector post-COVID-19 pandemic.

They discussed how to speed up digital transformation in tourism development as well as proposed cooperation models among investors to further enhance tourism promotion in the coming time.

Addressing the event, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam asked for doubling efforts to attract more visitors.

He stressed the need to digitise all cultural heritage and antiquities in museums, thereby providing new experiences to tourists via digital platforms before they decide to make a field visit.

Within the framework of the event, a signing ceremony for cooperation agreements to boost tourism development between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and five localities in the central key economic region was held.

Corruption fight fruitful, wins over people’s support: symposium

VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)
The symposium is held in Hanoi on November 28 to review the corruption prevention and control

The Central Steering Committee for Anti-Corruption held a symposium in Hanoi on November 28 to discuss the outcomes of corruption prevention and control during 2013-2020, especially since the beginning of the Party’s 12th tenure.

Standing Vice Chairman of the Party’s Central Theoretical Council Phung Huu Phu said the Party views corruption prevention and control as a critically important task in the Party and political system building and national development.

During the 11th and 12th tenures, the Party Central Committee have organised many events to review anti-corruption efforts via which a number of valuable lessons and experience have been gained, helping the Party Central Committee fine-tune related viewpoints and guidelines and issue practical solutions to promote the task, especially since the beginning of the 12th tenure.

Anti-corruption activities have reaped many important, comprehensive and considerable outcomes, winning over support from cadres, Party members, and people, as well as high evaluation from the international community, he noted.

At the workshop, participants shared the view that since the establishment of the Central Steering Committee for Anti-Corruption in 2013, especially during the almost five years of implementing the 12th National Party Congress’s resolution, the corruption combat has been carried out in a drastic, persistent, synchronous, comprehensive, methodological, and substantive manner. It has combined prevention with settlement of corruption, as well as the corruption fight with the Party and political system building and rectification.

As a result, corruption has gradually been contained and tended to decline, helping to ensure political stability, boost socio-economic development, and consolidate cadres, Party members, and people’s trust in the Party and State, they said.

Deputy Minister of Public Security, Maj. Gen. Nguyen Duy Ngoc held that the fight against corruption must be placed under the direct, absolute, and comprehensive leadership of the Party, with the Central Steering Committee for Anti-Corruption directly giving orders.

It also needs close, timely, and effective coordination with Party agencies in implementing the Party’s disciplinary measures so as to pave the way for punishments imposed by the State and organisations, as well as criminal penalties, Ngoc said, adding that there must not be off-limits zones in this combat.

Phan Dinh Trac, Standing Vice Chairman of the central steering committee and Chairman of the Party Central Committee’s Commission for Internal Affairs, held that corruption prevention and control are an important, regular, and difficult task that must be carried out both urgently and in the long term.

All-level authorities and sectors should carry out concerted solutions in a resolute and persistent fashion and without exceptions. The task should be associated with thrift practice, wastefulness prevention, and the building and rectification of the Party and political system while capitalising on the combined strength of the political system and the entire people, according to Trac.

Thailand signs deal to buy 26 mln doses of COVID-19 vaccine from AstraZeneca

Thailand on November 27 signed a deal to procure 26 million doses of a trial coronavirus vaccine developed by UK pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca in collaboration with Oxford University.

The doses are expected to be delivered in mid-2021, covering 13 million people in the 69 million-strong country.

Thailand’s National Vaccine Institute signed a non-refundable advance market commitment contract worth 2.38 billion THB (79 million USD) with AstraZeneca to reserve the supply of the vaccine candidate. Another 3.67 billion THB (121 million USD) agreement for the purchase of the trial vaccine, known as AZD1222, was signed by the Health Ministry’s Disease Control Department.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha stressed that Thailand must be able to get sufficient doses of a successful vaccine early.

Last month, the Thai government signed a contract with Oxford University and AstraZeneca to produce a vaccine in the country after the vaccine the two organisations were developing showed a very good efficacy rate of 70-90 percent.

Thailand has confirmed 3,961 COVID-19 cases since January, including 60 deaths.

Ceremony honours citizens with major contributions to community

The Party, State and people always treasure those who contribute to the community and pay heed to take care of the poor, people who rendered services to the nation, with disabilities, and were victimised by natural hazards, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said on November 27.

He made the pledge during a ceremony held in Hanoi on the day to honour people with major contributions to the community.

The leader welcomed the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs’ idea of holding the event, voicing his hope that similar ones will be held in the future. In addition to support from the State, individuals’ support for the community is greatly appreciated, he underlined.

The PM hoped that the mobilisation of social resources and humanitarian assistance will be further bolstered for the sake of national solidarity.

The Government will work to complete legal institutions, especially policies in social welfare and social securities, he pledged, urging relevant agencies to devise incentives for people working in the field./.

PM Phuc: creating best environment for innovative startups

It is necessary to create the best environment for innovative startups and startup ecosystem, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said at a dialogue with investors, experts and entrepreneurs in Hanoi on November 27.

He said the startup spirit has become popular in Vietnam, and stressed that innovation of more than 100 million Vietnamese people, both at home and abroad, should be regarded as new, endless resources that need to be fully tapped.

The leader, however, pointed out the incomplete domestic startup ecosystem, along with obstacles regarding mechanisms and resources, particularly capital.

Supporting startups will be a top priority of the Government, he said, pledging to hold more dialogues and step up the communications work in order to devise financial mechanisms and carry forward the role of private investment funds.

During the dialogue, held within the framework of the national innovative startup day Techfest 2020, participants also touched upon such issues as digital transformation, opportunities, and role of youngsters in startup and high-quality human resources.

Nguyen Anh Tuan, First Secretary of the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union Central Committee and President of Vietnam Youth Federation, said ministries and agencies have adjusted a wide range of policies to facilitate startups.

Apart from various programmes of the Government and ministries and agencies, localities have also made decisions and rolled out plans and programmes to support startups in general and innovative startups in particular, he said./.

UNICEF supports malnourished children in flood-hit central localities

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) Vietnam on November 27 announced that it will present 60 tonnes of products treating malnutrition for children living in disaster-hit areas of the country’s central region.

Accordingly, more than 4,000 children suffering from acute malnutrition are set to receive the aid in the next three months.

Some 10 tonnes of the products was delivered to health clinics through the National Institute of Nutrition and the remainders will arrive in Vietnam in upcoming weeks.

UNICEF Representative in Vietnam Rana Flowers said the organisation is teaming up with partners to support affected children and women in the region, prioritising access to clean water, sanitation facilities, health care, nutrition, education, psychological support and child protection.

Figures of UNICEF showed that some 10,000 children under five in nine Vietnamese localities hardest-hit by storms and floods are victims of acute malnutrition. Their conditions may worsen because of disrupted healthcare services triggered by adverse impact of natural disasters.

The organisation has to date raised a total of 2.6 million USD to help meet urgent needs of the most vulnerable children as well as families and communities in worst-hit regions./.

Workshop looks at potential for ICT development in Vietnam, RoK

Delegates at a recent online workshop in Seoul suggested a sustainable connectivity network between Vietnamese students and Korean ICT firms.

The ICT workshop was jointly held by the Vietnamese Students’ Association in Korea (VSAK) and the National IT Industry Promotion Agency (NIPA) of the Republic of Korea (RoK), with the participation of nearly 300 scientists and students from Vietnam and other countries.

Participating firms pointed out the potential for ICT development in Vietnam and the RoK.

According to Tran Thien Quang, President of the VSAK, the six firms participating in the workshop are taking the lead in the ICT sector in the RoK. Therefore, the workshop provides valuable information for the students who want to work for ICT enterprises in the country.

Shin Sungwoo, a representative from the NIPA, said Vietnam would be a strategic market for the ICT sector in the time ahead, and suggested those who aim to work for the firms improve their Korean and other foreign language skills.

Vietnam-Kazakhstan political consultation held

Deputy Foreign Minister To Anh Dung and his Kazakhstan counterpart Shakhrat Nuryshev held an online political consultation on November 27

They reviewed the relations between the two countries over the recent past, exchanged ideas and agreed on various measures to further promote the ties and intensify the coordination of viewpoints and acts at international and regional forums.

Vietnam always treasures its traditional relations with Kazakhstan, and wishes to consolidate and strengthen bilateral ties in various field, Dung said. Meanwhile, his Kazakhstan counterpart stressed Vietnam is a priority in Kazakhstan’s foreign policy in the region, and a bridge between the country and ASEAN.

The two officials noted that bilateral trade has made strides in the recent past, but advantage of the benefits created by the free trade agreement between Vietnam and the Eurasian economic union should be taken.

They also agreed to bring into further play the role of the Vietnam – Kazakhstan inter-governmental cooperation committee in pushing up bilateral cooperation, and exchanged views on the cooperation prospects in various field, including the COVID-19 fight.

The Kazakhstan side spoke highly of Vietnam’s successful control of the pandemic, and hoped to strengthen cooperation with the country in this field.

The two sides agreed to continue intensifying cooperation at multilateral and regional forums so as to contribute to regional peace and stability, settle disputes by peaceful means on the basis of respect to international law and the United Nations’ Charter as well as the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982). The Kazakhstan official congratulated Vietnam for successfully completing its ASEAN Chairmanship 2020.

The two sides also agreed to resume and intensify the exchange of delegations, including high-level ones, after the pandemic is put under control.

Vietnam - Cuban diplomatic ties marked in HCM City

VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)

A get-together to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Vietnam – Cuba diplomatic ties was held in HCM City on November 28 by the Ho Chi Minh City Union of Friendship Organisations (HUFO).

The event was also to mark the 30th anniversary of the Vietnam – Cuba Friendship Association in HCM City.

Addressing the event, HUFO Chairwoman Truong Thi Hien highlighted the close relations between the two countries, saying that despite historical changes, the friendship between the two Parties and countries has been constantly strengthened and become a valuable asset of the two nations.

Vietnam always remembers and appreciates valuable support the Cuban people gave to Vietnam during the war time in the past and the national construction, protection and development at present, she stressed.

Hien said HUFO has always actively operated under the foreign policy and motto of the Party and Government, contributing to the sound relations between people of HCM City and Cuba.

The association works to play its role as a bridge to promote economic cooperation and culture exchange between HCM City and Cuban localities, while effectively coordinating with Cuba’s Consulate General in HCM City in organising various exchange programme, thus upholding solidarity between the two countries, she noted.

Indira Lopez Arguelles, Cuban Consul General in HCM City, said the cooperation between the two countries has been increasingly enhanced across fields such as construction, education, health and agriculture.

She expressed her deep gratitude of the Cuban people for Vietnam’s support and solidarity, and said that Cuba wishes to learn from Vietnam's experience in national development and pledges to be ready to cooperate and support Vietnam in the spheres of educational development, culture, health and biotechnology.

On the occasion, the municipal People’s Committee presented certificates of merit to individuals of the Vietnam – Cuba Friendship Association in recognition of their outstanding achievements in the people-to-people diplomacy work and efforts connecting the solidarity between people of HCM City and Cuba.

Vietnam hosts int’l conference on tackling plastic waste pollution in oceans

The Vietnam Administration of Sea and Islands, in coordination with the UN Environment Programme and the World Wide Fund for Nature, hosted an international conference in both online and in-person formats on solutions to handling plastic waste in East Asian seas from November 24-26.

Addressing the event on November 26, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Le Minh Ngan called for joint efforts by all parties, including policymakers, management officials, businesses and consumers to tackle the issue, which has posed serious impacts on the ecosystem and environment, especially the oceans.

Ngan said that due to the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, the world is facing another source of pollution from medical masks, especially in the context that many waste treatment plants have suspended operations due to the pandemic.

The pandemic has led to the increase use of single-use products as part of measures to minimize COVID-19 spreading, he noted, adding that the collection and recycling of these products have also been affected.

He stressed that current cooperation initiatives and models should play a bigger role in facilitating the exchange of knowledge and experience regarding best practice and methods in policy making, development and transfer of technology and capacity building in each country as well as between countries.

The official expressed his hope that countries and international organisations will continue strengthening cooperation with and support for Vietnam in preventing and reducing plastic waste, thus contributing to the global efforts in responding to one of the biggest challenges in the current era.

At the event, Ngan and representatives from the governments of ASEAN member countries and three partners of ASEAN as well as domestic and international organisations underlined the need for effective coordination among sectors at different levels in taking specific actions to deal with the challenges of plastic waste pollution and marine debris.

Within the conference’s framework, Vietnam introduced a project to reduce marine plastic waste, which is being implemented in nine coastal localities with the aim to minimize marine pollution through the support in building guidance to implement prioritized policies related to plastic waste, among others.

During three days from November 24-26, the event included four plenary and 10 thematic discussions on measures to prevent the wasteful use of plastics and prevent the discharge of waste to the ocean./.

VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)
VIETNAM NEWS NOVEMBER 29 (updated hourly)

Vietnam, Mexican state to step up trade, investment, cultural, educational ties

Vietnamese Ambassador to Mexico Nguyen Hoai Duong visited Jalisco state in the west of the country from November 23 to 25 to boost bilateral cooperation in trade, investment, culture, and education, and to attend the opening of an honorary consulate.

At a meeting with Governor Enrique Alfaro Ramírez, Duong expressed a hope of stepping up business cooperation between the two sides to help boost trade and investment and the multifaceted partnership between Vietnam and Mexico.

For his part, the Mexican Governor affirmed his willingness to fortify his state’s friendship and economic and trade ties with Vietnamese localities, highlighting the potential for joint work in strategic sectors such as manufacturing, IT, footwear, and garments and textiles.

Host and guest agreed that the two countries' enterprises should take advantage of the opportunities brought about by free trade agreements, in particular the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

While in Jalisco, the ambassador also attended the opening ceremony of Vietnam’s honorary consulate in Guadalajara city - the first of its kind in Mexico and Latin America.

Saying its establishment will contribute to the elevation of amity and cooperation in economy, tourism, and culture, Duong highlighted that bilateral trade has increased by 10 to 15 percent each year over the last decade. Two-way trade exceeded 6 billion USD in 2019 and was close to 4 billion USD in the first nine months of 2020.

The Honorary Consul, Miguel Ángel Landeros, vowed to advance bilateral relations in all fields.

Also head of the Western Mexican Business Council for Foreign Trade (COMCE de Occidente), he announced that a Mexican business delegation will soon make a fact-finding trip to Vietnam.

The ambassador also took part in an online workshop on Vietnam - Mexico business opportunities and visited a statue of President Ho Chi Minh at Guadalajara’s international friendship centre./.

Workshop held to improve communications on wildlife protection

A workshop on communications in behavioural change to protect wild flora and fauna and contribute to the conservation of biological diversity was held on November 27, as part of the USAID Wildlife Asia project.

Speaking at the workshop, Dr Phung Huu Phu, Standing Vice Chairman of the Party Central Committee’s Theoretical Council, stressed the urgent need of the work, which is vital to the country’s sustainable development.

Not only mass media, social networks, and cultural and community activities but also civil servants and Party members must play a role in communications on behavioural change to protect wildlife, he said.

He highlighted the responsibility of civil servants and Party members, particularly those in leading positions, of setting a good example in this regard, which is decisive in improving the effectiveness of such communications.

It is important to change people’s behaviour towards nature, from “conquering” to “co-existing”, in order to promote a love for and the protection of nature, Phu said.

The outcomes of the workshop will be used to develop consulting reports on the protection of wild flora and fauna for the conservation of biodiversity, to be submitted to Central Party agencies, he added.

USAID Deputy Director Bradley Besire expressed his hope to further strengthen cooperation with relevant authorities in Vietnam to accelerate awareness campaigns on eliminating demand for wildlife and cease illegal trade and use.

Speakers delivered presentations on several issues regarding the management and conservation of wildlife in Vietnam; trade in endangered and rare wild flora and fauna; the system of legal regulations on the protection of wild flora and fauna; and solutions to improving the effectiveness of communications on the protection of wild flora and fauna; among others./.

Venezuela reiterates wish to join ASEAN cooperation treaty

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza has reaffirmed his country's wish to join the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

"We want to express what we did at the beginning of the year in writing, the formal request for Venezuela to be part of the ASEAN Treaty of Amity and Cooperation," Arreaza said during the third day of the virtual ASEAN Conference on November 26.

He stressed that it would be a very important step for Venezuela to have a much closer and much more productive relationship with ASEAN.

Venezuela always maintains its special relations with the 10 members of the bloc, Arreaza said, adding that as soon as pandemic restrictions on international flights are lifted, he plans to visit each of the ASEAN nations.

The TAC is a peace treaty established by the grouping’s founding members at the first ASEAN Summit held in Indonesia in 1976. Its purpose is to promote perpetual peace, everlasting amity and cooperation among their peoples which would contribute to their strength, solidarity and closer relationship./.



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