Social News 5/2

Tra Vinh: 6.2 mln USD to be spent on climate adaptation

Tra Vinh: 6.2 mln USD to be spent on climate adaptation, Vietnamese community praised for contributions to RoK city’s development, Deal on training in hospitality inked, Ninh Thuan promotes tourism in vineyards

A rural road project in Tra Vinh (Source:

Nearly 143 billion VND (6.2 million USD) will be spent to help farmers in the Mekong Delta province of Tra Vinh promote production models against climate change in 2018 in the framework of the on-going project Adaptation to Climate Change in the Mekong Delta (AMD). 

According to the project’s provincial coordination board, over 34.2 billion VND (1.5 million USD) of the amount will be the non-refundable aid from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and over 64.7 billion VND (2.8 million USD) is sourced by IFAD loans, while the provincial budget pays more than 23 billion VND (over 1 million USD). 

Huynh Nghia Tho, Director of the AMD Tra Vinh, said over 97 billion VND (4.2 million USD) out of the total will be used to improve livelihoods and build small-scale infrastructure facilities in adaptation to climate change; support poor and near poor households in investing in technology applications in production; and organise vocational training for rural labourers. 

As planned, the project will focus on building 26 communal-level infrastructure works; expanding sustainable livelihood models, putting into operation a fisheries analysis and testing centre, and an automatic salinity prediction and water quality  monitoring system.

In 2017, the project disbursed 125 billion VND (over 5.4 million USD) to help local farmers adapt to climate change through implementing 15 pilot production models joined by 113 households. 

The project also spent 27.2 billion VND (nearly 1.2 million USD) on the construction of infrastructure facilities in 21 communes, which became operational. 

The IFAD-funded AMD Tra Vinh with a total budget of 521 billion VND (over 22.8 million USD), is being implemented in 30 communes between 2014 -2020, benefiting 15,000 poor and near-poor households. 

Its main objective is to develop sustainable livelihoods for the rural poor in the face of changing climate and to enhance the target communities’ capacities to adapt to climate change.

HCM City promotes itself at India’s tourist fair

Ho Chi Minh City introduced the best of its tourism products and services at South Asia’s biggest tourism event - the International Travel and Tourism Trade Show (SATTE 2018) that was recently held in India’s capital of New Delhi.

Director of the municipal Department of Tourism Bui Ta Hoang Vu told the Vietnam News Agency that India is among major and potential tourism markets that the city is targeting this year, adding that HCM City will focus on promotion activities in those markets.

According to the official, more than 65,000 Indian tourists came to the city and adjacent localities in 2017, a rise of 10 percent year-on-year, putting India among top 15 markets with the largest number of visitors to the HCM City.

He voiced his belief that Vietnam and HCM City will see a surge of Indian tourists in the coming time. The city is working to have more Indian restaurants and quality accommodations to serve this market in the expectation of a three- or four-fold increase in the number of Indian tourists to the city when a direct air route connecting Ho Chi Minh City and New Delhi opens.  

The booths of HCM City Tourism Department and various Vietnamese travel firms attracted large numbers of visitors at the SATTE 2018 that took place in New Delhi from January 31 to February 2. 

The event offered chances for Vietnam to introduce the country’s image as a friendly destination while bolstering the friendship between Vietnam and HCM City in particular with India through tourism cooperation.

Programmes bring warm Tet to less fortunate people

Vice President of the Central Committee of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Truong Thi Ngoc Anh on February 2 presented 30 Tet gifts and 30 million VND (1,317 USD) in cash to impoverished households in Tam Nong district and Thanh Thuy district in the northern province of Phu Tho.

A line-up of benefactors like Vingroup and the Phu Tho chapter of the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) supported the poor in Don Hung, Lam Thao, Phu Ninh and Ha Hoa districts with nearly 36 billion VND (1.58 million USD).

Charity programmes were held in the central province of Quang Tri by the provincial chapter of the VFF and many local organisations. Over 10,000 gifts, valued at 4.5 billion VND (197,550 USD), were given to the needy, Agent Orange (AO)/dioxin victims, disadvantaged people, orphans and families affected by natural calamities and those with special circumstances.

The “Spring in border area” programme was organised in Huong Viet commune, Huong Hoa district by the Quang Tri provincial Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union. The union gave 110 Tet gifts to disadvantaged children, policy beneficiary families, the deprived and border guards in Sen But and Cu Bai stations. In addition, free medical check-ups and medicines were provided for 500 local residents.

Some 1,000 children in the Gio Linh, Cam Lo and Hai Lang districts also received gifts from the Dasnet Charity Fund on February 2-3.

The Central Highlands province of Dak Lak chapter of the VFF splashed out 320 million VND (14,048 USD) on 600 gifts for the impoverished influenced by natural disaster and ethnic people in Krong Bong, Lak and M’s Drak districts. 

Under the programme “Tet for the poor and AO victims”, the local chapter of the Red Cross Society presented 24,000 Tet gifts to the needy.

In the Mekong Delta province of Bac Lieu, nearly 100 Tet gifts were handed to local heroic mothers and families of those who rendered services to the country.

Also, a festival featuring various art performances were held for children with disabilities in Ho Chi Minh City on the threshold of Tet holiday.

Meanwhile, free bus tickets, Tet gifts and year-end bonuses were given to disadvantaged workers in the northern province of Ha Nam, the central province of Binh Dinh, the central province of Khanh Hoa, Ho Chi Minh City and the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang.

Tet gifts presented to AO/dioxin victims

Nearly 100 outstanding students afflicted with Agent Orange (AO)/Dioxin from Hanoi, Ha Nam, Hai Duong, Nam Dinh and Hai Phong have received gift packages and scholarships at the recent “Spring for Children” programme 2018.

The event was jointly held by the Vietnam Journalists Association, the Vietnam Association of Victims of Agent Orange/Dioxin, and the Hanoi Radio-Television Broadcasting in the capital city on February 2.

Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Journalists Association Ho Quang Loi said the association and press agencies nationwide have launched a number of charitable activities for AO/Dioxin victims and students with disabilities to ease their pains.

The programme aims to call for social assistance for AO/dioxin victims to overcome difficulties to pursue learning and have a warm Tet holiday, he said.

He also called on organisations, businesses and individuals to join hands to support students from disadvantaged backgrounds as well as those with disabilities.

During the programme, the audiences had a chance to enjoy circus and music performances and exchange with donors and AO victims.

Vietnamese community praised for contributions to RoK city’s development

Authorities of Hwaseong city in Gyeonggy province of the Republic of Korea (RoK) have praised the Vietnamese community in the city for their important contributions to the city’s all-around development and their efforts to integrate into the local society.

Speaking at a get-together on February 4 of Vietnamese living, working and studying in the city on the threshold of the Lunar New Year (Tet) festival, representatives from the city’s administration pledged to continue supporting the community and called on them to strictly abide by local laws. 

Representatives from the Vietnamese Embassy in the RoK and the Vietnamese Labour Management Office under the Employment Permit System (EPS) programme appreciated contributions made by Vietnamese guest workers to people-to-people exchange activities and the comprehensive relations between the two countries.

The delegates joined the Vietnamese expats in enjoying traditional Vietnamese music and songs and typical Tet dishes.

About 3,000 Vietnamese are living and working in Hwaseong. The total number of Vietnamese working in the RoK comes to almost 50,000.

Vietnamese in western Canada celebrate Tet holiday

The Vietnamese Consulate General in Vancouver has recently held a Tet celebration for overseas Vietnamese in the western provinces of Canada.

Consul General Pham Manh Hai highlighted Vietnam’s significant external events in 2017, including the successful APEC Year with the engagement of 21 leaders from member economies and the official and State visits to the Southeast Asian country, including the official visit by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Added to this were impressive socio-economic achievements such as the gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 6.81 percent, the trade turnover of over 400 billion USD, and attraction of over 30 billion USD in foreign direct investment (FDI).The tourism sector for the first time welcomed more than 13 million international tourists. Notably, the U-23 national football team made history to become the runners-up of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-23 Championship 2018, the official noted.

The relations between Vietnam and Canada witnessed important milestones over the past year with the issuance of a joint statement establishing the framework of bilateral comprehensive partnership across politics-diplomacy, trade-investment, cooperation development, defense-security, culture-education, science-technology, and people-to-people exchanges.

The Consul General informed that the two countries will celebrate the 45th anniversary of diplomatic ties in 2018. The Vietnamese Consulate General in Vancouver will coordinate with the British Columbia (BC) province to herald this event, he added.

He also affirmed the Party and State’s consistent policies of regarding overseas Vietnamese as an indispensable part of the nation. All Vietnamese expatriates, including those in Canada, are encouraged to invest in the hometown and contribute to the cause of national building and defense, he stressed.

Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology Bruce Ralston congratulated Vietnamese people on the Tet holiday and highlighted the sound relations between the BC province, particularly Vancouver city, and Vietnam.

He hailed the role of the Vietnamese Consulate General in Vancouver in promoting the bilateral multi-faceted relations and supporting the overseas Vietnamese in Canada’s western localities.

During the celebration, participants were treated with traditional Vietnamese cuisines and special art performances.

OVs honoured for contributions to Vietnam-Thailand friendship

Nearly 700 Vietnamese expats living and working in Thailand have been honoured for their contributions to the homeland and the Vietnam-Thailand relations. 

A ceremony was held in Thailand’s Mukdahan province on February 3 to present orders, medals and certificates of merit awarded by the President, Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Vietnam to the honourees.

Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Foreign Minister Vu Hong Nam said the unity among Vietnamese communities in Thailand has been praised by local authorities, contributing to Vietnam’s reputation in the country. 

On the occasion, President of the Thailand-Vietnam Friendship Association Prachuab Chaiyasan and former principal of Rattjabhat Nakhon Phanom University Sorat Phitchuonchom were also presented with certificates of merits from Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh for their contribution to promoting the friendship between the two peoples.

Prachuab Chaiyasan  highlighted the strong development of Vietnamese communities in the country, saying that they contribute to enhancing the bilateral relations.

Winners of second press contest on Party building announced

Winners of the second Bua Liem Vang (Golden Hammer & Sickle) Press Awards were honoured at a ceremony at the Hanoi Opera House on February 3 night. 

The event was attended by General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Nguyen Phu Trong, former CPV General Secretary Nong Duc Manh, President Tran Dai Quang, former President Tran Duc Luong, and former National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung, among others. 

The contest received nearly 2,000 entries, up from 1,173 entries of the previous event, with 54 selected for prizes, including six first, eight second, 15 third and 25 consolidation prizes. 

The first prizes went to journalist Bac Van from Nhan Dan (People’s) Daily, Tran Luu from Sai Gon Giai phong (Liberated Saigon) newspapers, a group of journalists from Nhan Dan Television, Tri Dung from the Vietnam News Agency, Phuong Lien and Nhat Nam from Government e-newspaper and Viet Anh from Vietnam Television. 

Besides, the organisation board also presented certificates of merit to outstanding press and information agencies, and Party organisations. 

Apart from the first prize of Tri Dung, journalists from the Vietnam News Agency also brought home a third prize and a consolidation prize. The agency was also one of the 15 outstanding press and information agencies, and Party organisations hounoured at the ceremony.

Addressing the event, head of the CPV Central Committee’s Organisation Commission Pham Minh Chinh, who is also head of the organising board, said the works have provided a panorama on Party building in Vietnam. 

Tran Quoc Vuong, head of the CPV Central Committee’s Inspection Commission, said that Party building and rectification is the task shared by all-level Party Committees and organisations, as well as the entire political system and people of all social strata.

“The press plays an important role in the work,” he stressed, asking all-level Party Committees, authorities and Fatherland Front, and organisations to create conditions for press agencies and journalists to popularise Party building and rectification. 

The 2018 Bua Liem Vang (Golden Hammer & Sickle) Press Awards, also the third edition of the contest, was also launched on this occasion.-

Vietnamese communities abroad celebrate Tet

The Vietnamese communities around the world have begun activities to celebrate the Lunar New Year (Tet) festival, which is several days left. 

In Vientiane, the capital city of Laos, Vietnamese expatriates joined together in Phat Tich pagoda on February 4 to pray for peace and happiness in the upcoming New Year.

Speaking at the event, Venerable Thich Minh Quang, head of the pagoda highlighted the need to preserve Vietnam’s cultural identity and traditions. 

Built in 1957, the pagoda is serving religious demand of overseas Vietnamese (OVs) living in Vientiane and adjacent areas. It is a place for exchange, thus promoting unity in the Vietnamese community in the country. 

On February 3, the Vietnamese permanent representative delegation to the UN and the Vietnamese Consulate General in New York jointly held a get-together for OVs and international friends to welcome the new spring.

In her speech at the event, Head of the Vietnamese permanent representative delegation to the UN Ambassador Nguyen Phuong Nga looked back Vietnam’s great achievements in 2017 across fields from economy, socio-culture, diplomacy, to defence and security. 

The Vietnam-US comprehensive partnership has witnessed fruitful developments through Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to the US and President Donald Trump’s official visit to Vietnam in the year. 

She stressed contributions made by Vietnamese expats in the US as well as international friends to promoting the relations between the two countries. 

The ambassador took the occasion to wish OVs in New York and adjacent areas and international friends a happy New Year. 

The same day, Vietnamese expats in Buenos Aires of Argentina and Moscow of Russia gathered at ceremonies to celebrate the traditional Tet. 

Vietnamese Ambassador to Argentina Dang Xuan Dung informed that trade between the two countries exceeded 3 billion USD and Vietnam is the leading trade partner of Argentine in Southeast Asia. 

He hoped OVs will continue serving as a bridge to promote the traditional friendship between the two countries. 

Meanwhile, Vietnamese Ambassador to Russia Ngo Duc Manh shared difficulties met by OVs living the country, affirming the embassy will do its best to support the community in the coming time.

He asked for closer coordination and information exchange between the embassy and associations and societies of the Vietnamese people, thus enhancing solidarity among the Vietnamese communities in Russia.

Overseas Vietnamese in Australia also gathered in Canberra to celebrate the traditional Lunar New Year festival on February 3. 

Ambassador Ngo Huong Nam reviewed the strong development of the Vietnam-Australia relations over the last 45 years, saying that the two sides scheduled to sign a statement on upgrading their relations to “Strategic Partnership” in the upcoming visit of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to Australia to attend the ASEAN-Australia special summit. 

He praised valuable contributions of Vietnamese communities in Australia, affirming that they are important factors to make the bilateral relations stronger. 

Tran Ba Phuc, Chairman of the Vietnam entrepreneurs’ association in Australia thanked the embassy in particular and the Vietnamese Government in general for their support for Vietnamese community in the country, saying that the organisation of events of this kind every year contribute to preserving and promoting Vietnam’s traditional culture. 

The same day, Vietnam’s Consulate General in Sydney also held a gathering celebrating Tet for the Vietnamese community in the city.

Also on February 3, Vietnam’s Embassy in Japan and the Vietnamese Consulate General in Fukuoka city of Japan hosted similar events, providing opportunities for Vietnamese expatriates to meet each other after one year of hard work.

Vietnamese Ambassador to Japan Nguyen Quoc Cuong updated participants on outstanding achievements in the Vietnam-Japan relationship in 2017, especially high-ranking visits of the two countries’ leaders to deepen the Intensive Strategic Partnership. 

He said the Vietnamese community in Japan made significant contributions to both nations’ prosperity and expanding the bilateral ties in a sustainable manner. 

He urged OVs in Japan to continue upholding the national great unity, and work harder to make more contributions to the bilateral relations.

Deal on training in hospitality inked

The Đà Nẵng-based Vietnamese-Australian Vocational College, in co-operation with Ariyana beach resort, have inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on human resource training in tourism for 2018-20.

It’s the first deal on tourism manpower with two-thirds of the course to be hands-on job experience in central Việt Nam.

The college will supply 2,000 workers for international convention halls and five-star resorts, hotels and villas of Ariyana beach resort and tourism complex in the next two years.

Following the MoU, students from the college will spend most of their job-training time at the complex as the curriculum focuses on practical qualifications.

Last year, the Empire Group and local universities and colleges also inked an agreement on manpower training in the hospitality sector to meet demand for 10,000 jobs by 2020.

According to the city’s tourism department, Đà Nẵng’s hospitality sector will face a deficiency of skilled manpower in 2020 when it will need 27,000 employees at hotels and resorts alone.

Đà Nẵng City’s hospitality sector currently employs 14,000 people, 40 per cent of them skilled. The 12 colleges and vocational centres in the region can only train about 5,000 students a year.

Đông Á College in Đà Nẵng and William Angliss Institute from Australia also began a personnel training programme for the hospitality, tourism and culinary arts sectors in 2017 in supplying manpower meeting ASEAN standards.

Government provides rice for Nghệ An’s farmers

Deputy Prime Minister Vương Đình Huệ has instructed the Ministry of Finance to allocate rice from national reserves to support people in the central province of Nghệ An, who have suffered from a poor crop.

More than 794,710 tonnes of rice will be sent to the province.

The provincial People’s Committee will be responsible for distributing the rice.

Charity programme provides free medical checkups, Tết gifts to the poor

Thousands of poor people and the elderly in 23 communes in Thạch Thất District, Hà Nội, were provided Tết gifts, along with free medical checkups and treatment, as part of a humanitarian programme last weekend.

Through the local Red Cross, the programme delivered 1,000 gift packages, worth VNĐ500,000 (US$22.2) to poor households in 23 communes, along with 50 motorbikes to poor students in Thạch Thất district.

The programme also provided free medical checkups and health consultations to nearly 500 elderly people and poor families in the area.

It also organised performances, screenings of documentary films, socio-cultural reports on Thạch Thất region and the land of Đoài.

The charity programme was organised by the Hà Nội Red Cross Society, in collaboration with the People’s Committee of Thạch Thất district and the Xứ Đoài Mây Trắng Company. 

Human resources search firm and university co-operate to train soft skills

Navigos Search and the Hanoi College for Electro-mechanics on February 2 officially signed a memorandum of understanding to train soft skills for lecturers and students.

The co-operation will facilitate useful training programs for students, such as resume writing and job interview skills.

For lecturers, the executive search firm Navigos Search will provide separate training programs on these skills so that the lecturers can then train students in the these courses.

The training courses for students are expected to start in the first quarter of 2018 to support the students who will graduate this year.

These training programs will be conducted by the experienced recruitment consultants of Navigos Search.

Quảng Nam beat HAGL to rank third at BTV Cup

V.League 1 defending champions Quảng Nam defeated Hoàng Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) 4-2 in a penalty shootout in the third-place match at the annual Bình Dương Television International Football Cup (BTV Cup) on Sunday.

The match, held in the southern province of Bình Dương ended in a 1-1 draw in official time.

Both sides used many young players in this match to hone their skills. Quảng Nam’s Nguyễn Đức Cường and Huỳnh Tấn Sinh played, while HAGL gave game time to young talents Đinh Thanh Bình and Nguyễn Văn Hạnh.

The mountainous football team HAGL opened the scoring in the second half through Korean Kim Jin-seo, however, Quảng Nam’s Văn Hà levelled the score in injury time.

HSBC donates $700,000 to help preserve freshwater resources

HSBC Việt Nam will donate US$700,000 for a two-year community-based fresh-water resources conservation and management project, which will be carried out by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Việt Nam.

The company will send 350 staff members, who are trained to preserve freshwater resources, to meet with local residents in Tràm Chim in the Mekong Delta province of Đồng Tháp and the Vũ Gia – Thu Bồn rivers basin in the central city of Đà Nẵng with technical support from WWF Việt Nam in order to control and improve quality of water.

“HSBC has co-operated with WWF globally on the HSBC Water Programme with total investment of US$150 million since 2012. The programme has brought fresh water to 2.5 million people around the world,” Phạm Hồng Hải, HSBC Việt Nam general director said at yesterday’s project launching ceremony.

“It will help our staff to increase its awareness about the environment, improve its cohesiveness with company and show corporate social responsibility (CSI),” he added.

Trịnh Thị Long, co-ordinator of WWF-Việt Nam’s Water Programme said: “We are very happy to have a partner like HSBC because right now, awareness to preserve nature is very low and we hope in the future more enterprises will donate and participate with us in the struggle to preserve nature.”

Long explained that along with educating and guiding local residents about how to control and protect their water resources and bringing local communities into dialogue with the government, the project will work with high-level leaders to show them how to better manage and improve the quality of water resources.

“We will show local residents how to sustainably maintain their water resources,” she added.

In the Vũ Gia – Thu Bồn river basin, the project will pay attention to the reservoirs in the region, which are believed to have been responsible for recent serious flooding.

In Tràm Chim, the project will implement a deeper study about water remaining for the whole year in order to prevent fires.

Water fresh usage is an essential right for people. However, according to research recently published, by 2100, half of the Mekong Delta would be sunk under sea level and the rest will suffer from salinisation, regular storms and flooding.

Besides climate change and rising sea levels, human activities such as over-exploitation of sand and hydropower dams on major rivers have seriously changed the biological system of the river.

Ninh Thuan promotes tourism in vineyards

Large-scale fields are becoming more common, not just in rice farming, but also for other crops in certain parts of Ninh Thuan province. Ninh Phuoc district is using large fields to grow grapes to boost productivity.

Local farmers are cooperating with enterprises to ensure outlets for production and promote tourism. 

Phuoc Thuan commune in Ninh Phuoc district plans to develop a 30-ha grape growing area in Phuoc Khanh village specialized for eco-tourism.

Under the plan, Phuoc Thuan aims to restructure crops, apply scientific and technological advancements in production and secure outlets for the farm produce of Ninh Thuan.

In the first phase, the commune has instructed local farmers to grow 10ha of grapes in line with the Vietnam Good Agricultural Practices (VietGAP) standards. Farmers have set up teams with 27 key members to implement the model.

Nguyen Duc Thuan, Chairman of Phuoc Thuan commune’s People’s Committee, said, “We have asked businesses and organizations to help farmers find product outlets and have worked with the provincial tourism promotion center to set up tours of grape fields in the commune.”

Thanks to production links, high-tech application, expert training, and coordination with businesses, the value of Ninh Thuan grapes has greatly improved. Nguyen Van Moi, owner of the Ba Moi vineyard in Ninh Thuan, said that once the model of large-scale grape fields is successful, local grape production will become a modern agricultural industry using more state-of-the-art machinery.

“Large-scale fields will enable businesses to secure product outlets and make market forecasts. Large-scale production will also enable quality control and transfer of technology,” said Van Moi.

The large-scale grape field model is being expanded in Ninh Thuan next year. Each locality has its own model but they all want to support farmers to increase their productivity and find outlets. 

Vietnam establishes national association for animal protection

Vietnam has set up a national association specialized in the protection of animals to raise social awareness of animal welfare, rights, and protection.

The Vietnam Animal Welfare Association (VAWA) was officially established during a ceremony in the central city of Da Nang on February 3, following the decision of the Ministry of Home Affairs.

​According to Nguyen Xuan Duong, deputy head of the Department of Livestock Production under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the organization is aimed at preventing violence and mistreatment against animals.

The group will coordinate with competent authorities to investigate crimes against animals, Duong added.

It will also organize research and provide consultation on animal rights and welfare as well as projects on animal protection.

The public has become irate following recent reports about the excessive exploitation of animals as well as animal abuse during local festivals and rituals, Duong remarked, adding that such activities reflect the lack of awareness of animal welfare.

The association is to raise social awareness of animal welfare, rights, and protection.

It will also serve as a tool to harmonize the perspective of global animal protection organizations with the traditions and beliefs of localities across Vietnam, Duong stated.

Tra Vinh: 6.2 mln USD to be spent on climate adaptation, Vietnamese community praised for contributions to RoK city’s development, Deal on training in hospitality inked, Ninh Thuan promotes tourism in vineyards