COVID-19 F1 cases allowed to go to work, school in HCM City
Ho Chi Minh City has allowed COVID-19 F1 cases (i.e. those in close contact with virus infection) to go to work or attend school again under certain conditions.
The decision, which comes into effect on March 24, applies to fully vaccinated F1 cases or those who have contracted the virus within three months.
These cases are required to self-monitor their health for at least 10 days from the date of last close contact with F0. They will undergo a COVID-19 test on day 5 and whenever they show flulike symptoms.
Among other conditions, they are required to use personal vehicles when travelling from home to destinations, and strictly abide by COVID-19 measures at the workplace or school.
Over the past days Ho Chi Minh City has made progress in keeping the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak in check. Most people over 12 years old have been vaccinated, while most infections in the risk group are asymptomatic or mild, and they have then recovered from the disease.
The decision is to facilitate local economic recovery efforts after the city recently resumed socio-economic and cultural activities.
Hanoi moves to speed up smart city project
Secretary of the Party Committee of Hanoi Dinh Tien Dung on March 23 hosted a reception for Japanese Ambassador to Vietnam Yamada Takio and representatives of the Sumitomo Corporation and BRG Group of Japan to review the implementation of a smart city project in the northern area of Hanoi.
The Japanese diplomat said the development of green and smart cities will be one of the cooperation priorities between Japan and Hanoi. The project is a highlight in the cooperation between Japan and Vietnam in general and Hanoi in particular, to practically celebrate the 50th founding anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 2023, he stressed.
The smart city project aims to build a city, regarded as the most modern and smartest city in Southeast Asia in the northern area of Hanoi (covering both sides of Vo Nguyen Giap road) as part of the Nhat Tan – Noi Bai Route Planning Project.
It is expected to create a focal point for the space and architecture of the capital’s gateway area, provide impetus for urban development in the northern Red River area, and contribute to the city’s socio-economic development.
Robotics competition held for secondary students of Vietnam, Finland
The first edition of the Master Robot Builders Robot Competition will be held for secondary students of Vietnam and Finland.
The contest is organised by the Satakunta University of Applied Sciences of Finland, within the framework of the Vietnam-Finland bilateral cooperation agreement. It will be held online in English and free of change.
Contestants can register at https://elonake.samk.fi/lomakkeet/11876/lomake.html before April 10. They will be enabled to participate in three robotics training sessions and a guiding session in the robotics industry from April 5-8.
Groups comprising 3-5 members will work together to build their robots and submit to the jury by May 8.
The most 20 outstanding works will qualify for the final slated for May 20. The top three winners will walk home with prizes of 150 EUR (165 USD), 100 EUR and 50 EUR, respectively.
Vietnam willing to join humanitarian efforts for Ukraine
Ambassador Dang Hoang Giang, Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the United Nations (UN), has affirmed that Vietnam supports and is always willing to contribute to the UN’s humanitarian relief for Ukraine within its capacity and conditions.
Addressing the UN General Assembly’s 11th emergency special session on the humanitarian situation in Ukraine, Giang reasserted Vietnam’s consistent stance on solving international disputes by peaceful measures on the basis of respecting international law, the UN Charter, and the principle of respecting independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of other countries, not interfering into their internal affairs and not using force in international relations.
Sharing the international community’s deep concern about the humanitarian situation caused by the war in Ukraine, the Vietnamese diplomat emphasised that the current urgent priority should be given to stopping fighting, protecting civilians and essential civilian infrastructure, deploying humanitarian operations, and evacuating citizens.
Committee for foreign NGO affairs reviews performance of 2021 tasks
The Committee for Foreign Non-Governmental Organisation Affairs (COMINGO) on March 23 held an online conference to review the implementation of its tasks in 2021 and discuss its orientations this year.
During the meeting, participants shared information about the international, regional and domestic situation that directly affect foreign NGO affairs in Vietnam, and results achieved in 2021.
Due to impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, foreign NGOs in Vietnam faced many difficulties, especially in mobilising budget and arranging visits and field-trip activities, the meeting heard.
The disbursement of foreign non-governmental aid to Vietnam in 2021 hit nearly 233 million USD, an increase of over 5 percent year-on-year. Of the total, the value of goods, cash and technical assistance for Vietnam’s fight against COVID-19 totaled more than 10.6 million USD.
The disbursement ratio of foreign non-governmental aid reached more than 73 percent of the total value committed in the year, over 2 percent higher than that of 2020.
Hanoi to host hot air balloon festival “Colourful Hanoi”
The Hanoi Department of Tourism will coordinate with relevant agencies to kick off a tourism programme themed “Get on Hanoi 2022” on March 25 with a series of attractive activities, including a hot air balloon festival “Colourful Hanoi”.
The programme is part of activities to respond to the resumption of tourism activities, welcoming international tourists in the new normal in the capital city.
This is the first event in a series of activities to be organised in Hanoi during 2022, such as the Hanoi tourism gift festival, Hanoi tourism festival, food and handicraft village tourism festival, and Ao dai Hanoi festival.
This is a combination of music, lights and images of Hanoi’s destinations; along with the screening of the short film “Colourful Hanoi”, music and visual art “Charming Hanoi”, visual art Love Hanoi, musical and art performance “Get on Hanoi 2022”.
In particular, the event also introduces low-hanging hot air balloons on Dinh Tien Hoang Street, with ten one-level hot air balloons (10m high) and one seven-level hot air balloon (22m high).
The programme will broadcast online through digital platforms: YouTube, the municipal Department of Tourism’s fanpage and the “Get On Hanoi” fanpage.
During the hot air balloon festival on March 25- 27 , the municipal Department of Tourism will coordinate with VMG Media JSC to organise a programme to introduce three new tourism products with hot air balloons, and perform at the same time 22 hot air balloons. Visitors will experience flying up in hot air balloons to see Hanoi from above.
HCM City, World Bank work to intensify partnership
Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Phan Van Mai had a meeting with visiting World Bank (WB) Regional Vice President for East Asia and Pacific Manuela V. Ferro on March 23 to discuss ways for enhancing cooperation.
Highly valuing HCM City’s role in the Vietnamese economy, Ferro affirmed that the WB is proud to help with designing a new growth driver for HCM City to become a modern and worth-living city.
As many other cities around the world are facing challenges similar to those of HCM City, the WB is ready to connect the southern largest economic hub of Vietnam with typical foreign cities to exchange experience in dealing with those challenges, she suggested.
The WB Regional Vice President recommended HCM City pay more attention to promoting investment, create an investment climate attractive to foreign businesses which are planning to shift to Vietnam, and step up attracting private resources to priority areas.
The WB will continue working closely with HCM City and boost the joint working group’s coordination to identify priority areas, effective measures, and feasible action plans, Ferro added.
At the meeting, HCM City and the WB debuted their joint working group, led by Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Vo Van Hoan.
World Press Photo Exhibition 2021 opens in Ho Chi Minh City
Winning works of the World Press Photo Contest 2021 are being on display at Le Van Tam Park of Ho Chi Minh City.
The exhibition was launched by the Consulate General of the Netherlands in the city on March 23 evening, introducing visitors to 159 outstanding photos of last year’s contest.
This is an practical activity towards the celebration of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties in 2023, Dutch Consul General Daniel Stork said.
According to him, the World Press Photo Contest is the world’s leading contest for professional press photographers and reporters. Last year’s contest received over 74,000 photos of 4,315 photographers from 130 countries and territories. Its winning photos have been exhibited in nearly 90 countries over the globe.
The exhibition in Ho Chi Minh City will remain open to the public till the end of April 10.
Vietnam’s U23 tie goalless with Iraq at Dubai Cup 2022
Vietnam’s U23 squad tied goalless with Iraq in the team’s first match at the Dubai Cup 2022 friendly tournament.
Tran Bao Toan and Nghiem Xuan Tu had chances to score but they lacked accuracy to put the ball into the back of the net.
Ten football teams from Asia and Europe will compete at the event, including Uzbekistan, China, Saudi Arabia, Japan and hosts the UAE. Each team will play three matches throughout the tourney, which will be held from March 23-29.
Vietnam will play Croatia in the second round on March 26 and the team’s third match is slated for three days later.
Vietnam provided with 7 million USD worth of innovative drug for haemophilia
The World Federation of Haemophilia (WFH) has provided Vietnam with an additional 5,670 vials of Emicizumab, worth over 161 billion VND (7.04 million USD), for the treatment of haemophilia, according to the National Institute of Haematology and Blood Transfusion (NIHBT).
Haemophilia is an inherited genetic disorder that impairs the body’s ability to make blood clots, caused by decreased or abnormal function of coagulation factors VIII and IX. It can cause a person to bleed even without being injured for a long duration and repeat many times.
Approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA), Emicizumab is deemed as an innovative prophylaxis for haemophilia A in Vietnam as the drug helps prevent and reduce the frequency of bleeding episodes in patients. However, the drug is very expensive since it is estimated that a 50-kg patient needs to spend around 4 billion VND worth of the drug a year.
Last year, Vietnam received 4,410 vials of Emicizumab, worth 125 billion VND, from the WFH. The drug has been given free of charge to patients with haemophilia A.
Quang Ninh’s preparations in full swing to meet deadline for SEA Games 31
Quang Ninh will host seven out of 40 sports in the Games, including volleyball and women’s football. The province’s organising board for SEA Games 31 also gives priorities to communications and logistics tasks.
To date, Quang Ninh has fundamentally arranged accommodation facilities with more than 3,000 rooms for organisers and sport delegations. A 5,000-seat gymnasium which will host indoor volleyball matches has been upgraded.
Some 163 billion VND (7.13 million USD) was allocated to double the capacity of Cam Pha Stadium, which is the venue for women’s football, to 16,000 seats. An additional 83 billion VND was disbursed to improve function facilities at the stadium.
In addition, about 300 volunteers have been recruited to support delegations during the region’s biggest sport event. About 1,725 members of delegations are projected to travel to Quang Ninh, including 978 athletes.
Nationwide ceremony kicks start environmental protection events
A hybrid nationwide ceremony has been held by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources to kick start a series of events to mark World Water Day, World Meteorological Day, and Earth Hour 2022, all to be celebrated this month.
The March 23 ceremony brought together 63 cities and provinces and 400 international organisations, non-governmental organisations, diplomatic corps in Vietnam, Vietnamese ministries and agencies.
The event also honoured winners of a competition entitled “Hydro-meteorology in me” designed for secondary and high school students.
In response to the Earth Hour 2022, the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources is calling all people and organisations to switch off lights and non-essential electronic devices for an hour, from 8:30pm to 9:30pm, on March 26.
A host of activities will be held to educate people on a green and healthy lifestyle and the harmful effects of illegal hunting and consumption of wildlife animals while schools are asked to organise environmental awareness classes and relevant extracurricular activities.
Da Lat among leading must-see flower destinations globally
Travel website Booking.com has unveiled a list of the top flower destinations from across the world, including Da Lat in the Central Highland region of Vietnam.
Often dubbed the city of thousands of flowers, Da Lat is home to various flower parks, farms, and festivals, each one serving to decorate the city with colourful blooms and rich green landscapes, the article states.
The travel website also suggests visitors spend their days exploring the Da Lat Flower Gardens and wandering around the grounds, taking in some of the fragrant lilies, chrysanthemums, and diverse orchids which the city is famous for.
GM Quang Liem progresses to semi-finals of Charity Cup
Vietnamese grandmaster Le Quang Liem won a place in the semi-finals of the online rapid chess tournament – the Charity Cup – after recording a solid win over David Navara of the Czech Republic on March 24.
Liem held the advantage of playing with the white pieces as the game began, allowing him to easily win the first set, before Navara quickly equalised the score in the second set.
The GM then made a spectacular comeback in the third set, helping him to secure a victory after 27 moves. The fourth set ended in a draw. The final score means Liem has progressed through to the Charity Cup’s semi-finals.
Liem is set to face Jan-Krzysztof Duda of Poland in the semi-final round which is due to be held on March 25.
Night performance to kick off national tourism year in Quang Nam
More than 200 dancers and artists will stage an art performance: ‘The Mỹ Sơn Sanctuary Legendary Night’ in the central province’s Duy Xuyên District today marking a significant event of the National Tourism Year – Quảng Nam 2022.
The province said the performance would begin at 4pm at the UNESCO-recognised world heritage site in Duy Phú Commune, 40km from Hội An, featuring a series of cultural performances, arts and handcrafts demonstrations throughout the day.
Visitors will explore the old culture of Chăm people and the Vietnamese community by joining exhibitions and demonstrations of wood sculpture, weaving, terra-cotta, cuisine and the beauty of the Chăm tower complex.
Meanwhile, a Balloon Day will be hosted by Đà Nẵng City, marking the restart of international flight when Singapore Airlines and Thai Vietjet carry the first international tourists to Đà Nẵng on March 27.
Regional minimum wage increase to be considered
The Vietnam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL) has proposed the National Wages Council adjust the regional minimum wage to meet workers’ and the labour market’s demand.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic over the past two years, the regional minimum wage has not been adjusted. It is still based on the Decree 90/2019/NĐ-CP of the Government, starting January 1, 2020.
On April 15, the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs will conduct a survey of enterprises on labour issues, wages and minimum living standards. The results will be used as a basis for developing content on regional minimum wages next year and related policies.
After the survey, the concerned agency will clarify more about the regional minimum wage adjustment, he said.
On August 5, 2020, at a meeting in Hà Nội, Deputy Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs and Chairman of the National Wages Council Lê Văn Thanh declared that the region-based minimum wage would not be adjusted in 2021.
The minimum wage for workers in Region 1, which covers Hà Nội and HCM City’s urban areas, is set to maintain at VNĐ4.42 million (US$191.39). Region 2, covering Hà Nội and HCM City’s rural areas, along with major urban areas in the country like Cần Thơ, Đà Nẵng and Hải Phòng, will be VNĐ3.92 million. Those in Region 3, or provincial cities and the districts of Bắc Ninh, Bắc Giang and Hải Dương provinces, will earn at least VNĐ3.43 million a month, while Region 4, or the rest of the country, will receive a minimum of VNĐ3.07 million.
Thai Nguyen to host final round of Miss World Vietnam 2022
The final round of Miss World Vietnam 2022 is set to take place from April 4 to April 24 in Danko City in the northern province of Thai Nguyen.
The organising board will also present minor title of Miss Fashion to the round’s outstanding beauty.
The event will be broadcast live on VTV2, VTV6, and other 13 channels across the country.
Miss World Vietnam was launched for the first time in 2019, with the competition aiming to find a Vietnamese representative at the Miss World beauty pageant. Women aged 18 to 27 who are at least 1.65 metres tall and have had no cosmetic surgery are eligible to enter the contest. Participation is limited to unmarried women who have never given birth or parented a child.
Chibooks attends book fairs in Thailand
Vietnam’s Chi Culture Joint Stock Company (Chibooks) will attend the 50th National Book Fair and the 20th Bangkok International Book Fair 2022, which are set to be held in Bangkok, Thailand, from March 26 to 31.
Within the events, Chibooks will introduce 50 Vietnamese book titles released by Chibooks and Saigon Books that have won great interest from readers.
The book titles covered various topics ranging from culture, customs, and natural landscapes of Vietnam as well as education, economies, and children’s books.
In addition, representatives from the company will also participate in seminar entitled ‘Enhancing book copyright transactions on in post COVID-19 pandemic area’, a meeting of the Publishers and Booksellers Association of Thailand (PUBAT), and discussions on promoting cooperation among publishers in the Southeast Asia.
Food poisoning cases linked to Lien Hoa Bakery in Dalat rise to 84
Some 36 more people were hospitalized over food poisoning after eating bread from the Lien Hoa Bakery in Dalat City, Lam Dong Province, raising the total number of food poisoning hospitalizations linked to the bakery to 84 between March 18 and 23.
The provincial health authority said today, March 23, that these 36 cases were admitted to the Lam Dong Province General Hospital and the Hoan My Hospital in Dalat for emergency treatment from March 22 to 23.
The Hoan My hospital, since yesterday morning, received 23 more cases of foodborne illness. They said they developed symptoms of digestive disorder, nausea, fever and diarrhea after eating the Lien Hoa bread. Similarly, the Lam Dong general hospital admitted 13 more cases yesterday, reported Tuoi Tre newspaper.
The authorities are working on the case.
Two killed after truck overturns
Two people were killed and six others injured after a truck lost control on a slope on Provincial Road 757 in Binh Phuoc Province, and flipped over today, March 23.
The accident occurred in Bu Nho Commune, Phu Rieng District at 6.30 a.m. while the cashew carrying truck was heading to Dak Nong Province, the local media reported.
After the vehicle overturned, the walls of an eatery which the truck hit collapsed, killing Bui Thi Lan, aged 11, and La Van Dai, aged 39, who lived in the district. The victims were eating inside at the time.
An electricity pole nearby also broke, resulting in Bu Nho Commune losing electricity.
On the same day, Dong Nai Province witnessed a collision between a passenger coach, a motorcycle and a tractor-trailer on National Highway 51. Many passengers in the passenger coach were injured, while the front of the coach was crushed.
The accident caused a severe traffic jam on the national highway.
Coca-Cola Foundation supports WWF to address water challenges in Vietnam
The Coca-Cola Foundation is supporting WWF-Vietnam to help improve the capacity of wetlands, a nature-based solution to sustainable livelihood and biodiversity enhancement in the face of the unpredictable drought and flood patterns in Upper part of the Mekong Delta. Long-term and continued support from The Coca-Cola Foundation to WWF-Vietnam to address water challenges to become more resilient to climate changes.
The Coca-Cola Foundation on March 23 announces its continuing support of US$150.000 (equivalently to VND3,5 billion) for WWF-Vietnam to enhance the natural ability of ecosystems to control water flow and absorption capacity of Tram Chim National Park and surrounding floodplains.
The support will contribute to the restoration of its health and natural function of the 2000th world Ramsar site, a designation given in recognition of the previous success of rehabilitation work in the national park.
Smartphone users warned of fake troubleshooting calls
Functional agencies lately have warned citizens of criminals impersonating operators of major network carriers to take control of subscribers’ SIM via fake troubleshooting calls, and then illegally sign in bank accounts to steal money.
VinaPhone warns its customers against sending the code ‘**21*Số điện thoại#’ when being instructed by a strange call. Also, if customers discover that their phone cannot receive any calls, they have to immediate send the SMS ‘##21#’ to cancel the Call Forward function, followed by contacting VinaPhone’s free hotline 18001091 to check the security status.
Similarly, MobiFone subscribers need to dial its hotline 9090 to verify whether the person contacting them are truly MobiFone employees or not. They are warned against sharing their OTP codes, passwords, sensitive information, bank accounts, PIN code to unreliable sources.
Viettel asks that its customers strictly observe all laws of the country as well as its regulations regarding sign-up information provision. Users are advised to beware of calls from strangers for SIM upgrade or prize winning purposes.
HCMC issues regulations on management coordination of foreign workers
The People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City has just issued regulations on coordination in state management of foreign workers working in enterprises in the city, taking effect on March 28.
The regulations set out the duties of the Municipal Department of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs, the Municipal Department of Public Security, the People’s Committees of districts, Thu Duc City and many organizations, individuals without arising from procedures related to the work permit to create conditions for enterprises to strictly comply with regulations on recruitment and usage of foreign workers.
According to the regulations, the information, documents and data provided by the agencies must be used for the right purposes for state management. It is strictly prohibited to take advantage of this information for unauthorized purposes.
Currently, 27,000 foreign workers are working in the city, including many experts and managers of key projects.
HCMUT introduces robotic gloves for stroke patients
A group of students from Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology (HCMUT) has successfully invented robotic gloves to help patients recovering from strokes to hold objects and restore hand movements. This meaningful product aims at supporting arm movements of stroke patients who are rehabilitating at home.
The fingers of robotic gloves are made from flexible and soft materials (liquid rubber solutions) in order to grasp objects easily without deforming them. Their movement mechanism is according to the pneumatic principle.
The elbow of these gloves are attached with sensors that can read signals from the hand muscles and then transmit them to the soft fingers via wires. Receiving these signals, the gloves have their fingers automatically inflated with air to bend and help users’ fingers move as well so that they can hold objects.
The product has been recognized and published on IEEE Xplore journal of the International Electrical Engineers Association.
HCMC sets new evaluation criteria of advanced, integrated schools
Accordingly, for advanced-credited kindergarten teaching children aged 3 to 6, the number of pupils not being more than 30 students per class as criteria to be advanced and integrated schools. All children in advanced-credited schools have their nutritious lunch at schools without cases of illnesses and food poisoning.
In addition, they also receive medical check-ups including their height and weight measures, which are important when tracking a child’s growth.
For advanced-credited primary schools, the criteria for personnel and facilities are similar to that of preschools. The total number of students is no more than 35 students per class, all students can study two shifts a day.
Additionally, all primary teachers can communicate in English and have computer skills. Half of the students have to achieve certificates of English and computer output standards according to international standards after graduating from primary school. Swimming safety and preventing drowning must be made compulsory for all students.
As for advanced-credited secondary schools and senior high schools, 80 percent of teachers must win the title of excellent teachers at school level and 30 percent of teachers win the title of excellent teaching at the district level. The ability to use English communication is required for all teachers while the foreign language teachers must have teaching language competence two levels higher than the general level.
Can Tho to inaugurate temple of Hung Kings on April 6
A temple commemorating Hung Kings will be inaugurated in the Mekong Delta City of Can Tho on April 6, announced the municipal People’s Committee at a press conference on March 22.
The construction of the Hung Kings’ Temple covering an area of more than 39,000 square meters in Binh Thuy Districts has been completed in 30 months.
The project includes main works, including a temple, a management and administration area, a stele house, a courtyard, park and among. The temple was built at a total capital of VND129 billion (US$5.7 million) and aims to commemorate and worship the Hung Kings who are the founders and first emperors of the nation.
At the press conference, the city’s authorities also provided information on the organization of the 3rd National Southern Amateur Music Festival and the 9th Southern Folk Cake Festival.
The two festivals will take place at at Binh Thuy District’s square On April 6-11 with the participation of 21 provinces and cities in the Southeast and Mekong Delta regions, aiming at promoting traditional cuisines and culture, tourism potentials of the Vietnam’s South.
Seven rescued tigers handed over Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park