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VIETNAM NEWS HEADLINES OCTOBER 7

Two more national parks nominated ASEAN heritage ones
Two more national parks nominated ASEAN heritage ones hinh anh 1

Bach Ma and Con Dao National Parks have been nominated to become the 54th and 55th ASEAN Heritage Parks at the 33rd ASEAN Senior Officials' Meeting on the Environment, held in Cambodia from October 3-7.

Accordingly, the nomination of the two Vietnamese parks, together with the Philippines’ Pasonanca Park and Mount Inayawan Range Natural Park, will be submitted to ASEAN Environment Ministers for approval, and the certificate is expected to be handed over at the 17th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on the Environment.

The ASEAN Heritage Parks Programme, carried out since 2003, aims to conserve biodiversity in the areas of regional and international importance, help improve public awareness of the environment, and demonstrate the ASEAN people’s aspiration for nature conservation and sustainable development.

At present, Vietnam has 10 protected areas recognised as ASEAN Heritage Parks. If Bach Ma of Thua Thien Hue province and Con Dao of Ba Ria-Vung Tau province win the approval, the number will be raised to 12.

Workers’ average monthly income continues to grow in Q3

The average monthly income of workers in most economic sectors continued to increase and the unemployment rates declined in the third quarter of this year, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).

Figures revealed at a conference on October 6 showed that workers’ average monthly income in most economic sectors in the third quarter of this year stood at 6.5 million VND (272.2 USD), an increase of 143,000 VND compared to the previous quarter.

This number had a strong growth rate, up to 30.1% or 1.6 million VND (67 USD) compared to the same period last year when the COVID-19 pandemic spread in many localities.

The GSO also reported the average income of employees in the first nine months of this year was 6.6 million VND (276.4 USD), a sharp increase of 727,000 VND or 12.4% compared to the same period in 2021.

The country's economy has continued to record positive signs. The number of employed people increased compared to the previous quarter and the same period last year.

The number of employed people aged 15 and over reached 50.8 million, an increase of over 255,000 people compared to the previous quarter and 3.5 million people over the same period last year.

The number of underemployed people in the age group was about 871,000, down more than 10,000 people compared to the previous quarter and over 993,000 people compared to the same period last year.

Vietnam, Germany boost academic exchange

A scientific workshop to promote academic exchange between Vietnam and Germany was held by the Vietnam Academy of Social Science (VASS)’s Institute for European Studies (IES) in Hanoi on October 6.

Addressing the event sponsored by Germany’s Friedrich Naumann Foundation, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nguyen Chien Thang, Director of the IES, said that workshop offers a good chance for scientists to exchange their views, thereby clarifying scientific arguments and progressive values of economic thought trends in Germany. 

Director of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation in Vietnam Prof. Andreas Stoffers said studying the history of the formation and development of theoretical content of German economic thought trends helps enhance theoretical and practical research activities, contributing to understanding more about Germany, as well as to promoting cooperation between the two countries.

Vietnam records nearly 1,000 cyberattacks in September

Vietnam was hit by 988 cyberattacks in the first nine months of this year, according to the National Cyber Security Centre under the Ministry of Information and Communications.

The figure represents a rise of 8.9% from August, and 19.9% year-on-year, the centre reported.

In the third quarter, the centre detected and guided the handling of 2,878 cyberattacks, up 15.5% over the same period last year.

On September 14, it launched a campaign to clean up malicious codes in Vietnam’s cyberspace.

At the same time, the centre has stepped up communication work to raise public awareness of cyberattacks and preventive measures.

More data needed on people with disabilities in Vietnam

There is a serious shortage of data on specific groups of Persons with Disabilities (PwDs) in Vietnam, especially those who are most marginalised, including persons with hearing and learning difficulties.

As Vietnam is set to conduct its second national survey on people with disabilities, it is important to collect data on the full spectrum of people with disabilities in Vietnam, so as to develop appropriate actions and policies.

Representatives of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Vietnam, Vietnam Federation on Disability and the General Statistics Office (GSO) held a consultation workshop regarding the issue on October 6.

Speaking at the workshop, Patrick Haverman, Deputy Resident Representative of UNDP in Vietnam, said that according to the latest UN analysis, out of the 158 sustainable development indicators of Vietnam (VSDGs), only eight require data regarding those with disabilities.

Among these eight indicators, only two (the number of beneficiaries of monthly social allowance in the community, and number of people living and being cared for in social protection facilities or social housing) are collected by both the General Statistics Office and the National Council on Disability (NCD) through statistical surveys and reporting.

Data of half of the eight indicators to assess the level of disability inclusion in different areas of VSDG are not collected by NCD, such as the proportion of the population satisfied with their most recent experience of public services.

Dang Van Thanh, vice president of Vietnam Federation on Disability, said there were about 6.2 million people with disabilities in Vietnam including more than 700,000 children.

He said that the number of people with disabilities in Vietnam released by different agencies was different from each other.

This crucial information was a foundation to design and develop activities and policies, for example, social welfare, education or healthcare, he said.

Deputy head of the GSO Le Trung Hieu said that Vietnam was preparing for the second national survey on people with disabilities next year. 

The first National Survey on PwDs was done in 2016, using an internationally standardised toolkit for measuring disability. That survey was part of the National Statistical Survey Programme.

Until now, there have been many reports by State agencies, organisations and for persons with disabilities, and disability experts still using data published in this survey.

After six years, the 2016 National Survey on Persons with Disabilities (VDS 2016) no longer accurately reflects the current situation of PWDs in Vietnam, Hieu said.

The GSO has proposed a set of 53 indicators to be disaggregated by disabilities, covering ten Sustainable Development Goals. The indicators can be used not only for the survey next year, but also serve the disability data disaggregation in other national statistical surveys, contributing evidence to the development of disability-inclusive socio-economic policies and programmes.

President commends citizens for life-saving actions

President Nguyen Xuan Phuc on October 6 sent a letter to Vi Van Truyen, Le Minh Huong and other residents in Hoa Son village, Ta Ca commune in the central province of Nghe An’s Ky Son district, praising them for their life-saving actions.

The President learnt from the media that Truyen, who is head of Hoa Son village, along with Huong and other villagers, had risked their lives to rescue people who were trapped in flood water in the village and brought them to a safe location.

Lauding their bravery, President Phuc said they have set bright examples of courage and upheld the good tradition of the nation. Their examples should be multiplied in community, he said.

In his letter, the state leader also shared the loss of people who are affected by the recent storm and floods. He asked Party committees and authorities at all levels to continue with their efforts to overcome the consequences of storms and floods, ensure life safety and people's health as well as minimise possible property damage.

Leaders extend sympathy to US over losses caused by Hurricane Ian

President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh on October 5 sent their condolences to US President Joe Biden over the heavy losses caused by Hurricane Ian.

Hurricane Ian swept through Florida, South Carolina and North Carolina states of the US, claiming hundreds of lives and caused extensive damage to infrastructure, houses and properties.

Authorities working with Cambodia to rescue Vietnamese lured into illegal work

Spokeswoman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) Le Thi Thu Hang said on October 6 that Vietnamese authorities are working closely with relevant agencies of Cambodia to deal with the issue of Vietnamese people tricked or lured to Cambodia for illegal work.

The issue has come to light recently and is attracting attention, she told the ministry’s regular press meeting in Hanoi. 

She noted Vietnam’s representative bodies in Cambodia have kept a close watch on the situation, maintained contact with the Vietnamese community, and proactively coordinated with Cambodian authorities to increase examination, expand investigation, verify, and rescue the Vietnamese nationals tricked or lured to work illegally in Cambodia.

The MoFA and domestic agencies have also coordinated to quickly handle necessary procedures for repatriating the citizens, Hang went on, adding that more than 1,000 citizens have been rescued and returned to the homeland while thousands of others have been assisted to handle procedures.

Besides, ministries, sectors, and localities have also cooperated to increase awareness campaigns to call on people, businesses, and factories to adhere to laws, prevent acts of tricking or luring Vietnamese people into illegal work in other countries, tighten control in border gate areas, and strictly deal with those committing violations.

In the time ahead, the MoFA and Vietnam’s representative bodies in Cambodia will keep working closely with domestic agencies and localities, as well as Cambodian authorities to grasp the situation of Vietnamese workers and quickly help to rescue and repatriate those who are tricked or lured into illegal work there. At the same time, they will take measures to ensure Vietnamese citizens’ rights and legitimate interests, according to the spokeswoman.

Authorities will also continue coordinating with domestic media agencies to boost communications, she noted.

Vietnam attends int’l inter-party conference on sustainable development

A delegation of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) attended virtually an international inter-party conference on ecological security and sustainable development held by the United Russia party in Sakhalinsk city on October 6.

The hybrid event saw the presence of Chairman of the United Russia party and Vice Chairman of the Security Council of Russia Dmitry Medvedev, President of the Cambodian People’s Party and Prime Minister of Cambodia Hun Sen, along with leaders of the ruling parties in some Asian-Pacific countries.

In his speech, Le Hoai Trung, member of the CPV Central Committee and Chairman of the CPV Central Committee’s Commission for External Relations, highlighted the main content of Vietnam’s sustainable development policy.

He affirmed that the sustainable development policy of Vietnam both reflects common positive trends in the world and appropriately applies them in a way that takes into account the country’s conditions, with the consistent goal of socialism, rich people, and a strong, democratic, equitable, and civilised nation.

The official also suggested some orientations for strengthening cooperation among political parties, as well as international cooperation for the sake of sustainable development and ecological security.

Vietnamese navy ship concludes Malaysia visit

Sailing Ship 286-Le Quy Don and a delegation of Vietnam People’s Navy led by Colonel Huynh Vinh Tuyen, deputy director of the Vietnam Naval Academy, paid a courtesy visit to the Malaysian Royal Navy from October 4-5.

The event is part of activities toward the 50th anniversary of Vietnam-Malaysia diplomatic ties (1973-2023).

On October 5, the Vietnamese delegation paid a courtesy call to Rear Admiral Dato’ Anuar Bin Mohamed, Commander of the Simulation and Training cCntre under the Royal Malaysian Navy located at Lumut Naval Base.

At the meeting, Anuar said he expected the two navies to promote cooperation, especially in the exchange of officers, training and education. He also said the two navies will make milestones to strengthen the countries' diplomatic relations.

At a reception for the Vietnamese delegation on October 4, Rear Admiral Farizal Myeor, Deputy Commander of the Western Fleet of the Malaysian Navy said he wishes to enhance cooperation and mutual understanding between the two navies.

For his part, Colonel Huynh Vinh Tuyen, deputy director of the Vietnam Naval Academy, expressed his delight at the fruitful cooperation between the two countries and between the two defence ministries in particular. He hoped that navy cooperation will continue to be a bright spot in Vietnam-Malaysia defence cooperation.

Spokeswoman clarifies MoFA’s viewpoint on officials’ wrongdoings

Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) Spokeswoman Le Thi Thu Hang on October 6 highlighted the ministry’s viewpoint following new developments related to officials’ roles in repatriation flights amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The MoFA has suspended officials in question to serve investigation in line with legal regulations, she said, adding it is working closely with relevant agencies to investigate the case and deal with the ones committing irregularities in line with legal regulations.

The MoFA’s viewpoint is that all diplomatic cadres must seriously comply with the State’s guidelines, policies, and regulations, Hang emphasised. “All law violations must be handled in line with legal regulations, and there are no off-limits zones.”

The ministry has also ordered Vietnam’s overseas representative bodies to increase education in politics, thought, morality, and lifestyle for their staff; overhaul work processes to ensure strictness, efficiency, transparency, and favourable conditions for citizens, especially administrative, consular, and citizen protection procedures; and seriously and fully conduct examination and inspection in conformity with the Party and State’s rules.

Vice President Vo Thi Anh Xuan to attend 6th CICA Summit, visit Croatia

Vice President Vo Thi Anh Xuan will attend the 6th Summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA 6) at the invitation of President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Kemelevich Tokayev, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang announced at a regular press conference on October 6.

During her trip that will last from October 9 to 14, the Vice President will also engage in some bilateral activities in Kazakhstan, and then pay a visit to Croatia at the invitation of Croatia Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic.

The spokesperson informed that Vice President Xuan will deliver an important speech at the plenary session of CICA 6. She will hold bilateral meetings with the executive director of CICA and heads of delegations of some countries.

The Vice President will also hold talks and meetings with high-ranking leaders of the two countries.

Embassy working to protect Vietnamese nationals in Philippines: spokeswoman

The Vietnamese Embassy in the Philippines is taking necessary measures to protect the rights and legitimate interests of the 14 Vietnamese citizens reported to be human trafficking victims there.

Spokeswoman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Le Thi Thu Hang made the statement on October 6 in response to a question about a report that Philippine authorities recently rescued 14 Vietnamese nationals who were victims of human trafficking and incarcerated in Paranaque city.

She noted that shortly after being notified, under the ministry’s direction, the embassy liaised with Philippine authorities and met the nationals to verify the information and take measures to ensure their rights and legitimate interests.

The spokeswoman cited the embassy as saying that as of October 5, 13 of the 14 citizens had been freed, and the remainder who was infected with COVID-19 was under care at a centre for protecting women’s and children’s rights in the Philippines./.

Over 17 million join social insurance

Over 17.24 million Vietnamese people, or 34.84% of the workforce, are joining social insurance, according to the Vietnam Social Security (VSS).

At the sector’s recent online conference, the VSS said that as of September, 15.73 million people were participating in compulsory social insurance, while 1.51 million others were joining voluntary insurance.

Health insurance covers over 87.5 million people, or 88.4% of the population, while 14.02 million pay unemployed insurance.

VSS General Director Nguyen The Manh said that the sector’s priority tasks in the remaining months of this year are to increase the number of participants and complete the collection of insurance premiums.

To fulfil its target for 2022, the sector needs to attract additional 1.93 million social insurance participants in the fourth quarter.

Quang Ninh to host General Assembly of East Asia Inter-Regional Tourism Forum

The 17th General Assembly of the East Asia Inter-Regional Tourism Forum (EATOF) is scheduled to take place from October 25 to October 27 in the northern province of Quang Ninh.

The event will run with the theme of "Tourism recovery in East Asia in the new normal era” and aims to jointly develop the tourism industry of each province, update information on tourism policies, strive to strengthen the training of staff in the sector, as well as discussing other contents related to multilateral co-operation in tourism.

Pham Ngoc Thuy, director of the Quang Ninh Department of Tourism, emphasized that the event is expected to reaffirm the position of the locality’s tourism sector in the region and throughout the world.

Furthermore, the occasion will also provide an ideal venue for the local tourism industry to attract investment resources for further tourism development, whilst also creating a wealth of opportunities for future co-operation and tourism development linkages between EATOF member provinces and countries worldwide.

This will be done in order to promote international integration whilst simultaneously elevating Vietnam's position and its people to the world

Through the event, the locality is seeking to elevate Quang Ninh as a "friendly, safe and attractive destination" moving forward.

Phu Quoc voted among top 10 best islands in Asia

Travel magazine Condé Nast Traveler of the United States has listed Phu Quoc in the southern province of Kien Giang among the best 10 tourist islands in Asia, as voted for by its readers.

With an overall score of 89.77 out of 100, Phu Quoc ultimately ranked sixth in the list, behind Phuket in Thailand, Langkawi in Malaysia, Koh Samui in Thailand, and Bali in Indonesia.

The top position went to Boracay in the Philippines, whilst the other destinations to make the list include Sri Lanka, Palawan in the Philippines, the islands of Okinawa and Ryuku in Japan, and Phi Phi in Thailand.

US Higher Education Fair 2022 opens in Hanoi

The US Embassy has just hosted the EducationUSA Higher Education Fair in Hanoi.

60 US universities and colleges offering undergraduate and graduate programs in hundreds of different majors participated in the event, organized on October 4 by EducationUSA for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic.

The fair brought together more than 1,000 students, parents and professionals with representatives from US universities, who provided the latest information about degree programs, career perspectives, scholarships, and financial aid for international students.

At the fair, an Embassy officer provided updated information on student visas and optional practical training programs for international students. Prospective undergraduate and graduate students also had the opportunity to learn more about standardized tests used for admissions decisions and merit-based scholarships at US universities and colleges.

Currently, Vietnam is the sixth leading place of origin for international students studying higher education in the US, with nearly 30,000 students on American campuses.

Rare turtles at HCM City pagoda rescued

As many as 62 rare turtles in a lake of Ngoc Hoang Pagoda in HCM City have been handed over to a local wildlife rescue station.

On Wednesday afternoon, Cu Chi District’s Wildlife Rescue Station received these turtles before releasing them into the wild. The turtles were released by Buddhist followers in the lake. They were taken care of by the pagoda’s Buddhist monks and nuns.

The animals had been living in the lake for 5-10 years. Some of them weigh up to 15 kilos. They consist of eight rare species.

Among those, 11 are yellow-headed turtles which are seen as endangered species.

In July this year, many pagodas in HCM City handed over a total of around 40 rare turtles to environmentalists.

Hoi An aims to become dog and cat meat-free city

Hoi An City in the central province of Quang Nam has approved non-refundable aid of USD50,000 from the Four Paws animal welfare organisation for its project to become Vietnam’s first dog and cat meat-free city.

The fund is part of a memorandum of understanding signed between Hoi An and the Four Paws in December 2021 on putting an end to dog and cat meat consumption and supporting rabies elimination.  

The project to develop Hoi An as a dog and cat meat-free city along with supporting rabies elimination by Four Paws kicked off in September and will finish in December 2023.

Under the project, the city will set up fixed news bulletin boards in public places and release publications to help raise public awareness of the danger of rabies and encourage people not to eat dog and cat meat.

The city will also give financial assistance for the rabies vaccination of local dogs and cats.

Mass fish deaths in Hanoi's West Lake

Lots of fish have been found dead in Hanoi’s West Lake over the past few days.

The dead fish were found in the area near Nguyen Dinh Thi Street, causing a bad odour.

 Tay Ho District People's Committee Chairman Nguyen Dinh Khuyen, said an estimated 100 kilos of dead fish have been gathered from the lake.

A representative from the Hanoi Water Drainage Company said that the fish deaths started in early October and might have been caused by changing weather.

"The dead fish might also have been newly released by local people and have not adapted to the water here," the representative explained.

Earlier in 2016 and 2018, hundreds of tonnes of fish were also found dead at West Lake. Test results from the Hanoi Department of Natural Resources and Environment showed that the fish died from a lack of oxygen.

Fisheries sector striving to make EC lift “yellow card”

Concerted efforts have been made by localities nationwide to remove the “yellow card” for illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing imposed by the European Commission (EC) as a delegation from the body will visit Vietnam to examine the country’s measures to fight such fishing.

Thanks to an effective communications campaign, the northern province of Thai Binh now has 760 fishing vessels registered on the national fishing vessel database and 178 have installed a vessel monitoring system.

Boasting the country’s largest fishing fleet, with nearly 10,000, the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang has spared no effort to carry out measures against IUU fishing. The owners of 4,000 fishing vessels have signed a commitment not to infringe upon foreign waters.

According to the Directorate of Fisheries, 62 IUU fishing violations had been detected as of September.

Party Central Committee discusses industrialisation, modernisation project

The 13th Party Central Committee discussed the project on continuing to accelerate national industrialisation and modernisation to 2030 with a vision to 2045 in the morning of October 6, the fourth working day of its 6th plenum.

The discussion was chaired by Politburo member and National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue.

In the afternoon, the committee worked in groups, scrutinising a report on socio-economic situation and state budget in 2022, draft plans on socio-economic development and state budget for 2023, and three-year fiscal-budgetary plans for 2023-2025.

Vietnam takes more efforts to eradicate illegal fishing: Thai news site

Thailand’s news site Thaipublica.org on October 5 ran an article highlighting Vietnam’s efforts to address illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing and remove the European Commission (EC)’s “yellow card” warning on Vietnamese seafood exports, issued in 2017, with its recent issuance of a plan on IUU fishing prevention and control by 2025.

The site wrote that almost five years after the EC’s warning, Vietnam has been actively focusing on drastic actions following the commission’s recommendations and regulations on IUU fishing in order to remove the warning as soon as possible.

The country has reviewed and supplemented legal documents and enhancing sanctions in the revised Fisheries Law, documents, and action plans of the government. In the last online meeting between Vietnam and the EC in November 2021, EC officials appreciated the changes in terms of legal matters, one of the four key recommendations made by the EC to Vietnam to solve IUU fishing.

Besides, Vietnam has applied information technology and digital transformation in traceability, towards ensuring digitalisation of professional procedures for monitoring and supervising aquatic products throughout value chain in a manner suitable with domestic and international consumption demands.

The site, however, noted that Vietnam is facing many difficulties to be delisted from the group of “warned countries”. Among of them are the monitoring of fishing vessels in the recent years due to the resurgence of COVID-19, and the number of fishing vessels still remained high.

Vietnam should learn experience of its neighbour, Thailand, which had a “yellow card” removed in 2019 after four years, it wrote, adding that the nation can carry out reform in the legal system, invest in the Monitoring, Control and Surveillance (MCS) system, and further cooperate with Regional Fisheries Management Organisations and neighbouring countries.

Source: VNA/SGT/VNS/VOV/Dtinews/SGGP/VGP/Hanoitimes

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