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Archive for January, 2009|Monthly archive page

RoK farmers send 175 tonnes of rice to DPRK

In Uncategorized on January 9, 2009 at 5:14 pm

Seoul (VNA) – A group of farmers from the Republic of Korea (RoK) will send 175 tonnes of rice to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), local media reported.

A ship has been arranged to collect rice from across the RoK at ports along the west coast, Yonhap news agency on January 7 cited the Korea Peasants League as saying.

The boat left the southern island of Jeju on January 5 and will depart from the port of Incheon later January 7 afternoon, Yonhap said, adding that it will likely arrive at the DPRK port of Nampo on January 8. –

Laos completes preparations for 17th APPF

In Uncategorized on January 9, 2009 at 5:13 pm

Vientiane (VNA) – Laos has completed all of the necessary preparations for the 17th Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF), slated to take place in Vientiane from Jan. 11-15.

Among the 27 member countries of the forum, 23 members have already registered, Vice President of the Lao National Assembly Saysomphone Phomvihane said on Jan. 8.

As many as 262 delegates from these countries are already on list, he added. The annual APPF meeting is expected to focus on issues relating to politics and socio-economic development. A total of 26 speeches, including six from the host country, will be given during the meeting.

In order to ensure security at the forum, a meeting chaired by Vice NA President Saysomphone Phomvihane took place on 7 Jan. for the benefit of the police, according to the Lao news agency (KPL). –

Ministry tightens bird-flu checks as threat increases

In Uncategorized on January 9, 2009 at 4:43 pm

Veterinary officers in Tien Giang Province’s Tan Phuoc District vaccinate fowls and ducks at risk of avian flu.— VNA/VNS Photo Dinh Hue

HA NOI — There is a high risk of re-occurrence of the bird-flu epidemic this year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Dev-elopment’s Veterinary Department.

The warning follows an outbreak of the disease on 19 farms in Ba Thuoc District in central Thanh Hoa Province since December 28.

The sister of a girl infected with avian influenza type A/H5N1 died in the province last Friday.

The 13-year-old girl, Bui Thi Phuong, was from Dien Trung Commune where the latest outbreak occurred. She was taken to hospital with symptoms of fever, cough and difficult breathing, said her father Bui Van Hop.

Nguyen Ngoc Thanh, deputy director of Thanh Hoa health department, said she died quickly before any tests could be made.

Earlier, her 8-year-old sister, Bui Thi Thao, was tested positive for avian influenza type A/H5N1. She was hospitalised with fever, cough, sore throat and difficult breathing.

“After five-day treatment, she is recovering,” said doctor Le Trong Dung, head of the infectious department of the Thanh Hoa Polyclinic.

Two weeks ago, both girls ate birds raised by their family. The birds are believed to have been diseased.

Thao was the first recorded human case of avian influenza type A/H5N1 in Viet Nam since last March.

Health ministry figures show that five people were infected with the H5N1 virus in 2008 – and all had died.

The Thanh Hoa veterinary department reported that the latest avian influenza strain had affected 380 fowls and led to the culling another 8,000.

To prevent the disease spreading further, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Cao Duc Phat, has sent a circular to provinces and cities urging them to set up missions to frequently check on prevention and control measures and to make sure 100 per cent of the poultry are vaccinated.

He said steps should be taken to strengthen quarantine checks on poultry and other farm animals being transported before and after Tet, the lunar New Year festival.

And he called for publicity to warn people about the dangers of catching or spreading the disease.

Relevant agencies have been asked to set strict controls over the trade, transport, slaughtering and consumption of poultry.

The ministry on Wednesday approved spending VND120 billion ($7 million) nationally on poultry vaccination for the 2009-10 period.

Local authorities had promptly quarantined the area, culled sick fowls and kept an eye on all people relating to this case, said Nguyen Ngoc Thanh, director of the provincial health department.

“Local administrations have set up check-points and increased supervision on the transport and slaughtering of poultry in Dien Trung Commune,” said Lo Van Len, vice chairman of the People’s Committee of Ba Thuoc District.

The Department of Preventive Medicine and Environment under the health ministry recommends people should not eat sick poultry and report all dead or sick birds to local authorities. They should also only eat cooked food, drink boiled water and wash their hands frequently with soap.

High-risk areas

The risk of bird flu returning to the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta is high now because the disease typically breaks out in winter, local authorities are unable to control free-range ducks.

The delta last year reported 34 bird flu outbreaks in Tra Vinh, Dong Thap, Soc Trang, Ca Mau, and Kien Giang provinces and Can Tho Citythat saw 31,350 birds killed or culled. —

Brokerage rumours spark drop in market

In Uncategorized on January 9, 2009 at 4:40 pm

HA NOI — The HCM City Stock Exchange saw the end of a short-lived rally yesterday, with the VN-Index losing 1.7 per cent on the day to close at 314.15.

Volume of yesterday’s trading reached 13 million shares for a total value of VND303.8 billion (US$17.3 million).

Decliners outnumbered advancers by 122 to 29, with 22 codes remaining unchanged or inactive. Refrigeration and Electrical Engineering (REE) suddenly took the spot as most-active shares, with 1.12 million changing hands, closely followed by Saigon Securities Inc (SSI), at a hair over a million shares.

Manh Ha, an investor with An Binh Securities Co, noted that foreign investors once again had return to be net sellers, while domestic investors were now willing to sell out if it meant as little as a 5-per-cent gain.

Despite the cancellation of its shareholder meeting, for instance, Bach Tuyet Cotton Co (BBT) continued its 10-day run of increases, with BBT shares climbed from VND3,500 to VND5,000 in yesterday’s trading as investors looked for shares that might allow some profit-taking.

Meanwhile, some investors may have also begun to sell out on growing rumours that as many as 80 per cent of securities companies were on the verge of bankruptcy.

According to analyst Huy Duong of Hoa Binh Securities, despite the falling VN-Index, yesterday’s trading marked the fifth consecutive day of higher volumes, suggesting that investor worries about the new taxes levied on income from securities investment have been decreased.

In Ha Noi yesterday, the HASTC-Index also slipped 1.27 per cent to stand at 105.67 points. Total trading volume on the northern bourse reached 5.4 million shares, for a total value of about VND152.1 billion ($8.7 million). —

RoK to invest 50 trillion won in “green” projects

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2009 at 4:15 pm

Seoul (VNA) – The government of the Republic of Korea (RoK) will invest 50 trillion won (37.87 billion USD) in “eco-friendly” development projects over the next four years, local media reported.

The investment plan, which was endorsed at an earlier cabinet meeting, aims to create nearly one million new jobs and bolster the slumping economy, the RoK’s Ministry of Strategy and Finance was quoted by Yonhap news agency as saying on January 6.

According to the ministry, 39 trillion won will be invested in nine major businesses and 11 trillion won will be spent on 27 related businesses into 2012.

The government will also push to build nationwide “green” transportation networks, including low-carbon emitting railways, bicycle roads and other public transport systems costing some 11 trillion won and creating 160,000 new jobs over the next four years. –

Cambodia marks fall of genocidal regime

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2009 at 4:12 pm

Phnom Penh (VNA) – Tens of thousands of Cambodians celebrated the 30th anniversary of Cambodia’s Liberation Day on January 7, marking the fall of the murderous Khmer Rouge regime.

Some 50,000 people packed into Phnom Penh’s Olympic Stadium for a meeting organised by the Royal Government of Cambodia and the Cambodian People’s Party (CPP), which was attended by CPP Chairman and Senate President Chea Sim, Prime Minister Hun Sen, National Assembly President Heng Samrin, ministers and military generals as well as representatives of the diplomatic corps and various international organisations .

Speaking at the meeting, Senate President Chea Sim said the victory on January 7, 1979 ended the darkest chapter in Cambodia’s history and marked the beginning of a period of independence, peace, freedom, democracy and advancement for the Southeast Asian country.

President Chea Sim, on behalf of the Cambodian people, expressed deep thanks to the Party, Government and people of Vietnam for their assistance during the struggle to topple the genocidal regime and the current course of developing the country.

He also expressed his deep gratitude to the voluntary Vietnamese soldiers who gave their lives and blood to help Cambodia free itself from the genocidal regime.

To mark the occasion, a photo exhibition was officially opened, with almost 200 documentary images, some taken by Vietnamese photographers, depicting Cambodia’s Liberation Day and the process of economic development in the country.-

Waste paper should be recycled: experts

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2009 at 4:10 pm

HCM City (VNA) – The domestic paper industry needs to increase collection and recycling of waste paper generated in offices and homes to reduce costs and improve competitiveness, experts say.

The quantity of waste paper generated in companies, offices, schools and households is very large, however there are no organisations responsible for collecting and classifying them.

According to the Paper and Cellulose Industry Institute, 100,000-120,000 tonnes of waste paper can be processed into at least 80,000 tonnes of paper pulp.

Vu Van Cuong, head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Department of Light Industry, said only about 25 percent of waste paper in the country is collected to use as raw material for paper production.

Most of the domestic waste paper generated is destroyed while the country spends a lot of money to import wastepaper from countries like the US and Japan to serve paper production in the country.

Vu Ngoc Bao, Secretary General of the Vietnam Paper Association (VPPA), said that at present, Vietnam does not have policies and guidelines that encourage collection of waste paper for recycling.

Vietnam still has not recognised the important role of wastepaper as a source of raw material in production, he added.

The efforts made so far are confined to very small programmes; for instance, one calls for teenagers to contribute at least 1kg of waste paper a month from classrooms.

Even in the national development strategy for the paper industry, the Government has emphasised producing paper pulp from wood and makes no specific plan for collecting and recycling waste paper.

Most of the collection that does happen is unplanned and carried out by scrap iron dealers.

Hanoi-based Viet Tri Company said that last year, the company needed 50,000 tonnes of waste paper in production, but they had to import 20,000 tonnes because of difficulties in sourcing it locally.

VPPA has proposed the Government issues policies and regulations encouraging the collection and recycling of waste paper, and implement a national programme of collecting and recycling paper.

The Government also needs to increase public awareness about the value of saving and recycling paper in reducing deforestation and environmental pollution.-

Traffic jams worsen as Tet draws near

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2009 at 3:41 pm

HCM CITY— An already bad situation is set to get worse during the Tet (Lunar New Year) season as more people come into the city and jostle for space on roads narrowed by hundreds of construction projects, traffic police say.

Traffic jams will increase significantly in the run up to the festival as rising numbers of people come in from neighboring provinces and more trains run through the city during peak hours.

More city residents are also going to be out shopping for the festival, the police note.

From January 12 onwards, the Sai Gon Railway Station will double its operational services to meet Tet demand, making traffic congestion unavoidable as the rail route runs through 14 crossings with city streets.

Traffic jams lasting from one to two hours have become a common occurrence on many city streets and intersections including Truong Chinh, Cach Mang Thang 8, Bay Hien crossroads, Le Thi Rieng Park, the Tan Ky-Tan Quy junction and the Hoa Hung market.

Gridlocks happen even during non-peak hours on national highways connecting HCM City to neighbouring provinces including Binh Duong, Dong Nai and Long An.

The city People’ s Committee has instructed relevant agencies and departments to minimise the number of traffic jams and clear up the congestion as soon as it happens.

The Department of Transport has been assigned the task of regulating traffic flow on streets surrounded by construction fences and prone to heavy traffic jams, such as Luy Ban Bich, Au Co, Ly Chinh Thang.

The department will ensure 116 out of 240 construction fences are removed from 25 streets before the Tet festival, officials said.—

HASTC to become stock exchange

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2009 at 3:37 pm

Brokerage representatives at work at the Ha Noi Securities Trading Centre, which has received Government aprroval to become a stock exchange. — VNA/VNS Huy Hung

HA NOI — The Government has approved the Ha Noi Securities Trading Centre’s plans to become the Ha Noi Stock Exchange.

Decision 01-2009/QD-TTg, issued Tuesday, says the new exchange, with charter capital of VND1 trillion (US$58.8 million), will operate as a single – member State-owned limited company.

It will be subject to independent audit.

The decision stipulates that the new exchange will continue to have the rights and responsibilities of the securities trading centre.

Ha Noi Securities Trading Centre director Nguyen Vu Quang Trung said yesterday that although he had yet to be officially notified of the decision, he had read about it on the Government website.

“We proposed the conversion long ago and it’s good to have finally been given the nod,” he said.

A stock exchange would help raise transparency for investors.

State Securities Commission Market Development Department director Nguyen Son said the conversion to a stock exchange would take time.

“It’s a long and complicated process,” he said.

“It does not mean that the government has said the centre will become the exchange tomorrow.”

The Ha Noi Securities Trading Centre opened in 2005, and manages securities trading of the listed firms with charter capital of over VND5 billion ($294,117).

Small caps northbound

All firms with charter capital of less than VND80 billion ($4.7 million) listed with the HCM City Stock Exchange will have to transfer to the Ha Noi Securities Trading Centre by February 9 to meet the provisions of Government Decree 14/ND-CP.

“The question I ask myself is can the Ha Noi centre upgrade its criteria for listed firms when it changes to an exchange?” said Tung Linh, who holds shares in Nhi Hiep Brisk – one of the companies listed for transfer.

“And if the answer is yes, where will my shares go?”

Many investors with shares in similar companies listed on the HCM City Stock Exchange are asking the same question.

But Ha Noi Securities Trading Centre director Nguyen Vu Quang Trung said the transfer would happen as a matter of course because the Government’s decision ensured that all the rights and responsibilities of the trading centre would be maintained.

HCM City Stock Exchange spokesperson Le Hai Tra said the exchange would support listed companies making the compulsory transfer to protect both them and investors.

“The movement is necessary to increase the transparency for investors because each exchange has its own criteria for providing investors with specific goods,” he said. —

China, Japan to hold 9th strategic dialogue

In Uncategorized on January 7, 2009 at 3:42 pm

Beijing (VNA) – China and Japan will hold their 9 th strategic dialogue in Tokyo on January 9, Xinhua news agency reported on January 5.

China’s Vice Foreign Minister Wang Guangya and Japan’s Deputy Foreign Minister Mitoji Yabunaka will head delegations to the dialogue, said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang.

The two sides will exchange views on bilateral ties and other international and regional issues.
China and Japan have held eight rounds of strategic dialogues. The last round was held in Beijing in February, 2008.-