The Ministry of Health this afternoon, July 9 reported 609 more Covid-19 cases, with 603 domestic  and six imported cases, taking the country’s tally to 25,419.

Of the imported cases, three cases were confirmed in Ha Tinh Province, two in Quang Nam and one in Kien Giang.

Among the latest domestic infections, HCMC continued to account for the most, 479, followed by Binh Duong with 66, Dong Nai with 17, Bac Giang with nine, Tra Vinh with eight, Bac Ninh and Quang Ngai with seven each, Ba Ria-Vung Tau with four, Hanoi with two and Vinh Phuc, Bac Lieu, Lam Dong and Thanh Hoa with one each.

As many as 480 cases were detected at quarantine centers or in areas under lockdown.

With the new locally-infected Covid-19 cases, HCMC’s count amounted to 9,895 in the current fourth coronavirus wave, which began on April 27, while Binh Duong Province’s cases topped at 1,119.

The latest domestic cases raised the country’s total number of infections in the fourth wave to 21,943.

In related news, the Department of Endocrinology at the Dong Nai General Hospital, with over 100 medical workers, patients and caregivers, has been put under lockdown after a female doctor of the department tested positive for Covid-19.

The Covid-19 case was detected through screening for 1,500 medical workers at the hospital, with the unknown source of infection, the Dong Nai Department of Health said today.

In another development, the Haiphong government has decided to ease anti-Covid-19 measures in Vinh Bao District, which reported the largest number of Covid-19 infections in the city, as the district had undergone 14 consecutive days without fresh Covid-19 cases.

The decision was aimed at putting socio-economic activities and residents’ daily lives back on track.

At the district’s communes practicing social distancing under the prime minister’s Directive 15, several non-essential services will resume operations from 6.00 a.m. on July 10, but must comply with Covid-19 safety protocols, while nightclubs, bars, karaoke and massage parlors and pubs will remain shut.

Meanwhile, the communes of Ly Hoc, Hoa Binh and Cong Hien will stop applying Directive 16 on social distancing and follow Covid-19 infection prevention and control measures in line with Directive 15 instead, which is less stringent than the former.

Japan donates 600,000 more doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Vietnam

A batch of 600,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine donated by the Japanese Government arrived at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City early on July 9.

A batch of 600,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine donated by Japan has arrived in HCM City.

The batch, the third of its kind, is part of approximately two million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine the Japanese Government has committed to support Vietnam’s ongoing fight against COVID-19.

Previously Vietnam received approximately 1 million doses on June 16 and another 400,000 doses on July 7.

In a press release dated July 9, the Japanese Consulate General in HCM City noted the Japanese supply of vaccines to Vietnam is a testament to the deep friendship between the two countries. The Consulate General expressed hope the vaccine will help Vietnam overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.

HCM City has emerged as the largest coronavirus hotpot in Vietnam, recording nearly 10,000 positive cases following the resurgence of the virus in late April.

The government has agreed to prioritize all resources, including COVID-19 vaccines, for the city, the largest in Vietnam, to slow the spread of the virus in the community.

Health Minister proposes HCMC lock down high-risk areas

Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long has proposed HCMC lock down high-risk areas, while the entire city will practice social distancing under the prime minister’s Directive 16 from tomorrow, heard an online anti-Covid-19 meeting today, July 8.

The city’s fight against Covid-19 will decide the success or failure of suppressing the pandemic in nearby provinces such as Binh Duong, Dong Nai and Long An and the country, Long said, proposing some solutions to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Covid-19 tests should be conducted every five or seven days at high-risk areas, said Long, while other parts of the city should take group samples in households for testing.

The Ministry of Health will dispatch some 10,000 medical workers to HCMC to help the city collect samples for testing and treat Covid-19 patients.

Besides, Minister Long said that HCMC should prepare 50,000 beds at treatment areas for Covid-19 patients who are asymptomatic as these patients account for 70% of the total number of patients reported in the city.

All hospitals citywide must make themselves ready to treat ill patients, while Cho Ray Hospital, the HCMC Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Hospital 115 and Gia Dinh People’s Hospital will be in charge of treating seriously ill patients.

Also, Long said that in July, some 8.7 million doses of Covid-19 vaccine would arrive in Vietnam and HCMC and nearby provinces would be prioritized for vaccination.

The city should run a number of vaccination sites, especially at some residential areas, and arrange different time frames to avoid mass gatherings and ensure safety.

Chairing the online meeting, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh asked HCMC to adopt more drastic anti-virus measures and make all-out efforts to ward off community spread.

Since the current fourth wave of Covid-19 emerged on April 27, HCMC has reported over 8,500 domestic Covid-19 cases to become the country’s largest coronavirus hotspot.

13th Party Central Committee wraps up third plenum

The third plenum of the 13th Party Central Committee concluded on July 8 afternoon with the adoption of a resolution, completing all of its working programme after four days.

Delivering his closing speech, Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong said the committee acknowledged the efforts of the entire Party, people and army in the implementation of the Resolution of the 13th National Party Congress; the successful organisation of the elections of deputies to the 15th National Assembly and to People's Councils at all levels for the 2021-2026 term; and especially in COVID-19 prevention and control work during the current fourth wave of outbreaks.

In the first half of the year, the nation continued pressing ahead with the dual targets of pandemic combat and socio-economic development, taking care of the people's life, while maintaining defence, political security, social safety and order, and promoting external activities in line with global developments of the epidemic.

However, Vietnam did not fulfill its socio-economic goals set for the period. The nation faced a host of challenges and difficulties amid increasingly complicated pandemic situation.

The Party chief emphasised that the socio-economic development plan should continue to be supplemented and clarified, ensuring an appropriate proportion of spending on development investment and regular expenditure.

It is necessary to attach importance to the participation of the whole political system; and to inspection, prevention and combat of corruption and wastefulness, he added.

The Party chief directed tightening disciplines and intensifying the fighting against corruption and vested interest in public investment.

The Central Committee unanimously agreed on the nomination of 23 additional candidates for a number of positions in the state leadership in the 2021-2026 term./.

376 Covid-19 patients in critical, extremely critical conditions

As of July 7, 270 Covid-19 patients were reported to be in critical condition and 106 others in extremely critical condition, making up 3.3% and 1.3% of the total Covid-19 cases, according to the treatment subcommittee under the national steering committee for Covid-19 infection prevention and control. Nine patients are at risk of death.

As of this morning, the country’s Covid-19 deaths reached 105, including 70 in the current outbreak, double that of the figure in the third Covid-19 wave.

In the first two Covid-19 waves, the country had no Covid-19 deaths.

At a meeting on July 7, Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long asked localities to establish intensive care units to treat critical Covid-19 patients, with one in Dong Nai and one in Can Tho to be set up first.

Long added that the Delta coronavirus variant might raise the death rate, so cities and provinces must focus on the treatment of critical patients.

The ministry is drawing up plans for the worst scenarios and reviewing equipment, ventilators, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation machines, oxygen, medicines and protective suits.

Minister Long said the number of new Covid-19 cases might surge in the coming days. Dong Nai, Binh Duong, Quang Ngai, Phu Yen, Dong Thap, Long An and Tien Giang have also become pandemic hotspots.

He asked these localities to prepare test kits and increase their testing capacities. The Ministry of Health will create favorable conditions for the import of test kits and improve the local test kit production.

In HCMC, Long asked the city to test residents in areas under lockdown every three days and those in areas at a high risk of infection every seven days.

Motorists from/to HCMC must show negative Covid-19 test result

Motorists traveling from or to HCMC must show their negative Covid-19 test result as part of efforts to strengthen anti-Covid-19 measures and prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the city, according to a telegram issued by Minister of Transport Nguyen Van The on July 8.

All those on board the vehicles from/to the city must also produce proof of negative Covid-19 test, the local media reported.

Vehicles transporting people to hospitals or healthcare centers in emergencies are not subject to the order, but the drivers and conductors must comply with safety protocols.

Meanwhile, vehicles transporting goods, food, necessities, building materials, employees or experts that shuttle between HCMC and the nearby provinces and cities are allowed to operate, but must get approval from the governments of these provinces and cities, while the drivers and conductors are required to follow Covid-19 prevention and control measures and file daily health declarations.

The Ministry of Transport also told the Vietnam Directorate for Roads to work with the agencies and units under the Ministry of Public Security and the governments of HCMC and neighboring southern provinces to regulate traffic and tighten control over vehicles' entry into the city.

In addition, the heads of transport service firms, coach stations, train stations, ferry terminals and the airport and the owners of vehicles were asked to assume responsibility for the safety and compliance with anti-virus measures at their units.

Record 1,307 local COVID-19 infections reported, fourth wave tally nears 21,000

Viet Nam on Thursday recorded 1,307 domestically transmitted COVID-19 infections, the highest daily rise the country has ever seen.

The majority of new cases are in the country's coronavirus epicentre HCM City (with 915 cases) and southern provinces – Bình Dương (135), Đồng Tháp (108), Khánh Hoà (28), Phú Yên (24), Vĩnh Long (17), An Giang (11), Cà Mau (11), Bình Phước (3), Trà Vinh (2), Kiên Giang (1), Bình Thuận (1), Bến Tre (1), Tây Ninh (1), and Hậu Giang (1).

Some Central Highlands and central region provinces also reported new community cases – Quảng Ngãi (14), Lâm Đồng (3), Gia Lai (3), and Nghệ An (1).

Three northern localities with stabilising situations recorded single-digit rises in local cases – Bắc Ninh with eight patients, Bắc Giang with nine, and Hà Nội with five.

There were also seven imported COVID-19 cases detected today.

All in all, Việt Nam’s ongoing fourth wave of infections that emerged since late April, characterised by the dominance of highly infectious Delta variant of coronavirus, has reached 20,863 cases, pushing the national tally since the beginning of the pandemic past the 24,000 mark (currently at 24,385 confirmed cases).

The health ministry also reported 393 recoveries, bringing the country’s total to 8,950.

105 COVID-19 fatalities have been recorded in Việt Nam so far, 70 in the fourth wave.

HCM City pilots home quarantine of F1 cases

HCM City pilots home quarantine of F1 cases hinh anh 1

At Binh Dien wholesale market in HCM City (Photo: VNA)

The Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee on July 8 issued a document guiding pilot quarantine of F1 cases at home amid the rapid and complicated developments of the COVID-19 pandemic in the southern hub.

F1 cases comprise those who have had close contact with COVID-19 patients and wore medical masks, have rapid negative results to coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 while waiting for PCR tests, or have already finished two-week quarantine at concentrated facilities and tested negative to the virus on the 14th day of quarantine.

The municipal People’s Committee asked localities to follow the Health Ministry’s guidelines in terms of infrastructure and equipment for medically-monitored people, persons living in the same houses and health workers.

Samples for testing must be collected at least five times on the first, seventh, 14th, 20th and 28th days since quarantine, or at least twice on the 20th and 28th days for those who have finished two-week quarantine.

The municipal Department of Information and Communications was asked to partner with the Health Department to adopt technological advances to better manage home quarantine.

As of July 8 morning, the city recorded 53,191 people undergoing quarantine, 15,007 of them are in concentrated quarantine facilities and the remainders at home or places of residence./.

Vietnam adds 425 cases to national COVID-19 tally

Additional 425 COVID-19 cases were added to the national tally from 6:30pm on July 8 to 6am on July 9, raising the caseload to 24,810.

Among the new infections, two were imported. Up to 350 cases were recorded in Ho Chi Minh City, while the remainders were found in Long An, Dong Nai, Phu Yen, An Giang, Khanh Hoa, Bac Ninh, Vinh Phuc, Gia Lai and Bac Lieu.

As of July 9 morning, the country reported 22,910 domestic cases. The number of infections since the fourth wave of the pandemic broke out in late April amounted to 21,340, of whom 6,176 have been given the all-clear.

The health ministry’s Medical Examination and Treatment Department said 8,950 patients have recovered, and the national COVID-19 death toll has reached 105.

Among the active patients, 333 have tested negative to the coronavirus once, 203 twice, and 80 thrice.

Another 22,647 people were vaccinated on July 8. As of 4:00pm on July 8, nearly 4 million vaccine doses had been administered. A total of 249,532 people have received full two shots./.

Vietnamese rescuer honoured with IMO bravery award

A search and rescue officer from Vietnam has been selected to receive the 2021 IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea, after saving the lives of four people from a sunken cargo ship in extreme weather and heavy seas.

Tran Van Khoi, 47, works at the Regional Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Center No.II based in Da Nang.

While on duty on October 9, he and colleagues braved extreme weather and heavy seas to rescue four sailors in the sunken cargo vessel Vietship 01. They also received phone calls from President Nguyen Xuan Phuc to commend them on the bravery act.

In 2021 there are a total of 37 nominations for the above award, submitted from 23 member countries and four NGOs.

During an online meeting of the 125th session from June 28 to July 2, the IMO jury agreed to award the 2021 "IMO Award for Exceptional Bravery at Sea" award to Vietnam's Tran Van Khoi. The award ceremony will be held according to the plan proposed by the IMO secretary general./.

Vietnam calls for sharing of information on COVID-19 vaccines

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang said amid increasing complicated COVID-19 situation, Vietnam hopes countries and international organisations to increase the sharing of information, technology, finance and medical supplies, especially vaccines, to jointly prevent and control the pandemic and soon bring life back to normal.

She made the comment at a regular press conference of the ministry, which took place virtually on July 8.

Hang said that to date, Vietnam has received four types of vaccines, including nearly 4.4 million doses of AstraZeneca from the COVAX programme and through purchase, along with 1.4 million doses of the vaccine donated by the Government of Japan; 2,000 doses of Sputnik V donated by the Russian Government; 500,000 doses of Vero-Cell by Sinopharm donated by the Chinese Government. On July 7, the first batch of close to 100,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine arrived in Vietnam, she added.

According to the spokesperson, the COVAX programme has also committed to give priority to Vietnam in its upcoming vaccine allocations. It will deliver to Vietnam 2 million doses of the Moderna vaccine provided by the US Government through the mechanism, which are expected to arrive in Vietnam this week.

She noted that Vietnam has contributed 500,000 USD to the COVAX mechanism to join hands with the international community in fighting the pandemic.

Regarding the use of the 500,000 doses of Vero-Cell vaccine donated by China, Hang said Vietnam will use the vaccine in accordance with the Vietnamese Government’s Resolution 21/NQ-CP issued on February 26 on COVID-19 vaccine procurement and use. She added that at the same time, in response to the request of the Chinese side, Vietnam will vaccinate Chinese citizens working in Vietnam./.

Vietnam urges settlement of security, humanitarian issues in West Africa, Sahel

A Vietnamese representative called for the settlement of security and humanitarian challenges in West Africa and the Sahel while attending the United Nations Security Council (UNSC)’s meeting on July 8.

The event was also attended by Annadif Khatir Mahamat Saleh, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative in West Africa and the Sahel and head of the UN Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS); and Chantal Ayemou, President of the Cote d’Ivoire Network for the Defence of the Rights of Children and Women.

Speakers said over the last six months, West Africa and the Sahel witnessed certain political progress, notably the successful parliamentary and presidential elections in such countries as Niger, Benin, Ghana, Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire, and Burkina Faso.

However, they noted, the security situation in the region has continued recording complex developments as a result of growing terrorism and violence among communities.

They recognised the good response to COVID-19 by countries in West Africa and the Sahel but also voiced concern that the pandemic has pushed these nations into serious recession, reversed economic and poverty alleviation achievements, and hampered efforts to obtain the Sustainable Development Goals.

Saleh emphasised his concern about food insecurity and trans-national crime in many regional countries, along with piracy in the Gulf of Guinea.

For her part, Ayemou highlighted several strides in ensuring the rights of women and children in West Africa and the Sahel but also pointed out numerous challenges to this process, especially in securing access to education and healthcare for women.

At the meeting, held every six months, UNSC member states condemned the attacks against civilians, UN staff, and UN peacekeepers in the region.

They highly valued and affirmed their support for activities of UNOWAS and the G5 Sahel force. They also called on the African Union (AU) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to keep coordinating with the UNOWAS in maintaining regional peace, security, and development.

Minister Counselor Nguyen Phuong Tra, Deputy Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the UN, recognised the political process in the region, particularly the recent establishment of new governments and parliaments in some countries.

She shared concerns over the security and humanitarian situation in West Africa and the Sahel while condemning the attacks against civilians there.

The diplomat appealed to all stakeholders to strengthen the protection of civilians and UN staff and peacekeepers and ensure that civilians’ legitimate interests and humanitarian aid activities are not impeded.

Vietnam highly values efforts by the UN, UNOWAS, regional organisations, and the G5 Sahel force to contribute to peace, security, development, and promotion of the political process in the region, Tra stressed.

She called for the enhancement of preventive diplomacy, early warning, conflict prevention, and reconciliation during the settlement of regional conflicts, with threats posed by climate change to regional security taken into account./.

Fifth Italian Design Day taking place in July

The Italian Embassy in Hanoi is organising several events in the framework of the 5th Italian Design Day in Vietnam on July 8 and 9.

Two main events were held online, comprising a webinar under the theme “Revitalise urban areas,” and an online talk on “Application of technology in preserving cultural heritages” connecting Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Milan.

The Italian Design Day initiative has received warm response from many countries in the world, including Vietnam. Each year, 100 Italian cultural ambassadors in 100 cities will showcase and exchange ideas with art enthusiasts, architects, designers and landscape architects to seek answers for intriguing questions regarding future cities and sustainable development.

Ambassador of this year's Italian Design Day - architect Massimo Roj will join the webinar from Milan to provide young Vietnamese architects and the public with an overview of trends as well as solutions for some urban revitalising projects in Italy, Vietnam and other countries./.

HCM City ensures supply of essential items during social distancing


Many people in Ho Chi Minh City have been in fear of food shortages over recent days, since COVID-19 triggered the closure of wholesale markets which were linked to a growing number of infections. The city’s Department of Industry and Trade therefore identified a number of solutions to guarantee sufficient supply of essential items for local residents.

The Binh Dien, Thu Duc, and Hoc Mon wholesale markets in District 8 provide 70 percent of Ho Chi Minh City’s food supply but were forced to temporarily close due to COVID-19.

The market’s wholesalers have to transport their goods elsewhere and change their sales methods.

Modern distribution networks also played an important role in getting products to retailers after disruptions were seen in food supply at wholesale markets.

With the sound production capacity of local enterprises and solid supply chains from other localities, there have been no shortages of foodstuffs or essential goods in Ho Chi Minh City.

Though more than 100 markets and 65 supermarkets and convenience stores were shut due to COVID-19, goods were readily available at the 1,900 other shops in the city.

With concerted efforts from the trade sector, there will be no shortages of essential items during social distancing.

As the pandemic has become more complex, local people should remain vigilant and not go out to buy non-essential items./.

Summer days spotlighted at Hanoi exhibition


The vibrant shades of summer are highlighted at a painting and sculpture display at the Exhibition House at No. 16 Ngo Quyen Street in Hanoi.

On display at the exhibition “Summer Sunshine” are 84 oil and lacquer paintings along with artworks made from ceramics, copper and composite.

Paintings of corners of Hanoi’s Old Quarter under the shades of towering trees and tranquil paddy fields, or sunny yard or summer – inspired sculpture are available for contemplation.

The exhibition will run until July 16./.



Ho Chi Minh City – Phu Quoc flights temporarily suspended

The Ministry of Transport has approved the temporary suspension of flights between Ho Chi Minh City and Phu Quoc island city in Kien Giang province.

Deputy Minister of Transport Le Anh Tuan signed a decision on the suspension of flights beginning at 0:00 on July 8 until further notice. The move came as HCM City is recording a large number of COVID-19 cases in recent weeks.

The Ministry of Transport tasked the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam to coordinate with relevant agencies and units under the People's Committee of Kien Giang province to monitor the COVID-19 situation to make adjustments to flights to/Phu Quoc Airport in a timely manner.

The Ministry of Transport had previously agreed to suspend flights from HCM City's Tan Son Nhat International Airport to Ba Ria – Vung Tau, Thanh Hoa, Quang Ninh, Hai Phong, Gia Lai, Quang Binh, Nghe An, Quang Nam, and Thua Thien – Hue./. 

Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, La Vie launch novel programme

The Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) and La Vie Co., Ltd. have launched an initiative that helps people sit at home and still get a glimpse of the beauty of the country’s nature amid the raging COVID-19 pandemic.

They have selected more than 100 natural wonders and presented them through a limited edition collection of La Vie mineral water.

Customers can choose from more than 100 different labels featuring scenic spots such as the ‘four great peaks’ of the north-west and the mysterious caves of the ‘Kingdom of Caves’ in central Quang Binh province.

Users can also scan the QR code on the water bottle to get information about the particular place as well as tourism generally from the VNAT website

A spokesperson for the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism said the initiative is among activities to promote the beauty of Vietnam to tourists in a new and unique way.

A Nestlé Group company, La Vie has been a pioneer in environmental initiatives./.

HCM City assures supply of essential goods to remain normal

Ho Chi Minh City’s Department of Industry and Trade said it has plans to ensure uninterrupted supply of essential goods to meet consumer demand though all three of the city's largest wholesale markets have been closed.

Binh Dien Wholesale Market in District 8 was closed on July 6 morning after recording at least 39 cases of COVID-19 through mass testing, and will reopen when it can comply fully with the pandemic prevention and control protocols.

Traders there have been told to switch to online sales and have their products delivered to customers’ homes until then.

The city will also strengthen mobile sales to ensure there is an adequate supply of essential items like food.

The department has worked with businesses and district administrations to ensure no small trader hikes prices.

Whatever the situation, authorities and key businesses would ensure supply is always adequate provided people do not hoard, said Nguyen Nguyen Phuong, deputy director of the department.

With the three largest wholesale markets in the city having to temporarily shut down, Thu Duc and Hoc Mon being the others, goods coming from provinces to the city will go directly to traditional markets.

The department said the 1,962 food supply points (106 supermarkets, 220 traditional markets and 1,636 convenience stores) in the city have plans for stockpiling to ensure supply of food and other essential items is adequate.

The city also plans to strengthen the capacity of traditional markets as well as modern distribution systems to maintain their key role in distributing essential goods.

Bui Ta Hoang Vu, director of the department, said the city held a meeting with Tay Ninh province to set up a buffer zone for transhipment of goods between the two places.

Goods coming from Tay Ninh to the city will be gathered in a place between Cu Chi and Trang Bang it will disinfect districts where both they and the vehicles transporting them before they are brought to traditional markets.

The 30-hectare Binh Dien Wholesale Market has thousands of stalls selling mainly seafood, pork and vegetables.

It has around 20,000 people working every night during normal times, but during social distancing only 9,000-12,000 people were allowed to work there, yet the risk of spread of infection remained very high. It has thousands of stalls, and some 5,000 cars and trucks and 2,000 three-wheelers enter it every day.

Eight thousand tonnes of fruits and vegetables come to the city’s three wholesale markets every day, meeting 70 percent of demand.

Supermarkets, shopping malls and other retailers supply the remaining 30 percent./.



2022 AFC U23 Asian Cup qualification draw slated for July 9

A draw for the 2022 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U23 Asian Cup qualification will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, at 2pm (Vietnam time) on July 9, the Vietnam Football Federation said on July 8.

A total of 43 teams will compete at the competition, including 20 East Zone squads from East and Southeast Asia, which will be divided into five groups of four, according to the AFC.

Taiwan (China), Indonesia, Mongolia, Singapore and Thailand will be hosts of such groups.

Vietnam are in Pot 1 out of the four seeded groups in the East Zone, together with the Republic of Korea, Australia, Thailand and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

Meanwhile, Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Qatar, Tajikistan and the United Arab Emirates will be hosts in the West Zone.

The qualification will be held from October 23 to 31, 2021.

Due to COVID-19, in each group, teams play each other in a round-robin format. The eleven group winners and the four best runners-up qualify for the final tournament, slated for next June in Uzbekistan./.

Farmers need training to develop digital agriculture

Farmers need more training on digital technology to bring the industry to another level, experts have said.

Nguyen Duc Tung, general secretary of the Vietnam Digital Agriculture Association (VIDA), made the statement said at a launch ceremony for a report on digital transformation in agriculture in Hanoi on July 7.

“Vietnam has adequate facilities and infrastructure to implement digital transformation in the agricultural sector,” he said, adding that farmers’ technology adaption was among the factors that needed most attention when building digital agriculture.

According to the report, although Vietnam was an agricultural country, Vietnamese agriculture has still not had strong development due to many internal and global problems.

The multi-dimensional impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the economy and agriculture to transform, according to the report.

The report said though digital transformation was inevitable and the first results of the change have shown potential, the digital transformation process of agricultural production was still long and full of challenges.

The report considered the e-government programme of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and other regulations in data sharing as positive points in the process, but the weakness of the system was that agricultural data was not connected from the local to national level while there was a lack of human resources to use technology in farming.

Most agriculture students don’t know much about technology, Tung said.

At the same time, links between enterprises in the value chain and ties those in the chain need to ensure better harmony in terms of benefits and responsibilities, according to the report.

The report said the lack of funding for digital transformation was a problem faced by most businesses, especially small and medium-sized firms, the most common business type in Vietnam.

According to VIDA, the report provides an overview of local agriculture by approaching the core stakeholders of the industry like farmers, businesses and policymakers through online surveys and in-depth face-to-face interviews on the digital transformation process in Vietnam.

VIDA's goal in the coming years is to develop the annual report to become a total solution for the digitisation of the agricultural sector.

Tung said the report is hoped to the premise for the development of business evaluation indicators in the industry.

VIDA’s report also recommended building a common and uniform database, developing infrastructure with the participation of many parties, developing policies to support capital investment for businesses, developing an innovation system focusing on new technology, and promoting awareness through communication.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Vietnam saw a year on year increase of 30.3 percent in agro, forestry and seafood product exports to 22.83 billion USD in the first five months of 2021, reported the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).

Press freedom in Vietnam - Undeniable objective reality

This year, the Reporters Without Borders (RSF) organisation once again issued biased, unobjective, and completely groundless assessments when listing Vietnam among the countries with little media freedom.

The RSF assessments are far from new but repeat the old mindset from the previous years and show that this organisation has turned a deaf ear to the reality of the protected freedom of speech and the press in Vietnam.

It is a fact that the State of Vietnam has always worked to protect and promote fundamental human rights, including the right to freedom of speech, the press freedom, and the right of access to information, which were regulated in the Constitution and related legal documents and have been practiced in the political, economic, and social aspects in the country.

Ensuring all citizens can practice the right to freedom of speech and of the press under legal regulations is a consistent policy of the Vietnamese Party and State.

Over the past years, the State has made unceasing efforts to complete the legal system so as to facilitate and protect citizens’ fundamental rights relevant to the freedom of speech.

The rules set in the revised Press Law and the Law on Access to Information, both adopted in 2016, completely match international documents on human rights and the right to freedom of speech and of the press.

It is regrettable that the RSF has intentionally ignored the legal documents enforced in Vietnam for many years.

The freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and freedom of information in Vietnam are also clearly reflected in the development of diverse types and content of the press.

In Vietnam, there are now about 41,000 personnel working in the media sector, 779 press agencies, and 72 others licensed to operate in radio - television broadcasting with 87 radio and 193 TV channels.

Press freedom in Vietnam - Undeniable objective reality hinh anh 2
Visitors look at exhibits about the Vietnam News Agency at the Vietnam Press Museum in Hanoi (Photo: VNA)
Meanwhile, information from major international media agencies like CNN, BBC, TV5, NHK, DW, Australia Network, KBS, and Bloomberg can all be easily accessed in the country.

In recent years, activities of press outlets in Vietnam have demonstrated the right to freedom of speech and become an important bridge linking the country with international friends.

Even international media pointed out the “information transparency” factor for many times when reporting on the measures helping Vietnam to contain the COVID-19 outbreaks in 2020. Many foreign newspapers also highly valued the Vietnamese Government’s effective use of social media and information technology for the pandemic fight.

David Hutt, a British journalist covering Southeast Asian politics, also held that when the pandemic broke out, the Party and State of Vietnam were highly transparent and open in sharing and updating data about COVID-19, which is one of the reasons why Vietnamese people put their trust in the anti-pandemic measures taken by the Government.

Besides, the RSF has intentionally turned a blind eye to the fact that Vietnam was recognised as one of the countries with the fastest growth in internet usage, with more than 68 million internet users, or 70 percent of its population.

The internet freedom and the freedom of expression on social networks have always been practiced within the legal framework in order to guarantee cybersecurity and prevent the abuse of social networks to violate Vietnamese law or create a pretext for external forces to intervene in the country.

In Vietnam, no one is brought to trial or arrested just for expressing their opinions or protecting human rights. Only the ones who take advantage of the freedom of speech or of the press to infringe the State’s interests, the rights and legitimate interests of collectives or individuals, and break the law are handled as in line with legal regulations. That matches international law as well as law in many countries.

It is obvious that the guaranteed freedom of speech and of the press in Vietnam is an undeniable reality. The RSF has intentionally negated the Vietnamese Party and State’s efforts in this regard to make wrong and groundless assessments.

Its arguments show that this organisation, with bad intentions, is distorting and twisting the truth about the freedom of the press in Vietnam. The RSF itself is running counter to the journalism principle of respecting and not distorting the truth./.

Festival promotes culture of Mong ethnic group

A festival highlighting the culture of the Mong ethnic group is scheduled to be held in September in the Central Highlands city of Lai Chau, with the participation of 14 cities and provinces.

The three-day festival, in its third edition, will feature artistic activities and a fashion show, along with a famtrip to scope out community-based and eco-tourism in Lai Chau province.

There will a conference promoting investment, trade and tourism in the locality, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism said.

The schedule would be adjusted to match the latest COVID-19 situation, according to the ministry./.

Dong Thap works to preserve bio-diversity in agriculture

Preserving and developing bio-diversity in agriculture production and wetlands have been a priority of the Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap over the years.

The province has surveyed eco-systems to identify the specific areas and species of plants and animals that should be preserved, including lotus, water lily, cajeput trees, bamboo and other indigenous plants, especially rice varieties.

Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Huynh Minh Tuan said that the province is also focusing on developing animal husbandry, aquaculture and plants in the Dong Thap Muoi (Plain of Reeds) area in the Tram Chim National Park, and some other eco-tourism sites.

Fish and other aquatic species, for example, were often released into the wild on public holidays. The province releases more than 2 million fish of various species into the wild each year.

At the same time, focus will be on the reproduction of indigenous plants and animals that have high value, and the use of advanced techniques in agricultural production to promote bio-diversity, thereby raising public awareness of the work and sustainable bio-diversity in agriculture production.

Dong Thap is also stepping up the building travel tours in tandem with environmental protection./.

Ben Tre’s export turnover up 14.1 percent in six months

Export turnover of the Mekong Delta province of Ben Tre reached more than 656 million USD in the first half of 2021, up 14.11 percent from the same period last year.

According to Director of the provincial Department of Industry and Trade Nguyen Van Be Sau, the structure of export goods of the province continued to improve towards reducing export of raw materials and increasing shipment of processed and industrial products, creating conditions for local goods to participate more deeply in the global production and supply chain.

Main exports of the locality saw high growth in value compared to the same period last year, with coconut products increasing by 15.14 percent, garments, 91.92 percent; handbags, 27.61 percent; and electronic products and spare parts, 14.63 percent.

Tran Ngoc Tam, Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, attributed the positive results to the adoption of measures aimed at supporting enterprises in maintaining sustainable growth in potential export markets.

Bui Duong Thuat, Director of Mekong Fruit Import-Export Company in Chau Thanh district’s Huu Dinh commune, said the company has exported nearly 3 million fresh coconuts to the United States, Canada, Taiwan (China), Japan, the Republic of Korea and Singapore since the beginning of this year.

It has aligned with 300 households in Chau Thanh and Giong Trom districts to purchase coconuts with an area of about 200 hectares.

Thuat said that the company’s exports were not affected by the COVID-19 pandemic but it faced difficulties due to high transportation fees and lack of containers.

Ben Tre aims to generate 845 million USD from exports in the last six months of this year to bring the total export earnings in 2021 to 1.5 billion USD.

To this end, the department plans to ramp up trade promotion to help local producers expand their markets. Businesses will be assisted to speed up investment in new projects to increase production capacity, creating favourable conditions for the application of science and technology advances in production to improve the competitiveness of enterprises in the international arena.

The province has about 130 exporters and its products are found in 128 countries and territories./.

Vietnam upholds reconciliation to end violence in DR Congo

Ambassador Pham Hai Anh, Deputy Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the United Nations, reiterated the need to promote reconciliation in a bid to put an end to violence and address security challenges in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Addressing a meeting of the UN Security Council (UNSC) on July 7 to discuss the situation in DR Congo and activities of the UN Stabilisation Mission in the African nation (MONUSCO), the ambassador stressed the importance of intensifying efforts to address root causes of the instability in the east DR Congo, including prevention of illegal acts related to natural resources and promotion of socio-economic development.

He upheld the vital role of regional cooperation and support of the international community to help authorities and people of DR Congo to surmount current hardships.

Bintou Keita, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for the DR Congo and MONUSCO head, briefed participants on the situation in the country in the recent three months.

She reported that a new coalition government, which took power this April, has exerted efforts in State management reforms and ensuring security and socio-economic development.

The new government has continued to bolster bilateral and regional relations in an attempt to tackle common security challenges and foster integration.

However, the east of DR Congo continues to see complicated security situation, primarily due to illegal natural resources exploitation and smuggling of armed groups, and ongoing violence between communities in some provinces, Keita added.

Instability, diseases and natural disasters have dealt a blow to humanitarian activities in the recent past, while the adverse impact of COVID-19 on socio-economic development hinders local people’s access to fundamental services, especially in the health sector.

Participants acknowledged the commitment of DR Congo’s government in promoting reforms, and maintaining stability and development. They also expressed a concern about security in the eastern provinces and worsen humanitarian crisis in the past months.

At the meeting, delegates also extended condolences to Haiti for the assassination of President Jovenel Moise which occurred the same day./.

Pandemic-hit Bac Giang province returning to normal

The northern province of Bac Giang, which was the country’s biggest COVID-19 hotspot, is returning to normal after it basically put the pandemic under control.

The province has to date registered 5,700 COVID-19 cases since the fourth wave of outbreaks hit the country on April 27. Over the past days, fewer infections, even zero cases, were reported.

It is working hard to complete the dual goal of pandemic containment, and production recovery and socio-economic development.

Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Phan The Tuan told the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) that as of June 30, Bac Giang had counted 481 FDI projects with total registered capital amounting to 6.82 billion USD.

The locality had suspended the four industrial parks of Quang Chau, Van Trung, Song Khe-Noi Hoang and Quang Chau, to prevent pandemic spread, according to the official.

Many FDI firms have donated machines and medical equipment in service of the pandemic combat in the locality, while contributing nearly 10 billion VND (433,453 USD) to the national COVID-19 vaccine fund.

During the outbreak, Bac Giang prioritised the production of essential goods and the operation of enterprises that join the global supply chain, Tuan said.

Businesses in the locality allowed only employees testing negative for the coronavirus to work, offered accommodations and pick-up and drop-off services, and divided workers in groups in an efforts to prevent pandemic spread.

The firms have also established groups in charge of COVID-19 prevention and control, and conducted testing for their employees.

The model has proven effective, Tuan said, further explaining that it has helped to maintain production and control the pandemic.

As of the end of July 5, 160 businesses, mostly FDI firms at industrial parks, with 60,000 workers, had resumed operations, according to the official.

Tuan said Bac Giang has set up a steering committee for the restoration of industrial production, trade and services, along with working groups tasked with guiding enterprises in COVID-19 prevention and control, and removing difficulties in production and business./.

Vietnam, Canada hold bilateral defence consultation

The 2021 Vietnam - Canada defence consultation took place via videoconference on July 7, highlighting that defence cooperation has been carried out effectively and reaped encouraging outcomes, the Quan doi Nhan dan (People’s Army) daily reported.

The Vietnamese delegation included Lt. Gen. Vu Chien Thang, Director of the Foreign Relations Department at the Ministry of National Defence, along with representatives of the ministry’s agencies, and the military attaché of Vietnam to the US and Canada.

The Canadian side was led by Assistant Deputy Minister (Policy) at the Department of National Defence Peter Hammerschmidt, who was joined by the military attaché of Canada to Vietnam.

The officials affirmed that defence cooperation between the two countries has continually received attention from the two ministries’ leaders and been implemented fruitfully.

They agreed to maintain the annual defence consultation and defence policy dialogue, increase high-level meetings, while strengthening ties in personnel training, UN peacekeeping operations, and maritime security.

Thang expressed his hope that the Canadian Department of National Defence will pay attention to and support the cooperation fields Vietnam has demand for such as war aftermath settlement, defence industry, military medicine, humanitarian aid, and disaster relief.

He stressed that Vietnam will back Canada, on the basis of ASEAN’s consensus principle, when the latter takes part in the bloc’s cooperation mechanisms.

At the consultation, the two sides also discussed and reached an agreement on the defence cooperation plan for 2021 - 2023, as well as the preparations for the Vietnam - Canada defence policy dialogue at the deputy ministerial level this year./.

France-Vietnam Parliamentarians’ Group affirmed continued support for Vietnam

The France-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group in the French Parliament will continue coordinating closely with the France – Vietnam Parliamentary Friendship Group of the Senate to support Vietnam in strategic issues in the coming time.

The statement was made by Stephanie Do, President of the France-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group, during her reception for Vietnamese Ambassador to France Dinh Toan Thang on July 7.

She expressed her delight at fine development steps in the bilateral relationship, reflected through recent discussions of the two countries’ high-ranking leaders amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ambassador Thang acknowledged contributions made by Stephanie Do and her group to developing the diverse and multifaceted cooperation between the two nations in general and the two legislative bodies in particular.

He thanked the group for canvassing the European Parliament to approve the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, and for organising activities on Vietnam’s topic issues.

He showed his hope that group will continue helping Vietnam through encouraging EU member countries to pass the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement, supporting the settlement of fisheries-related issues in the Vietnam-EU relations.

The diplomat affirmed Vietnam always attaches importance to its relations with strategic partners, including France.

At the meeting, both sides agreed to maintain efforts to speed up delegation exchanges and prepare for the 12th Vietnam - France decentralised cooperation conference slated to be held in Hanoi in late 2022./.

Hanoi: 444 public services added to national public service portal

As many as 444 online public services were added to the national public service portal in the first six months of 2021, according to a report of the Hanoi People’s Committee.

The report said 14 administrative procedures were replaced while 175 others were abolished in the period.

Meanwhile, 100 percent of administrative procedures were processed through the one-stop-shop mechanism, it added.

According to the report, the city’s public service portal received over 1 million administrative records in the January – June period, with the rate of that processed on-time reaching 91 percent.

The municipal authorities are providing 1,217 online public services at level 3, and 468 at level 4./.

Flyers from/to HCM City must provide negative COVID-19 test result: CAAV

Air passengers are required to present a valid negative coronavirus test result before travelling from/to Ho Chi Minh City, according to a new directive by the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) on intensifying COVID-19 response.

The CAAV requests all airport employees, especially those working at HCM City’s Tan Son Nhat International Airport, to get at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine or have proof of a negative COVID-19 test conducted no more than 72 hours. Both rapid antigen and PCR test evidences are accepted.

The same policy is applicable to aircrew serving on flights from/to HCM City, who are also advised to refrain from leaving the airport to travel to the city. The aircrew should stay inside Tan Son Nhat International Airport before boarding the next flight, the directive says, adding that surfaces of air cargoes from/to the city must be disinfected.

It also ordered a halt of international flights to HCM City, except for those receiving permission of the National Steering Committee on COVID-19 Prevention and Control.

The CAAV requests airlines to instruct passengers to keep physical distance at airports, and increase the number of in-service airside transfer buses to make sure their passenger load does not exceed 50 percent of seating capacity per trip.

On July 8 afternoon, the authority issued an urgent notice requesting a reduction of seats available for sales on flights between HCM City and Hanoi, following a spike in COVID-19 cases in the country’s southern hub over the recent weeks.

Accordingly, national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines must sell no more than 700 seats on its flights between the two major cities in each direction daily while the limit for Pacific Airlines, Bamboo Airways and Vietjet Air ranges from 200 – 400 seats per day.

There are no restrictions on cargo flights, the notice adds.

The policy is applied from 0:00 hours July 9 throughout July 23./.

Copper artefacts unearthed in central Nghe An province

Experts and cultural officials have believed that several artefacts discovered recently by a family while levelling their garden in Chau Ly commune, Quy Hop district in the central province of Nghe An could be up to 600 years old.

The unearthed artefacts include three copper pots of different sizes and one copper kettle. While the pots have no handles and are decorated with lizard figures, the kettle has its spout and handle decorated with the patterns of a dragon head and dragon tail.

After receiving the information about the discover on June 30, Quy Hop district’s authorities directed the Bureau of Culture and Information to work with Chau Ly commune’s authorities to verify the artefacts.

The artefacts are being temporarily preserved and managed by the Chau Ly authorities while waiting for appraisal by superior authorities.

The Quy Hop authorities has also notified the provincial Department of Culture and Sports of the discovery.

The Nghe An Museum said that will send specialists on relics and antiquities to appraise the artefacts.

A representative of the heritage management department of the Nghe An Department of Culture and Sports said the kettle with dragon handle is believed to date from the Tran dynasty (1225–1440) and the pots, based on their designs and patterns, could be from the Le dynasty, around 500 years ago.

“These are precious artefacts of scientific and historical value associated with the development of Quy Hop district,” he said.

Previously, the district also discovered precious antiques such as bronze drums or bronze Buddha statues.

Vietnamese painter portrays women’s inner beauty

Women's aspirations for life and their emotions are the inspiration behind Vietnamese painter Nguyễn Hiển’s art, which will be displayed in Hà Nội from today.

Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, the inauguration ceremony of the exhibition, entitled Vô Hình & Hữu Hình (Invisible & Visible), will not be held but the event will open to limited visitors to avoid gatherings.

Invisible & Visible is a joint exhibition between Hiển and another colleague, but the painter considers it as his solo exhibition as their paintings are displayed in two different spaces. He himself has nearly 30 paintings exhibited this time, all of which were painted from 2018 till 2021.

“This is the period when I develop a new style of painting and I really like it," Hiển said. It fits who I am and my personality. I paint women with a suppressed mood, wanting to explode to get out of that deadlock.” 

Artist Nguyễn Hiển is pictured next to one of his paintings.  Photo
Viewers might find women portrayed in his works unattractive, and even “ugly”, however, the painter argued: “What is ugly? Do mothers become ugly when they get old? It is definitely that the image of a mother is always beautiful, even when they are old, hump-backed and have wrinkled skin. We always find mothers beautiful because we understand the good within them.

“To the women in my paintings, I paint the beauty that I find in them. I reckon that beauty is more than just appearances. Instead, beauty is found in the interior, patience, endurance and sacrifice. In addition, women also have the beauty of intense desires for love and silent emotions.

“I might love women in my own way. To me, Vietnamese women are very admirable. I have been obsessed with the little women driving their children on motorbikes in the middle of heavy traffic, which looks extremely dangerous. What is the joy of those women? What do they yearn for? I pondered and painted about their silent desires. How can the naked women in my paintings be attractive when deep inside them is always unresolved anxiety,” the painter said.

Invisible & Visible was originally scheduled to take place in May but postponed until July due to the fourth outbreak of the pandemic. However, during the time waiting for his solo exhibition to officially take off, Hiển has finished many paintings all of which are named Chờ Đợi (Waiting) and numbered like Waiting 1 or Waiting 2.

The exhibition at 29 Hàng Bài Exhibition Hall will open until July 13.

Born in 1974 in Hải Phòng City, Hiển graduated from the University of Industrial Fine Arts in 2001 and later became a member of the Viêt Nam Fine Arts Association.

The painter who is now based in HCM City has had his artworks exhibited in many prestigious events such as the National Fine Arts Exhibition in 2010, the exhibition of the Viêt Nam Fine Arts Museum in 2012, and group exhibitions held in the UK and Malaysia in 2015 and 2016, respectively. 

Thu Duc City issues grocery cards, limits shoppers in traditional markets

Thu Duc City in HCM City is handing out grocery cards and numbered tickets to limit the number of shoppers inside traditional markets.

The initiative aims to create a safe environment for market traders and shoppers, ensuring that supply of essential goods remains smooth amid social distancing within the markets.

Thirty-four wards and traditional markets are tasked with preparing grocery cards on which shoppers register and enter their personal info when they enter the markets.

The cards come with QR codes to quickly identify each shopper in future shopping trips.

Numbered tickets are handed to shoppers at the markets’ entry, and are used to manage and limit the number of people inside at any given time.

City wards and markets have been told to seal off non-main entry gates to create smooth, one-way routes. Staff will focus on the main gates to manage the tickets, cards and number of entries.

Shoppers have to maintain a minimum of 1.5 metres distance from others, and cannot enter the markets without the assigned cards.

Many markets in Thu Duc City have carried out this initiative, issuing more than 5,500 cards to shoppers. Other markets are making preparations to carry it out in the near future.

HCM City is the number one COVID-19 hotspot in the country, with more than 8,500 cases. It has been under a social distancing order since May 31, and began a lockdown for 15 days starting from July 9 midnight under Government Directive 16.

As of July 7, 122 traditional markets in the city had been closed, accounting more than half of the number in the city. The city’s three wholesale markets have been closed as well.

Many markets around HCM City have been assigning grocery cards to shoppers at traditional markets, some of which have been doing so for more than a month. 

Five types of Coronavirus spread in Ho Chi Minh City

There have been five types of Coronavirus reported in the virus hotspot of Ho Chi Minh City, according to Ho Chi Minh City Centre for Disease Control (HCDC). 

HCDC's deputy director Nguyen Hong Tam revealed at a meeting on July 8 that the five Coronavirus types are from Europe, the UK, South Africa, Uganda, and India.

"The city is now facing the fast spreading of the highly contagious Indian Delta strain in the on-going fourth virus outbreak," Tam said. "As of Thursday evening, we have recorded 9,066 Covid-19 infections since the fourth outbreak started in late April."

Ho Chi Minh City has imposed a 15-day social distancing period starting from July 9. The city has prepared for a scenario of up to 15,000 Covid-19 patients as hundreds of new cases are reported daily in recent days.

Hanoi authorities to provide financial support for Covid-19 screening tests

Hanoi People's Council has issued Covid-19 prevention regulations in which the authorities will provide Covid-19 screening tests for free for people who must be tested by the requests of the city authorities.

The cost will come from the state budget. In case there are sponsors or other sources of funding, the money that comes from the state budget will be reduced.

Hanoi People's Council had also reached an agreement on various special funding amid the Covid-19 pandemic including financial aid for meals and other support for frontline workers.

On July 7, the Ministry of Health sent an official document to the provincial and city people's committees, departments of health about the costs of several types of Covid-19 tests such as the rapid test and the Real-time PCR tests.

Hanoi suspends public transport to 14 localities

Hanoi has requested the halt of public transport from the city to 14 Covid-19-hit cities and provinces from today, July 8.

The move has been issued amid the pandemic outbreaks in many southern localities.  

Hanoi has banned the operations of taxis, app-based car services, buses and coaches from 14 cities and provinces of HCM City, Binh Duong, Dong Nai, Khanh Hoa, Phu Yen, Dak Lak, Quang Ngai, Quang Ngam, Danang, Thua Thien-Hue, Ha Tinh, Nghe An, Thanh Hoa and Ha Nam.

This rule is not applied to vehicles transporting company workers.

The suspension will be valid until the listed localities do not record any local Covid-19 infections for 14 consecutive days or until further notice.

Local stations are asked to tighten control over vehicles to detect violations.

From 6 pm today, residents in Hanoi were also banned from doing exercises outdoors. They are advised to go out only in necessary cases for Covid-19 prevention.

Earlier, people in Hanoi were allowed to do exercises outdoors again as the pandemic in the city had been brought under control.

Exhibition honours Hanoi’s public security force

An exhibition entitled “75 Years of the Capital City’s Public Security Force - Historical Milestones" officially opened in Hanoi on July 7.

On display are nearly 200 photos, documents and artifacts that briefly introduce the process of formation and development as well as the outstanding feats of the People's Security Force of the whole country in general and the capital city in particular.

Thereby, they affirmed the correct and wise leadership of theParty and State towards the task of protecting national securityand building a regular, elite, modern people's public security force along with the core role of the people’s security force in the cause of security and order protection.

The exhibition also aims to honour the generations of officers and soldiers of the public security force in Hanoi in the revolutionary cause of the nation.

The event is also expected to contribute to political and ideological education as well as the promotion of traditional history among younger generations today.

The exhibition will last until July 16.

Colourful mural paintings in fishing village

Following uncountable rainy and sunny seasons, the brilliant mural paintings in Canh Duong Village, Cảnh Hoa Commune, Quang Trach District in the central province of Quang Binh have faded over time; however, the echoes of a land imbued with its coastal cultural identity still seem to hold on visitors and coax them into scheduling a return date.

The fishing village at the mouth of Loan River is familiar to many people through the song “Quang Binh, que ta oi” (Quang Binh, my homeland) with its romantic lyrics. Since 2018, visitors have come to Canh Duong because it is famous as the first mural village of the land of “hot winds and white sand”. Around 50 vivid attractive 3D mural paintings are on display along the road from the ancient temple to the entrance to the sea, each wall and gate of local households are no longer gray concrete slabs. The vibrant art tells the history of the village’s development.

Several murals depict ancient times when the village was established, while many others reflect strong fishermen reaching out to the sea or locals paying their respects in the Cau Ngu (Whale Worshipping) Festival, hoping for a peaceful sea and bountiful harvest. Through many mural paintings, people can see the locals’ pride in their tradition of a scholarly land honoured as one of the eight famous villages of Quang Binh Province. It is also well-known for its revolutionary spirit during the war against the French colonialists.

The colourful paintings which record the daily life of the people in this coastal land are also equally attractive. Visitors will be interested in these idyllic scenes with basket boats on the shore, fishing activities as well as images of beautiful smiling babies and bicycles leaning on the village roads. They are rustic but familiar.

Another indispensable part of the journey to Canh Duong village is the Linh Ngu temple, the temple dedicated to the village’s ancestors and the adjoining whale cemetery which has been the resting place of whales for hundreds of years. Canh Duong has also a space to display two large fish skeletons in their original shape so that visitors can understand the origin of the name “Village of Whales” that locals call this land.

Thuan Kieu Plaza requisitioned as Covid-19 field hospital

HCMC is setting up its fifth Covid-19 field hospital at Thuan Kieu Plaza, now known as the Garden Mall, in District 5, to provide medical treatment to Covid-19 patients, given the city’s cases exceeding 8,500.

This morning, July 8, tens of workers were dispatched to the three-tower complex to start work on the field hospital which a source familiar with the situation said will occupy two of the 33-story three towers. The workers were asked to make mandatory health declarations before entering the site, the local media reported.

Many areas of the complex were disinfected yesterday, while construction materials have been gathered at the location since yesterday afternoon.

The installation at the field hospital is expected to take a week. Once completed, the relevant units will gather medical supplies and hand over the field hospital to the HCMC Department of Health.

The Thuan Kieu Plaza was built in 1994, with a floor area of some 100,000 square meters in the district’s Ward 12. It has hundreds of apartment units and functional rooms.

Earlier, the city had requisitioned the 1,000-bed dormitory of the National Defense and Security Training Center and the 4,000-bed dormitory Zone A, both under the Vietnam National University-HCMC, as Covid-19 Field Hospital No.1.

Besides this, the city converted resettlement apartment buildings in Thu Duc City, District 12, and Binh Chanh District into three Covid-19 field hospitals, with a total of around 10,000 beds to provide treatment for coronavirus patients.

HCMC suspends all passenger transport vehicles from July 9

Ho Chi Minh City decided to halt all passenger transport vehicles through the city from July 9 until further notice, except for official vehicles, ambulances and those carrying experts and employees to their working places and people to hospitals, medical centers and quarantine facilities as allowed.

Amid the current complicated and unprecedented Covid-19 situation, the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Transport issued an urgent notice about transportation activities for roads and waterways last night to ensure safety in the fight against the Covid-19 in the city following the Prime Minister’s Directive No. 16/ CT-TTG.

Particularly, the city suspended all passenger transport services in the city such as bus, taxi, business cars, passenger transit and transport vehicles on fixed inter-provincial routes from or to Ho Chi Minh City from July 9.

Waterway transport routes are also required to suspend, excluding ferries on Can Gio- Can Giuoc, Can Thanh-Thanh An and Thanh An- Thieng Lieng, Binh Khanh-Cat Lai routes.

The ferries are requested to carry a maximum 50 percent of capacity and all passengers must keep a distance at least two meters from others and wear face masks during their trip.

Means of transport must be sprayed disinfectant daily before picking up and after dropping off passengers.

Regarding domestic boats and foreign ships, all captains and crew members are not allowed to disembark unless neccessary.

097 campaign expected to battle coronavirus epidemic in HCMC

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, Head of the National Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control, and Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Nguyen Thanh Phong yesterday afternoon had a working session with administrators in districts 6, 7, and Binh Chanh on implementing Directive 16 and the 097 campaign on epidemic prevention and control. 

Speaking at the meeting, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam noted that from July 9, the southern metropolis began implementing the 15-day social distancing, which is quite difficult for the country’s largest city with a population of over 10 million.
Therefore, in the 15 days of social distancing implementation according to Directive 16, the city must make drastic efforts to end the epidemic situation.

Deputy Prime Minister Dam asked Ho Chi Minh City to be clear when assigning work to departments and each person with specific goals. He pointed out that the health sector in the city must be proactive in carrying out epidemiological data analysis to anticipate the situation as well as careful about the epidemic situation in traditional markets and industrial parks.

During the implementation of social distancing measures to impede the coronavirus, the city authorities must take stronger measures to stamp out the epidemic early; while at the same time ensuring the lives of the people. How to suppress the epidemic and keep the people safe. If the people agree with the government, the epidemic will be successful," Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam emphasized.

Commenting on the epidemic situation of localities, Chairman Phong said that local administrations have had good performance in investigating Covid-19 cases as well as isolating, collecting samples and tracing measures; however, he expected they will be more drastic in implementing preventative measures.

The City established a Command Center to operate the campaign to implement Directive 16 at the City People's Committee yesterday.

Chairman Phong emphasized that this is an important time for the battle of the epidemic and the solidarity can help us in preventing it adding that he named the 15-day campaign 097 whose success requires efforts by the entire political system of the city and joint effort and support of all dwellers.

Dao Gia Vuong, Chairman of District People's Committee in Binh Chanh outlying district, said at the working session that on July 8 only, 187 cases of Covid-19 were recorded in the district. Of these cases, 121 patients were locally-transmitted cases while other 10 cases were found in isolation camps. The health sector in the district has been carrying out an urgent epidemiological investigation of 56 cases. From April 27 to now, the district has recorded 1,091 cases, mainly in Binh Dien market and around this area; and Vinh Loc Industrial Zone...

In addition, the district has been taking 1,271 people to concentrated isolation facilities and monitoring nearly 4,000 cases. Collection of 318,000 samples for community testing has been conducted on residents in all 16 communes accounting for 40.27 percent. The leader of Binh Chanh district said that the epidemic situation in the locality is very complicated as there has been cross-infection especially amongst traders in Binh Dien wholesale market.

Regarding the implementation of Directive 16, Chairman Vuong affirmed that this is a "golden opportunity" for the district to focus all its efforts on carrying out tracing measures and collecting samples in 52 high-risk areas. At the same time, the locality has also carefully prepared material and human resources to set up 21 roadblocks on some main roads and the border with the Mekong Delta Province of Long An to prevent people from moving out of the district in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Also at the working session, Hoang Minh Tuan Anh, Chairman of District 7 People's Committee, said that the district has so far recorded 289 Covid-19 cases with 390 contacts F1. District 7 Hospital took samples to test 700 workers of a business establishment in the district on July 8, detecting 50 suspected cases of Covid-19. This shows that the epidemic in the district is very complicated. The district has planned to convert four primary schools into concentrated isolation camps for contacts F1 in case the number of cases in the area increases abnormally," said chairman Tuan Anh.

Worse, according to Le Thi Thanh Thao, Chairwoman of the District 6 People's Committee, the number of F0 cases in the area is increasing including many cases without a source of infection. The district administration has asked for approval from the city authorities for using an empty housing project in the area as a field hospital to treat 1,000 patients in the near future.

Source: VNA/VNS/VOV/VIR/SGT/Nhan Dan/Hanoitimes



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