Home ownership extensions rejected
The Ministry of Construction has rejected a proposal from the People’s Committee of central Da Nang City to allow foreigners buy and own houses for up to 70 years instead of the present 50.
It said this was in line with the Land Law of 2013 and the amended Housing Law.
In a related movement, the ministry gave the green light to a city plan requiring buyers of social housing to make the payment in one installment.
According to the People’s Committee, a one-time payment enables investors to quickly recover capital and re-invest.
The amended Law on Housing, which takes effect on July 1, is expected to attract more foreigners to come to live and work in the country.
Quang Binh police seize firecrackers
The Transport Police Department recently cracked down on illegal firecracker smuggling, catching nearly 150 kilograms of firecrackers being smuggled in Quang Binh Province.
The Traffic Police patrolling the National Road No 1 discovered the smuggled goods on a 16-seat coach, which had been flagged down for a traffic violation. After examining the coach, the police detected the firecrackers, for which no legal permit was found.
Taking advantage of the police’s negligence, the suspect said to be bearing the smuggled firecrackers, escaped from the bus and ran towards the nearby forest.
Due to hostile weather and a difficult terrain, the suspect reportedly escaped, even though the police had mobilised personnel to chase him.
An investigation into the incident is on-going.
Fire breaks out at City bank
A fire broke out at the branch office of the Bank for Development and Investment of Cambodia (BDIC) in downtown HCM City around 12pm yesterday.
The fire is believed to have started in the branch’s technical room located in the basement of the building. Office workers, who were on their lunch break, ran for safety after the fire alarm was sounded.
Motorbikes parked in the basement were quickly moved out and the Cach Manh Thang Tam Street was cordoned off from traffic in order to clear the site for the fire fighters.
Nguyen Thanh Huong, the Deputy Chief of HCM City’s Fire Prevention and Fighting Police Department, said the city had dispatched five fire trucks and 34 fire fighters to the scene.
The flame was extinguished within half an hour and no casualties or injuries were reported. The cause for the fire is being investigated.
Another fire destroyed the Huynh Mai home appliances shop in Hoang Dieu Street, District 2, Ca Mau City on Wednesday.
Soc Trang law enforcement officials punished for corruption
A number of officials of Soc Trang Province’s civil law enforcement agency were punished last year, according to a report from the provincial law enforcement department.
The punishments ranged from reprimands and dismissals to forced resignations.
Among the punished officials, four were former heads of the civil law enforcement agencies in My Xuyen, My Tu and Chau Thanh Districts, and Nga Nam Town.
These officials were disciplined for violating the financial and accounting management and official ethics, after they asked for bribes from persons concerned with law enforcement, the report said.
Hospitals to tighten measles prevention measures
The health ministry has asked hospitals and medicalunits nation-wide to strengthen disease prevention, especially against measles.
Director of the medical examination and treatment management department Luong Ngoc Khue said that the measles situation continues to be complicated.
The health sector reported a total of 35 confirmed measles cases among 123 suspectedcases in 25 provinces and cities since the beginning of this year, added Khue.
The ministrys instruction was released yesterday, following increasing number of measlescases being reported from across the country.
The health sector asked provincial and city health departments to tighten patientclassification and examination for early detection of measles cases inpatient check-up centres.
Hospitals and medical units have been requested to arrange for experienced staffs working at the check-up centres for receiving and examining patients.
Suspected measles patients arerequired to be hospitalised in the infection wards or isolation areas ofhospitals and medical units, before tests are conducted for confirmation of the disease.
Medical staffs have been asked to strictly follow the instructions for preventing the transmission of diseases, and guide patients and their families to also follow the instructions.
Enhancing all-sector capacity to support the disabled
The Vietnam Federation on Disability (VFD), the Irish Aid Programme, and the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) held a workshop in Hanoi on February 10 to review the implementation of the national project on supporting people with disabilities between 2012 and 2020.
Participants shared their experience in designing plans to support the disabled and proposed measures to enhance the capacity and responsibility of all ministries and sectors to carry out National Project 1019. National Project 1019 is focused on the social integration of people with disabilities through developing and enhancing links of disabled associations.
Over the past two years, cities and provinces across the country have worked hard to popularise the Party and State’s policies, guidelines, and legal documents supporting the disabled; raise public awareness of the issue; and protect and promote their rights in society.
Authorities have also carried out welfare policies, such as organising vocational training, generating jobs, enhancing handicap-accessible public transport, and facilitating business operation.
Shortcomings remain in project implementation, however, such as the slow progress in building and upgrading public facilities and roads for the disabled; low social subsidies; uncompassionate care staff; and limited mechanisms to support employment opportunities.
Participants suggested ministries and sectors issue regulations on support for businesses which employ workers with disabilities while receiving more disabled homeless individuals at social welfare centres and ensuring access to public facilities.
National Project 1019 is being carried out between 2012 and 2015 in Hanoi, Quang Tri, Quang Nam, and Binh Dinh. It aims to create equal access for the disabled to socio-economic services and social activities.
Binh Duong establishes public administrative centre
The People’s Committee of the southern province of Binh Duong unveiled the public administrative centre, the provincial one-stop software, and the public administration website on February 10.
According to Binh Duong’s Department of Home Affairs, the centre was established to simplify time-consuming administrative procedures at the province’s new administrative building, opened on February 20, 2014.
Under the province’s Department of Home Affairs, the centre will help the director of the department manage and coordinate the receipt and return of documents, facilitating smooth and professional operations and connecting departments and agencies.
It also helps monitor and supervise the administrative process across departments and agencies, gauge user satisfaction and the application of information technology, and reform administrative efforts in districts and communes.
The province also commenced phase I of the provincial-level one-stop software pilot, allowing citizens to search for administrative information at kiosks or documents through bar codes.
The province also introduced the provincial-level public administrative website at http://ift.tt/1yeu6xs, which provides information on the progress of documents processing, online public services, and a smart search option for administrative information.-
Overseas Vietnamese gathers in Hanoi on Tet
The Hanoi People’s Committee and the State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese Affairs organised a New Year programme for about 100 Vietnamese expatriates in Hanoi on February 10.
During the event, overseas participants expressed their confidence in the Party’s leadership and their desire to further contribute to national development through linking Vietnamese enterprises with foreign markets.
They also asked the Government to expand the provision of domestic information.
Le Hong Son, Vice Chairman of the capital People’s Committee confirmed that overseas communities are an indispensable part of the nation and pledged that the city will do its utmost to support them.
Earlier, the expatriates were greeted by President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan who highlighted the participation of 17 expatriates in the Standing Committee of the Front’s 8 th tenure, the highest rate to date.
In response to the participants’ proposals to establish a network connecting Vietnamese intellectuals across the globe and open a representative office in the Czech Republic to promote domestic products, Nhan said his agency and its members will explore the valuable suggestions.
At her reception for these overseas Vietnamese, Vice State President Nguyen Thi Doan praised the communities’ robust growth around the world, consolidating the national image abroad.
She recommended the State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese Affairs design additional initiatives to lure expats home to work as well as to foster the development of Vietnam’s culture internationally.
According to the Hanoi Department of Planning and Investment, by 2014, Vietnamese living overseas had invested in 12 projects worth more than 200 million USD in Hanoi.
There are around 4.5 million Vietnamese living and working across 109 countries and territories.-
Hon Tre Island connected to national power grid
Hon Tre island – the administrative centre of Kien Hai district, the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang was officially connected to the national power grid on February 11.
The sea-crossing power project has a total cost of 78 billion (around 3.66 million USD). It includes the construction of a 12.9-km long 22kV transmission line, 27 poles with a height between 43-48 metres above the sea level. The line runs from Tho Son commune in the mainland district of Hon Dat.
Additionally, a power network on Hon Tre island with 6.2 km of a 22kV transmission line, 2.8km of a transmission line and 10 transformer stations with a total capacity of 1,275kVA were constructed as part of the project.
About 30km west of Kien Giang’s city of Rach Gia, Hon Tre island covers an area of 428.59 ha. Along with Phu Quoc, Kien Hai is an island district with great potential for developing sea-based economy, services, tourism and maritime transport.
The power project to Hon Tre island commune is expected to help Kien Hai create new impetus in its socio-economic development.
Ministry calls for innovative initiatives for low-income
The Enterprise Development Agency under the Ministry of Planning and Investment invited organisations and individuals to participate in the Inclusive Innovation Project for Low-Income Individuals at a ceremony on February 10.
Nguyen Hoa Cuong, Deputy Head of the Agency and Director of the project’s management unit, said the project is being implemented from 2013 to 2018 in line with credit agreement No 5249/VN worth 55 million USD and signed on September 6, 2013 between the Vietnamese Government and the World Bank.
The development objective of the project is to help with the development and application of innovative technologies for the benefit of the population at the Base of the Pyramid (BoP).
Research organisations, universities, Vietnamese private enterprises, individuals and groups of innovators are encouraged to register for the project.
Addressing the event, Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Dang Huy Dong, who is also Deputy Head of the project’s Steering Committee, said he hopes the project will attract numerous initiatives.
Victoria Kwakwa, the World Bank’s Country Director for Vietnam, said the project was an important landmark in seeking creative ideas to support low-income populations.
The project will also stimulate the growth of small- and medium-sized enterprises, she said.
Leaders extend New Year greetings to religious communities
Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Le Hoang Quan paid a visit to the city’s Archdiocese on February 10 to wish local Catholic dignitaries and followers a happy new year in the Year of the Goat.
He highlighted the significant role that the Catholic community played in helping the city surmount difficulties last year to fulfil its socio-economic development targets.
The city’s leader hoped that with his reputation and clout, Archbishop Bui Van Doc will encourage Catholic dignitaries and followers to continue working for a thriving city and nation.
Quan then visited the Committee for Solidarity of Vietnamese Catholics’ Ho Chi Minh City chapter and the Evangelical Church of Vietnam (South).
He said he hopes the committee will continue working closely with the Vietnam Fatherland Front and other organisations in improving the material and spiritual lives of religious groups and disadvantaged people.
Many southern provinces, including Binh Duong and Ben Tre, have been organising meetings with local religious communities to wish them a happy new year.
Korean ODA helps reduce poverty in Lao Cai
The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) has launched a US$14 million project aimed at improving the living conditions of ethnic minority residents in the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai.
Prominent figures in attendance at the ceremony on February 10 included Korean Ambassador to Vietnam Jun Dae Joo, KOICA Chief Representative Chang Jae Yun and Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung.
The ODA programme will contribute to bring healthier and happier lives to ethnic minorities by improving their living conditions, enhancing their education and providing better medical care in the three-year period from 2015-2017, said Chang Jae Yun.
HCM City’s trash volume to surge at Tet
The garbage discharged in HCMC is forecast to amount to over 9,000 tons a day from this Friday throughout the Lunar New Year holiday (Tet), or 2,000-3,000 tons higher than the daily average, according to Nguyen Minh Hoang, deputy director of the HCMC Urban Environment Company.
Hoang said the company will have to mobilize all of its workers to collect and transport all garbage to the landfills during the country’s biggest holiday, which begins on February 19.
The city government will allow garbage trucks to operate around the clock from this Saturday to February 23, or the 27th of the twelfth month of the lunar calendar to the fifth of the first lunar month, as the waste volume will shoot up during this period.
Households are requested to keep garbage in the first two days of the lunar new year as waste collectors will be off on these days. But the company and district-level public services firms should mobilize 30% of their employees to handle garbage at Tet.
The city government has told the HCMC Department of Transport to monitor construction sites and fine individuals and contractors who infringe regulations on road digging. They must clean construction sites before February 11, or the 23rd of the twelfth month of the lunar calendar.
HCM City to install automatic weighbridges at gateways
The HCMC Department of Transport plans to install automatic vehicle weighing systems at the city’s gateways and on the roads in front of ports and large warehouses in an effort to better detect overloaded trucks.
The agency said in a scheme submitted to the city government that the control of overloaded vehicles in the city has exposed shortcomings and the installation of mobile weighbridges is time-consuming and depends much on weather conditions. Besides, monitors are unable to stop all vehicles to check while drivers manage to make use of byways to avoid weighbridges.
Therefore, the control of vehicle loads in HCMC has not been effective as only 13.8% of checked vehicles have been found transporting goods higher than their permitted loads.
The automatic weighbridges that the department plans aim to detect and manage all data of overloaded vehicles here in the city. This is important to effectively control vehicle loads and impose fines on violators.
The department said the installation of automatic weighbridges is an important component of the city’s smart traffic management system.
According to the Directorate for Roads of Vietnam, since the Ministry of Transport launched load controls on vehicles nationwide last March, the rate of overloaded vehicles had fallen from 50% to 8.3% as of the end of 2014.
However, the agency said the number of overloaded vehicles has dropped remarkably but not sustainably.
At a meeting on traffic safety last month, Minister of Transport Dinh La Thang said weighbridges will be placed at toll stations of all build-operate-transfer (BOT) road and bridge projects in the coming time and proposed criminal charges against those overloading trucks.
AFD disburses 111 million euro for local projects
The French Development Agency (AFD) disbursed a total of 111 million euros for projects in Vietnam last year.
Remi Genevey, AFD director in Vietnam, said the amount was higher than planned, suggesting that the projects funded by AFD were implemented more efficiently in 2014 than in previous years.
AFD pledged to provide 89.3 million euros for ODA-funded projects in the country last year. Of the amount, 69 million euros were for Urban Railway No.3 in Hanoi, 20 million euros for the Support Program to Respond to Climate Change (SP-RCC) and 300,000 euros for renovation of Ngu Ha Canal in Hue City, and 1.4 million euros for non-governmental organizations in Vietnam such as Croix rouge, Enfants et Dévelopment and WWF.
The European Union (EU) picked AFD to manage the non-refundable aid of six million euros for the HCMC Finance and Investment Company (HFIC), along with grants from KfW and AFD.
In May last year, AFD clinched a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Planning and Investment to provide loans for State-owned enterprises (SOE) without Government guarantees.
AFD has been in Vietnam since 1994 and has since pledged 1.5 billion euros for 75 projects in the country.
Ministry orders to inject all children to prevent re-occurrence of measles
As per the Ministry of Health’s plan to prevent measles in 2015, all children in the immunization age groups must be taken to medical clinics for measles shots.
Medical clinics across the country must re-check whether all children in districts and social sponsoring centers for measles shots. Medical workers must administer vaccine shots for all children who are in the immunization age or those who have not received two shots yet especially children in distant districts and villages nationwide.
Moreover, the Ministry asked medical clinic leaders to closely supervise vaccination procedure to ensure safety for children as well as daily report on disease. Vaccine and equipments must be supplied to local districts under the national mass immunization campaign.
The Ministry said that measles is one of leading causes of deaths among children and vaccination is the only way to prevent the dangerous illness; accordingly parents should take their children to medical clinics for immunization.
Governments need to popularize information of vaccination benefits to parents in order to encourage them to take their children for immunization.
The Ministry targets to eliminate measles in 2015 nationwide, aiming to minimize the cases of infections and deaths. The rate of vaccination must reach 95 percent for children at the age from 1 to 14. Vaccination safety is placed as the top priority.
Since the beginning of the year, measles occurred in scattered districts mainly in Hanoi and the northern province of Bac Ninh. Last year, the disease re-occurred in provinces with 35,700 infection cases and killed 147 children who have not been injected vaccine or not received enough shots as per routine vaccination.
Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee closes Phuoc Hiep landfill
The Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee is considering closing the Phuoc Hiep landfill, prompting protests from Ho Chi Minh City Urban Environment Company Limited (Citenco), according to tuoitre newswire .
“The Korean contractor will sue us for breach of contract,” said Citenco director Huynh Minh Nhut at a meeting held on February 3 between the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee and the company.
The burial site number three of Phuoc Hiep landfill is a collaboration project between Citenco and KBEC Korea Co., Ltd. (KBEC). It was designed to process an estimated 2,000 tonnes of waste per day within nine years. Two thirds of the project has been completed as of December 31, 2014 when the city decided to close the project.
Citenco and its partner KBEC each invested VND400 billion ($18.8 million) into burial site number three of the landfill. In case the landfill is closed, all investments would be lost.
After the closure the garbage will have to be relocated to the Da Phuoc landfill located in Binh Chanh district. “The closure will also make the 300 employees of Phuoc Hiep landfill, mostly coming from the Cu Chi district, lose their jobs,” added Nhut.
The Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee did not respond immediately to VIR’s enquiries of the reasons why they decided to close the landfill.
Pre-Tet visits to officials, disadvantaged
Politburo member and Secretary of Ho Chi Minh City’s Party Committee Le Thanh Hai visited and extended Lunar New Year (Tet) wishes to border guards and impoverished residents in coastal Can Gio district of the city on February 11.
Visiting Flotilla 2 and the Thanh An, Can Thanh and Long Hoa border posts, Hai praised achievements by the border guards in recent years, including successfully protecting the border, actively engaging in rescue operations, and assisting locals in boosting socio-economic development.
He said he hopes the border guards will continue promoting their active and close ties with the people.
The municipal leader also presented Tet gifts to five impoverished ethnic minority families in Binh Khanh commune of Can Gio district as well as President Truong Tan Sang’s gift to 100-year-old Huynh Thi Kiem in Can Thanh town.
The same day, a delegation of HCM City authorities, led by Deputy Standing Secretary of the municipal Party Committee Vo Van Thuong, paid a visit to a mobile police regiment, disadvantaged households, and policy beneficiaries in District 9.
Deputy Secretary of the municipal Party Committee Nguyen Thi Thu Ha visited impoverished households, old people, and the families of soldiers based on the Truong Sa archipelago.
Meanwhile, in the northern province of Thai Nguyen, provincial leaders visited and extended Tet wishes to families of soldiers and officials serving in border and sea areas.
Authorities in the northern province of Hung Yen also offered presents to poor households, policy beneficiaries, veterans, and orphans in the locality.
The Hung Yen Association of Agent Orange/Dioxin Victims also distributed 540 gift packages worth a total of 190 million VND (8,930 USD) to victims across 10 districts. Impoverished children in the locality also received presents worth a total of 240 million VND (11,280 USD).
At the same time, the People’s Committee of the Central Highlands province of Kon Tum provided 500,000 VND to 18,422 disadvantaged and ethnic minority households to ensure a warm festival.
The Transport Department of the southern province of Binh Phuoc gifted two new houses valued at 60 million VND (2,820 USD) each to poor families in Hon Quan district and Binh Long town.
VFF leader offers New Year wishes to southerners
President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan hailed the efforts made by the Steering Committee for the Southwest Region to improve the material and spiritual lives of locals while holding a pre-Tet meeting with the committee on February 12.
On the occasion of the quickly-approaching Lunar New Year (Tet), Nhan extended his best wishes to the committee staff and residents in the region.
According to the committee’s Permanent Deputy Head Nguyen Phong Quang, last year the region saw an 8.98 percent economic growth rate, 1.5 times higher than the national average.
The poverty rate decreased to 5.6 percent as aquatic output reached 3.2 million tonnes and the value of rice exports hit 2.6 billion USD.
The region also worked to effectively implement social welfare policies while focusing on ethnic and religious affairs and maintaining political security, social order, and safety.
The same day, the VFF leader also visited Can Tho city’s Party Committee. He asked local authorities to focus resources on developing high-quality agriculture and narrowing the income gap between labourers in agriculture and other fields.
Sustainable craft villages require public involvement
The expanding number of craft villages nationwide has increased environmental pollution, and addressing the issue requires strong communal engagement.
A majority 70 percent of the country’s craft villages are concentrated in the north, with the highest density in the Red River Delta region which suffers from substantial pollution concerns.
Low environmental knowledge and bad management lie at the root of the issue. Local officials in charge of monitoring pollution are poorly informed, leading to apathy and rampant violations. Although all localities have a loose agenda for sustainable growth in craft villages by 2020, the non-specific and unenforced plans are unlikely to take effect.
Based on research of the pressing issue, the Institute of Human Geography considers mobilizing public involvement and support to be the most promising initiative.
Accordingly, the centre suggests establishing relevant legal frameworks and mobilization mechanisms for human and financial resources from the communities, outlining detailed sustainable models suitable for each village, and intensifying the implementation of green campaigns.
Vietnam is home to nearly 3,000 craft villages, including 240 traditional villages. The market generates jobs for 11 million people.
Officials deliver Tet gifts across country
Vice President Nguyen Thi Doan extended New Year greetings to the northern Ha Nam provincial Party Committee and residents in a visit to the locality on February 12.
The Vice President praised the remarkable achievements made by the provincial authorities and people over the past year despite national economic difficulties.
The province recorded good economic growth last year while further reducing the number of poor households. Substantial results were seen in the culture, education, and healthcare sectors as well as in caring for social policy beneficiaries.
In line with the traditions on the occasion of the lunar New Year, Vice President Doan and provincial leaders visited and presented gifts to revolutionary veterans, wounded soldiers, policy beneficiaries, and impoverished households in Phu Ly city and Ly Nhan district.
The same day, Politburo member and Party Central Committee Secretary To Huy Rua went to the northern province of Bac Ninh, where he presented gifts to 92-year-old Heroic Mother Vu Thi Loi and the families of some fallen soldiers and war veterans in Gia Binh district.
President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Nguyen Thien Nhan visited the southern province of Tra Vinh. He delivered gifts to 50 poor families and scholarships to poor students, and called at the provincial Patriotic Monk Association to wish them a happy New Year.
Also on Feb. 12, the military telecom group Viettel and An Binh Commercial Joint Stock Bank donated 3.5 billion VND (164,000 USD) and 200 million VND (9,300 USD), respectively, to a scholarship fund established by Professor Nguyen Thien Thanh for deprived students in Tra Vinh.
Đăng ký: VietNam News