VIETNAM NEWS HEADLINES JANUARY 8
Lao Prime Minister begins Vietnam visit
Politburo member and Prime Minister of Laos Phankham Viphavanh arrived in Hanoi on January 8 morning, begining his official visit to Vietnam from January 8-10 at the invitation of his Vietnamese counterpart Pham Minh Chinh.
The Lao PM is accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Naitonal Defence Chansamone Chanyalath; Deputy PM, Minister of Planning and Investment and Chairman of the Laos - Vietnam Cooperation Committee Sonexay Siphandone; Minister of Foreign Affairs Saleumxay Kommasith, and other ministers and officials.
It is the first visit by a foreign high-ranking leader to Vietnam this year, showing determination of the two countries’ leaders in promoting Vietnam - Laos special ties and effectively carrying out the Vietnam - Laos Joint Statement in June 2021.
30 Omicron cases detected in Vietnam
The Ministry of Health (MoH) has confirmed 30 Omicron cases in Vietnam since the first case was detected in late December 2021.
Fourteen cases were diagnosed in Quang Nam, 11 in Ho Chi Minh City, 2 in Thanh Hoa and one each in Hanoi, Hai Phong and Hai Duong.
All these cases were documented upon their arriving from overseas, said the MoH, adding that most of the cases were mild and asymptomatic.
According to the MoH, more Omicron cases would be recorded in Vietnam in the coming weeks as more Vietnamese people are returning to the homeland for the coming Lunar New Year holiday (Tet). Therefore, it warned the risk of virus spreading to the community is rather high.
NA’s extraordinary session looks into draft resolution on fiscal, monetary policies
Legislators on January 7 debated online a draft resolution on fiscal and monetary policies to support the programme on socio-economic recovery and development, as part of the first extraordinary session of the 15th National Assembly.
Most of them agreed on the need to issue the resolution, saying it demonstrates the hope of people and businesses for a better future.
Minister of Finance Ho Duc Phoc, Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) Nguyen Thi Hong and Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung cleared up issues of deputies’ concern.
During the working session, the lawmakers also looked into a draft resolution on the pilot application of special mechanisms and policies for the development of Can Tho city.
Korean man jailed for six years for arranging illegal exit
The Hanoi People’s Court on January 7 sentenced Kang Joon-ho, a 74-year-old man from the Republic of Korea (RoK), to six years in prison for arranging illegal exit for Vietnamese citizens.
His two Vietnamese accomplices, Trinh Ba Huy and Pham Van Sang were given 36 months on probation and 4 years behind bar, respectively, on the same charge.
On June 1, 2020, Hanoi's police received documents about a case involving six residents in Chuong My district who sought to fly to the RoK’s Jeju island for work on tourism visas.
Five of them admitted that on October 5, 2019, they departed for Jeju but a man named Nguyen Van Doan was denied for exit at Noi Bai International Airport. The remaining five people were later forced to return home on October 9, 2019.
They said they were introduced by Huy to fly to the RoK as tourists, then seek jobs there. Sang admitted that he previously helped Kang bring six others to Jeju from Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City, who then stayed there for work.
Miss Vietnam tests negative for COVID-19 in US
Do Thi Ha, the Vietnamese representative at the Miss World 2021 pageant, received a negative COVID-19 test result following two weeks of treatment in the US.
Ha announced the information via her Facebook page on January 7, adding that she had been given a negative PCR test and quick test results.
The girl said that her health condition now remains stable and she is still waiting for her final PCR test.
Ha hopes to quickly recover so she can return home for the upcoming Lunar New Year, known locally as Tet.
The Vietnamese beauty queen said on December 23 that she had tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, forcing her to cancel her return flight to Vietnam and stay in the US for COVID-19 treatment.
Cau Giay District to suspend in-person dining services as COVID risk level raised to high
Cầu Giấy District in Hà Nội will stop offering in-person dining services as the district’s COVID risk level has been changed from medium (yellow) to high risk (orange).
Restaurants and coffee shops must switch from dine-in services to takeaways. Activities with crowd gatherings will be banned. The district’s authorities are working on a detailed plan for the suspension. Adjustments will be valid 48 hours after an official document is issued.
Eleven districts in the city are currently at a high-risk level of COVID-19 infection: Ba Đình, Hai Bà Trưng, Hoàn Kiếm, Hoàng Mai, Long Biên, Nam Từ Liêm, Tây Hồ, Gia Lâm, Thanh Trì, Thanh Xuân and Cầu Giấy.
Since the fourth wave broke out, Hà Nội has reported 62,908 cases and 211 fatalities.
Two more provinces to inspect procurement of Covid test kits
Aside from HCMC, two Mekong Delta provinces - Kien Giang and Bac Lieu - have announced that they will launch inspections into the procurement of Covid-19 test kits.
Yesterday, January 5, Nguyen Van Duc, chief inspector of Kien Giang Province, said the province had decided to look into joint ventures and cooperation deals involving medical services and the procurement of medical supplies and Covid test kits at hospitals and clinics across the province in 45 days. Those subject to the inspections include the provincial General Hospital, the Traditional Medicine Hospital, and the Oncology Hospital.
The same day, the inspectorates of Bac Lieu Province made the same move, with the inspection lasting 70 days. Entities subject to the inspection include the provincial Health Department, the Bac Lieu Center for Disease Control, hospitals and medical centers throughout the province.
First Covid ward in HCMC hospital established
The HCMC Department of Health has allowed Children’s Hospital 1 to establish a Covid-19 ward, the first of its kind in the southern city.
According to the hospital, the 150-bed ward will be put into operation tomorrow, January 7, with two separate areas, the local media reported.
The Covid-19 treatment area has 120 beds for patients with mild and moderate symptoms. Meanwhile, the recuperation area with 30 beds will admit and treat those in critical condition, who need HFNC, noninvasive and invasive positive pressure ventilation and ECMO support.
In addition, the ward will include a negative pressure operating room for children infected with Covid-19.
The head of the ward is Associate Professor Dr Phung Nguyen The Nguyen, who is deputy head of Children’s Hospital 1’s intensive care and poisoning control ward.
HCM City reduces COVID home-treatment period from 14 days to 10
COVID-19 patients treated at home in HCM City and cured now have to stay home only for 10 days and not 14, the city Department of Health has said.
They had to stay at home for at least 14 days even if they had recovered several days earlier, but now they no longer have to self-isolate once they are cured.
COVID patients can treat themselves at home if they are asymptomatic or only have slight symptoms, and are aged between three months and 64 years.
They must not have underlying medical conditions or be pregnant or obese, and should have received two vaccine shots.
Patients who do not satisfy the above conditions can still remain home if their underlying conditions are stable or they show no signs of health problems or are fully vaccinated.
Children or people who cannot care for themselves need to have caretakers.
If a patient qualifies for home treatment but has a family member at high risk, they will be encouraged to quarantine elsewhere or sent to a public facility.
Traffic Safety Year 2022 launched in Hanoi
The National Committee for Traffic Safety in collaboration with the Hanoi People’s Committee on January 6 held a ceremony to kick off the Traffic Safety Year 2022.
According to the National Committee for Traffic Safety, as of December 14, 2021, 11,495 traffic accidents had occurred across the country, killing 5,799 people and injuring 8,018 others, down 23.32 percent, 15.55 percent, and 28.16 percent year-on-year, respectively.
As many as 55 provinces and centrally-run cities recorded a strong decrease in the number of fatalities due to traffic accidents compared to 2020. Notably, An Giang and Son La provinces reported a decrease of over 40 percent.
Traffic police had handled 2.88 million violation cases, giving out fines of over 2.8 trillion VND (123 million USD), revoking 248,6000 driving licences and sequestering 460,000 vehicles./.
JICA donates medical equipment to Hue Central Hospital
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has continued its support to Vietnam’s fight against COVID-19 by donating medical equipment, including five ventilators, five electrocardiogram measuring devices and seven infant incubators, to the Hue Central Hospital in the ending days of 2021.
This batch was part of initial support within the framework of the technical cooperation project entitled “The Project for Enhancing Hue Central Hospital Capabilities in responding to COVID-19”.
The project will deliver six batches of 11 different types of equipment, with a total value of 200 million yen, or roughly VND39.3 billion.
Photo exhibition spotlights 50 years of ties with India
A photo exhibition aimed at highlighting five decades of diplomatic relations with India opened on January 6 in Hanoi.
On display at the event are photographs showcasing the landscape and daily lives of people in both Hanoi and New Delhi.
The photo exhibition is jointly held by the Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre, the Indian Embassy in Vietnam, and the Vietnam-India Friendship Association of Hanoi (HAVIFA).
The event is open at the Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre on 63 Tran Hung Dao street in Hanoi from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day, and will last through to January 8.
Two Vietnamese doctors honoured at AFC Medical Awards
Vietnamese doctors Nguyen Trong Hien and Pham Thi Thuy will receive the AFC Football Medicine Award for 15 years dedicated service, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) announced on January 6.
Dr Pham Thi Thuy had served as a doctor for the national women’s football team for 18 years.
Dr Nguyen Trong Hien was recognised for his various endeavours in the Vietnamese sports medicine industry. He worked for the national men's football team from 1995 to 2012, and is also a member of the Medical Committee of the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF).
Currently, Dr Hien is head of the National Sports Training Center’s Sports Medicine Department.
Dr Pham Thi Thuy is notable for taking charge of the national women’s football team between 2000 and 2018. She has since assumed the role of deputy head of the Outpatient Department at the Vietnam Sports Hospital.
New heads of pagodas in Truong Sa appointed
The Executive Board of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha (VBS) in the south-central coastal province of Khanh Hoa has held a ceremony announcing decisions on the appointment of heads of six pagodas in Truong Sa island district.
The six establishments are on Truong Sa Dong, Song Tu Tay, Sinh Ton Dong, Truong Sa Lon, Phan Vinh, and Nam Yet.
Khanh Hoa’s Buddhist information and communication board on January 6 cited Most Venerable Thich Minh Thong as saying at the ceremony that border residents have a limited material, spiritual and religious life due to geographical difficulties.
Khanh Hoa is home to nine pagodas located on islands of Truong Sa district.
Hanoi restores old French villa
Hanoi is home to many classical French architectural works, including a number of villas built in the early 20th century. One old villa in the downtown area - after many years of being empty - is now being renovated in the expectation of “reviving” a heritage site in the heart of Vietnam’s capital.
According to figures from the Hanoi Department of Construction, there are 1,253 old French houses and villas in the city built before 1954 and on a list of being in need of preservation.
This is the perspective after the project is completed and restored. The site will become a place of cultural exchange, with a host of activities to promote the cultural and architectural heritage values of the capital.
Dien Bien holds reburial service for fallen Vietnamese soldiers
A ceremony was held at Tong Khao cemetery in the northern mountainous province of Dien Bien on January 6 to rebury remains of six Vietnamese volunteer soldiers who died for international missions in Laos.
The unidentified remains were found by Military Zone 2’s searching team with the help of competent forces in Laos.
Cai luong opera star releases music video online
People’s Artist Bạch Tuyết, a cải lương (reformed opera) performer, has made waves with a new music video, released on YouTube on January 3.
The video for Mang Tiền Về Cho Mẹ (Bring Money to Your Mother) is a cải lương version of the same song by rapper Đen Vâu.
Her version has attracted more than 115,800 views on YouTube.
Rapper Đen’s version, released on YouTube last month, attracted more than 22 million views.
Re-selling of Molnupiravir in drugstores strictly prohibited: MOH
Molnupiravir, which is being used to treat mild COVID-19 patients under a trial program in Việt Nam, is not allowed for sale on the open market.
Molnupiravir's price has reportedly skyrocketed at some local drugstores, and the Drug Administration of Việt Nam (DAV) has demanded departments of health at localities to increase inspection and strictly handle violations, especially in Hà Nội.
In order to ensure the safety of users, the DAV also ordered stronger supervision and examination and punishment over violations in producing, trading and advertising medicine used for COVID-19 prevention and control, particularly violations relating to selling drugs of unknown origin and unreasonable price hikes.
The Hà Nội Department of Health was instructed to focus on inspecting and clarifying information regarding the reselling of Molnupiravir at local drugstores, and strictly punish violators.
Free oxygen programme in place for Hanoi's COVID-19 patients
As COVID cases continue to rise, the work of volunteers is proving vital to fight the pandemic.
And Việt Nam has no shortage of people willing to sacrifice their own time for the good of others.
One such helper is Nguyễn Quốc Triệu, a student from Hà Nội University of Science and Technology.
For the past six months he has been providing assistance in Lĩnh Nam Ward in Hà Nội’s Hoàng Mai District along with 11 other young people.
With almost 30 new cases reported each day in the ward, there is a huge need for oxygen, and Triệu is just a phone call away to deliver cylinders for those in need.
Over 2.2 million people leave cities during Covid-19 pandemic
Over 2.2 million people left Vietnam’s major cities for their hometowns in 2021 after being hard hit by the Covid-19 pandemic according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).
According to a report released on January 6 by GSO, over 520,000 people left the southern economic hub of Ho Chi Minh City while over 440,000 left Hanoi. Another 600,000 plus left other southern localities for their hometowns during the year.
Most of these were people who didn't have stable jobs and housing and were badly affected by the social distancing regulations applied for Covid-19 prevention during that time, the report said.
Head of the GSO's Population and Labour Statistics Department, Pham Hoai Nam, said the exodus had led to labour shortages in several industries including textiles and footwear.
HCM City sets up one more Covid-19 treatment hospital
HCM City has restructured a Covid-19 field hospital to serve all mild, moderate and severe Covid-19 patients.
The hospital has 1,600 beds, including 600 for intensive care. It receives Covid-19 cases and then classifies them for suitable treatment.
The first tier is for patients without symptoms or with mild symptoms. The second tier, mostly at field hospitals and Covid-19 treatment hospitals, receives patients with medium symptoms and underlying health conditions.
Danang aims to attract 3.5 million tourists this year
The central city of Danang has set a target to triple visitor numbers to 3.5 million this year.
The municipal Department of Tourism held a meeting on Wednesday on plans for 2022. The department mentioned two scenarios for the tourism sector in the year.
With the first scenario, the city expects to serve 3.5 million tourists, including 180,000 foreigners, bringing in a total revenue of VND6.7 trillion (USD291 million), up 2.6 fold on-year.
With the second scenario, the city’s tourists would reach 2.1 million, up 87.8 percent on-year, including 100,000 foreigners. The city’s tourism revenues are expected to be at VND4 trillion, up two times on-year.
Vietnamese referees vie for berth at 2022 AFC Women's Asian Cup
Local referees Cong Thi Dung and Truong Thi Le Trinh have been selected to officiate matches at the upcoming 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup.
The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) made the announcement on January 5 to name a total of 36 referees and assistant referees who will take charge of the continental tournament.
According to the statement, Cong Thi Dung is on the list of reserve referees and Truong Thi Le Trinh is on the list of official assistant referees or lineswomen.
The AFC has also invited six more male referees to participate as the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) management. VAR will be making its first appearance at the 2022 AFC Women’s Asian Cup from the quarter-final stage.
HCM City top destination to welcome New Year 2022
Ho Chi Minh (HCM) City and Sapa are still the most favoured destinations of Vietnamese tourists during the New Year celebrations. This result is based on booking data for the New Year period on the online travel booking platform Agoda.
HCM City has maintained its position as the top destination for tourists on New Year’s Eve for 2 consecutive years, while Sapa in Lao Cai province is prominent in the ranking as it jumped from 7th place last year to 2nd place this year, pushing Da Lat city in the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong to 3rd place.
Phu Quoc Island in the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang ranked 5th and Nha Trang city in the central province of Khanh Hoa jumped from 8th place last year to 6th this year. Hanoi ranked 4th in attracting tourists, thanks to the unique French architecture in many famous tourist destinations.
The northern province of Ninh Binh is a new name in the Top 10 favorite destinations for the New Year this year, because of its attractive natural beauty and many interesting experiences./.
Dak Nong helps Cambodian province with food, medical supplies
The Border Guard Command of the Central Highlands province of Dak Nong on January 7 presented food and medical supplies to armed forces of Cambodia’s Mondulkiri province to serve the COVID-19 combat.
The donations, worth 170 million VND (7,490 USD), are expected to help the Cambodian armed forces better perform their tasks of border management and pandemic fight, said Colonel Nguyen Van Lu, head of the Border Guard Command.
On this occasion, the two sides exchanged information about territorial sovereignty, activities of hostile forces and crime at border areas.
Vietnamese, Indian leaders exchange congratulatory letters
Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Quoc Dung and Indian Ambassador to Vietnam Pranay Verma in Hanoi on January 7 exchanged letters of congratulations by Vietnamese and Indian leaders on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties (January 7).
The letters were written by President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Indian President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and his counterpart Narendra Modi, National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue and Vice President and Chairman of the Rajya Sabha (Upper House) Venkaiah Naidu, and Speaker of the the Lok Sabha (House of Representatives) Om Birla.
On the occasion, Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son exchange his congratulatory message with Indian Minister of External Affairs Subrahmanyam Jaishankar.
Quang Tri: 227kg bomb successfully relocated
The Peace Trees Vietnam’s mobile bomb and mine clearance team announced on January 7 that they had successfully moved a 227kg MK-82 bomb to a safe area to wait for deactivation.
The bomb was found by a man in Ta Rung village, Huong Viet commune, Huong Hoa district, the central province of Quang Tri.
Located in a depth of 2m, the bomb has a diameter of 274mm, a length of 1.54m and weighs 227kg.
30 football players summoned for national team
Head coach Park Hang-seo on January 7 proposed summoning 30 players for the national team to prepare for the away match with Australia in the third Asian qualifier of FIFA World Cup 2022, according to the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF).
It will be also the first gathering of the Vietnamese team this year.
The return of Nguyen Huu Tuan, Nguyen Duc Chien, To Van Vu, Pham Tuan Hai and especially Do Hung Dung is expected to breathe new life into the gathering.
There are also promising players such as Nguyen Thanh Binh, Lieu Quang Vinh, Le Van Xuan, Nguyen Trong Long, Le Van Do and Ho Thanh Minh.
Due to injuries, Nguyen Tuan Anh, Do Duy Manh and Ha Duc Chinh will be absent.
As scheduled, the team will gather for training from January 13.
Before their departure to Australia, Park will finalise the list of 23 players for the match.
Hanoi artisans, outstanding rural industrial products 2021 honoured
The Hanoi municipal Department of Industry and Trade presented the title of Hanoi artisans and outstanding rural industrial products 2021 during a ceremony in the capital city on January 7.
Among 71 products joining in the selection, 61 were recognised as outstanding rural industrial products.
On the occasion, Hanoi presented the insignia “For the cause of Vietnam’s industry and trade development” to 57 outstanding individuals in recognition of their contributions to the sector.
Vietnam logs 16,278 COVID-19 cases on January 7
Vietnam recorded 16,278 cases of COVID-19, including 24 imported ones, during 24 hours from 4pm January 6 to 4pm January 7, according to the Ministry of Health.
Hanoi recorded the highest number of infections with 2,723, followed by Hai Phong with 795 and Khanh Hoa with 790.
The national tally reached 1,859,841, including 30 infections of Omicron.
According to the Ministry of Health’s report, 6,006 patients nationwide are in serious conditions, with 723 requiring invasive ventilation and 20 on life support (ECMO).
On the day, the country saw 233 deaths from the disease. The death toll now hits 33,877, equal to 1.8 percent of the total caseload.
Virtual photo exhibition marks 50 years of Vietnam-India cooperation
A virtual photo exhibition entitled ‘Vietnam - India: 50 years of cooperation’ began on January 7.
The event is in celebration of the 50th founding anniversary of the Vietnam - India diplomatic ties (January 7, 1972 - 2022) and five years since the establishment of the two countries' Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (September 2016 - 2021).
Held by the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) together with the Embassy of India in Vietnam and the Vietnam - India Friendship Association, the exhibition can be viewed at https://link.gov.vn/TLAVNAD (in Vietnamese) and https://link.gov.vn/PICVNAD (in English) until January 11.
Draws for 2022 professional football championships held
The Vietnam Professional Football JSC on January 7 held a draw to arrange the schedules of 2022 professional football championships slated to take place from February 19 to November 20.
Accordingly, 12 clubs namely Ba Ria – Vung Tau, Binh Phuoc, Can Tho, People’s Public Security, Dak Lak, Hue, Khanh Hoa, Long An, Pho Hien, Phu Dong, Phu Tho and Quang Nam will compete in the Vietnam National Football First League (V.League 2) starting from March 5.
Meanwhile, the top national football championship (V.League 1) will see the participation of 13 clubs, including Becamex Binh Duong, Dong A Thanh Hoa, Hanoi, Hai Phong, Hoang Anh Gia Lai, Hong Linh Ha Tinh, Nam Dinh, Sai Gon, SHB Da Nang, Song Lam Nghe An, Topenland Binh Dinh, Ho Chi Minh City and Viettel
They will play in 156 home and away matches in 26 rounds, staring from February 19.
The National Football Cup 2022 will attract 13 V.League 1 and 12 V.League 2 clubs that will compete in a total of 24 matches from April 6.
Photo exhibition in HCM City spotlights 50-year Vietnam-India diplomatic ties
A photo exhibition on the five-decade journey of the Vietnam – India diplomatic relations (January 7, 1972 - 2022) opened at the Ho Chi Minh City Museum on January 7, aiming to help people gain better understanding on the countries’ traditional friendship and cultural similarities.
On display at the event are 100 black and white photos regarding the nations’ friendship as well as their diplomatic-cultural-educational relationship reflected in HCM City. The photos capture visits exchanged by Indian and Vietnamese leaders like President Ho Chi Minh (in India, 1958) and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru (in Vietnam, 1954).
The exhibition also introduces bilateral cooperation activities across all spheres, including economy, politics, defence, security, trade-investment, science-technolgy, and culture, among others.
Home Spring programme to be held on January 22
The annual “Xuan Que Huong” (Homeland Spring) programme 2022, a run-up to the Lunar New Year festival for Overseas Vietnamese (OVs), will take place in Hanoi on January 22.
President Nguyen Xuan Phuc is expected to extend New Year wishes to OVs. An art exchange will also be staged on the occasion, featuring the development of Vietnamese music and harmonisation between preserving and promoting the traditional cultural values of the nation.
The programme will be held in-person and virtual forms and be broadcast live on Vietnam Television’s VTV1 and VTV4 channels.
As many as 300 OVs are expected to take part in the face-to-face event at the Hanoi Opera House, including 100 persons with outstanding achievements in such fields as culture, science and technology.
Organised regularly since 2008, the programme has become a much anticipated event attracting a large number of expatriates from all corners around the globe.
Exhibition raises public awareness on plastic waste reduction
An exhibition on plastic waste reduction opened in Hanoi on January 7, aiming to help change citizens' mindset and behavior regarding the use of plastic bags and other single-use plastic products.
It is co-organised by the Institute of Strategy and Policy on Natural Resources and Environment (ISPONRE) and the World Wide Fund for Nature in Viet Nam (WWF-Viet Nam).
Taking place at the Vincom Mega Mall Royal City, the exhibition lasts until January 16.
Source: VNA/Nhan Dan/SGT/VOV/VNS/VGP/SGGP
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