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Japan eyes building its own GPS system

In Uncategorized on January 8, 2011 at 4:14 am

 Japan is considering launching new satellites to establish its own global positioning system (GPS) in a bid to reduce its reliance on the US navigation network, officials said on Wednesday.

In September, Japan launched a rocket carrying its first satellite intended to improve GPS systems widely used by Japanese motorists for navigation as well as by aviation and maritime operators.

The government’s space development strategy headquarters, headed by Prime Minister Naoto Kan, is now discussing plans to launch additional satellites, said an official.

“There is a proposal that our country should secure its own GPS as it is now fully relying on the US system,” the official said.

“The new system may also open our opportunity for marketing GPS services to other Asian countries,” he said, adding that the government plans to reach a final decision by August.

A Japanese rocket takes off carrying satellites at the Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima prefecture in the south of the country

The Yomiuri Shimbun daily reported on Wednesday that Japan had decided to launch six to seven new satellites to establish its own GPS system by 2014 and 2015 to cover the entire Asia-Pacific region.

By using both the new satellites and American GPS in combination, Japan could raise the degree of precision of car navigation systems 10-fold, the mass-circulation said.

The government plans to charge private GPS operators some 13 billion yen (158 million dollars) per year for using the system as it would cost more than 200 billion yen to launch six satellites, it said.

Source: SGGP

HCMC welcomes its three-millionth visitor

In Uncategorized on December 24, 2010 at 4:28 am

HCMC welcomes its three-millionth visitor

QĐND – Wednesday, December 22, 2010, 20:34 (GMT+7)

Ho Chi Minh City Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the national flag carrier, Vietnam Airlines (VNA), yesterday received the three-millionth visitor to Ho Chi Minh City.

Ms Nguyen Thi Hong, Deputy-Chairwoman of the City People’s Committee presented flowers to Nina Fedorova, the lucky visitor from Russia, at Tan Son Nhat International Airport.

The Vietnam National Tourism Administration and VNA are expected to welcome the five-millionth visitor to Vietnam tomorrow, marking the record number of tourists to Vietnam.

Tourist agencies in Ho Chi Minh City have been popularising the potential of Vietnam tourism in new, far and promising markets, such as Northern Europe, Russia and Australia.

La Quoc Khanh, Deputy-Head of HCMC Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, said that HCMC will participate in the Matka International Tourism Fair, the biggest in Northern Europe, to be held in Helsinki, Finland, in January, 2011, to further popularise Vietnam Tourism’s potential.

According to HCMC Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the City expects to receive a total of 3.1 million visitors, up 20% compared to the figure for 2009. The turnover from tourism is estimated to reach VND 41,000 billion.

Source: TT

Translated by Mai Huong

Source: QDND

National Assembly to strengthen its supervisory ability

In Uncategorized on December 16, 2010 at 9:29 am

National Assembly and the 12th Standing Committee held a seminar in Ho Chi Minh City on December 6. It was decided to collect opinions and to review their work during the year.

Mr. Tran Dinh Dan, director of the Office of the National Assembly said, “Legislative work of the 12th Standing Committee of the National Assembly is still limit. The decree-law is not feasible and the National Assembly’s supervision has not been met the people’s expectation and life requirement”.

He also went on to say, “The National Assembly needs its own acting mechanism for members and needs to strengthen their supervisory ability. Likewise, the Government should not fix the age limit of elected members of the National Assembly, but to focus more on its own prestige”.

In conclusion, it was decided that the Party leadership should be changed to create more advantages for the National Assembly and to implement its own authority and responsibility.

Source: SGGP

12th NA concludes its eighth session in Hanoi

In Uncategorized on November 26, 2010 at 1:49 pm

12th NA concludes its eighth session in Hanoi

QĐND – Friday, November 26, 2010, 20:44 (GMT+7)

After a full month of intensive work with a democratic spirit of renewal and a high sense of responsibility, the 12th National Assembly (NA) closed its eighth session in Hanoi on November 26.  

At this session, NA members reviewed the implementation of the socio-economic development plan and the State budget for 2010, worked out a new plan for socio-economic development and the State budget for next year, carried out law making and supervisory programmes, and made decisions on important national issues.

In his closing speech, NA Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong said the NA agreed that this year, the entire Party, people and soldiers spared no efforts to overcome every difficulty and challenge in order to fulfill the targets of socio-economic development. Most of the set targets have been reached and the national economy has recovered from recession and posted a relatively high growth rate. The State budget’s revenues have increased while social welfare continue to see improvements.

However, NA deputies admitted some weaknesses and limitations such as unsustainable growth, slow economic restructuring, poor competitiveness, high trade deficit, high budget overspending and public debts, and low investment efficiency.

In addition, inflation controls have proved ineffective. The price of essential goods is not yet under control and the gold market and the foreign exchange rates still face instabilities.

Regarding the 2011 plan for socio-economic development, NA deputies underlined the need to stabilise the economy, control inflation along with renewing the growth model and restructuring the economy, attain a higher economic growth rate than 2010, and increase the quality, efficiency and competitiveness of the national economy.

It is essential to ensure social welfare, improve people’s living standards, maintain political stability, national defense and security, and increase the efficiency of foreign affairs- related work and international integration.

The NA approved 9 draft laws and one resolution, including the Environmental Protection Tax Law, the Consumer Rights Protection Law, the Minerals Law (revised), Amendments and Supplements to some Articles in the Securities Law, the Insurance Business Law, the Law on the Election of NA and People’s Council members and a resolution on tax policy for agricultural land use.

They also held debates on 9 other draft laws, including the Independent Auditing Law, the Capital Law, the Complaints & Denunciations Law, the Measurement Law, the Anti- Human Trafficking Law, the Archives Law, the Cooperative Law (revised), and Amendments and Supplements to some Articles of the Civil Procedure Code.

The NA questioned four ministers with the participation of two deputy ministers and six other ministers who also explained related issues. The Prime Minister also directly answered queries raised by NA deputies and clarified a number of major issues relating to the government’s management and guidance.

The NA’s question and answer sessions focused on key issues of great concern to NA members and voters such as price fluctuations, the trade deficit, management and operational efficiency of groups and State corporations (the Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Group known as Vinashin is for example),  power supplies and safety, and the efficiency of a bauxite project in the central highlands.

Q&A sections continued to be improved, obtain practical results and were conducted in a frank, open, and constructive manner. Many NA members admitted their sectors’ weaknesses and limitations and clarified their individual responsibility.

In conclusion, NA Chairman Trong said the eighth session discussed many important issues with heart-felt opinions from NA deputies and thorough preparations of the NA and relevant agencies.

Before the closing ceremony, the NA voted for the approval of a resolution on the Dung Quat refinery project. By a 90.26 percent vote, the NA adopted a resolution on the implementation of administrative procedures relating to citizens and businesses under an overall administrative reform programme in the 2001-2010 period.

Source: VOV

Source: QDND

Hanoi plans to increase its annual GDP growth rate by 12 – 13 percent

In Uncategorized on November 18, 2010 at 1:57 pm

Central region’s tourist site resumes its operation

In Uncategorized on October 28, 2010 at 2:11 pm

Central region’s tourist site resumes its operation

QĐND – Thursday, October 28, 2010, 20:46 (GMT+7)

The Phong Nha Ke Bang National Park in the central province of Quang Binh resumed receiving domestic and foreign visitors as of October 26th after a disruption of nearly a month due to the flooding, said Luu Minh Thanh, Director of the park’s management board.

The recent flooding in October cost the popular tourist site VND4.2 billion. Many tourism facilities, such as the Culture and Ecology Tourism Centre, lighting in the Phong Nha cave, and a wharf, were seriously damaged by the flooding.

The management board of the tourist site sent 150 employees to clean up the environment and repair tourism facilities in order to receive visitors as soon as possible.

Local people with heroic deeds, such as Nguyen Van Diep, Ngo Tam and Nguyen Van Ninh, who rescued hundreds of people during the flooding, continue to carry tourists to visit the caves.

Source: Tuoi Tre

Translated by Duy Minh

Source: QDND

12th NA opens its 8th session in Hanoi

In Uncategorized on October 20, 2010 at 3:04 pm

12th NA opens its 8th session in Hanoi

QĐND – Wednesday, October 20, 2010, 20:56 (GMT+7)

The eighth session of the 12th National Assembly (NA) opened in Hanoi on October 20, with Party and State leaders, revolutionary veterans, international guests and more than 400 NA deputies taking part.

In his opening speech, NA Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong said the eighth NA session is taking place after the celebrations of Hanoi’s millennium- a significant event which has raised national pride and encouraged the Party and people to gain new achievements in national construction and defence.

This year, Vietnam has faced a lot of difficulties and challenges caused by the global economic downturn, natural disasters and epidemics. However, under the correct leadership of the Party and the Government, socio-economic targets have been reached, with an estimated economic growth rate of 6.7 percent for this year.

Industrial production and export turnover have posted high growth rates while State revenues are expected to be higher than estimated and inflation is control.

Improved social welfare, social security have helped to improve people’s living standards significantly. Remarkable progress has been seen in administrative reform, and preventing corruption. The successful holding of the ASEAN Summit, the 31st General Assembly of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) has elevated Vietnam’s status in the international arena.

The achievements recorded in 2010 are fresh impetus for carrying out resolutions adopted at the 10th National Party Congress and the five-year plan for socio-economic development (2006-2010) under the NA’s resolution, which will give fresh impetus to socio-economic tasks in the following years.

Mr Trong pointed out the limitations and weaknesses in socio-economic development that have not yet been resolved, namely a slow economic restructuring, poor infrastructure, ineffective investment, a high trade deficit and a State budget overspend and soaring prices, which could result in the return of inflation. In addition, environmental pollution and violation of food hygiene and safety regulations have become more complex, while many burning social issues have not been dealt with. Therefore, it is essential to find more ways of resolving these issues properly to ensure sustainable development, Mr Trong emphasised.

NA focuses on important issues

With its 32-day working schedule, the eighth NA session will concentrate on many key national issues such as considering the government reports on the outcomes of socio-economic plans, and the State budget for 2010 and 2011 and central and local budget allocations for next year.

During the session, the NA is expected to adopt 9 draft laws and 1 resolution draft, including the Environmental Protection Tax Law, the Consumer Rights Protection Law, the Minerals Law (revised), the Laws on Amendments and Supplements to some Articles in the Securities Law, the Insurance Business Law, the Law on the Election of NA and People’s Council deputies and a resolution on tax policy for agricultural land use.

The NA deputies will also give their opinions on 9 other draft laws, including the Independent Auditing Law, the Complaints& Denunciations Law, the Measurement Law, the Anti- Human Trafficking Law, the Archives Law, the Cooperative Law (revised) and the Law on Amendments and Supplements to some Articles of the Civil Procedure Code and the Capital Law.

The NA will supervise the reform of administrative procedures related to citizens and businesses under the State’s master plan for administrative reforms in the 2001-2010 period.

Reports on supervisory activities conducted by the NA Standing Committee, the NA Ethnicity Council and NA committees and some other reports on voters’ petitions, the NA’s Q&A sessions and the NA’s supervisory activities, the Chief Judge of the Supreme People’s Court and Head of the People’s Procruracy’s operations will also be considered.

Many other issues related to waste, anti-corruption, external relations, national security and defence, a pilot project for ending people’s councils in districts and wards, the conclusion of the Dung Quat refinery project, the Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Group (Vinashin) and afforestation joint-ventures in border areas, will also be discussed.

The NA will give opinions on several draft documents to be submitted to the 11th National Party Congress and consider some other important issues.

NA Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong emphasised that Vietnam will grasp every opportunity and seek effective solutions to restore economic growth and ensure macroeconomic stability, social welfare, national defence, and security, laying a solid foundation for fast and sustainable growth in the years to come. Mr Trong urged the NA deputies to be responsible, sensible and democratic and to make practical proposals.

After the opening speech by NA Chairman Trong, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung reported on some of the major socio-economic issues in 2009 and targets for 2010.

Regarding the socio-economic situation in 2009, Mr Dung said that in the process of its opening up and integrating deeper into the region and the world, Vietnam’s economy, especially exports, investments and tourism has been seriously affected by the global financial crisis. Since 2008, the government has done all it can to control inflation, overcome natural disasters and epidemics and counter activities by hostile forces. It has constantly provided updated information and analysed the situation to devise proper solutions to prevent a further economic downturn and control inflation.

To prevent another economic downturn, the Government submitted a plan to the 5th session to adjust some specific targets.

As a results, in 2009, Vietnam achieved many significant results, such as preventing the economic downturn, obtaining a fairly high growth, increasing investment for development, ensuring macroeconomic stability, and containing inflation to encourage socio-economic development. It continued with social welfare programmes to support poor people and families of social beneficiaries in disadvantaged areas, stepped up administrative reform, combated corruption, and waste and ensured socio-political stability, further improving Vietnam’s status in the international arena.

PM Dung also pointed out five weaknesses, including the lowest GDP growth rate in 10 years, an unstable macro-balance, poor infrastructure, resources and economic institutions, problems with social welfare and slow progress with administration reform.

For the country’s socio-economic development targets for 2010, PM Dung said that it is essential to make a greater effort to restore economic growth, which will be higher than 2009, improve the quality of growth, strengthen macroeconomic stability, control inflation, and ensure social welfare to improve the people’s living standards. It will actively integrate and promote international economic co-operation, maintain socio-political stability and defence and fulfill its socio-economic targets for the five-year plan (2006-2010).

President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front, Huynh Dam, presented a report on voter’s petitions. The 6th session of the 12th NA received 1,687 voters’ petitions on major issues, such as efficiency of the stimulus package, labour, employment, people’s living conditions, environmental pollution, food safety, traffic problems and corruption.

The NA also heard a report on the outcomes of the socio-economic targets in 2009 and plans for 2010, presented by Ha Van Hien, Chairman of the NA Economic Committee.

Earlier, the NA held a preliminary session and approved the agenda for the 8th session.

Source: VOV

Source: QDND

Mekong Delta looks for way to reveal its hidden charms

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 2:41 pm

Vietnamese and native cultures are strong points of the Mekong Delta tourism that have attracted a great number of visitors per year. However, the delta region hasn’t got a prominent role on the national tourism map yet.

          Foreign tourists visit Mekong Delta region

The Mekong Delta is a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic and multi-religion region with innumerable festivals all year round.

Festivals, floating markets, specialties, Dan ca tai tu Nam bo (Southern amateur music), exuberant orchards, immense rice fields and many islets along the Hau Rivers are appealing tourist attractions of the land.

In addition, the flood season is also a character of the South. During this time, fields are submerged in water. Farmers temporarily set aside their farm work and turn to catching fish to make a living.

Tours to the Mekong Delta on this occasion have appealed many overseas Vietnamese, said deputy director of Ben Thanh Tourist Company Nguyen Minh Quyen.

Cultural and Sport Festival in the flood season in An Giang Province has been recently a flourishing season of the tourism industry, he added.

However, the local authorities have been only interested in exploiting the natural resources, not trying to create new tourist services and products. They have also indeliberately lost advantages of the region.

Visitors pluck dien dien flowers on river in the flood season.

As an example, Nga Bay (seven-way intersection) hundred-year-old floating market in Hau Giang Province was closed because it caused traffic jams and pollution. Meanwhile the floating market’s beauty inspired the French captain of the famous Calypso ship, Jacques Yves Cousteau (1910-1997) to made a documentary film in 1992 that was broadcast on more than 100 TV channels throughout the world.

In fact, legends, traditional festivals, habits and customs, daily activities of people in the area are special tourist products.

In related news, documents on don ca tai tu (southern amateur music) are being compiled for submission to UNESCO to be recognized as a world intangible cultural heritage.

The local authorities of Mekong Delta provinces have to cooperate with cultural experts to preserve and develop their traditional cultural values to create tourist characters.

They should also concentrate in training more tourism staff, promote and diversify tourism products.

Source: SGGP

VNG asked to cut off violent content from its online game

In Uncategorized on October 13, 2010 at 7:50 am

The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Information and Communications September 19 asked Vietnam’s top online game firm VNG to cut out violent content from its online game entitled Biet Doi Than Toc (Sudden Attack). 

An ad for Biet Doi Than Toc (Sudden Attack), a role-playing online game released by VNG Corporation

The department also asked VNG to stop creating valuable assets in its online games to sell to gamers, and selling game cards which gamers buy to credit money to their accounts to buy or rent assets in games.
The department ordered Internet service providers to take technical measures to block violent content in the Sudden Attack game, and report results to the department by September 30.
The city’s district people’s committees were ordered to ask Internet shops to stop offering the game with violent content, and administratively penalize them if they don’t.
Sudden Attack is the second online game after Special Force of FPT Online Company found to contain violence.

Source: SGGP

Billion-VND crown unveils its glamorous beauty in city

In Uncategorized on August 18, 2010 at 11:22 am

The crown for the most-anticipated beauty pageant Miss Vietnam Global 2010, which cost approximately VND1 trillion (US$52,000), officially come out to public, not in the pageant’s venue – Nha Trang city but in Ho Chi Minh City.

The billion-VND crown will find out its life-time owner on Aug 21 (Photo: ZELA)

The crown is inlaid with 606 diamonds and Amethyst of 2-12 carats.

The design was inspired with the lotus image, which is well-known to the Vietnamese culture. The lotus represents the innocent and passionate elegance of the Vietnamese young women.

In addition, every petal reminds people of the sea waves touching the beach. That is also a very common way to draw the whole description of the Vietnam country, a beautiful and peaceful place sitting next to the blue beach.

The biggest Amethyst which is placed at center of the crown, replicates the image of the third eye – a spiral culture that relates to intelligence.

The maker, ZELA Co – a branch of the Diamond Trading Company, told that their gem craftsmen had to work during 1,000 hours before completing the final product. 

The crown will be sent to  Nha Trang city before the final show of the Miss Vietnam Global 2010 on Aug 21 in Vinepearl Land.

Source: SGGP