Social News 10/11
EU condoles with Vietnam over typhoon losses

EU condoles with Vietnam over typhoon losses, 1,000 in vitro fertilised babies born at Hue central hospital, Hanoi: 83 percent of population covered by health insurance, President sends thank-you letter to Russian President,

The European Union (EU)’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini and Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides on November 8 issued a joint statement sending condolences to Vietnam over losses caused by recent typhoon Damrey.

The statement said: “The typhoon that has struck Vietnam over the past days has taken many lives and caused considerable damage, adding to the toll of a number of storms in the past weeks. On behalf of the European Union, we express our heartfelt condolences to the victims, their families and loved ones, and to all those affected.”

“The European Union stands alongside the people of Vietnam and the Vietnamese authorities at this time, in particular the emergency services and response teams who are working to save lives and minimise the damage to homes, livelihoods and infrastructure.”

The statement also added that the EU is in touch with Vietnamese authorities and ready to help Vietnam address consequences caused by the storm.

The bloc’s 24/7 Emergency Response Coordination Centre is monitoring developments and will send a team in the coming days to assess the damage and explore any assistance requested by the Vietnamese authorities.

1,000 in vitro fertilised babies born at Hue central hospital

The Hue Central Hospital has so far delivered 1,000 babies conceived via in vitro fertilisation (IVF) after 10 years of practising the technique.

Since the first six IVF babies were born in July 2008, the hospital has improved its capacity to carry out about 400 – 500 IVF cycles per year, with success rate ranging between 35 and 40 percent. 

The Law on Marriage and Family allowed surrogacy from January 1, 2015. On July 28, 2016, the Hue Central Hospital’s first surrogate baby was born, weighing 3.5 kilogrammes. 

In April 2016, the hospital established a reproductive support department. It aims to build a reproductive support centre for the central region in the future.

Hanoi: 83 percent of population covered by health insurance

About 83 percent of Hanoi’s population has joined the health insurance scheme so far, the city’s Social security Agency announced at a conference to review its performance on November 8.

The coverage exceeded this year’s target of 82.8 percent set by the government and the municipal authority.

According to the agency, the collection of social insurance, health insurance and unemployment insurance over the past three months exceeded 26.7 trillion VND (1.17 billion USD), up 21 percent over the same period last year.

More than 54,000 local employers have been paying towards social insurance and health insurance, a year-on-year increase of 12.5 percent.

However, compulsory social insurance debt by the end of October remained high, worth more than 2.96 trillion VND (130.2 million USD), affecting the rights of nearly 681,200 workers in the city. 

The agency proposed local police provide guidance on how to report enterprises that shirk or owe social insurance dues. It also asked the Hanoi Tax Department to coordinate in social insurance inspection, and the municipal Department of Planning and Investment to provide monthly updates on the status of the enterprises.

President sends thank-you letter to Russian President

President Tran Dai Quang has sent a letter to thank President Vladimir Putin, the Government, and people of Russia for their prompt and valuable aid sent to the Vietnamese people affected by typhoon Damrey.

On November 7, the Russian President instructed the Government of Russia to provide an emergency aid worth five million USD to help Vietnam recover from the severe damage caused by storm Damrey in the central region.

On November 8, an aircraft of the Ministry of the Russian Federation for Affairs for Civil Defence, Emergencies and Elimination of Consequences of Natural Disasters landed Cam Ranh airport in the central coastal province of Khanh Hoa with relief goods for the storm victims.

According to the National Committee for Search and Rescue, storm Damrey hit Vietnam on November 4. Following downpours and floods had claimed 89 lives and left 18 missing and 174 others injured in central and Central Highlands localities as of November 7 night.

14th NA deputies hear reports on revised Law on Complaints

The 14th National Assembly (NA) convened a plenary session in Hanoi on November 8 under the chair of NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan during its ongoing fourth meeting. 

In the morning, Government Inspector General Le Minh Khai presented a report on acquiring feedback on the draft amended Law on Complaints. 

Later, Chairman of the NA’s Committee on Legal Affairs Nguyen Khac Dinh delivered a report examining the draft revised Law on Complaints. 

In the afternoon, the deputies discussed in groups a scheme on building several highways in the eastern part of the north-south route in 2017-2020 and the Law on amendments and supplements to several articles of the Law on Sports and Physical Training. 

As scheduled on November 9 morning, the NA will hear reports and discuss the implementation of the national target programme on gender equality which will be broadcast live nationwide. 

Later in the afternoon, lawmakers will hear reports regarding the draft revised Law on Corruption Prevention and Control and discuss the bill in groups.

Exhibition featuring Cambodian culture opens in Hanoi

An exhibition featuring Cambodia’s culture was opened at the Vietnam Culture-Art Exhibition Centre in Hanoi on November 8. 

The event forms part of the activities of the Cambodian cultural week jointly hosted by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MCST), and the Cambodian Ministry of Culture and Fine Art (MCFA) to mark the two countries’ five-decade-old relations.

The ribbon cutting ceremony was attended by MCST Deputy Minister Vuong Duy Bien, MCFA Minister Khim Sarith, and Cambodian Ambassador to Vietnam Prak Nguon Hong.

The event introduces to visitors the beauty of Cambodian people and the country’s renowned sites, including Angkor Wat temple, Preah Vihear temple, Sambo Prei Kok archaeological site, Khmer dances, as well as several traditional music tools.

Addressing the opening ceremony, Deputy Director of the MCST’s International Cooperation Department Nguyen Phuong Hoa said the cultural exchanges between Vietnam and Cambodia, such as the cultural week, lay the foundation for the development of the two nations’ relations and friendship.

Hap Touch, Director General of the MCFA’s Cultural Technique Department expressed his hope that the exhibition helps enhance mutual understanding and friendship between the two countries in general, and promote the two ministries’ cooperation in the 2018-2023 period, in particular.

During the cultural week, 32 artists from the Cambodian National Art Troupe performed in Hanoi on November 8 and will stage a performance in the northern province of Quang Ninh on November 10.

APEC 2017: Vietnam’s hosting good experience for Papua New Guinea

The government and people of Vietnam have done excellent preparation for APEC 2017 and Papua New Guinea wants to learn from Vietnam, said Rimbink Pato Obe, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Papua New Guinea, host of APEC 2018.

Talking to a Vietnam News Agency reporter on the sidelines of the 29th APEC Ministerial Meeting (AMM) in the central city of Da Nang on November 8, the minister elaborated that he enjoys his stay in Vietnam and the service here is fantastic. 

He also affirmed “everything in terms of preparation for the next APEC Year in Papua New Guinea is on track”. 

Papua New Guinea sets three key areas: improving connectivity, deepening regional economic integration; promoting inclusive and sustainable growth; and strengthening economic growth through structural reform as priorities for next year’s APEC, he revealed. 

Regarding the AMM’s recommendations to be submitted to the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting on November 10, Rimbink Pato Obe said all of them are important. 

“We are members of the APEC community, we are part of inclusiveness, part of connectivity, trade liberalisation, inflow and outflow investment, trade within the APEC economies so anything enhances trade and investment between APEC economies we will support,” he said.

He also said he expects all recommendations to be adopted because APEC’s future will go through all of them. 

“If there is a challenge in relation to one or two recommendations, I think our leaders are working on it and we are looking for them reaching consensus,” he noted.

Talking about relations with Vietnam, the diplomat said “Vietnam is a country of great history and we want to learn from it”.

Vietnam has coffee, cocoa, some of the fisheries and training facilities that his country is in need, as a result, Papua New Guinea wants to connect better now with Vietnam, he added.

The APEC Economic Leaders’ Week from November 6-11 is drawing around 10,000 delegates from the 21 APEC member economies.

Established in 1989, APEC comprises Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong (China), Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Chinese Taipei, Thailand, the US, and Vietnam.

It represents 39 percent of the world population, 57 percent of the world GDP and 47 percent of the total trade.

Minister asks for faster internet for APEC 2017 events

Minister of Information and Communications Truong Minh Tuan on November 8 asked telecom providers to increase internet speeds in order to facilitate the media covering the APEC Economic Leaders’ Week events.

He made the statement when touring the International Media Centre (IMC) and conference venues in hotels and resorts in central Da Nang city where APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting and related meetings take place to inspect preparatory works there.

He examined communications and transmission infrastructures and security at the IMC. He requested the local telecom providers to ensure internet connection, urgently increase the internet speed to facilitate works of the reporters and have backup plans for any emergency.

The minister also urged media and news agencies of Vietnam such as the Vietnam News Agency, the Vietnam Television (VTV), the Voice of Vietnam (VOV) and the Vietnam Television Corporation (VTC) to better coordinate with foreign agencies to increase media coverage of events of the APEC Economic Leaders’ Week.

Researchers back stronger Vietnam-China relations

Promoting relations between Vietnam and China in a pragmatic and effective manner for mutual benefits meets the aspiration of the two countries’ Parties and people, researchers said at a forum held in Hanoi on November 8.

President of the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences Nguyen Quang Thuan said Vietnam and China are members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum. 

The two sides have joined multilateral cooperation mechanisms and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

The Communist Party of Vietnam and Government always want to develop comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership with China and support China to make more active contributions to the maintenance of peace, stability and cooperation in the region and the world.

At the same time, Vietnam is keen to maintain the stable and healthy relations with China to promote peace, stability and stronger cooperation, Thuan said.

As the bilateral relations are entering a new period of development, the two countries should devise new policies to elevate their ties to a new height while strengthening cooperation to balance economic partnership and increasing exchanges in politics, external affairs, culture and defense, he added.

Guo Weimin, Vice Minister of the State Council Information Office, said China hopes to promote the stable and sustainable friendship and cooperation with Vietnam.

The forum enables Vietnamese and Chinese researchers to seek to deepen the Vietnam-China comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership and maintain peace, stability and development in the Asia-Pacific region, he added.

During the event, participants also shared information and experience regarding the Party building and management in the two countries as well as the bilateral cooperation within the APEC framework.

Vietfood & Beverage - ProPack 2017 expo opens in Hanoi

The VietFood, Beverage and Professional Packing Machines (VietFood & Beverage – ProPack) International Expo 2017 kicked off in Hanoi on November 8.
The event draw than 200 domestic and foreign businesses from 10 countries and territories, including the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Denmark, Japan, Thailand, India, China and host Vietnam.

The annual expo, held by the Vietnam National Trade Fair & Advertising Joint Stock Company (Vinexad), displays a wide range of products such as vegetables, seafood, farm produce, materials for food, beverages and confectionary, alcoholic drinks, fruit juice, tea, coffee, food packaging and preserving equipment, among others.

A similar expo was organised in Ho Chi Minh City in August, with the participation of 512 companies from 20 countries and territories which showcased products at 608 booths.

According to the organisers, more than 15,300 visitors came to the expo and about 3,000 trading contracts were signed between agricultural and processing firms.

The food sector is forecast to continue its growth in the coming time, Nielsel Vietnam said, adding that the country’s food and beverage market was valued at 30 billion USD in 2016.

BMI Research forecast that the sector’s growth rate would be at 10.9 percent in the 2017-2019 period thanks to people’s increasing income and a trend of using high value products.

The latest figures from the General Statistics Office showed that food production and processing in the first nine months of the year rose by 6.6 percent, while that of the beverage sector was 5 percent higher than the same period last year.

With a population of more than 90 million and an increasing number of tourists, the food and beverage industry has been getting the attention of both local and foreign investors.

Hanoi seminar marks 100th anniversary of Balfour Declaration

A seminar took place in Hanoi on November 7 to mark the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration and discuss its impacts on the Middle East, especially Palestine.

The event was held by the Embassy of Palestine to Vietnam in partnership with the Institute for Africa and Middle East Studies (IAMES), with Palestinian Ambassador Saadi Salam and scholars from the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences in attendance.

Addressing the seminar, Saadi Salam said Arthur Balfour, a then-British foreign secretary, decided to change the faith of Palestine by promising to hand over the land he did not own to Zionist in the 1917 declaration.

The declaration had completely changed the history of Palestinian people, making thousands to live in exile, he stressed.

The seminar also featured the screening of the short film “100 Balfour Road” and a discussion around the declaration, its consequences and the struggle for freedom of Palestinians.

Cambodia’s 64th Independence Day marked in Ho Chi Minh City

The Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations and the Vietnam-Cambodia Friendship Association in Ho Chi Minh City held a ceremony on November 8 to mark Cambodia’s 64th Independence Day (November 9).

Speaking at the event, President of the association Truong Minh Nhut affirmed that Vietnam and Cambodia hold good neighbourliness, time-honoured friendship and comprehensive cooperation.

The two countries have strived to consolidate and develop the friendship and cooperation and coordinated closely at international forums in order to lift the bilateral relations to a new height, for the interests of the two peoples and for peace, stability, development cooperation in the region, Nhut added.

Cambodian Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City Im Heng recalled the struggles for national liberation of the Cambodian and Vietnamese people.

The sacrifice of the two nations has created traditional friendship and solidarity which have become a valuable treasure and nurtured by the two countries’ leaders and people.

He took the occasion to thank Vietnam for helping his country escape from the Pol Pot genocidal regime and gain independence.

Quang Ninh appraises biodiversity preservation plan

The north-eastern border province of Quang Ninh has held a meeting to appraise its biodiversity preservation plan through 2020, with a vision toward 2030. 

The plan aims to promote biodiversity preservation and development, especially the natural ecosystem and rare species, to serve sustainable development, environmental protection, climate change adaptation, and ensure ecological security.

The province hopes to increase the forest coverage by 55 percent by 2020 and 58 percent by 2030 and will prioritise the protection of endangered species.

The plan will be carried out in three phases. In 2018-2020, Quang Ninh will upgrade existing nature reserves and establish Dong Rui – Tien Yen wetland nature reserves, and Co To and Dao Tran marine nature reserves.

The province will launch Dong Son-Ky Thuong, Yen Tu and Bai Tu Long floral gardens and Bai Tu Long and Dong Son-Ky Thuong fauna gardens in 2021-2025, along with mountainous and maritime biodiversity corridors and Quang Hanh limestone nature reserve. 

The plan also sets measures for implementation regarding capital, human resources training, science-technology, policy mechanisms, information communication, and livelihood improvement.

Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Dang Huy Hau suggested reviewing the proposals to expand areas for the Dong Son-Ky Thuong nature reserve and forecast risks and difficulties in implementing the project such as socio-economic development speed, declining water resources in some lakes, and the extinction of rare species.

He stressed the need to implement the project to protect the environment, preserve biodiversity and develop the local economy.

The official urged the consultant company involved to complete the plan before November 15, 2017.

Quang Ninh is home to 4,350 species of fauna and flora, including 154 species listed in Vietnam’s Red Book. However, local ecological systems are being damaged by human activities. Tigers, bears and horses have vanished from the province while coral reefs have been spoilt.

The province’s Bai Tu Long National Park, named the 38th ASEAN Heritage Park in 2017, has saved, taken care of and released to nature over 200 forest animals and five sea turtles. It has also worked with international organisations to preserve sea turtles, enhanced management capacity and biodiversity conservation, and supported eco-tourism and environmental education.

APEC 2017: US President’s visit aims to boost ties with Vietnam

US President Donald Trump’s attendance at the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting and his State visit to Hanoi from November 10-12 show that the US wants to strengthen its ties with Vietnam in trade, economy and security.

The statement was made by the US National Security Advisor Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster in an interview to reporters ahead of Trump’s trip to Asia from November 3-14.

According to McMaster, one of the key topics for discussion during the visit in Hanoi will be sketching out plans to define and boost the bilateral relationship.

At the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, Trump will deliver a speech which will “include his vision for a free and open Indo-Pacific region as well as the US relationship with countries in the region”.

He will emphasise the importance of preserving sovereignty and maintaining international order that facilitates free, fair and reciprocal trade and economic relations.

The President will have the opportunity to hear from other leaders about their concerns and their ideas about how APEC economies can work together to strengthen security and advance mutual prosperity.

President Trump is committed to freedom of navigation as it has benefited all countries in and across the Indo-Pacific region, McMaster said, adding that the richness of commerce and trade in the region is associated with freedom of navigation.

Contest on Vietnam - Laos special relations reviewed in Ha Nam

The Party Committee of the northern province of Ha Nam on November 7 presented awards to the winners of a contest on studying the history of Vietnam - Laos relations. 

The contest was organised to mark the 55th anniversary of diplomatic relations (September 5, 1962-2017) and the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Vietnam-Laos Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (July 18, 1977-2017).

It drew more than 25,000 submissions from members of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV), workers and students across the province. The entries highlighted the significance of the friendship between Vietnam and Laos and the beauty of Lao landscapes, people and culture.

They also told stories of solidarity between the two nations in their past struggle for independence.

HCM City works with Indian firm in urban flood control

HCM City wants to work with Kirloskar Brothers Limited from India in fields of mutual concern, especially in urban flood control and solutions to saltwater intrusion, said Vice Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Tran Vinh Tuyen.

The official made the statement on November 7 while receiving Shipra Tripathi, Vice President of the Indian firm.

At the meeting, Tuyen lauded the development of Vietnam – India relations as well as the cooperation of HCM City and Indian businesses, including Kirloskar Brothers Limited. He vowed to create best conditions for the firm to set up projects in the city.

For her part, Tripathi expressed her hope to expand ties with HCM City in the firm’s strong suits like flood management in urban areas, agricultural irrigation and solutions to fire control.

The two sides agreed to study feasible projects in the future.

Cambodian cultural days underway in Hanoi, Quang Ninh

A Cambodian cultural week began in Vietnam on November 8 in celebration of the two countries’ five-decade-old relations.

Lasting until November 12, the week features an exhibition introducing the land and people of Cambodia through photos, traditional costumes, Khmer kites and musical instruments.

As part of the event, artists from the Cambodian National Art Troupe will perform in Hanoi and Ha Long City in the northern province of Quang Ninh.

Cambodia is home to UNESCO-recognised Angkor, one of the most important archaeological sites in Southeast Asia, Preah Vihear Temple, the Sambo Prei Kok archaeological site and Khmer dance. 

In 2016, Cambodia welcomed more than five million international tourists, including nearly 960,000 from Vietnam.

Activities mark Russian October Revolution’s 100th anniversary

Various activities were held on November 7 to mark the 100th anniversary of Russia’s October Revolution, one of the most important revolutions in the 20th century.

Local leaders and the Vietnam-Russia Friendship Association of the central province of Khanh Hoa laid flowers at the Vietnam-Russia Friendship Monument in Cam Ranh city. The monument honours 44 soldiers from the former Soviet Union (now Russia) and 176 Vietnamese officials and soldiers who died in Cam Ranh and the central region.

The Khanh Hoa chapter of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations and the provincial Vietnam-Russia Friendship Association also held a get-together with the Russian community in the province.

Meanwhile, a conference was held in the central province of Quang Binh to highlight the historical significance of the October Revolution and discuss experience for Vietnam’s reform process at present.

In the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak, a photo exhibition was held, showcasing 100 photos on the October Revolution, achievements of the former Soviet Union’s people in protecting the revolution and socialism, as well as the friendship between Vietnam and Russia. The event will run until November 11.

Earlier on November 5, a ceremony was held in Hanoi to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution.

In his speech delivered at the ceremony, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Nguyen Phu Trong stressed the significance of the revolution, which, he said, opened up a new period in humankind’s history.

All victories of the Vietnamese revolution were linked with the impacts of the Russian October Revolution and the wholehearted support of the people of the former Soviet Union, he said.

The Party chief expressed his belief that with the spirit of the October Revolution and Vietnam’s August Revolution, the people’s confidence in the CPV and joint endeavours, Vietnam will become a strong country with wealthy people, democracy and equality. 

Japan sends water purifiers to aid storm-hit areas

The Japanese government, through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), donated 105 water filtering systems to help residents in central Thua Thien-Hue and Quang Nam provinces cope with aftermath of flooding.

The filterers arrived at Da Nang International Airport in the afternoon of November 7.

Vietnam has been making efforts to cope with aftermaths of widespread flooding caused by typhoon Damrey which swept through central Vietnam last weekend. 

The aid has demonstrated the close friendship and cooperation between Japan and Vietnam at the time when many areas in Vietnam continue suffering severe damage and flooding due to the storm, said Head of the General Department of Natural Disaster Prevention and Control Tran Quang Hoai after his department received the aid.

The National Committee for Search and Rescue reported that storm Damrey that hit Vietnam on November 4 and following downpours and floods had claimed 89 lives and left 18 missing and 174 other injured in central and Central Highlands localities as of November 7 night.

Russia offers 5 mln USD aid to Vietnam in flood recovery

Russian President Vladimir Putin on November 7 directed providing 5 million USD in aid for Vietnam to overcome consequences of typhoon Damrey. 

The aircraft Il-76 is to carry relief goods from Russia to Vietnam. 

Speaking to the media, Russian President’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov expressed his hope that the humanitarian initiative will be welcomed by many countries. 

Russia calls on the global community, including those attending the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders’ Meeting, to show solidarity with Vietnamese people, he said. 

Peskov added that Putin discussed with Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev, Minister of Civil Defence, Emergencies and Disaster Relief Vladimir Puchkov, and Minister of Finance Anton Siluanov about damage caused by the storm in Vietnam. 

Causing the most serious damages over the past two decades, typhoon Damrey made landfall in central Vietnam at a time when the APEC Economic Leaders’ Week is ongoing in the central city of Da Nang from November 6-11. 

The typhoon has so far left 69 dead, 30 injured, tens of thousands of people evacuated, and collapsed over 120,700 houses. 

It also damaged transport infrastructure and left many areas in power outage.

NA deputies discuss prevention of crime and corruption

Legislators deliberated the Government’s reports on combating and preventing crime, legal violation and corruption at the ongoing fourth session of the 14th National Assembly (NA) in Hanoi on November 7.

Lawmakers also heard reports presented by Chief Judge of the Supreme People’s Court Nguyen Hoa Binh, Prosecutor General of the Supreme People’s Procuracy Le Minh Tri, and Government Inspectorate General Le Minh Khai.

Chairman of the NA Law Committee Nguyen Khac Dinh delivered an appraisal report on the settlement of citizens’ complaints and denouncements in 2017, while Chief of People’s Aspiration Department Nguyen Thanh Hai presented the inspection outcomes in the field.

On November 8, deputies will discuss in groups the revised draft Law on denunciation.

APEC 2017: Field trip leaves deep impression on VOF delegates

Delegates to the ongoing APEC Voices of the Future (VOF) 2017 have voiced their satisfaction with a field trip to several famous destinations in the central province of Quang Nam.

“The involvement in outdoor activities like this trip is very interesting and shows different sides of Vietnam.” Liam Jones, Australian team leader said after visiting Peace Village, Tam Thanh mural village and a lantern maker’s in Hoi An ancient town on November 7.

It also helps boost friendship among VOF delegates, added he.

Of the places he visited, Peace Village, which is caring for 112 disabled children, orphans and homeless old people in the province, impressed him the most. 

“The people living in the village are being taken good care,” he said, voicing his hope that he will have a chance to come back there. 

Sharing the same feeling, Jieun Joy Park, a delegate from the Republic of Korea, said that “one of the duties of the youth in the region is taking care of vulnerable groups.”

The youth should make more efforts to fulfill the task, she said. 

Many of them were also excited when visiting the Tam Thanh mural art village, a joint initiative by the Korean Community Art Exchange Programme and the People’s Committee of Quang Nam province to bring art to the people. 

For Diana Gorbulina, head of the Russian delegation, the village is a combination of natural beauty and art.  It helps show how the villagers treasure the beauty of nature, she added.

At a lantern maker’s in Hoi An ancient town, the delegates learnt from artisans how to cover the lanterns’ frames with silk to finish a product. 
“Making a lantern and keep it as a souvenir will be an unforgettable experience for me,” said Miyuki Tsuru from Japan.

Taking place from November 6-10, the APEC Voices of the Future 2017 (VOF 2017) has drawn 180 delegates from 17 APEC member economies.  

The participants focus discussions on the contributions of the youth to APEC Vision beyond 2020 and the future; economic, financial and social integration, human resources development in the digital age; and policies to support start-up, renovation and small and medium-sized enterprises.

Japan hosts contest of eloquence in Vietnamese

The 11th contest of eloquence in Vietnamese took place at Kanda University of International Studies in Japan’s Chiba prefecture on November 7, bringing together 22 contestants from nine local universities and colleges.

At the competition, the contestants, divided into five groups based on their fluency in Vietnamese, were required to talk about challenges and maturity. 

Yoshino Tamako from Tokyo University of Foreign Studies won a grand prize at the category for those with at least two years learning Vietnamese. Her story was about an unforgettable experience when she had to go to hospital while in Vietnam. It could have been a very tough time for her but her Vietnamese friends had come to her bedside to comfort her, giving her strength to become such an optimistic person today.

Meanwhile, Ashida Haruka from Osaka University of Foreign Studies earned the first prize at the category for those with at least three-year Vietnamese education with a presentation about her effort in studying Vietnamese and exploring the Vietnamese culture.

According to lecturer Atsushhi Kasuga, who is in charge of Southeast Asia Department at Kanda University, the number of students enrolling to study Vietnamese in the university has been on the rise since it started to offer a course in Vietnamese studies in 2001. 

This year, the university has about 60 students and five lecturers of Vietnamese studies, he noted.

EU condoles with Vietnam over typhoon losses, 1,000 in vitro fertilised babies born at Hue central hospital, Hanoi: 83 percent of population covered by health insurance, President sends thank-you letter to Russian President,