The Ministry of Health has demanded no obstruction to nor profiteering from the issuance of COVID-19 vaccination certifications and “vaccine passport”, according to a notice released on May 1.
The notice was sent to provincial health departments, the ministry’s bodies and telecom group Viettel, the developer of the national digital platform for COVID-19 vaccination database management.
The ministry began issuing digital vaccine passports last month. To protect rights of the holders of COVID-19 vaccination certificates and vaccine passports, the ministry requests relevant units to not make difficulties nor profiteer from these services.
It also plans to accelerate communications campaigns to raise people’s awareness of the rights to be granted with vaccination certificates and vaccine passports in case they have been fully vaccinated.
It emphasised that violators must take full responsibility before the law.
Japanese media spotlight PM Kishida’s Vietnam visit
Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio’s official visit to Vietnam on April 30 – May 1 has grabbed the headlines of the media in Japan.
Kyodo News cited PM Kishida as saying after the talks with his host PM Pham Minh Chinh on May 1 that Vietnam is an “important partner” in realising Japan’s vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific.
On the bilateral front, the PMs agreed on enhancing cooperation in Vietnam’s maritime security and on Japan’s Self-Defense Forces helping the Southeast Asian country strengthen cybersecurity skills. They also decided to set up a website for Vietnamese people seeking to train in Japan under the country’s technical internship programme and allow them to directly access information on job offers and the sending organisations.
Japan also vowed to provide 19 billion JPY (146 million USD) to Vietnam for improving the latter’s disaster management capabilities by launching observation satellites, according to Kyodo.
The news agency reported that the two PMs affirmed respect for the sovereignty of states.
“We confirmed that countries must abide by the principle of respecting the independence and the sovereignty of states,” Kishida said. “In any region, changing the status quo by force is intolerable.”
He added the two agreed to strongly oppose attempts to change the status quo in the East Sea.
Kyodo also quoted PM Chinh as speaking at the press conference that they are committed to strengthening ties for maintaining peace and stability in the region.
In a story titled “Japan to Work with Vietnam to Diversify Supply Chains”, Jiji Press reported that PM Kishida on May 1 unveiled the idea that Japan and Vietnam will work closely to strengthen supply chains through diversification.
The novel coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the importance of diversified supply chains, Kishida said in a seminar on the two countries’ cooperation at the Vietnamese PM’s Office in Hanoi, noting Japan will provide assistance to supporting industries, which mainly make parts and other intermediate goods, in Vietnam so that Japanese companies doing business in the country can operate without a hitch.
Kishida told his Vietnamese counterpart that Japan will help Vietnam improve its military’s cyber capabilities, Jiji Press wrote in another story, adding the two leaders also agreed to continue cooperation to realise a free and open Indo-Pacific region.
NHK reported that during the talks in Hanoi, the two PMs agreed to enhance cooperation in investment, trade, energy, and the environment.
Japan will assist Vietnam to further engage in global supply chains and accelerate digital transformation. It will also increase receiving Vietnamese interns and students and help the Vietnamese community in the country.
At the talks, they also discussed regional and international issues of common concern, voicing their opposition to unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force in any region, according NHK.
Vietnamese cultural centre opened in Italy’s Venice city
A Vietnamese cultural centre has been opened in Venice city, Italy, expected to help promote cultural cooperation and exchange between the two countries.
Renato Darsie, Chairman of the Italy – Vietnam Friendship Sub-Association in the Veneto region, affirmed the importance of the coming into being of the centre, noting that together with the teaching of the Vietnamese language at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, this will help foster bilateral cultural exchange.
He also expressed his hope that through the centre, Vietnam’s cultural cooperation with Italy, including the Veneto region, will record concrete strides in the time ahead.
Addressing the launch, Ambassador Duong Hai Hung thanked the official and the sub-association for their efforts to coordinate with regional and municipal authorities to open the cultural centre.
He said the opening is important to the two countries’ friendship and cooperation as the centre will help enhance bilateral cultural understanding.
Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi named among top ten destinations in Southeast Asia to visit in 2022: Travelport
Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi have been named among the top ten destinations in Southeast Asia for international travellers to visit in 2022, according to Travelport, a global technology company that powers bookings for travel suppliers worldwide.
According to Travelport, as borders begin to reopen across Southeast Asia, increased flight bookings show how excited travellers are to return to the region.
HCMC seeks to end pump rental contract
The HCMC Department of Construction has written to the municipal government proposing entering negotiations to end a contract to rent a massive pumping system for Nguyen Huu Canh Street in Binh Thanh District.
Nguyen Huu Canh Street no longer faces floods as a road upgrade has allowed rainwater to be drained into the Nhieu Loc-Thi Nghe canal rather than into the pump system operated by the Quang Trung Industry Group since the start of April, the municipal department stated.
A project to upgrade the street was completed in April last year and the road did not witness inundation despite the rainy season in 2021.
The city signed the pump rental contract to control flood tides on Nguyen Huu Canh Street in April 2018. The contract, worth VND14 billion a year, is valid for seven years, from 2017 to the end of 2023.
If the city unilaterally terminates the contract, apart from paying compensation, the city will be fined 8% of the contract value, the department cited Article 14.3 on the breach of contract terms.
As such, the department proposed that the municipal government assign the Infrastructure Management Center, which acted as the city’s representative to sign the contract, to negotiate with Quang Trung Group for the termination.
Earlier, the center under the HCMC Department of Construction asked the firm to suspend the pump system so that it could assess the necessity of the pumping system after the road was upgraded.
Aside from this, HCMC Chairman Phan Van Mai also tasked the municipal department with coming up with solutions to handle the pumping system on the street in April to avoid wastefulness and save State budget.
Soc Trang seeks financial aid from Gov’t for 18-km sea-crossing bridge
Soc Trang Province has proposed that the Government provide it with nearly VND7 trillion, or 70% of total funding, to develop an 18-kilometer sea-crossing bridge, part of the Tran De seaport project.
The proposal was made during a working visit to the province by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh on April 27.
In addition, the province asked the Government for financial support of some VND1.4 trillion to build a road connecting the Dai Nghia bridge to National Highway 60 and of VND550 billion to construct a road behind the seaport and other components.
The Tran De seaport is set to become a deep-water gateway port in the Mekong Delta region and can receive cargo vessels with a tonnage of up to 160,000 tonnes.
Offering various preferential policies, Soc Trang Province is calling for investment in the Tran De seaport project, which will cover an area of 4,550 hectares and comprise a 550-hectare wharf, a sea-crossing bridge, a logistics service area and an industrial park.
“Memory of ancient markets” exhibition reenacts ancient Hanoi
The photo exhibition titled “Memory of ancient markets” is underway online at the website and Facebook profile of the National Archives Center I in the capital city’s Cau Giay District.
The exhibition features some 80 administrative documents, maps, and materials related to ancient markets in Hanoi, including Dong Xuan, Buoi (Pomelo) and Bach Ma markets or the Tet flower market on Hang Luoc street, as well as the vivid photos of traditional markets and street vendors in the capital city from the 19th century to the early 20th century.
The exhibition consists of two parts. The first part titled “The story of planning” features documents and pictures related to the planning of markets in ancient Thang Long Citadel.
The second part of the exhibition, “Ancient memories”, features photos of makeshift markets and street vendors in ancient Hanoi. These old-fashioned-style markets survived the French colonial period and still exist today in the capital city.
The virtual exhibition is available at https://archives.org.vn/chohanoixua/tour/tour.html/ or https://www.facebook.com/luut ruquocgia1
Efforts intensified as SEA Games 31 approaches
Vietnamese national squads are working hard with a high determination for the best achievements at the upcoming 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games 31), which will begin in about two weeks.
According to head coach Pham Anh Tuan of the national fencing team, significant efforts were made to keep all members of the squad free from the novel coronavirus during 2019 – 2021.
It was a really hard process; and there were “closed” phases when coaches and athletes practiced together in an almost completely closed environment, he added.
Tuan said to prepare for SEA Games 31, the fencing team currently has 24 outstanding members to compete in 12 events towards the goal of winning at least three gold medals.
Meanwhile, the coach of the national women’s wrestling team, Nguyen Huy Ha, said the athletes are practicing advanced technique – tactic exercises and are in a stable psychological state. The six-member squad is eyeing 4-5 gold medals, Ha noted.
According to head coach of the national Taekwondo team Vu Anh Tuan, the team recently trained in the Republic of Korea for a month, then returned to Ho Chi Minh City to attend a tournament.
Currently, they are practicing hard towards SEA Games 31, targeting at least three gold medals, Tuan said.
Planning for Central Highlands in 2021-2030 to be set out
Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh on April 14 signed Decision No. 461/QD-TTg approving a planning scheme for the Central Highlands through 2021-2030, with a vision to 2050.
The planning aims to concretise socio-economic orientations, tasks, targets and solutions for the region, as set in the 2021-2030 socio-economic development strategy.
Accordingly, the Central Highlands will increase plantations of industrial trees and medicinal plants, form linkage chains in production, processing, preservation and distribution, and build brands for its products in the international market.
Attention will be paid to forest-based economic recovery and development, renewable energy and the development of major tourism centres.
Other targets include human resources development, the preservation and restoration of traditional values, the building of expressways, and upgrades to the transport network.
SEA Games 31: Hanoi police ready to ensure safety and security for the tournament
The Hanoi Police on April 29 launched a campaign to maintain security and social order during the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games 31), the region’s biggest sport events.
According to Nguyen Hai Trung, Director of the Hanoi Police, forces and vehicles are ready to ensure the absolute security and safety of the Games.
Specialised police groups will be deployed in places where the tournament’s events will take place to proactively prevent and combat crimes.
Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Chu Xuan Dung asked the Hanoi Police to closely coordinate with relevant agencies to ensure security for the opening and closing ceremonies of SEA Games 31.
Deputy Minister of Public Security Luong Tam Quang, who is also head of the sub-committee responsible for security and order of SEA Games 31, asked the Hanoi Police to collaborate with other forces of the ministry to carry out traffic control measures at the Games’ venues.
Organising committee calls for protection of SEA Games 31 brand
The Organising Committee of the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games 31) has called on organisations, enterprises, and people to respect and jointly protect the brand of the Games.
It made the appeal in the face of recent infringements of the brand of SEA Games 31.
According to the Organising Committee’s Regulation No. 849/QD-BTC2021, issued on March 10, 2021, the committee possesses the brand of the Games, comprising the name (31st Southeast Asian Games – SEA Games 31), logo, mascot, official song, the title of the Organising Committee, and images related to the Games.
Some infringements have been reported on recent days such as producing fake stuffed “sao la” – the Games’ mascot, printing the SEA Games 31 logo on products such as sports clothing, and using the logo at events.
Aside from efforts to prepare for the Games, the Organising Committee will also strive to protect the Games brand in line with regulations, it said, appealing for relevant agencies, enterprises, people, and the media’s support for the protection of the brand, efforts by the units performing duties at the Games, and common achievements of the regional event.
This is also an action through which Vietnam affirms its highest sense of responsibility towards the common Southeast Asian home in general and the region’s sports in particular for the sake of a fair and quality SEA Games like what the theme of the Games says – “For a Stronger Southeast Asia”, according to the committee.
People can report infringements via email email@example.com or the Games’ official fanpage at https://www.facebook.com/SEAGames31.Vietnam2021.
WHO representative honoured with insignia
Dr Kidong Park, outgoing Representative of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Vietnam, has been honoured with the insignia “For the Health of the People” by the Vietnamese Ministry of Health.
Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long handed over the reward to the WHO representative at a ceremony in Hanoi on April 29.
Long appreciated the support of Dr Park and the WHO in terms of technical expertise, especially in the context of difficult medical conditions in Vietnam.
WHO and Dr Park personally “always stood shoulder to shoulder” with the Ministry of Health (MoH) in the COVID-19 prevention and combat over the past time, especially helping Vietnam access COVID-19 vaccine sources to innoculate local residents, he said.
With the help of Dr Park and colleagues, the MoH has developed some policies and laws relating to public health and health care for Vietnamese people. Several laws have been passed by the National Assembly, Long said.
Dr Park also continuously supported the building of capacity of the health system, especially in remote and isolated areas, as well as the training and development of medical human resources in the country, he said.
The Vietnamese official said he hopes that Dr Park will continue to help the Vietnamese health sector in the new position.
Work begins on President Ho Chi Minh Monument in Phu Quoc
Work on construction of the President Ho Chi Minh Monument began on April 29 in Phu Quoc city, the southern province of Kien Giang.
Covering 7.45 hectares in Duong Dong ward, the monument site includes an 18m-tall statue of President Ho Chi Minh, a 63m-long mural sculpture, a memorial space of the President, and other auxiliary facilities.
Speaking at the ground-breaking ceremony, Secretary of the Kien Giang provincial Party Committee Do Thanh Binh said that the work is designed and is built to honour the great service of President Ho Chi Minh – the hero of national liberation and a great man of culture.
On this occasion, Kien Giang inaugurated the Martyrs’ Temple in Phu Quoc city.
Project to help implement policies for comprehensive youth development
The Ministry of Home Affairs and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Vietnam launched a new project on April 29 to support the implementation and monitoring of laws and policies for comprehensive youth development and youth participation, including during natural disasters and pandemics.
Minister of Home Affairs Pham Thi Thanh Tra said one of the objectives of Project VNM10P01 is to create a favourable environment to support youth development, in which focus on life skills, gender education and a mechanism promoting youth participation in policies and programmes responding to emergencies, natural disasters and epidemics. The project follows UNFPA priorities, as well as the country’s socio-economic development and the current situation and the needs of Vietnamese youth in the coming years, she added.
Naomi Kitahara, UNFPA Representative in Vietnam cited the 2019 population and housing census as showing the country has the highest proportion of young people in its history, creating the potential for a demographic dividend to accelerate socio-economic growth. The 20.4 million young people, aged 10 – 24, account for 21 percent of the total population.
With a total budget of 3.1 million USD, the project will be implemented from 2022 to 2026.
It will focus on implementing the Youth Law, the Vietnamese Youth Development Strategy, and other policies and programmes related to youth; strengthening the monitoring of the implementation of the Youth Law, youth development policies and programmes, including in humanitarian crises such as natural disasters and pandemics; developing platforms/mechanisms and policies to enhance the active participation of young people, especially vulnerable youths, in the development and monitoring of laws, programmes.
Hoa Binh launches paragliding activities ahead of SEA Games 31
Hoa Binh province is offering a paragliding experience for visitors as part of the northern tourist destination’s efforts to attract more tourists and revive the local tourism sector.
The northern province will also host mountain biking from May 14-17 and the cycling road race from May 19-22, with the participation of about 400 riders and officials.
Speaking at the launch, director of the provincial Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism Bui Thi Niem said that the regional event is a good chance for the province to promote tourism.
Chairman of the People’s Committee of Hoa Binh City Bui Quang Diep said that through the event, Hoa Binh hopes to promote sport and tourism.
Visitors will also have the chance to enjoy gong performances by artisans from the Muong ethnic minority group as well as folk games, along with products of the “One Commune, One Product” (OCOP) programme and traditional Muong cuisine.
Singapore to send 427 athletes to SEA Games 31
Singapore has confirmed 427 athletes taking part in 33 sports at the 31st Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games 31) to be held in Vietnam from May 12 – 23.
More than half of the Singaporean athletes (243) will make their debut at the regional event, which was postponed from December 2021 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Singapore’s best performance remains at the 2015 Games at home with a haul of 84 gold, 73 silver and 102 bronze medals. Its best overseas (58 gold, 58 silver and 72 bronze medals) came two years later in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
At the last edition in the Philippines in 2019, the island country earned 53 gold, 46 silver and 68 bronze medals.
Park Hang-seo announces preliminary list of players for SEA Games
Chief coach of the Vietnam football team Park Hang-seo crossed out 17 names on April 30 and is expected to remove another five names to officially form the national lineup for coming SEA Games 31 matches.
Van Tung, Van Dat, Thanh Minh and Xuan Tu, four of the 10 newcomers Park called up for recent friendlies were selected to stay with the team.
Van Tung scored the only goal for Vietnam in their recent friendly against the Republic of Korea U-20, while Thanh Minh scored against Myanmar U-23 in the Asian U-23 qualifier last October.
Other familiar names that Park chose for the starting lineup include goalkeeper Van Toan, defenders Thanh Binh, Viet Anh, and Tuan Tai, wingers Van Do and Van Xuan.
Midfielders who perform slightly better than their colleagues are Quang Nho, Hoang Anh and Hai Long.
Local students to compete at International Computational Olympiad
Two Vietnamese students, Ngo Doan Hung and Pham Nhu Khanh, are set to represent the nation in competing at the Hong Kong International Computational Olympiad 2022 (HKICO).
The two students successfully surpassed other domestic contestants at HKICO Vietnam in order to win a gold medal and earn tickets to compete at the international competition.
The competition will consist of main programming languages such as Scratch, Blockly, Java, C++, and Python. This year’s event is scheduled to take place in Singapore on June 19.
New findings help with building dossier to seek recognition for Oc Eo archaeological relic as World Cultural Heritage Site
New archaeological findings at the Oc Eo – Ba The and Nen Chua archaeological sites in the Mekong Delta provinces of An Giang and Kien Giang have set an important milestone in the research of the Oc Eo culture and provided reliable evidence and materials for the compilation of a dossier of the sites to seek recognition as a World Cultural Heritage site, a prominent archaeologist has said.
Associate Professor, Dr. Bui Van Liem, editor-in-chief of the Archaeology Journal and member of the National Cultural Heritage Council, added that the findings also serve as orientations for upcoming programmes and research projects on the Oc Eo culture in the Mekong Delta in particular and across the ancient Phu Nam Kingdom at large.
The Prime Minister in 2015 assigned the Vietnam Academy of Social Science to launch a research project on the Oc Eo – Ba The and Nen Chua archaeological sites, with the goal of providing a trustworthy scientific foundation for the planning, conservation and building of a dossier on the relic site to submit to UNESCO for recognition as a World Cultural Heritage Site.
Between 2017 and 2020, archaeologists carried out large-scale excavations across an area of more than 16,000 sq.m. in Oc Eo field area and Ba The mountain, comprising eight sites.
Oc Eo culture was at its peak in the southern delta during the period from the first to seventh centuries.
The Oc Eo – Ba The national relic site in the southern province of An Giang mostly covers Oc Eo Town, Thoai Son district. Parts of the site are over 2,000 years old.
The renowned relic was first discovered by French archaeologists in late 19th century. It is believed to have been a prosperous commercial port of the once-powerful Phu Nam Kingdom two millennia ago.
The relics in the region are extremely rich and diverse in terms of both style and material, giving an insight into the period’s religion, residencies, architecture, burial areas, ancient canals and waterways.
National museum displays sketches from the resistance war
Around 70 sketches from the HCM Museum of Fine Arts’s collection have gone on display in Hà Nội, featuring daily life and the war in the South.
The collection, entitled Ký Họa Kháng Chiến Miền Nam (Sketches from the Resistance War), was drawn between 1954 and 1975. They showcase a wide range of themes and mediums including gouache, watercolour, charcoal and fountain pen.
The sketches are vivid diary pages about the people, the life, the nature and the war in the South, which are clearly portrayed in works such as Spring in the Artillery Bunker and Night Resting in the Village by artist Thái Hà; Bình Gia Battle 1965 by Huỳnh Phương Đông; On the Way to the South and Ms Quyên by Lê Lam.
The artists used painting as an effective weapon to portray the war-life of the people in the south. Instead of depicting the cruelty of the war as in other war-themed sketches, those about the resistance war in the south of Việt Nam were remarkably different in their simple and human topics.
Thousands of sketches created from this period have not only become historical evidence but also expressed the quest for peace and the national heroism of the Vietnamese people, according to artist Trần Thanh Bình, director of HCM Museum of Fine Arts.
The exhibition runs until May 8 at Việt Nam Fine Arts Museum, 66 Nguyễn Thái Học Street. It is held on the occasion of the 47th anniversary of the Liberation of the South and National Reunification Day.
Suspension of health declarations under review by Ministry of Health
The Ministry of Health (MoH) announced on Friday that it will review the temporary suspension of domestic health declaration protocols that are active during the pandemic.
This move is to enable citizens to travel more freely in the country.
According to the MoH, data has optimistically shown that the COVID-19 pandemic is currently under control in Việt Nam. The number of daily cases has fallen 20 times compared to the peak in mid-March.
With less than 8,000 cases per day, this is the lowest daily case number in Việt Nam since the Omicron variant emerged in the country. Daily deaths have fallen ten times, while severe cases have fallen five times.
In case of the emergence of new variants or unusual developments of the pandemic, health declaration protocols will return and the MoH will notify specific provinces and cities.
Earlier on Wednesday, the MoH issued a suspension on health declarations for people entering Việt Nam.
This comes after the sharp decline in Việt Nam’s and worldwide COVID cases and deaths.