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Archive for April 23rd, 2010|Daily archive page

2,100 by-sea visitors arrive in HCM City

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:41 pm

2,100 by-sea visitors arrive in HCM City

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:24 (GMT+7)

The cruise ship, Costa Romantica, has just docked in Navi-Oil port, Ho Chi Minh City.

The arrival of the cruiser is part of a scheduled visit arranged by Saigontourist.

According to the travel agent, 2,100 tourists from Europe visit Vietnam during April 20th and 22nd. During their stay in Vietnam, they were to tour to landmarks in Ho Chi Minh City, My Tho, Da Nang, Hoi An, My Son and Hue.

According to the travel company, it has welcomed more than 25,000 by-sea tourists, mainly from Europe.

Source: NLD

Translated by Thu Nguyen

Source: QDND

Aviation, tourism sectors promote Vietnam’s image

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:40 pm

Aviation, tourism sectors promote Vietnam’s image

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:27 (GMT+7)

Aviation-tourism cooperation is vital to the development of the two sectors and greatly benefits the country, Nguyen Van Tuan, Director General of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), said in Hanoi on April 22.

Addressing a seminar on boosting aviation-tourism cooperation, Mr Tuan said between 70-80 percent of passengers travelling by air do so for tourism purposes while up to 80 percent of foreign tourists come to Vietnam by air.

Vietnam boasts large tourism potential and diversified products and its tourism market is able to compete against other major regional tourism destinations, affirmed Deputy Head of the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam (CAAV) Lai Xuan Thanh.

The aviation sector plays an important role in serving national tourism development, he stressed.

Meanwhile, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Tran Chien Thang said that the primary task of both the aviation and tourism sectors is to promote Vietnam’s image abroad..

There are more than 20 foreign airlines operating in the country apart from the Vietnam national flag carrier. With around 20 airports for regular civil flights, Vietnam now boasts more than 800 international and thousands of domestic travel agents.

Source: VNA-VOV

Source: QDND

New air routes connect Hanoi, central Vietnam

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:40 pm

New air routes connect Hanoi, central Vietnam

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:27 (GMT+7)

Vietnam Airlines has announced that it will open a direct air route connecting Hanoi and Chu Lai in the central province of Quang Nam and restore flights between Hanoi and Vinh.

Beginning June 2, the national carrier will operate four flights per week on the Hanoi-Chu Lai route, on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, using Fikker 70 aircraft. The Hanoi-Vinh route, beginning May 12, will offer flights on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays, using ATR 73 aircraft.

To promote the new routes, for a limited time, Vietnam Airlines is offering one-way tickets priced at VND300,000 for the Hanoi-Vinh route and one-way tickets priced at VND400,000 for the Hanoi-Chu Lai route.

Vietnam Airlines Director General Pham Ngoc Minh says the new routes are being opened to meet customer demand, increase cultural exchanges, trade and investment, and contribute to turning Vietnam’s central provinces into a key economic and tourist region.

The airline says it will add 224 more flights to domestic routes between April 22 and May 4 during celebrations of the death anniversary of the Hung Kings, the Liberation of South Vietnam and May Day. These new flights, employing mainly Airbus 320s/321s/330s and Boeing 777s, include 38 flights between Hanoi and HCM City, 36 between HCM City and Danang, and 30 between Hanoi and Danang.

On its international routes, the national carrier will increase the numbers of flights linking Hanoi to Siem Reap, Singapore, Seoul, Tokyo, and Guangzhou, and linking HCM City to Seoul, Osaka, Singapore, and Kuala Lumpur.
Source: VOV

Source: QDND

Vovinam artists to compete in France

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:39 pm

Vovinam artists to compete in France

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:27 (GMT+7)

An 18-member delegation of the traditional Vietnamese martial art (Vovinam) has arrived in France for a France-Vietnam international Vovinam tournament on April 24-27.

The delegation was led by Nguyen Danh Thai, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, who is also President of the International Vovinam Federation (IVF).

During the tournament, the IVF executive committee will meet with leaders of more than 30 European countries and territories to discuss ways of promoting the development of Vovinam in Europe. 

Delegates will also draw up a plan to establish the European Vovinam Federation in 2011 and organise a European Vovinam Championship on this occasion.

Source: VOV

Source: QDND

CBA to buy 15 % of shares in VIB

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:39 pm

CBA to buy 15 % of shares in VIB

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:24 (GMT+7)

Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) Vietnam International Commercial Bank (VIB) have just announced an agreement on strategic cooperation.

Under the agreement, CBA will buy 15 per cent of the shares in VIB and become a VIB’s foreign strategic investor.

In addition to the role as an investor, CBA as a strategic partner, will transfer banking technology and augment business capacity for VIB in the future as well as closely collaborating in seeking business opportunities.

CBA, with its estimated total asset of US$ 785 billion and total capital of US$ 85 billion, has been present in the Vietnamese market for 16 years and officially founded its representative office in Ho Chi Minh City in August 2008.

Top representatives of the two partners also released that CBA would raise its share in VIB to 20 per cent in 2011 if the local government allowed.

Source: HNM

Translated by Thu Nguyen

Source: QDND

Contractors sign $2.1 bln thermal power project

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:38 pm

Contractors sign $2.1 bln thermal power project

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:24 (GMT+7)

Five contracts to build the US$2.1 billion Mong Duong thermo-power plant No 2 in the northern province of Quang Ninh were signed on April 22.

The project is co-sponsored by American Electric Supply, Inc (AES) and the Vietnam National Coal and Minerals Industries Group (Vinacomin-TKV), with an estimated capacity of 1,200 MW. The US group has contributed 90 percent of the capital and Vinacomin, 10 percent, to form the joint-venture, Mong Duong AES-TVK.

The Mong Duong 2 is the first power project in the form of BOT which has been signed since 2001, said Minister of Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang at the signing ceremony.

US Ambassador to Vietnam Michael W. Michalak said the signing of the BOT contract for the project significantly manifests the rapid growth of economic cooperation between Vietnam and the US. It also proves AES’s long-term commitment to Vietnam’s energy development via the public-private partnership (PPP) model, he added.

The ambassador also said he hopes the Ministry of Planning and Investment will soon make laws on PPPs to create equal competition for foreign investors in Vietnam.

Source: VNA

Source: QDND

EU helps make small enterprises go green

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:37 pm

EU helps make small enterprises go green

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:24 (GMT+7)

A project entitled ‘Sustainable product innovation in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia’ was launched in Hanoi on April 22 to help small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) get oriented toward green growth.

The EUR 2.3 million project is funded by the SWITCH-in-Asia Programme under the European Union that benefits 500 SMEs operating in food packaging, apparel, footwear, handicrafts and furniture in the three countries.

Sean Doyle, Ambassador and Head of the EU mission in Vietnam, said he expects the project to help boost sustainable production and consumption in Vietnam and make practical contributions to legislation when the Vietnamese Government is drafting its socio-economic strategy for the 2011-2020 period.

Under the project, a representative office will be opened in Hanoi in connection with assistance offices in Vientiane (Laos), and Phnom Penh (Cambodia).

The offices will serve as a stable network to provide SMEs with assistance in managing and conducting relevant research and supplying information toward environmentally-friendly products and marketing.

Source: VNA

Source: QDND

National week on safe water, rural sanitation begins

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:37 pm

National week on safe water, rural sanitation begins

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:24 (GMT+7)

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) launched an annual national week on rural clean water and environmental sanitation in Khoi Ky commune, Dai Tu district, in the northern mountain province of Thai Nguyen on April 22.

The ministry said the event is very significant this year as 2010 has been selected as the year of ‘Clean water for a healthy world’. This is particularly important in Vietnam, which is among the five countries most vulnerable to climate change.

After the launch ceremony, health experts showed children how to correctly wash their hands with soap, while young people cleaned schools and streets.

On the occasion, construction of a VND 7.9-billion clean water supply station started in Khoi Ky commune.

Once operational in 2011, the station is expected to provide safe water to more than 3,100 people as well as offices, schools and health clinics in the commune.

According to the the National Programme on Rural Clean Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation, 79 percent of rural people nation-wide are using hygienic water; however, only 39 percent of them are given water that meets the Ministry of Health’s standards.

Source: VNA

Source: QDND

Leaders commemorate nation’s founders

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 4:36 pm

Leaders commemorate nation’s founders

QĐND – Friday, April 23, 2010, 21:24 (GMT+7)

State President Nguyen Minh Triet, and many other Party and State officials burned incense to commemorate Hung Kings – the founders of the Vietnamese nation – at a solemn ceremony in Phu Tho province on April 23.

In his speech, Mr Triet expressed his never-ending gratitude to Vietnamese ancestors, President Ho Chi Minh, revolutionary veterans, heroic Vietnamese mothers, heroes and war martyrs who bravely fought for national independence and freedom, as well as for the people’s happiness and well-being.

“Having experienced many upheavals over thousands of years, Vietnam has today made many important achievements of historical significance,” said Mr Triet. “The country has achieved relatively high economic growth for many consecutive years, maintained its socio-political stability, national defence and security, elevated its status internationally and improved its people’s standard of living.”

He confirmed that these achievements are testimony to the clear-sighted leadership of the Communist Party of Vietnam, the result of national unity and the extraordinary efforts from the entire Party, people and army.

President Triet called on his fellow Vietnamese countrymen, no matter where they are, to join hands to bring into full play the bloc of great national unity and build a strong and prosperous Vietnamese nation.

In his oration, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Le Tien Tho confirmed the great significance of the Hung Kings’ Death Anniversary and praised the Kings for their immense contribution to founding Van Lang– the first independent and sovereign State of the Vietnamese people several thousand years ago.

To defend the nation, he said, generations of Vietnamese people have been united, driving away foreign invaders and wresting back national independence and freedom.

His speech also highlighted the Vietnamese people’s feelings towards their roots, their national patriotism, love for peace and international solidarity, and great national unity under the leadership of the Communist Party of Vietnam.

After the ceremony, President Triet and leaders from various other provinces laid wreaths at the Hung Kings’ Tomb.

The Hung Kings’ Death Anniversary is observed on the 10th day of the third lunar month to pay respect to the founders of the Vietnamese nation. It is part of the Hung Kings Temple Festival, which starts on the first day of lunar March.

About 5.5 million pilgrims, including overseas Vietnamese, have taken part in diverse activities of the 10-day festival.  

Source: VOV

Source: QDND

‘Major oil spill’ as rig sinks off US coast

In Uncategorized on April 23, 2010 at 2:29 pm

A blazing oil rig has sunk into the Gulf of Mexico, sparking fears of an environmental disaster two days after a massive blast that left 11 workers missing.

US maritime authorities said crude oil was pouring into the sea at the site where the hulking Deepwater Horizon rig once stood, though they were unable to determine at what rate.

In Washington, President Barack Obama said the federal response to the disaster “was being treated as the number one priority,” the White House said in a statement.

Obama “made sure that the entire federal government was offering all assistance needed in the rescue effort as well as in mitigating and responding to the environmental impact,” the statement read.

US Coast Guard issued photo shows fire boat response crews battling the blazing remains of an oil rig off the Louisiana coastline.

Officials said that before the explosion there were 700,000 gallons (2.6 million liters) of diesel fuel on board the semi-submersible platform and it had been drilling 8,000 barrels, or 336,000 gallons, of oil a day.

“This is considered a major oil spill,” Mike O’Berry, a US Coast Guard senior chief petty officer, told AFP.

The Coast Guard said a one mile by five mile slick had settled on the surface some 45 miles (70 kilometers) offshore as a massive clean-up operation gets under way to prevent the oil from hitting land in the Gulf states of Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi.

Coast Guard vessels continued their search late Thursday for the 11 missing workers, while British oil giant BP, which leased the platform, dispatched a fleet of boats to try to keep environmental damage in check.

Officials said the current spill had the potential to be the worst seen in the United States since the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil tanker spill, considered one of the worst man-made environmental disasters.

That spill, vastly bigger than the current one in the US Gulf, poured nearly 11 million gallons of crude into Alaska’s Prince William Sound, devastating some 750 miles (1,300 kilometers) of its once pristine shores.

If oil leaks and the spill escapes containment efforts, Louisiana‘s sensitive coast would be at risk for ecological damage. Wild birds, breeding grounds for shrimp, and oyster beds would also be threatened. Should a spill reach shore, birds could be covered in the slick.

O’Berry said US authorities were deploying several oil-skimming vessels to try to limit the pollution.

The Coast Guard sent a mini-submarine equipped with cameras to determine the oil flow into the ecologically fragile Gulf, home to a vast array of waterfowl and other wildlife.

Before the rig sank into the ocean, oil fires raged for more than a day and a half following a spectacular explosion late Tuesday that sent huge balls of flame leaping into the night sky.

The now submerged oil rig measuring 396-by-256 feet (121-by-78 meters) is owned by Houston, Texas-based contractor Transocean, Ltd. and under contract to BP.

Transocean confirmed late Thursday that it had not been possible “to stem the flow of hydrocarbons prior to the rig sinking,” raising fears that thousands more gallons of crude will pollute the Gulf waters before the flow is contained.

“We are working closely with BP Exploration & Production, Inc. and the US Coast Guard to determine the impact from the sinking of the rig and the plans going forward,” the company said.

It added that “the US Coast Guard has plans in place to mitigate any environmental impact from this situation.”

Transocean vice president Adrian Rose said earlier that the rig likely suffered a blowout while drilling through rock at BP’s Macondo prospect, although investigations into the exact cause of the accident are ongoing.

Meanwhile rescue crews scoured the Gulf waters for sign of the 11 missing workers.

Seventeen workers were airlifted to hospital on Wednesday after suffering broken bones, burns and smoke inhalation in the explosion on the mobile rig. Four remained in critical condition.

But there was no sign of the missing workers and it remained unclear whether they made it safely into one of the rig’s lifeboats.

“We’re going to continue to search as long as there is a reasonable probability of finding them alive,” Coast Guard spokeswoman Ashley Butler told AFP, adding that weather conditions were favorable for the search.

Transocean’s Rose said the missing workers “may have been unable to evacuate” once the rig exploded.

Transocean is the world’s largest offshore drilling contractor, with a fleet of 140 mobile offshore drilling units, in addition to three ultra-deepwater units under construction.

A total of 126 people were onboard the platform at the time of the explosion, 79 of them Transocean staff, six BP personnel and 41 contractors.

Source: SGGP