More than half the companies in information technology, finance- banking-insurance and import-export have not laid off employees or cut salaries or benefits during the prolonged pandemic, according to a report by recruitment company VietnamWorks.

According to the report, when the outbreak is controlled, 50 per cent of enterprises plan to recruit new and inexperienced employees since they still need to meet overheads after many months without any business.

But with society and the economy gradually entering a new normal, workers too are likely to have new requirements, the report warned.

They might not only look for attractive salaries or benefits but also consider the working mode and operating model of the employer, and so businesses need to come up with new strategies to attract talent, it said.

‘COVID-19 and The Labour Market in 2021: Situations and Solutions’ collected data from 400 enterprises and 1200 job seekers in August, which showed 49.9 per cent either sacked workers or cut wages.

Some 11.6 per cent continued to hire.

But 3 per cent stopped operating temporarily, 7.3 per cent laid off employees but did not cut salaries or benefits and 9.4 per cent chose to both lay off employees and cut salaries.

Businesses in the food, hotel, tourism, education, construction, and architecture sectors were severely affected, leading to a high number of lay-offs and huge cut in salaries and benefits.

Employees in the administration/secretarial, sales and customer service departments were the first to be sacked.

According to the Youth Employment Service Centre of HCM City, many companies in commercial services, delivery, accounting, banking, and IT need a large number of workers now.

The centre is carrying out a programme to help unemployed workers find jobs, rent cheap rooms and get free COVID tests.

It is also working with authorities in Ninh Thuận, Sóc Trăng, Đồng Tháp, Bến Tre, and Bình Dương provinces to help people there find jobs in HCM City.

The Employment Service Centre under the city Department of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs is co-operating with labour agencies in districts to organise online job fairs to bring enterprises and workers together.

A report by the HCM City Centre for Forecasting Manpower Needs and Labour Market Information shows city businesses will need 44,000-57,000 workers in the year’s last quarter.

The centre said this is the time when businesses increase production to meet the surging demand during the Lunar New Year (Tết) holidays in the early part of the new year.

It added that demand for labour is high in trade-commerce, IT, customer care, tourism, hotels and restaurants, electricity, food, and construction. 

Quang Ninh looks to take lead in IT application in COVID-19 fight

Quang Ninh looks to take lead in IT application in COVID-19 fight hinh anh 1

Apart from striving for all eligible residents to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the northern province of Quang Ninh is also working hard to take the lead nationwide in the application of information technology in the COVID-19 combat.

Secretary of the Quang Ninh Party Committee Nguyen Xuan Ky, who is also head of the provincial steering committee for COVID-19 prevention and control, has asked the departments of health and public security, along with localities, to standardise data and ensure smooth connection and integration of information.

Moving to enhance its IT deployment capacity in the pandemic fight, Quang Ninh is considering the trial application of artificial intelligence (AI) at the checkpoint on Bach Dang bridge and will expand this model if it proves effective. It is also boosting the use of QR codes at agencies, businesses, and stores, and requests visitors to those places to scan QR codes in order to serve contact tracing.

Efforts are being made from provincial to grassroots levels to carry out integration and application solutions on the basis of the national population database, which is useful to not only the building of an e-administration, digital economy, and digital society, but also the fight against COVID-19.

Established on September 1, the Quang Ninh command centre for COVID-19 prevention and control is based at the headquarters of the provincial People’s Committee and uses the existing infrastructure of the local smart city operation centre. It is connected with 13 command centres at the district level and 177 others at the communal level.

Via the camera system, it has discovered wrongdoings in the implementation of anti-pandemic regulations at several checkpoints while entry and exit procedures for people were handled there, helping to make rectification in a timely manner.

Many activities of the provincial command centre have been integrated such as reading and submitting reports, issuing directions, managing documents and tasks, convening teleconferences, and receiving and replying to people and businesses’ opinions. Thanks to that, it has managed to gain a panorama as well as precise and continuous updates on the pandemic situation, keep contact with all-level centres around the clock, and make swift decisions to serve the COVID-19 fight.

In addition, the provincial command centre set up two hotlines, 0203.223.588 and 0869.9199.588, available in four foreign languages (English, Japanese, Korean, and Chinese) to receive information about the pandemic. The hotlines handles around 80 - 100 calls per day most of which ask for details about conditions for exiting and entering the province, quarantine procedures, and the vaccination policy.

Besides, the centre has advised the provincial People’s Committee on anti-pandemic measures when socio-economic activities are resumed, along with COVID-19 vaccination for foreigners living in Quang Ninh. It has also directed, examined, and promoted the implementation of measures against COVID-19 in the province.

By taking early actions from the grassroots level and prioritising pandemic prevention, Quang Ninh has succeeded in surmounting different waves of coronavirus infections.

So far, it has stayed free of community transmission of the coronavirus for more than 100 days and basically completed administering the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine to all eligible residents.

The provincial administration has issued a plan to give the second doses, looking to finish the vaccination by October 30.

Authorities are also taking strong actions to prevent the virus from entering the province so as to keep the local situation stable in the “new normal”.

In 2021, Quang Ninh eyes a growth rate of 10 percent in the gross regional domestic product (GRDP) and more than 51 trillion VND (over 2.2 billion USD) in State budget revenue, thereby achieving the twin targets of curbing COVID-19 and boosting socio-economic development.

Its GRDP increased 8.6 percent in the first nine months of this year, higher than the nation’s average level./.

Thua Thien Hue aims to welcome six million tourists by 2025

The tourism industry of Thua Thien Hue province plans to receive approximately six million visitors by 2025, with total tourism revenue anticipated to reach roughly VND13,000 billion, according to the provincial Thua Thien Hue Provincial People's Committee.

Under the details of the plan, Thua Thien Hue aims to become a unique tourism centre and turn into a festival city, as well as being an clean ASEAN tourist city.

Accordingly, Thua Thien Hue province will strive to have 10 five-star hotels and resorts by 2025, with the local tourism industry setting a target of attracting approximately six million visitors by 2025.

In relation to the figure, international guests will account for between 45% and 50% of total estimated tourism revenue of roughly VND13,000 billion.

Furthermore, the province will continue to institutionalise policies on tourism development and focus on digital transformation in the tourism industry, thereby giving priority to smart management, invest in building technical infrastructure for tourism development, and design unique tourism products imbued with the local Hue culture.

Nguyen Thanh Binh, vice chairman of the People's Committee of Thua Thien Hue province, said the province will devise solutions aimed at reopening tourism and service activities to provide fresh impetus to local socio-economic development. 

Young volunteer helps islanders prevent COVID

After returning to his hometown on Hải Tặc Island in the Mekong Delta's Kiên Giang Province, Nguyễn Thanh Nhựt’s found himself with time on his hands.

Not wanting to sit around idle, the 19-year-old decided to volunteer to help fight the pandemic.

“Although my hometown is far from the mainland, there is still a high risk for the pandemic to spread to the island because foods and other necessity goods must be transported from the mainland," Nhựt, a marketing student at An Giang University, told Tiền Phong (Pioneer) online newspaper. 

During his time as a volunteer, Nhựt has had a chance to contribute to his hometown’s efforts in preventing the pandemic, as well as gain new knowledge about health and connect with many people on the island.

But this was not an easy job. Besides juggling his volunteer work with online university classes, Nhựt had to deal with other challenges such as bad weather on the way to surrounding islands to collect samples for COVID-19 testing.

“We often have to travel by boats to surrounding islands to collect samples for COVID-19 testing and it is easy to encounter dangerous weather conditions such as storms or whirlwinds. However, I am willing to help to keep the people safe,” he said.

One of Nhựt’s most memorable moments was when he was assigned by local authorities to record and make video clips to report about pandemic prevention efforts of the island. The news report was then sent to local outlets for information dissemination about COVID-19.

Nhựt also said this task helped him meet a lot of local officials, medical workers and soldiers who are all working hard to prevent COVID-19 and ensure safety for local residents. 

Nhựt recalled a time when his delegation travelled to Hòn Giang island to collect samples for COVID-19 testing, and there was a thunderstorm bringing in heavy rains and strong waves.

"All people on the boat got wet and felt nervous but we were still determined to overcome difficulties to accomplish the mission,” he said.

Although volunteering in the islands seems difficult as it requires travelling a lot by boat, Nhựt and his team received support from local islanders who are willing to cooperate in taking samples for testing as well as prepare meals for the volunteers. 

“I hope that local residents in the island would strictly abide by COVID-19 prevention and control regulations in order to keep the island free from the pandemic,” he said. 

HCM City to care for employees affected by COVID-19 during Tet

Ho Chi Minh City’s trade union will focus on caring for and supporting employees who have lost their jobs or have unstable jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic during the upcoming Lunar New Year (Tet) Festival, said Vice President of the municipal Labour Confederation Pham Chi Tam.

Tam said support activities during Tet will also target female workers who are pregnant or raising children under 6 years old with difficult circumstances; employees who have owed wages and have labour contracts suspended; nurses, doctors, and health workers on duty to prevent and control the COVID-19 pandemic; labourers with difficult circumstances undergoing COVID-19 treatment; trade union members and trade union members' children that are entitled to free heart surgery; workers in difficult circumstances at enterprises that have not yet established grassroots trade unions but have trade union funds.

Local trade unions’ members, public employees, and labourers suffering from occupational accidents and diseases that have difficult circumstances will be still supported during Tet as usual.

The city’s all-level trade unions aim to mobilise and donate 35,000 train, coach and plane tickets to union members and employees.

In addition, the municipal Labour Confederation will also organise the 2nd "Spring train" programme to take typical trade union member’s relatives back home to celebrate Tet this year.

Tam said with the motto "All union members and employees have Tet", grassroots trade unions will coordinate with employers to develop a plan to pay salaries and other social benefits to employees on the occasion of the Lunar New Year festival.

Relevant units should soon publicly announce the time of salary payment, bonus and Tet holiday schedules of enterprises so that employees can arrange jobs and stablise production at the end of the year./.

Viet Nam plans to vaccinate adolescents aged 12-18 against COVID-19 this month

Viet Nam plans to vaccinate adolescents aged between 12 and 17 against COVID-19 in October, said Deputy Minister of Health Tran Van Thuan at a meeting with voters in Ho Chi Minh City on October 9.

The ministry will then make plan to vaccinate children aged below 12, said Tran, adding that from now to the end of this year, at least 120 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine will arrive in Viet Nam.

The Southeast Asian nation targets that more than 70 percent of its population aged 18 years and older will receive one shot of COVID-19 vaccine by the end of 2021.

The nation has administered 51,968,108 COVID-19 out of 74 million doses received so far, with 14,242,628 people having taken two jabs. 

Viet Nam signed contracts to purchase a total of 51 million vaccine doses from Pfizer, of which 20 million doses are for minors aged between 12 and 17.

For children aged below 12, the Government would work with vaccine suppliers and step up domestic vaccine research to acquire vaccines as soon as possible, said Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh at a meeting on August 28.

Quang Ninh looks to take lead in IT application in COVID-19 fight

Apart from striving for all eligible residents to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the northern province of Quang Ninh is also working hard to take the lead nationwide in the application of information technology in the COVID-19 combat.

Secretary of the Quang Ninh Party Committee Nguyen Xuan Ky, who is also head of the provincial steering committee for COVID-19 prevention and control, has asked the departments of health and public security, along with localities, to standardise data and ensure smooth connection and integration of information.

Moving to enhance its IT deployment capacity in the pandemic fight, Quang Ninh is considering the trial application of artificial intelligence (AI) at the checkpoint on Bach Dang bridge and will expand this model if it proves effective. It is also boosting the use of QR codes at agencies, businesses, and stores, and requests visitors to those places to scan QR codes in order to serve contact tracing.

Efforts are being made from provincial to grassroots levels to carry out integration and application solutions on the basis of the national population database, which is useful to not only the building of an e-administration, digital economy, and digital society, but also the fight against COVID-19.

Established on September 1, the Quang Ninh command centre for COVID-19 prevention and control is based at the headquarters of the provincial People’s Committee and uses the existing infrastructure of the local smart city operation centre. It is connected with 13 command centres at the district level and 177 others at the communal level.

Via the camera system, it has discovered wrongdoings in the implementation of anti-pandemic regulations at several checkpoints while entry and exit procedures for people were handled there, helping to make rectification in a timely manner.

Many activities of the provincial command centre have been integrated such as reading and submitting reports, issuing directions, managing documents and tasks, convening teleconferences, and receiving and replying to people and businesses’ opinions. Thanks to that, it has managed to gain a panorama as well as precise and continuous updates on the pandemic situation, keep contact with all-level centres around the clock, and make swift decisions to serve the COVID-19 fight.

In addition, the provincial command centre set up two hotlines, 0203.223.588 and 0869.9199.588, available in four foreign languages (English, Japanese, Korean, and Chinese) to receive information about the pandemic. The hotlines handles around 80 - 100 calls per day most of which ask for details about conditions for exiting and entering the province, quarantine procedures, and the vaccination policy.

Besides, the centre has advised the provincial People’s Committee on anti-pandemic measures when socio-economic activities are resumed, along with COVID-19 vaccination for foreigners living in Quang Ninh. It has also directed, examined, and promoted the implementation of measures against COVID-19 in the province.

By taking early actions from the grassroots level and prioritising pandemic prevention, Quang Ninh has succeeded in surmounting different waves of coronavirus infections.

So far, it has stayed free of community transmission of the coronavirus for more than 100 days and basically completed administering the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine to all eligible residents.

The provincial administration has issued a plan to give the second doses, looking to finish the vaccination by October 30.

Authorities are also taking strong actions to prevent the virus from entering the province so as to keep the local situation stable in the “new normal”.

In 2021, Quang Ninh eyes a growth rate of 10 percent in the gross regional domestic product (GRDP) and more than 51 trillion VND (over 2.2 billion USD) in State budget revenue, thereby achieving the twin targets of curbing COVID-19 and boosting socio-economic development.

Its GRDP increased 8.6 percent in the first nine months of this year, higher than the nation’s average level./.

Ha Noi announces 20 hotels designated for COVID-19 quarantine

Ha Noi has selected 20 hotels designated for quarantining arrivals after the capital city agreed to resume passenger transport from/to Ho Chi Minh City and Da Nang.
These hotels are:

1. Hyatt Regency West Ha Noi at No. 36 Le Duc Tho Street, Nam Tu Liem District.

2. Sofitel Legend Metropole at No. 15 Ngo Quyen Street, Hoan Kiem District.

3. InterContinental Ha Noi Westlake at No. 5 Tu Hoa Street, Tay Ho District.

4. Muong Thanh Grand Ha Noi Hotel at No. 66 Phuc La Street, Ha Dong District.

5. The Ann Ha Noi Hotel at No. 38A Hang Chuoi Street, Ha Ba Trung District.

6. Silk Path Hotel at No. 195-199 Hang Bong Street, Hoan Kiem District.

7. Whyndham Garden Ha Noi Hotel in To Huu Street, Ha Dong District.

8. Hilton Garden Inn Hotel at No. 20 Phan Chu Trinh Street, Hoan Kiem District.

9. Sunway Hotel at No. 19 Pham Dinh Ho Street, Hai Ba Trung District.

10. Muong Thanh Hotel at Plot CC2 Bac Linh Dam Residential Area, Dai Kim Ward, Hoang Mai District.

11. Hoa Binh Hotel at No. 27 Ly Thuong Kiet Street, Hoan Kiem  District.

12. New Era Hotel at No. 17 Nguyen Van Cu Street, Long Bien District.

13. Hacinco Hotel at No. 110 Thai Thinh Street, Dong Da District.

14. Binh An 3 Hotel in Lam Nghiep Village, Minh Phu Commune, Soc Son District.

15. Binh An 2 Hotel in Song Cong Village, Trung Gia Commune, Soc Son District.

16. Binh An 1 Hotel in Binh An Village, Trung Gia District, Soc Son District.

17. Lake Side Hotel at No. 23 Ngoc Khanh Street, Ba Dinh District.

18. La Bellle Vie Hotel at No, 101 - 103 – 105 Nguyen Truong To Street, Ba Dinh District.

19. Top Hotel at No. 188 Le Quang Dao Street, Nam Tu Liem District.

20. Muong Thanh Ha Noi Grand Center Hotel at No. 78 Tho Nhuom Street, Hoan Kiem District.

As reported earlier, passengers departing from HCMC to Ha Noi shall be required to:

(i) Have full vaccination certificate (with the second dose taken at least 14 days and no more than 12 months before departure time), or COVID-19 recovery certificate issued within 6 months before departure time.

(ii) Have negative COVID-19 test certificate issued within 72 hours before departure time.

(iii) Comply with the Ministry of Health’s 5K message.

These passengers shall be subject to seven-day quarantine at Ha Noi’s designated sites or hotels and pay for all quarantine and testing fees.

After undergoing the mandatory quarantine period, these passengers shall have to self-monitor their health at home for another week./.

Vietnamese children in Australia hold concerts to raise funds for COVID-19 fight at home

Vietnamese children in Sydney have raised AUD7,532 (US$5,505) by holding a series of concerts to support COVID-19 prevention and control activities in Ho Chi Minh City and pandemic-hit people in Central Highlands province of Dak Lak.

Khoi Anh, the mother of two children who perform at the concert, said that her family has kept a close watch on COVID-19 developments in Vietnam and HCM City and wish to do something to ease difficulties facing pandemic-hit people, especially children.

Through the concerts, she hopes to nurture her children’s sense of sympathy with other people’s difficulties and willingness to support the needy, while becoming more closely to the homeland.

Earlier in June, the Vietnamese Embassy in Canberra and the Vietnamese General Consulates in Sydney and Perth called for support from the Vietnamese community in the country in COVID-19 prevention and control at home.

In response to the call, many Vietnamese associations, businesses, entrepreneurs, students and Vietnamese people in Australia have donate cash to the activities, while engaging in many activities to support pandemic fight in Vietnam and call for Australia’s assistance in COVID-19 vaccine to Vietnam.

HCM City field hospitals to accomplish COVID-19 mission soon

Field hospitals in Ho Chi Minh City, the largest coronavirus hotspot in Vietnam, have done their goods job over the past months and will suspend operations in the coming months, according to the municipal Department of Health.

Since July 2021, the city has established 16 field hospitals with many of them converted from resettlement areas. Their main task is to receive and treat asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic F0 cases.

With the prolonged coronavirus outbreak being gradually brought under control, the municipal Department of Health is mapping out a plan to suspend these hospitals’ operations and return them to the local administration to meet residents and students’ accommodation demand when the city moves into the post-pandemic period.

These hospitals are expected to end their mission in October, November and December, respectively. Field hospitals No. 3, 6, and 8 in Thu Thiem Resettlement Area will stop their operations in December.

The department is also making a plan to receive and manage intensive care unit (ICU) centres developed by the Ministry of Health and managed by centrally-run hospitals.

These ICU centres have played an important role in reducing the mortality rate by half to just 100 cases at present.

Changed mindset needed in COVID-19 control and prevention: PM

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has requested the administrations at all levels to change their mindset and adjust COVID-19 prevention and control measures to suit the real situation.

According to an annoucement of the PM's conclusion at the meeting of the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control on October 9, PM Chinh, who is also head of the committee, asked localities across the country to focus on a number of major tasks, including issuing documents detailing pandemic control measures in accordance with the government's directions.

They should show close coordination in transporting, receiving and managing people returning from other localities, considering vaccination as the key solution in pandemic fight, designing suitable roadmap to safely, flexibly and effectively adapt to COVID-19 and recover business and production, the Government leader said.

At the same time, they should increase communications in a specific and transparent manner to avoid wrongful information from hostile forces, the PM asked.

He also assigned the Ministry of Health to continue giving directions to localities on safe and effective vaccination activities.

The Ministry of Information and Communications and the Ministry of Public Security were requested to work together in operating a united database serving pandemic prevention and control activities.

At the same time, the Ministries of National Defence, Public Security, and Health were asked to collaborate closely with localities in regulating backup forces to ensure close monitoring over the pandemic.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs was requested to cooperate with relevant ministries, sectors and localities to implement a roadmap to apply COVID-19 vaccine passport.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Education and Training was directed to design plans on safe teaching and studying and allowing students to return to school, especially in remote, mountainous and island areas./.

Localities told to seriously follow direction on resuming passenger transport

The Prime Minister has demanded localities seriously comply with the order for passenger transport resumption given the importance of this type of transport.

An official dispatch signed by Deputy PM Le Van Thanh on behalf of the PM on October 10 asked leaders of ministries, ministry-level agencies, Government agencies, steering committees for COVID-19 prevention and control, and provincial-level People’s Committees to ensure safe and flexible organisation of passenger transport alongside effective control of COVID-19.

It noted the resumption of passenger transport in the current situation holds special importance to reactivating production and business activities and meeting people’s travel demand.

On October 8, the PM ordered air transport to be reopened, but the Ministry of Transport (MoT) reported that some localities have yet to adhere to this request or regulations set by the MoT and the Ministry of Health, the dispatch said, telling localities to make review and seriously comply with the abovementioned instructions.

To meet economic recovery and travel demand, the MoT was asked to base on the Health Ministry’s guidance on COVID-19 prevention and control to closely work with localities to issue rules and guidelines on rail and road transport of passengers nationwide, within three days since the date of the dispatch issuance./.

HCM City to further ease measures by mid-month to speed up recovery

HCM City authorities have said they will ease social distancing measures further by October 15 as part of reopening the economy as the COVID-19 pandemic comes under control.

 

Speaking on a TV programme called ‘People Ask - The City Authority Responds’ on Friday (Oct 8), Phan Thị Thắng, vice chairwoman of the city People’s Committee, said: “We cannot eradicate the virus completely. We have to accept to live safely with it.” 

She said people need to remain highly cautious and strictly comply with preventive measures.

The city has recently focused on speeding up vaccination for workers in industrial parks and export processing zones. 

Nearly 100 per cent of adults aged 18 and above have received at least one shot and nearly 70 per cent have got two, which enables the reopening, Thắng said. 

“The city will continue to speed up vaccination, especially for workers at wholesale markets and other locations where consumer goods are gathered so that the city will not be locked down again.” 

Support to businesses

The Government plans a range of measures to help businesses such as reducing corporate income tax by 30 per cent for businesses with a turnover of up to VNĐ200 billion, and a similar cut in VAT (between October 1 and December 31) for certain sectors.

Small business households will be exempt from tax for the third and fourth quarters of 2021.

The city has worked with banks to remove difficulties related to borrowing by businesses and reduce interest rates.

Small and medium-sized enterprises, business households and individuals need to directly contact banks for preferential loans, Thắng said. 

Business households can get loans of up to VNĐ2 billion and individuals can get VNĐ100 million. 

Poor and near-poor people will be able to borrow more than once (up to VNĐ100 million at an interest rate of 0.5 per cent per month).

Many businesses have expressed concern about the high cost of COVID testing, but Thắng said, “the city cannot subsidise businesses any more.” 

But the costs are treated as expenses for tax purposes, she pointed out.

Tourism resumes

HCM City has allowed tourism activities to resume in Cần Giờ and Củ Chi districts where the pandemic is under much better control.

From November it would allow people from the city to travel to other provinces, Thắng said.

The city has agreed with Hà Giang Province authorities that travellers from the city who have been fully vaccinated can travel to the northern border province without needing to quarantine.

Regarding labour demand, Thắng said many businesses and associations in the city have compiled a list of people in other provinces who need to return to work. 

The city will create condition for those who want to find jobs in the city. For example, the city’s employment centre and the Youth Union will help them find jobs for free.

The city will also give priority of vaccines for workers in provinces who want to return to work in the city.

The country’s pandemic hotspot early this month lifted its lockdown measures. It has allowed almost all businesses in the city with a limited number of people allowed to gather at the same time.

Non-essential services and businesses (such as beauty salons, karaoke venues, pubs, bars and massage parlours, cinemas, video game venues, on-site catering services), and street vendors and street ticket sellers, have remained prohibited.

The city has imposed various levels of lockdown measures since late May. It has had more than 400,000 cases since late April. More than 15,000 people have died of the virus in the city. 

Efforts made to complete ship lock ahead of storm season

Ensuring a safe shelter for vessels during the storm season is a pressing need in Vietnam’s coastal provinces. With more than 3,000 boats, including more than 750 large-capacity offshore fishing vessels, the central province of Quang Nam is working hard to upgrade ship locks for thousands of boats to find shelter during storms. 

In recent storms, the An Hoa ship lock, located between Tam Quang and Tam Giang communes in Nui Thanh district, Quang Nam province, has become a safe shelter for thousands of fishing vessels. The province is continuing to invest nearly 100 billion VND (around 4.5 million USD) in building two breakwaters and a network of internal roads to provide a safe shelter for vessels with a high capacity of over 1000 CV during the storm season.

Every year, local fishermen in Quang Nam province catch over 94,000 tonnes of seafood of all types. To ensure safe fishing during the storm season, the province has worked hard to speed up construction of key works, especially the An Hoa ship lock, so that they can be put into use before this year’s storm season.

With a coastline stretching more than 125 km and an exclusive economic zone of more than 40,000 sq km, Quang Nam identifies fishing as a key economic sector. Therefore, in addition to efforts to build a logistics service base for fisheries to meet the needs of long-term seafaring, the investment in building more ship locks for vessels to avoid storms has been a pressing need./.

Hanoi agrees to resumption of air routes to Da Nang, HCM City

The People’s Committee of Hanoi has agreed with the Ministry of Transport on the reopening of air routes connecting the capital city with major cities of Da Nang and Ho Chi Minh City.

Accordingly, commercial flights between Hanoi-HCM City and Hanoi-Da Nang were resumed on October 10 with one return flight per day at half of capacity until October 20.

Hanoi has proposed that the Ministry of Transport continue to suspend railway passenger transport to the capital city, as well as flights on other routes to the capital city's Noi Bai airport.

The city will continue to evaluate the pandemic risks based on COVID-19 vaccine coverage in order to make further adjustment to transport plans.

In order to ensure safety, Hanoi also proposed a number of measures on passengers arriving in Noi Bai International Airport.

The passengers must show a certificate of full vaccination with the second dose taken at least 14 days and no more than 12 months before departure time, or a COVID-19 recovery certificate issued within 6 months before departure time.

They should have negative COVID-19 test certificate issued within 72 hours before departure time, while implementing the Ministry of Health’s 5K message.

These passengers will be subject to seven-day quarantine at designated sites or hotels in Hanoi and pay for all quarantine and testing fees.

After undergoing the mandatory quarantine period, these passengers will have to self-monitor their health at home for another week.

Similar requirements are also given to passengers from Da Nang. However, they are allowed to isolate themselves at home or place of residence for seven days and get tested for COVID-19 on the 1st and 6th day upon arrival.

They are requested to continue self-monitoring their health at home or place of residence for one subsequent week.

As of October 8, the capital city has injected over 8 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to local residents (97.8 percent of the population over 18 years old and 70.9 percent of the overall population) with over 2.14 million people receiving full two shots./.

Deputy PM Le Van Thanh urges watching out for upcoming storm Kompasu

Deputy Prime Minister and head of the National Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control Le Van Thanh has asked relevant agencies and localities to keep up caution and prepare for an upcoming storm.

He made the request at a meeting of the committee on October 10 to review the response to storm Lionrock, which has weakened into a depression, and preparation for storm Kompasu, which is forecast to enter the East Sea in the next several days.

The Deputy PM noted that prompt preparations have helped minimize losses from storm Lionrock, but vigilance is still needed as big rains in the storm’s aftermath will continue for some days.

Besides, storm Kompasu is on its way to the East Sea, expected to become the eighth storm to hit the country this year. Kompasu is forecast to be stronger and move faster than storm Lionrock, so careful preparation is needed, he said.

Deputy PM Thanh underlined the need to check and ensure the safety of reservoirs and dams as well as important dykes. He reminded local administrations to help farmers harvest crops, while still following pandemic prevention regulations.

Head of the Vietnam Disaster Management Authority Tran Quang Hoai asked localities to prepare food and essential goods for emergency situations, and have plans to give shelters to migrant workers who are travelling from the south to their hometown in the north after prolonged lockdowns. 

Vietnamese children in Australia hold concerts to raise funds for COVID-19 fight at home

Vietnamese children in Sydney have raised 7,532 AUD (5,505 USD) by holding a series of concerts to support COVID-19 prevention and control activities in Ho Chi Minh City and pandemic-hit people in Central Highlands province of Dak Lak.

Khoi Anh, the mother of two children who perform at the concert, said that her family has kept a close watch on COVID-19 developments in Vietnam and HCM City and wish to do something to ease difficulties facing pandemic-hit people, especially children.

Through the concerts, she hopes to nurture her children’s sense of sympathy with other people’s difficulties and willingness to support the needy, while becoming more closely to the homeland.

Earlier in June, the Vietnamese Embassy in Canberra and the Vietnamese General Consulates in Sydney and Perth called for support from the Vietnamese community in the country in COVID-19 prevention and control at home.

In response to the call, many Vietnamese associations, businesses, entrepreneurs, students and Vietnamese people in Australia have donate cash to the activities, while engaging in many activities to support pandemic fight in Vietnam and call for Australia’s assistance in COVID-19 vaccine to Vietnam./.

Top leaders meet voters ahead of NA second session

In preparation for the second session of the 15th National Assembly, General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong and members of the Hanoi National Assembly Delegation had an online meeting with voters in districts of Ba Dinh, Dong Da, and Hai Ba Trung in Hanoi, on October 9.

At the meeting, the capital’s voters gave their opinions on various issues of people’s concern, such as the fight against corruption, the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic, social security, and economic development, among others.

Appreciating the opinions as well as the enthusiasm of voters, the Party Chief stressed their voice will be heard at the NA session.

Trong also suggested voters and people nationwide continue to monitor, supervise, and give timely opinions to the Party and State, actively joining hands in the cause of the national construction and development.

On the same day, State President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and the Ho Chi Minh City National Assembly Delegation met with voters who are working in the city's health sector in an online form.

A number of proposals were made by the voters, including those on vaccination program for students, instructions on the payment for COVID-19 patients having health insurance cards, and improvement of grassroots medical network system.

The State President shared with the pain and loss caused by the pandemic that the city’s people have suffered. He also expressed his deep respect and sympathy for the hardships of the frontline forces, especially those in the health sector.

Meeting with voters of the northern city of Hai Phong via videoconference on October 9, National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue said the NA will issue an overall strategy based on scientific data to offer scenarios and solutions to the pandemic.

Besides, the legislature will also look into a master plan on post-pandemic economic, social, educational, medical and cultural recovery, he added.

In order to help people and businesses amid difficulties, Hue said in the near future, the NA is going to have more policies to offer tax exemption and reduction and payment delay./.

President urges HCM City to control risks following reopening measures

President Nguyen Xuan Phuc has asked Ho Chi Minh City to come up with options and plans for monitoring post-reopening risks on a larger scale.

The leader made the request when attending an online meeting with voters from the municipal health sector on October 9, urging the city improve its COVID-19 vaccination and treatment capacity.

He expressed his deep sympathy to local people on their great sufferings and losses caused by the epidemic in recent days as well as to healh workers regarding their hardships in caring for patients. He also appreciated the determination of the city's authorities and people to overcome difficulties and return to the normal life.

On the basis of the city's economic recovery and reconstruction plan, Phuc agreed with the voters' proposals on risk control on a broader scale following the city’s reopening, vaccine coverage expansion, and measures to minimise the number of deaths.

The President also asked the city to coordinate with and support neighbouring localities.

HCM City should pay more attention to forecasting work, improving the local health sector’s response capacity, and staying proactive in responding to any arising situations, he noted.

At the meeting, participating voters, who are medical staff at hospitals and health centres, and lecturers of medical universities, presented 21 opinions.

In response, Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Phan Van Mai said the city’s plan considers strengthening the health system a key pillar. The city will study the idea of developing a hospital model for post-COVID-19 mental and psychological care, and promote the combination of military and civil medicine, among others./.

HCM City assists foreigners in difficulties

The People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City has recently issued a plan to support foreigners who fall into difficulties due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the city.

Accordingly, the municipal military high command will work with authorities of Thu Duc city, districts, departments and agencies to arrange accommodation along with meals for foreigners in concentrated quarantine facilities.

The municipal People’s Committee assigned the local police to ensure security and safety in those facilities.

The municipal Health Department must also ensure necessary medical supplies there and offer training courses on pandemic prevention and control./.

President Nguyen Xuan Phuc commemorates leading professor

President Nguyen Xuan Phuc on October 9 visited the family of Prof. Vu Khieu to extend condolences over the death of the professor on September 30.Prof. Vu Khieu’s real name is Dang Vu Khieu. He was born on September 19, 1916 in Hanh Thien village, Xuan Hong commune, Xuan Truong district, the northern province of Nam Dinh.

He used to be head of the information and training department at Viet Bac Military Zone and a member of the first-generation bodyguard force of President Ho Chi Minh. After 1954, he took to sociology and culture research and became a founder of Vietnam’s sociology sector.

He was also appointed as the first Director of the Vietnam Institute of Sociology, Deputy Director of the Vietnam News Agency and deputy head of the Committee on Social Sciences, now known as Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences.

Khieu was one of the first scholars to receive Professor title in Vietnam. He authored and co-authored hundreds of books in the field of philosophy, ethics, literature, arts, socio-culture, as well as Vietnamese celebrities, culturalists and writers.

With his great and eminent dedication to the country, Prof. Khieu was honoured with Ho Chi Minh Award in 1995, the title of labour hero in the renovation period in 2000, the first-class Independence Order in 2006, and the title of outstanding citizen of Hanoi capital city in 2010 and other noble distinctions./.

HCM City launches app connecting philanthropists with needy people

Ho Chi Minh City's welfare centre on October 9 launched its app that facilitates philanthropists' assistance for needy people.

Using the app, people in need can send their requests for aid packages worth 300,000, 400,000 and 700,000 VND (13, 17.6, and 30.8 USD). After a seven-day process following the acceptance of the donors, the centre will present the gifts to the requesters.

The launch was part of a ceremony to kick off the city’s action month for the poor this year.

Speaking at the ceremony, Chairwoman of the municipal Vietnam Fatherland Front Committee To Thi Bich Chau highlighted the participation of the entire society, including organisations, businesses, and individuals, in charity work in the city.

She urged continued assistance to come in aid of the needy, orphans, and other disadvantaged groups in HCM City so that they can soon overcome their difficulties.

At the event, the committee raised more than 10 billion VND, while the centre received the donation of 15,000 welfare packages valued at 4.5 billion VND in total.

In the first nine months of this year, the city collected 115 billion VND for its fund for the poor and spent 113 billion VND on building and upgrading charity houses as well as grant scholarships and gifts for the group, among other activities./.

Live streams on COVID-19 vaccination on Facebook

Facebook will live-stream expert information and online exchanges between health experts and the public every month on COVID-19 vaccination under a communication campaign launched by the Ministry of Health.

The launch of the campaign, ‘Tiêm vắc xin- Vững niềm tin’ (Get Vaccinated - Keep the Faith) was live-streamed on Friday (October 8) on the ministry’s Facebook page Sức Khỏe Việt Nam (Việt Nam Health) and www.facebook.com/facebookappVietnam.

The campaign, to last until the end of this year, conveys the message of getting vaccinated to protect oneself and their family and community.

It will carry 12 short video clips on various topics and a music video to raise public awareness about the pandemic and vaccination.

Attending the online launch, Deputy Minister of Health Trần Văn Thuấn said the pandemic situation remains dire not only in Việt Nam but also the rest of the world, and vaccination is one of the most important ways to stop it quickly.

“More than ever, each person should exercise personal responsibility towards the community. Do get your COVID-19 vaccine when it's your turn.” 

Rafael Frankel, director of Facebook’s public policy for South Asia and Southeast Asia, said the campaign is part of his company’s efforts to keep people around the world safe and informed about the pandemic.

The campaign was one of a number of activities of "Facebook for Vietnam" campaign launched by Facebook in partnership with the US Mission to Việt Nam and other partners to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Việt Nam - US relations on May 24 last year.

Việt Nam is speeding up vaccination and calling on everyone to join hands in the fight against the pandemic. 

VN sets out to reverse Olympic woes

An Olympic medal is a dream not only of athletes but also nations. Every four years, world elite athletes gather together to vie for glory, which for many is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

In its 40 years taking part in the global event, Việt Nam has grabbed one gold, three silvers and one bronze. The poor results at the recent Tokyo Olympics have led to national sport leaders changing their minds on Việt Nam's sport investment.

"We will change our strategy. We will not focus most on the SEA Games, a regional competition, which we have done previously. We will pay attention to the Olympics and continental Asian Games (ASIAD)," said Trần Đức Phấn, deputy director of the Việt Nam Sport Administration (VSA).

In 2013, a plan for Việt Nam’s sport development to 2020 was approved. It set specific targets for each competition that the country took part in.

The SEA Games was considered the most important tournament, and the Việt Nam team was required to always make the top three. 

In ASIAD, athletes and coaches must win 2-3 golds in 2014 and 10-15 golds in 2018 and rank in the top 15. 

In the Olympics, the team was asked to have up to 40 participants and win 1 or 2 medals at the 2016 Olympics. The goal was for 30-50 athletes to compete at Olympics from 2020 to 2030 and win more than two medals, including gold.

However, most tasks remain uncompleted.

The best result since 2013 is that of gold for marksman Hoàng Xuân Vinh in the Rio Olympics in 2016. 

Other remarkable achievements include a silver at the AFC Asian U23 Championship in 2018, golds for the national men's and women's football team at the AFF Cup and SEA Games in 2019, and the national men's football team making the World Cup third-round qualification for the first time.

But these results cannot cover Việt Nam's poor performance at the 2014 ASIAD where they got one gold and ranked 21st out of 45 teams. Four years later, they took four golds and placed 16th.

At the 2012 Olympics, Việt Nam sent 18 athletes but went home with nothing. At the Rio Olympics in 2016, Vinh's gold and silver helped Việt Nam stand at 48th among 206 countries.

The historic score was expected to strongly push Việt Nam but it did not do so. Eighteen athletes flew to Tokyo with the nation's expectation, but after two weeks they returned home empty-handed.

Swimmer Nguyễn Huy Hoàng of Việt Nam took part in men's 800m and 1,500m freestyle at the Tokyo Olympics. He failed to secure a slot in the finals of both events. AFP/VNA Photo 
Speaking to the media, Phấn confirmed that there was a big gap between Vietnamese athletes and the world. And the country had many things to do to improve its Olympic record.

"Our athletes are at a lower level than world athletes in many terms. We are shorter, thinner, and weaker in both physical and mental strength," said Phấn.

"I saw two Jamaican runners who competed in the women's 100m final. They were tall, thick and muscled. Just in seconds of looking at them I guessed they would be champions, and they were.”

“Runner Quách Thị Lan, swimmer Nguyễn Huy Hoàng and boxer Nguyễn Văn Đương are considered having good shapes among local athletes. But they were small when coming to Tokyo. Meanwhile weightlifter Hoàng Thị Duyên was shaking in her Olympic debut. We were not surprised with our Tokyo result although our athletes did their best."

Phấn said it was time to make change and it would be key matter at a national conference to be held to discuss a plan for sport development until 2030, with a view to 2050, in the next few weeks. The plan will be released later this year.

"The Olympics will be our top priority, then ASIAD and the SEA Games. We will focus on Olympic sports rather than those played only in Asia and ASEAN. This change is the core of the development strategy and suitable for the reality of the sport movement in Việt Nam," said Phấn.

“No change means no way to getting closer to continent's and world's results where we still face a shortage of finance and personnel.

"Clearly, we cannot vie for medals in sports that require speed, endurance and strong physique. We will choose sports that are suitable for Vietnamese athletes so that we take golds at the 2022 ASIAD. Winning a medal at the next Olympics will be difficult but the ones after that will be possible." 

Suitable sports that Phấn mentioned are shooting, archery, taekwondo and lightweight categories of weightlifting.

Phấn’s comments have received strong agreement from experts and managers.

Nguyễn Trọng Hổ, VSA's director of the National Sports Complex, added other sports such as badminton and martial arts to the list.

"It is hard to cover all tournaments at once. If we really want to reach the Olympic level, we must invest in Olympic sports first, then sports of the other competitions," he said. "If we focus on them methodically we could vie for medals at the Olympics."

Former VSA's Head of Elite Sport Department Nguyễn Hồng Minh said winning an Olympics medal was a long journey, requiring time, money and hard work.

"Our hero marksman Vinh shot for 23 years before he could have a brilliant moment in Rio. He is an example of a long process to 'produce' an Olympic winner. But with a professional training environment, advanced technologies and facilities, a good nutrition regime and quality coaches, the time will be reduced to five to eight years," he said.

He added that sports needed to raise funds to support sport activities such as sending athletes abroad for intensive training and taking part in elite tournaments to sharpen skills.

"Apart from the state budget we should lure more financial sources from the community including from businesses. ASEAN countries such as Thailand, Singapore and Indonesia have received big support from enterprises. It is a worldwide trend to gain high results," said Minh.

"In short, a comprehensive strategy, which covers good plans, investments, social support, and talented athletes would make us medal favourites in the next one or two Olympics, instead of beating our own records."

Source: VNA/VNS/VOV/VIR/SGT/SGGP/Nhan Dan/Hanoitimes  

VIETNAM NEWS HEADLINES OCTOBER 11

VIETNAM NEWS HEADLINES OCTOBER 11

HCM City launches app connecting philanthropists with needy people