VIETNAM NEWS HEADLINES MARCH 19
Seven days off in total for national holidays in April
The national flag is hung on an alley in Hanoi on a national holiday.
Cadres, civil servants, public employees, and workers nationwide will have a total of seven days off during the two national holidays this April.
As the commemoration of the Hung Kings, the legendary founder of Vietnam, on the 10th of the third lunar month falls on Sunday April 10, people will have another day off on the following Monday, April 11.
That means this holiday will last from Saturday April 9 through April 11, according to the Department of Work Safety under the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.
Meanwhile, the National Reunification Day (April 30) and the May Day (May 1) fall on Saturday and Sunday, so workers will have two more days off on the next Monday (May 2) and Tuesday (May 3).
These holiday schedules are applied to cadres, civil servants, public employees, and workers of administrative and public agencies, as well as political and socio-political organisations. Other agencies and organisations can base on their own work plans to arrange appropriate schedules, the Work Safety Department said.
KOICA and central provinces renewed cooperation in mine action and rural development
The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) on March 17 signed joint agreement with the People's Committees of Thua Thien – Hue, Quang Ngai, and Binh Dinh provinces on the Korea – Vietnam Peace Village Project (KVPVP) to protect people from the multiple risks of unexploded ordnance (UXO), climate and health, and ensure their safe livelihood.
The three central provinces are among the most affected areas by UXO. The UNDP will cooperate with the Vietnam National Mine Action Center (VNMAC) and these provinces to deliver the project’s expected results, including survey and clearance of 15,000 hectares; provision of more specialised medical services for the UXO victims based on the data from the victims’ registration system developed in the first phase; and education of risks from UXO and climate disasters/issues for people in targeted areas.
The project is also expected to support 10,500 farmers in targeted areas to apply smart-climate and resilient agriculture. Meanwhile, 400 flood and storm resilient houses and 50 commune health stations will be built or upgraded for local people.
The Peace Village project is built on the Korea-Vietnam Mine Action project (KVMAP) – a partnership of VNMAC, KOICA and UNDP over the past 4 years – which has surveyed and cleared nearly 17,000 hectares of land, paving the way for building sustainable livelihoods for people in Quang Binh and Binh Dinh provinces, and helped improve the resilience of 450,000 people through risk education and provide support for 1,000 UXO victims.
Pedestrian spaces in Hanoi resume operation
The walking zone surrounding the Hoan Kiem Lake and Old Quarter in downtown Hanoi re-opened from March 18 after nearly 10 months of closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The resumption right at the time when Vietnam fully opens to tourism activities is hoped to create an attraction for domestic and foreign tourists.
The walking area around Hoan Kiem Lake spreads over 11 streets which are closed to traffic from Friday night through Sunday mid-night. It is linked to the pedestrian streets in the Old Quarter
Another 259 Vietnamese from Ukraine arrive home on flight from Poland
A Vietnam Airlines flight from Warsaw arrived at Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi on March 19, bringing home an additional 259 Vietnamese citizens evacuating from Ukraine.
The passengers included five children under 2 years old.
This is the third free-of-charge flight from Poland to repatriate Vietnamese citizens leaving Ukraine. The first two, on March 9 and 12, carried nearly 600 people, many of whom were children, women, and elderly people.
Statistics from the Polish Border Guard show that more than 2,800 Vietnamese people from Ukraine have entered Poland so far.
Vietnam’s forces save Panamanian ship in distress near Truong Sa archipelago
The fisheries resources surveillance and naval forces of Vietnam are working to rescue Panama-flagged Vessel Pacific 07 which encountered a breakdown while passing the waters of Vietnam’s Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelago, according to the Naval Region 4 Command.
All the three generators of the ship broke down while the main engine was unable to be activated when it came to an area about 30 nautical miles east of Song Tu Tay Island, part of Khanh Hoa province’s Truong Sa island district.
On its way from Hong Hong (China) to Indonesia, the ship with 19 of its crew members being Vietnamese sent a distress signal after efforts to fix the problem failed and it faced the risk of being stranded.
At 5:30pm on March 17, Vessel KN 464 of Fisheries Resources Surveillance Team No. 4 was ordered to go to save Pacific 07. It found and approached this ship at around 1:30am on March 18.
After that, the Naval Region 4 Command deployed Vessel 905 which was performing duties in the waters of Song Tu Tay Island to move to the scene and join Vessel KN 464 in the rescue operation.
On March 18, the two rescue vessels managed to tow Pacific 07 out of the site it might be stranded at. Vessel 905 is tugging the Panamanian ship to a location near Song Tu Tay for repair.
SEA Games chefs de mission convene
The second SEA Games Chefs de Mission Meeting of the 31st Southeast Asian (SEA) Games was held both in person and via videoconference in Hanoi on March 18.
Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Van Hung, Chairman of the Vietnam Olympic Committee and head of the 31st SEA Games organising committee, told the event that despite many challenges, Vietnam has basically put the COVID-19 pandemic under control and made preparations for the 31st SEA Games, with safety measures taken, on schedule.
Basing on the opinions raised at the first meeting, Vietnam has worked on issues relevant to the organisation of the event, Hung noted, adding that sub-committees of the organising committee will continue providing the delegates with updated information about the Games and issues needed to be done in the time ahead so that all countries can have the best preparations for their delegations to the region's largest sport event.
Vinh Long partners with German firm in vocational training
An agreement on vocational study abroad for students in the Mekong Delta province of Vinh Long was signed on March 18, focusing on providing consultation and career guidance for those who wish to study in dual vocational college programmes in Germany.
The signatories were representatives of the Department of Education and Training, the Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs of the locality; SHB Investment and Development JSC; and Asbestos Corporation - a vocational training unit of Germany.
The programme is hoped to contribute to improving young human resources for Vinh Long province towards promoting the supply of high-quality human resources trained in line with German standards.
Vietnam records 163,174 new COVID-19 infections on March 19
There were 150,618 new COVID-19 infections, including 12 imported cases, recorded across Vietnam on March 19, according to the Ministry of Health.
The capital city of Hanoi continued registering the highest daily number of infections with 21,071, followed by Nghe An with 11,099 cases, and Phu Tho with 6,681 cases.
Vietnam’s total caseload now reaches 7,791,841.
A total of 77 COVID-related deaths were also recorded, taking the total number of fatalities to 41,817, accounting for 0.5 percent of the total infections.
There were a further 129434 recoveries, bringing the total number of people given the all-clear to 3,991,393.
Luxurious tourist railway carriage to reopen from April 1
The Vietage, a high-end tourist railway carriage, will be reopened to travellers on the route between Da Nang city and Quy Nhon city of Binh Dinh province from April 1, according to the Vietnam Railways Corporation (VNR).
This carriage will be connected with the train SE5 at Da Nang Station in the morning and return with the train SE8 from Dieu Tri Station in Binh Dinh in the afternoon the same day.
Unveiled in July 2020, The Vietage with only 12 seats, accompanied by restaurant, bar, and massage services, was designed to ensure the best comfort and privacy for passengers.
It offered daily round-trip journeys between Da Nang and Quy Nhon, along the coast of the southcentral Vietnam, promising luxurious travel experiences for tourists while exploring different lands of the country.
In late 2021, The Vietage was named by CNN as one of the six amazing Asia train journeys.
Quang Ngai hosts 13th national Vovinam championship
The 13th national Vo Viet Nam (Vovinam) championship kicked off in the central province of Quang Ngai on March 18.
The tounament gathers 351 athletes representing 33 clubs with a strong Vovinam movement nationwide.
During the event, the martial artists will compete at 26 fighting categories and 22 performance events.
According to the organisers, this year's tournament is an important event to re-evaluate the training and competition of Vovinam in localities.
It is also a good opportunity to select excellent martial artists for the upcoming 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games 31).
The tournament is scheduled to close on March 24.
Can Tho to host Agritechnica Asia Live 2022
The 2022 Agritechnica Asia Live – Field Demonstrations of Agricultural Machinery is scheduled to take place in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho this August, as heard a working session on March 18.
The session was co-organised by the Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development (MARD), the municipal People’s Committee and other units involved, discussing the organisation of the event.
The 2022 Agritechnica Asia Live aims to foster sustainable mechanisation by demonstrating the use of up-to-date technologies in the local cropping systems. It is expected to attract 3,000 – 4,000 participants, including farmers, machinery owners, service providers, scientists, and businessmen, in Vietnam and abroad.
Xyris indica shows off beauty of Tram Chim National Park
Visitors to Tram Chim National Park in Tam Nong district in the Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap not only have the chance to see red-headed cranes but can also contemplate the beauty of Xyris indica flowers.
Xyris indica is commonly called yellow-eyed grass. Its stalk is 10-20 cm long, and its tiny yellow flowers look like small seals.
Fields of yellow flowers count among the intriguing things to see in the 7,000-hectare national park, and make the area resemble a colourful mat created by Mother Nature.
They can also visit a yellow-eyed grass garden and enjoy landscapes around the park and on waterways. A one-hour tour costs 10-13 USD per person.
Sierra Leonean President visits Mekong Delta rice research institute
Sierra Leonean President Julius Maada Bio and his entourage on March 18 visited the Cuu Long Delta Rice Research Institute (CCRRI) in Can Tho city.
Welcoming the President, Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Ngoc He expressed his hope that the President will create favourable conditions for Vietnamese firms, including those in Can Tho, to trade with their Sierra Leonean peers.
Can Tho always facilitates foreign-invested businesses' investment activities, He stated.
At the CCRRI, President Julius Maada Bio expressed his nation's desire to strengthen agricultural cooperation with Vietnam; to be supported in the transfer of scientific advances in rice cultivation; and to hear experience in solving problems regarding private resources mobilisation for production, irrigation, and mechanisation in rice production.
Sport delegations highly value Vietnam’s preparations for upcoming SEA Games
Representatives from Southeast Asian sport delegations highly valued Vietnam’s preparations for the upcoming 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games 31), while inspecting some competition venues for the Games in Hanoi on March 19.
In Hanoi, they travelled to the My Dinh National Stadium, the My Dinh Water Sports Stadium, and the National Sports Training Centre.
“Since Vietnam announced the SEA Games 31’s official date in late 2021, the country has exerted tremendous efforts, and preparations are in full swing to meet the deadlines,” said Director (Projects) of the Singapore National Olympic Council Anthony Lee.
He believed that the regional sporting event this year will be smooth-sailing and organised efficiently.
The renovation of My Dinh National Stadium, which is to host football and track and field, has been fundamentally completed while the Water Sports Stadium is also being renovated to meet international standards, ready to host the Games.
For his part, Vice President of the Olympic Council of Malaysia Paduka Nur Azmi Ahmad spoke highly of progress made in the preparations at My Dinh Stadium and the National Sports Training Centre, despite various challenges facing Vietnam, especially the COVID-19 pandemic.
Japanese city’s feelings for Vietnamese students
Sixteen Vietnamese students of the Goto Japanese language school in Goto city of Nagasaki Prefecture will graduate this month.
The school for Vietnamese students was set up by local authorities and the University of Nagasaki in 2020, following an agreement signed between Nagasaki Prefecture and the Da Nang Department of Home Affairs in 2018.
Local authorities have worked to create the best conditions for the students to live and study in the city, Mayor Noguchi Ichitaro said.
In the face of COVID-19, Goto authorities have assisted foreign students with vaccination against the disease, and presented face masks and aid packages to them.
Quang Nam’s goddess festival listed as national intangible cultural heritage
The Thu Bon Goddess Festival in Duy Xuyen district of central Quang Nam province has been recognised as part of the national intangible cultural heritage.
The festival shows respect for and gratitude to the river goddess and ancestors for their land exploration and village establishment, which laid the foundation for following generations to settle down and develop. It also reflects the solidarity of Cham, Co Tu, and Kinh ethnic groups living in the upper river basin.
The Thu Bon Goddess Festival features precious humane values and is deeply imbued with traditional belief, history, and culture. The vitality of the festival comes from locals’ aspirations for good weather, bumper crops, and national peace.
The festival is held from the 10th to 12th days of the second lunar month annually, which falls on March 12 - 14 this year.
Exhibition on Hoang Sa, Truong Sa comes to Quang Tri’s Cam Lo district
Maps and documents on Vietnam’s Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagoes are now on display in Cam Lo district, the central province of Quang Tri.
The mobile exhibition, opened on March 18, is co-organised by the provincial Department of Information and Communications, the Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, and the People’s Committee of Cam Lo district.
Among the exhibits are records of the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945), maps by Vietnam and western nations, documents in Vietnamese and French, and Atlas proving Vietnam’s sovereignty over the archipelagoes.
The exhibition will run until March 22.
HCM City shakes hands with Mekong Delta localities in tourism development
Ho Chi Minh City and 13 Mekong Delta localities on March 18 signed a cooperation agreement on tourism development and launched the reopening of tourism in the new normal.
The deal was reached during a conference on the implementation of the programme on cooperation in tourism development between the southern largest economic hub and 12 provinces and Can Tho city in the Mekong Delta region held in Bac Lieu province.
Foreign seaman rescued in Khanh Hoa
Regional Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Centre No 4 brought a foreign seaman to shore for medical treatment on March 18.
At about 1am, Orlanda Ubana, 57, suffered serious stomach pain and vomiting while working on Panagia Force ship en route Quang Ninh province’s Cai Lan port from Singapore. It was was 124 nautical miles southeast off Nha Trang.
The Philippine man's condition worsened, so the captain had to send a request for emergency rescue to the centre.
After receiving the request, the centre dispatched Ship SAR 427-01 with doctors on board to the Marshall Island-flagged vessel while guiding medical first aid.
It took more than 11 hours for SAR 427-01 to reach Panagia Force’s location, rescue the man and bring him to the mainland.
Vietnam now has easiest entry requirements in SEA: travel website
An article posted on the travel website Traveloffpath.com on March 17 highlighted the entry requirements that Vietnam is applying in the new normal context, saying Vietnam now seems to be the easiest country to enter in Southeast Asia.
In efforts to shore up tourism activities, Vietnam has resumed international and domestic travel by air, road, railway, and sea with appropriate anti-pandemic measures for inbound and outbound tourists, and those making domestic trips.
According to the writing, Vietnam now has the easiest entry requirements in Southeast Asia.
“Firstly - unlike other nations in Southeast Asia that have also reopened for tourists - Vietnam does not require visitors to present a COVID-19 vaccine certificate, or certificate showing proof of recovery, when entering the country," the article reads.
“Also, there is no requirement to undergo any quarantine, whatsoever.”
Air travellers to the country only need to have a certified negative result of a COVID-19 RT-PCR or RT-LAMP test taken no more than three days (72 hours) prior to their departure, or of a rapid antigen test no more than one day (24 hours) prior to their departure; complete an online health declaration form before arrival; download the ‘PC-COVID’ app before arrival; and purchase health insurance which covers COVID-19 medical expenses.
With regards to visa requirements, Vietnam has reopened its e-visa website, where citizens from 80 countries can apply for a 30-day (single entry) tourist visa. The country has also resumed its visa exemption scheme for nationals from 13 nations, including the UK, France, Germany and Italy, according to Traveloffpath.com.
Shared joy with “Zero dong Ao dai”
The ao dai is a traditional local outfit that honours the beauty of Vietnamese women. Not every woman, however, can afford to buy one. With a desire to help disadvantaged women and to spread the value of the traditional outfit, one ao dai tailor in Ho Chi Minh City has worked on a programme called “Zero dong Ao dai”.
As a poor worker, doing whatever she can, Huynh Thi Bich Ngan in Thu Duc City can’t afford to by an ao dai or make her own. Upon hearing of the “Zero dong Ao dai” programme from an acquaintance, Ngan looked into it and received a much-longed-for ao dai.
The “Zero dong Ao dai” programme is open throughout the week from 9am to 7pm, so that anyone in need can visit. An old ao dai of one person can become a new ao dai of another, sending positive messages out to the community.
President of Sierra Leone visits An Giang province
President of Sierra Leone Julius Maada Bio on March 18 paid a visit to the Mekong Delta province of An Giang as part of his official tour of Vietnam.
Speaking at a reception for the President, Secretary of the provincial Party Committee Le Hong Quang affirmed that An Giang always welcomes and creates all favourable conditions for Sierra Leonean businesses to cooperate with local partners in the fields the two sides have potential, especially in agriculture and fisheries.
President Julius Maada Bio emphasised that Sierra Leone admired the great achievements reaped by An Giang in particular and Vietnam in general in the field of agriculture.
According to him, thanks to similar climate and soil conditions, Vietnam and Sierra Leone have affirmed to make agriculture a pillar of bilateral cooperation.
Sierra Leone wishes to learn rice An Giang's farming techniques and seafood processing technology and strengthen business cooperation in these two spheres, he added.
HCM City launches official digital transformation portal
Ho Chi Minh City’s official digital transformation portal https://chuyendoiso.hochiminhcity.gov.vn has been put into operation, the municipal Department of Information and Communications said on March 18.
The portal is a move to implement the southern economic hub’s digital transformation programme and smart city building project.
With modern, simple, and assessable user interface, it offers an overview of the city’s related plans, progresses, news, and cooperation activities. The site also features a multi-media library.
Reading Culture Ambassador Contest 2022 to be launched in April
The Reading Culture Ambassador Contest 2022 is expected to be launched on April 1, aiming to boost the reading culture among the young generation, contributing to the creation of a learning society.
Pham Quoc Hung, head of the Library Department under the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism said at a press briefing on March 18 that the contest, themed “Aspiration for national development,” is part of a wide range of activities under the government’s project "Fostering a reading culture within the community, with an orientation to 2030".
Focusing on pupils and students, the contest aims to inspire the passion for reading among youth, thereby helping foster the reading culture within the community.
The final round will be held from July 15 to the end of November in Hanoi.
Quang Ngai: Ceremony held to commemorate soldiers safeguarding national sovereignty
“Le khao le the linh Hoang Sa” (Feast and Commemoration Festival for Hoang Sa Soldiers) took place in Ly Son district, the central province of Quang Ngai, on March 18.
According to Vietnam’s feudal state history, the Hoang Sa Flotilla was set up when the Nguyen Lords began their reign in the south of the country. Thousands of sailors overcame roaring waves and storms to survey sea routes, plant milestones and erect steles affirming national territory in Hoang Sa (Paracel) and Truong Sa (Spratly) archipelagos, and exploit marine resources ordered by the Nguyen Lords. Their missions were full of dangers, and many of them never returned to land.
To pay tribute to the men enlisted in the flotilla, “Le khao le the linh Hoang Sa” has been observed through hundreds of years by families in Ly Son island and many coastal areas in Quang Ngai. The festival, recognised as part of the national intangible cultural heritage by the State in 2016, reflects Vietnam’s history of protecting the national sovereignty in the East Sea, especially over the Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagos.
Seventh to 12th graders in Hanoi to resume in-person learning
Vice Director of the Hanoi Department of Education and Training Tran Luu Hoa on March 18 signed a document on the safe, flexible adaptation to and effective control of COVID-19 during the organisation of in-person classes for students from 7th to 12th grades in the city.
Under the document, relevant agencies and schools were asked to apply measures to control COVID-19 during the face-to-face learning process and handle infections in time to ensure utmost safety for students and teachers.
They were requested to get regularly updated about pandemic prevention and control regulations in schools from the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Education and Training and the city, while actively building their plans to resume face-to-face learning for students from 7th to 12th grades and submit them to the People’s Committees of districts ans townships for approval.
Spokeswoman gives more details on Vietnam’s plan to reopen to int’l visitors