Vietnam ready to join negotiations on draft Peru/ Rwanda resolution on plastic waste
Vietnam is ready to join negotiations on a draft resolution which aims to pave the way for an international legally binding agreement on marine litter and plastics to be presented by Peru and Rwanda at the second segment of the 5th UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-5.2) in late February.
This is part of the tasks set out in the Prime Minister’s decision on approving a project named “Vietnam actively prepares and participates in building a global agreement on ocean pollution”.
According to the Vietnam Administration of Seas and Islands under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, in 2021, it took an active part in activities and meetings within the UNEA framework. The agency and its counterparts from Germany, Ecuador and Ghana coordinated in holding the Ministerial Conference on Marine Litter and Plastic Pollution in September 2021 to contribute to building the global agreement.
To date, a project on joining negotiations on the global agreement to be submitted to the Prime Minister has been completed.
Hoai suggested Vietnam soon co-submit the draft UNEA 5.2 Resolution, initiated by Peru, Rwanda and the EU on the establishment of an Inter-governmental Negotiation Committee, and send official confirmation notices to Peru, Rwanda and the EU to finalise the co-submission.
Young take great pride in military service
Localities nationwide have completed their recruitment targets for 2022. Many cities and provinces organised ceremonies on Feb. 16 to send off thousands of young men and women who will serve in the military for two years.
Thousands of young people from all walks of life around the country are excited and proud to join the army and hope to contribute to protecting the fatherland.
All are kitted out and ready to serve.
Though this is a time of peace, the army still stands at the ready.
Proud parents watched on as their children joined the army. It’s time to say goodbye to the family and get ready to serve the country.
The capital city of Hanoi held ceremonies in 30 districts and communes to send off 4,600 young people to the military and public security service. Leaders from the Ministry of National Defence attended ceremonies in different localities, to encourage the new recruits.
Ambassador Dang Hoang Giang begins tenure as head of Vietnam’s permanent delegation to UN
Ambassador Dang Hoang Giang began his tenure as Head of the Permanent Delegation of Vietnam to the United Nations (UN) in New York on February 17.
He received a decision of President Nguyen Xuan Phuc appointing him to the post on January 20.
The 45-year-old diplomat has many years of experience in multilateral diplomacy. He worked at the Vietnamese Delegation to the UN in the 2007-2010 period, and held the position of political coordinator when Vietnam served as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for the first time in the 2008-2009 term.
He was appointed as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs in March 2021.
Giang has also held many positions in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including secretary and assistant to the Standing Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Ambassador Nguyen Quoc Dung starts his term of office in US
Ambassador Nguyen Quoc Dung, accompanied by his wife Tran Thi Bich Van, arrived in Washington on February 16, starting his term of office as Vietnamese Ambassador to the US.
Nguyen Quoc Dung was appointed by President Nguyen Xuan Phuc as Vietnamese Ambassador to the US in January 2022.
Earlier he held the position of Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and head of SOM ASEAN Vietnam for many years.
With more than 30 years of working in the diplomatic field, Ambassador Nguyen Quoc Dung has held many different positions and had extensive experience in international integration, bilateral and multilateral diplomacy, international economic research, and foreign policy.
Measures to be taken to protect legitimate rights of Vietnamese citizens abroad
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) has asked the Vietnamese Embassy in Ukraine to announce a hotline on citizen protection to provide timely support for Vietnamese people there when necessary, the ministry’s spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang said on February 17.
The embassy was also requested to keep a close watch on the situation in Ukraine, closely coordinate with local competent agencies and maintain contacts with Vietnamese associations, Hang told a regular press conference held by the ministry.
She said the embassy’s staff have visited Vietnamese people in some areas, and found that there have been no major disturbances in their daily activities so far.
Regarding a Vietnamese intern abused in Japan, Hang said after learning about the incident, the embassy has held a working session with Japanese competent agencies to verify the case and ask for investigation.
The embassy’s officials also visited the man whose physical and mental health is stable now, the spokesperson added.
The Japanese Minister of Justice on January 25 asked the Immigration Services Agency of Japan to quickly conduct an investigation and handle individuals involved, and requested relevant firms to act to improve the support and protection of trainees.
Japanese authorities have suspended the reception of foreign technical trainees at the company where the incident occurred. The firm also admitted to its wrongdoings and pledged to compensate the trainee.
According to the spokesperson, the remaining Vietnamese trainees at this company have been moved to the management agency and they may be transferred to other workplaces.
The MoFA has directed the embassy to keep a close watch on the case and stand ready to take measures to protect the legitimate rights and interests of Vietnamese citizens, Hang said.
Vietnam calls for enhanced solidarity to build strong, resilient ASEAN Community
Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son has called for solidarity, unity, dialogue, and cooperation to be enhanced to serve as the basis for a strong and resilient ASEAN Community.
He made the call while addressing the ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting Retreat (AMMR), which was held both in person and virtually in Phnom Penh capital of Cambodia – Chair of the bloc in 2022, on February 16 and 17.
Regarding the Myanmar issue, Minister Son affirmed Vietnam’s readiness to join hands with other countries to assist Myanmar to overcome these trying times, voicing support for the continued effective implementation of the Five-Point Consensus.
He also proposed stronger cooperation within ASEAN and between the bloc and partners to deal with emerging non-traditional security challenges, including those related to cyber security, maritime security, water resource security, climate change, and environmental pollution, as well as new challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Flight resumption a great help to OVs in Laos: official
The resumption of international flights, including the Laos – Vietnam route, has made it easier for Vietnamese expats in Laos to return home for visit and business purposes, according Le Anh Duc, Standing Vice Chairman of the Overseas Vietnamese Association in Vientiane.
In an interview with the Vietnam News Agency, Duc said the Vietnamese community in the Lao capital city is happy and grateful to the Vietnamese Party and State’s special care for overseas Vietnamese (OVs) in Laos.
The decision of the two governments to re-open the route has created favourable conditions for OVs in Laos to come back home, he said.
Kham Long Sengsavang, a Vietnamese expat that has lived in Laos for 30 years, said he was very pleased and touched by the attention of Vietnamese Party and State leaders to resuming international flights, including those between Hanoi and Vientiane.
Hoi An listed among “Most Welcoming Cities on Earth”
Hoi An ancient town in the south-central coastal province of Quang Nam has been voted as one of the “10 Most Welcoming Cities on Earth” by over 232 million reviews from real travellers verified by the leading digital travel platform Booking.com.
The information has been announced by the organisers of the 10th annual Traveller Review Award 2022.
Others in the list are Matera (Italy), Bled (Slovenia), Taitung (Taiwan – China), Nafplio and Toledo (Spain), Monte Verde (Brazil), Bruges (Belgium), Nusa Lembongan (Indonesia), and Ponta Delgada (Portugal).
Vietnamese Pho wins hearts of diners in South Africa
In a small corner of Cape Town in South Africa, the Saigon – Vietnamese restaurant has become a familiar place over the past three decades among diners looking to enjoy Vietnamese cuisine.
Like many other overseas Vietnamese, Chef Nguyen Van My wanted to introduce Vietnamese culture and dishes to international friends.
My was born and raised in Ho Chi Minh City, and developed a great passion for food at an early age. He worked in a restaurant in the US. In 1996, My moved to South Africa to realise his dream of introducing Vietnamese cuisine to foreign friends.
He puts his heart into each and every dish, he said, and also spends time seeking original ingredients in order to prepare authentic dishes.
My said that local people are fond of a late brunch so don’t eat out in the daytime, while dinner is the main meal of the day, so his restaurant is normally packed in the evening.
During Cape Town’s peak tourism season, from November to April, his restaurant can serve from 100 to 200 customers each day.
Diners clearly love the authentic, fresh, and delicious Vietnamese dishes My prepares.
NA Standing Committee’s 8th session closes
The National Assembly (NA) Standing Committee wrapped up its 8th session in Hanoi on February 17.
NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue said during the session, the committee looked into the amendment of two draft laws – the Law on Mobile Police and another revising and supplementing some articles of the Law on Intellectual Property.
The top legislator ordered agencies in charge of submitting and verifying to closely coordinate so as to improve the quality of these draft laws before they are submitted to the parliament for approval, and urgently prepare relevant documents for discussion at the upcoming meeting of full-time NA deputies.
The committee agreed with the Government’s proposal to add the draft Law on Medical Examination and Treatment (amended) to the Law and Ordinance Building Programme in 2022, and submit it to the legislature for comments.
Regarding supervision, the committee reviewed a report on initial results of the implementation of policies and laws on the planning work since the Law on Planning came into force, and gave opinions on the selection of ministries, sectors and localities serving the supervision work in the coming time.
At the session, it also considered the legislature’s report on the people’s aspirations work in January.
The committee passed its draft resolution on the establishment of wards of Pho Yen township and Pho Yen city in the northern province of Thai Nguyen.
It also mulled over and commented on the draft resolution on functions and tasks of the board for deputies’ affairs, and another on amending the working regulations of the NA Standing Committee.
Da Nang to host beauty pageant for peace
The Vietnam Peace Bella 2021 beauty pageant is set to be launched in the central city of Da Nang from March 12.
The qualification rounds of the competition is set to take place in May for both the northern and central regions, with qualification for the southern region taking place in June.
Contestants will carry out a range of charity projects aimed at protecting children, women, and disadvantaged people in the society.
As part of the pageant, a total of 25 contestants will be selected for the grand final, which is due to transpire on October 9 in the central city of Da Nang.
The winner will be awarded a grand prize of VND100 million, with the first and second runner-ups receiving prizes worth VND80 million and VND60 million, respectively.
Hanoi manages to raise tree coverage in urban areas
Hà Nội’s authorities are trying to plant more trees in the city, especially in urban areas, in an effort to improve the environment and reduce air pollution.
This is also part of actions to respond to the Government’s programme on growing one billion trees in Việt Nam during the 2021 – 2025 period.
The city has set a plan to plant 200,000-250,000 new trees for shade and timber along urban traffic routes; 200,000 fruit trees, and about 50-80 ha of forests in 2022.
It will also focus on taking care of 3,546 ha of planted forests, and managing and protecting 6,483 ha of protection and special-use forests.
In urban districts of the capital, the ratio of trees is only about 1sq.m per person at present, while the targeted rate is 7sq.m per person by 2030.
Separate lane at TSN airport reserved for ride-hailing vehicles
The Tan Son Nhat International Airport in HCMC has announced a separate lane for ride-hailing vehicles, making life easier for drivers and passengers.
A representative of ride-hailing firm Be said its cabs can now pick up passengers from columns 1-5 of lane D1 of the TCP parking lot from February 17. Ride-hailing drivers have to pay VND25,000 each time to pick up passengers.
Be drivers can still pick up passengers from lane B at the international passenger terminal, the local media reported.
Meanwhile, Grab’s vehicles can pick up passengers from columns 6-12 of lane D1 and the third, fourth or fifth floor of the TCP parking lot.
Lane D1, which is parallel to other lanes in front of the airport’s domestic passenger terminal, has been equipped with traffic signs and ticket-checking cabins.
Son La arrests two drug traffickers
The police of the northern mountainous province of Son La have busted an illegal drug trafficking ring, detaining two traffickers and seizing six bars of heroin and 17,000 pills of synthetic drugs.
At 6.05 p.m. on February 16, the police of Yen Chau District discovered two men transporting a large volume of illicit drugs in Pha Cung Village in Long Phieng Commune, according to the police.
The traffickers were identified as Thao Ly Pao Song, aged 38, who is a Lao national, and Hang A Vang, aged 40, a resident of Son La Province’s Moc Chau District, the local media reported.
The two admitted they were hired to transport the drugs from Laos to Vietnam and were arrested on the way. The police are investigating the case.
Binh Thuan wants to host National Tourism Year 2023
Binh Thuan Province yesterday, February 16, wrote to the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism seeking permission to host the National Tourism Year 2023.
According to the province’s dispatch sent to the ministry, the province will meet requirements to host the National Tourism Year in 2023 through a wide range of efforts.
The coastal province has made efforts to build the Binh Thuan tourism brand by successfully hosting national and international events, such as the International Yacht Festival and the Professional Windsurfing Association World Cup.
The province is also effectively implementing a scheme to develop Binh Thuan into a national sports and tourism center, and mapping a zoning plan for the Mui Ne national tourism area.
HCMC to have pedestrian street in Dist 11
The government of District 11 in HCMC is planning to open a pedestrian street and a food area on Ha Ton Quyen Street in Wards 4 and 6.
The pedestrian street and nighttime food area are set to debut this year, operating from 4.00 p.m. to 10.00 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. The food area will feature 70 booths and over 50 business households.
Under its plan, District 11 will give priority to prestigious food and beverage brands active on Ha Ton Quyen Street and poor and near-poor households in Wards 4 and 6 to do business in the food area.
In addition, the district will set up many fast-food, beverage, footwear, clothing, souvenir and handicraft stands at the area.
Fresh food and unprocessed food will not be allowed in the food area, according to the District 11 government.
Ministry proposes shorter quarantine for teachers, students
The Ministry of Education and Training has proposed the Ministry of Health shorten the quarantine time for close contacts of Covid cases who are teachers and students to facilitate the reopening of schools.
The proposal was made due to different regulations on the quarantine and testing in each area, affecting in-person learning and teaching activities, the local media reported.
Many schools are finding it hard to handle Covid cases and those in close contact with Covid patients. Many have asked the entire class to stay at home after detecting a Covid case in the class, according to a report prepared by the Ministry of Education and Training.
Largest-ever audit on use of resources for anti-Covid fight launched
The State Audit of Vietnam (SAV) has launched an audit on the mobilization, management and use of resources in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic and support policies at nine ministries and agencies and in 32 provinces.
In addition, the audit will focus on the proposal and issuance of policies relating to the fight against the pandemic; the direction, cooperation, instruction, inspection, supervision and assessment of the deployment of directives and resolutions of the National Assembly, the Government and the national anti-Covid steering committee in 2020, 2021 and other related periods.
The audit will last from February 16 to March 31, the local media reported.
Through the audit, shortcomings and limitations on the employment of policies may be found and solutions will be worked out.
HCMC reports over 32,400 Covid cases among children under 16
Over 32,400 children under 16 in HCMC have tested positive for Covid-19, accounting for 6.3% of the city’s case count.
Forty-eight children in the city had succumbed to the disease as of February 7, making up 0.23% of HCMC’s total Covid fatalities, it was announced at a training conference on treating and caring for child Covid patients held by the Ministry of Health today, February 16.
Many of these child Covid patients in HCMC are overweight and have underlying health conditions, the local media reported.
Among over 2.5 million Covid infections reported in Vietnam, more than 490,000 are children under 18. The country has reported 165 Covid deaths among children, accounting for 0.42% of the total fatalities.
Massive flights unable to land at Noi Bai airport due to poor visibility
The Noi Bai International Airport said that massive flights of Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet, Bamboo Airways and Pacific Airlines into Noi Bai international airport and other airports of the Northern region had to be canceled, postponed and were unable to land on runways throughout last night because of heavy fog and clouds causing poor visibility.
However, from this early morning, the weather condition is better so the airports can receive planes and operate smoothly.
Some flights affected by the bad weather had to land at other airports of Van Don, Phu Bai, Da Nang, Cat Bi and Tho Xuan, even retuning to the departing places.
Last night, six international flights carrying both passenger and cargo into Noi Bai international airport had to divert to other airports as unexpected.
Large quantity of illegally imported Covid-19 test kits detected
The General Department of Vietnam Customs last night informed that , it detected a large number of Covid-19 test kits illegally imported from the Republic of Korea (RoK) to Vietnam at Noi Bai International Airport.
Accordingly, the Anti-Smuggling and Investigation Department (under the General Department of Vietnam Customs) yesterday cooperated with Hanoi Department of Customs to investigate the large violating consignment sent from RoK to Vietnam.
The result showed that over 85,000 Covid-19 test kits, worth more than VND8 billion (US$351,000), found in the consignment were not precisely declared.
Regulations state that Covid-19 test kits are conditional imported goods and must possess a valid permit issued by the Health Ministry. However, owners of this consignment used a foxy trick to declare them under the generic category with a wrong name for a smuggling purpose.
The case is being further investigated by the customs agency in accordance with regulations.
Germany film festival KinoFest debuts
Twenty selected German films of different genres will be screened online from February 18 to March 31.
For the first time, eight Goethe-Instituts in Southeast Asia have jointly organized an online film festival called KinoFest. The film festival will be available online for viewers who live in big cities in the Southeast Asia area.
According to event organizers, most of the films are recent productions. The films are available for free of charge at https://kinofest22.goethe-on-demand.de/. All the motion pictures are shown in Germany with Indonesian, Thai, Burmese, Vietnamese or English subtitles.
The movies set to be screened during this two-week long film festival include the thriller Free country (2019 Christian Alvart); drama, the political satire film Curveball (2020, Johannes Naber); the drama The Royal Game (2021, Philipp Stölz), among others.
Vietnamese vaccine passport accepted by 14 countries and territories
As of February 16, 14 countries and territories recognized Viet Nam’s vaccine passport, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang told reporters on Thursday.
The four new countries are Egypt, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Turkey.
Earlier, Australia, Belarus, Cambodia, India, Japan, Maldives, Palestine, the Philippines, the U.K. and the U.S. had accepted Viet Nam’s vaccine passport.
Meanwhile, Viet Nam has recognized vaccine passports of 79 countries and territories. Thanks to vaccine passport recognition, since January 1, 2022, fully vaccinated international arrivals with negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test results are required to self-quarantine at home or their places of accommodation for three days when they enter Viet Nam.
Gov’t targets to reduce fatal occupational accidents by 4% annually
The Government targets to reduce the frequency of fatal occupational accidents by 4 percent annually between 2021 and 2025.
This is part of a newly-approved national program for occupational safety and health for the 2021-2025 period.
The program sets goal to provide training in occupational safety and health to over 80 percent of workers performing tasks bound by strict requirements for occupational safety and health.
At least 80 percent of workers with occupational accidents or diseases will be entitled to compensation and benefits in accordance with the law.
Hanoi builds roadmap to reopen kindergarten next month
The Hanoi Party Committee has agreed on a roadmap to reopen kindergartens from March 1, Vice Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Chu Xuan Dung said during a virtual meeting with district-level steering boards on COVID-19 prevention and control of the capital city on February 17.
The municipal Department of Education and Training is assigned to devise plans on the work, with a focus on flexible and effective measures to ensure safety and meet residents’ needs.
Dung asked relevant agencies and localities to view bringing students back to schools as an important task and they need to work with schools to ensure safety in arranging in-person classes.
Pre-pandemic visa policy should be resumed: Ministry
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MCST) proposed resuming pre-pandemic visa policy for foreign arrivals to the country to attract more tourists and recover the tourism sector in the future in a document sent to the Government Office on February 17.
The document reported that after a meeting with related ministries and agencies on February 15, the MCST had adjusted a plan for the resumption of tourism activities in the new normal. Accordingly, both inbound and outbound tourism will be resumed from March 15 via air, road and sea routes; and foreign arrivals are subjected to comply with pandemic prevention and control.
Prior to the pandemic, Vietnam had applied many policies which aim to attract foreign tourists including unilateral and bilateral visa exemption, and electronic visa granting for citizens from potential markets. However, the Government decided to halt the unilateral visa exemption in March last year in a bid to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
HCM City accelerates metro line projects