The 2023 Vietnam – ASEAN Culture and Food Festival, the first of its kind, kicked off at Hoa Lu Sports Centre in Ho Chi Minh City on May 25 evening.
Hosted by the Institute for Research Development and Conservation of Southeast Asian Art and Culture (IRSAC), the four-day event is one of a series of events designed to realise the goals of the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community Blueprint 2025 and strengthen the ASEAN identity towards the 56th founding anniversary of ASEAN (August 8, 1967 – 2023).
The festival sees the presence of local and foreign restaurants, hotels and travel businesses, and food processing establishments, which display their products and services at 200 pavilions, including traditional and modern dishes, food products, and specialties.
There are also cooking demonstrations by skilled chefs, as well as a presentation of traditional costumes, performances of traditional music and dances, and folk games from ASEAN countries.
According to Director of IRSAC Le Van Tiep, the festival aims to introduce characteristics of culture and cuisine, people and arts of the ASEAN community to local and international visitors, thus strengthening understanding, friendship and cooperation among ASEAN member countries.
In the framework of the festival, the organiser will arrange two seminars on preserving and promoting the value of Vietnamese culinary culture; and guiding enterprises to register exclusive trademarks and labels for products.
Specific mechanisms, policies for HCM City’s development under NA’s consideration
A proposal and a verification report on the National Assembly’s draft resolution on some specific mechanisms and policies for the development of Ho Chi Minh City were scrutinised during the ongoing fifth meeting of the 15th legislature on May 26 morning.
Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung, who presented the proposal, noted that the draft resolution is intended to create a legal framework for the country’s largest economic hub to optimise its potential and advantages, create breakthroughs, and remove bottlenecks in local socio-economic development.
The document features new policies covering investment, finance-banking, land management, and planning and apparatus organisation.
Regarding the new policies and mechanisms, the Government raised proposals on the city’s use of public investment capital sourced from the city budget and its pilot application of the urban development model towards Transit Oriented Development (TOD).
Besides, HCM City should be allowed to expand investment areas under the public-private partnership (PPP) for sport and culture projects, and apply the Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) contract in the present road projects and carry out such BOT projects using its budget, and implement regional, inter-regional projects with the local budget.
The draft resolution also stipulates incentives to attract strategic investors in such areas as chip production, semiconductor integrated circuit and new materials, conditions for strategic investors, procedures of project registration, and the selection of strategic investors, among others.
Chairman of the NA’s Finance-Budget Committee Le Quang Manh, who represented the assessment agency, noted that the report should evaluate precisely both positive aspects and challenges to the implementation of the policies and mechanisms, especially those impacting the State budget spending and the current resources.
It needs to include more policies on budget collection as the city has great advantages in terms of sources of income, he said, adding that more regulations on responsibility of organisations and individuals should be supplemented, apart from those on decentralisation.
To realise such regulations, it requires many guidance documents. Therefore, the committee suggested the resolution stipulating what should be done and responsibility of those involved.
Russian paper: Vietnam opens up gateway to Asia
The reputable Russian newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda (Komsomol Truth) on May 24 published an article highlighting the potential and prospects of the Russia-Vietnam relationship in the current situation, on the occasion of the Vietnam visit by Chairman of the United Russia Party and Deputy Chairman of the Security Council of Russia Dmitry Medvedev.
The article described Vietnam as a strong emerging country with a population of 100 million, and one of the fastest-growing digital economies in the region, with an annual growth of 38%. The country is also likely to become the second-largest digital economy in Southeast Asia by 2025.
Commenting on bilateral ties, the author highlighted the long-standing relationship between Russia and Vietnam. In 1950, the Soviet Union was one of the first countries to establish diplomatic ties with Vietnam, assisting Vietnam in its national liberation and development. After a period of stagnation due to fluctuations in Russia, cooperation between Vietnam and Russia resumed at the State level following the Vietnam visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2011. One year later, the two countries upgraded their relationship to a comprehensive strategic partnership.
Currently, Vietnam maintains such a high-level relationship with only four countries, namely China, Russia, India and the Republic of Korea.
In international relations, Vietnam follows the policy of balance between major countries based on respect for national interests, and has been quite successful in becoming a new geopolitical hotspot in the region. This is evident in the operation of the world’s largest factories gradually taking place on Vietnamese territory, it said.
The article concluded that it is strategically important for Russia to maintain Vietnam’s role as a gateway to Asia, in order to enhance cooperation in trade and other key sectors between the two countries.
Vietnamese fried spring rolls among world’s 100 most popular appetizers
Vietnamese fried spring roll (known as “nem ran” in the north and “cha gio” in the south in Vietnam) is on the list of 100 most popular appetizers in the world compiled by international food magazine Taste Atlas.
It also recommended some restaurants in Ho Chi Minh City to try the dish such as Ngon Restaurant and 94 Restaurant in District 1 and Hum Vegetarian, Lounge & Restaurant in District 3.
Chinese dumplings, known as jiaozi, were named the most popular appetizer in the world, followed by kimchi of the Republic of Korea and Japan’s crescent-shaped dumplings gyoza.
Dangerous levels of UV rays reported across country
Almost all localities across Vietnam on May 24 experienced a dangerous level of ultraviolet (UV) rays, according to the National Centre for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting.
The UV index, which is used to measure the intensity of UV radiation, ranged around 8-10 in all major cities on the day, except for Hanoi.
According to the World Health Organisation, a UV index of 7.5 to 10.4 is deemed “very high”, which means a very high risk of harm from unprotected sun exposure.
Specifically, from 11 am to 2 pm on the day, the UV index in Ha Long city (the northern province of Quang Ninh) was 9.1. The index was measured at 9.3 in the northern city of Hai Phong, 9.5 in Hue city (the central province of Thua Thien-Hue); 9.5 in Hoi An city (the central province of Quang Nam); 10 in Nha Trang city (the south central province of Khanh Hoa); and 9.1 in Ho Chi Minh City.
The index in Hanoi was at the “high” level, ranging from 5.5 to 7.4.
It is forecasted that from May 25-27, cities across the country will continue to see high to very high UV index.
People are advised to take extra precautions such as wearing protective clothing, hats, and sunglasses, as well as ensuring hydration for the body.
Six works win prizes in writing contest on Buddhism
Six works winning prizes in the writing contest entitled “Buddhism in my heart” were honoured at a ceremony held on May 24 at Quan Su pagoda in Hanoi, which is the headquarters of the Central Committee of the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha.
The work “Tu Nha” by Quang Phuong from the central province of Thua Thien-Hue was awarded the first prize. The organiser also handed over two second and three third prizes to authors.
Initiated by the VBS’s information and communication department, the contest aimed to encourage people learn about Buddhism, thus understanding more about the religion, while honouring and preserving the humane value of Buddhism.
Opened to everyone, from Buddhist monks, nuns and followers to those who are interested in Buddhism both at home and abroad from November 2, 2022 to April 30, 2023, the competition received nearly 800 entries of various forms.
As many as 30 outstanding works selected from the contest have been published on the VBS’s portal.
HCM City ramps up efforts to crack down on loan sharks
Police in Ho Chi Minh City have taken various measures to combat loan sharks, and their efforts have paid off.
A campaign has been launched in Thu Duc city and districts in the southern largest economic hub to peel off illegal leaflets posted on walls and poles along local streets, which contain advertisements for quick loans with low interest rates, ensnaring locals in never-ending debt traps.
The drive has received warm response from all-level Party Committees, authorities, youth unions, women’s unions, war veterans’ associations, and local residents.
People and businesses have also been encouraged to commit not to joining the illegal advertisement.
Thanks to such joint efforts, police in many localities in HCM City have tracked down many loan sharking rings, notably the one in Tan Binh district which imposed an annual interest rate of up to nearly 700%.
Most recently, the district’s police on May 22 detained two men who confessed that they charged a monthly interest rate of 120%, and some 50 people have been trapped.
HCM City’s Steering Committee 138 on crime prevention and control said local police will continue tracing loan sharks, and handle them strictly in line with regulations.
Hanoi: Transerco applies technology to improve public bus services
The application of technologies in managing and operation activities has been among prioritised solutions that the Hanoi Transportation Corporation (Transerco) has rolled out to improve the quality of its public bus services over the past years.
To date, all buses operated by Transerco have been equipped with GPS devices, enabling the company to control operations of buses, collecting and analysing data, giving measures to minimise violations during bus operations, and designing suitable training courses for drivers and staff to enhance service quality.
Recently, Transerco has built a smart operation centre and established a Call Centre and a hotline to provide timely information and support to customers and receive their feedback on its bus services. According to the company, a survey it has conducted recently revealed that its customers show high level of satisfaction about the firm’s response to their requests.
At the same time, timbuyt.vn, a free mobile app that provides information about the routines of all bus routes, bus stops and bus frequency, has been available on both Android and IOS, using Vietnamese and English, making it easier for passengers to find best plan for their journey. Passengers can also book monthly bus tickets via the app.
Transerco has allowed cashless payment using QRcode of VNPay on a number of routes.
Alongside, Transerco has also applied a number of software for the management of different stages of its operations.
In the coming time, the company plans to continue investing in IT application and upgrading underway apps to meet customers’ demand and give passengers best access to its bus services, heading to a smart, modern and sustainable public transport system in Hanoi. This year, Transerco will prepare for the use of green energy for its bus fleet.
Hanoi hosts Vietnam – Asia DX Summit 2023
Deputy Prime Minister Tran Hong Ha chaired the opening session of the Vietnam – Asia DX Summit 2023 themed “Driving economic growth enabled by digital data mining and smart connectivity” in Hanoi on May 24.
Addressing the event, Ha affirmed that Vietnam’s digital transformation is taking place strongly, and producing practical results. However, it cannot be done by one person, one organisation, one country, one government, but requires the engagement of everyone and all sectors.
This is a “gold mine”, and an endless resource from thinking, creativity and wisdom that the world has been creating and exploiting. This is also a new and green resource, helping to recover natural resources, and promote economic development, he stressed.
According to him, Vietnamese technology enterprises need to determine that participating in digital transformation is participating in the global market, reaching out to the world, and solving major international problems.
He expressed his wish that the country’s 70,000 digital technology enterprises pioneer to reach out to the world, jointly create digital ecosystems, introduce new and effective economic models, and create new values for the country and a happy life for people.
Nguyen Van Khoa, Chairman of the Vietnam Software Association (VINASA) – the organiser of the summit, said the digital technology business community is always ready to stand side by side with the Government and its stakeholders to provide suggestions on building an open legal corridor and a methodical data strategy. They aspire to participate in building advanced, modern and effective digital data infrastructure. And the IT business community is ready to support connectivity and data sharing among localities, agencies and sectors.
Within the framework of the two-day summit, there will be five sessions on digital data infrastructure and information security. Other sessions include digital transformation in Vietnam and Asia, sharing digital government and administration development data, digital transformation in finance, and Vietnam – Asia cooperation in the IT sector.
An exhibition on the digital solution platform and the connection of supply and demand for digital transformation of domestic IT enterprises also takes place on the sidelines of the summit.
Business community critical in fight against illegal wildlife trade: seminar
A seminar held in Buon Ma Thuot city, the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak, on May 24 underlined the business community’s critical role in fighting illegal wildlife trade and consumption.
Nguyen Quoc Hung, head of the Dak Lak forest protection sub-department, said wild animals form an extremely precious natural resource, contributing to ecological balance and the living environment of humans. However, the illegal wildlife trade still exists with increasingly sophisticated ruses.
Over the last five years, the forest protection sub-department of Dak Lak has coordinated with relevant forces to uncover and deal with 46 wildlife-related violations, seizing 44 wild animals weighing 325.5kg in total, including rare and endangered species.
To prevent and minimise wildlife trafficking, joint efforts by the entire society are needed while it is necessary to effectively carry out awareness programmes, he said, noting that when there is no demand for wildlife consumption, illegal trade will also be eradicated.
Hung said that as enterprises have an important role to play in this work, they should be more active in the fight against illegal wildlife trade to help achieve the common goal of wild animal protection, nature conservation, and sustainable development.
Nguyen Quoc Hung, head of the Dak Lak forest protection sub-department, speaks at the seminar (Photo: VNA)
Echoing the view, Nguyen Huu Nam, Deputy Director of the Ho Chi Minh City branch of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), pointed out that Vietnam is considered a supplier, a point of transit, and a consumption market in the global wildlife trafficking chain. Valuable products from endangered species that are illegally traded include elephant ivory, pangolin scales and meat, rhino horns, and products from big cat species.
Many people are still using wildlife products as food, medication, jewellery, fashion items, and gifts. The rise in demand for and use of these products has become a threat to the existence and sustainable development of wild animals, he added.
Therefore, stepping up communications and protecting wild animals are the responsibility of the entire community. In particular, the business community and entrepreneurs play an important role in curbing illegal hunting, trading, and consumption of wildlife, as well as preventing latent risks of diseases transmitted from animals to humans, Nam opined.
Communications key to fighting IUU fishing
Communications campaigns raising fishermen’s awareness about the Law on Fisheries and the fight against illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing are considered the leading measure in Vietnamese coastal localities’ effort to get the European Commission (EC)’s “yellow card” warning to be removed soon.
The central province of Nghe An, which has so far issued its action plan to carry out the anti-IUU project toward 2025, has worked to renew communications work and expand its reach to each fishermen and ship owner. Localities have used vivid images, videos and specific examples of IUU fishing behaviours to help people easily understand, properly perceive, and strictly abide by the regulations when fishing at sea.
Meanwhile, in the Mekong Delta of Kien Giang, a total of 236 law communications sessions took place since the beginning of this year, benefiting more than 12,900 fishermen. The local authorities also handed over 11,200 anti-IUU fishing fliers and over 1,300 national flags to the group.
In Da Nang, Son Tra district, which houses the central city’s largest number of fishing vessels, has established 71 solidarity production groups at sea and coordinated with agencies and units to provide fishermen with the Party’s guidelines, policies and laws related to them.
An inspection team from the European Commission (EC) will visit Vietnam to examine the country’s efforts on IUU fishing prevention and control in October instead of May as it announced earlier. The EC suggested the organisation of online working sessions with Vietnamese authorities in May, June and October before sending the team to Vietnam.
In late May, a MARD delegation will have in-person working sessions with EC representatives to update them on Vietnam’s achievements in IUU fishing prevention and control with the hope of narrowing the EC’s recommendations to Vietnam.
Since the EC’s inspection in last October, Vietnam has worked hard to implement four groups of the EC’s recommendations on IUU fishing prevention and control, including those on legal framework; fishing vessel monitoring and control, and fleet management; seafood output verification and origin traceability; and law enforcement.
Da Nang ready for international firework festival
The central city of Da Nang is finalising preparations for the Da Nang International Fireworks Festival (DIFF 2023) slated for June 2.
Currently, the stage for the festival has basically been completed, said Tran Xuan Hung, leader of the DIFF 2023 stage construction team. He said that the construction has taken place for over 2 months, a shorter time compared to previous festivals.
This year, the stage is decorated with a modern led laser lighting system, bringing the best views of the entire fireworks area, he said.
This year, the DIFF stage covers1,050 sq.m on the Han River bank on Tran Hung Dao street of Son Tra district, along with a 5,000-seat grandstand.
Themed “The World Without Distance”, the festival is scheduled to take place from June 2 to July 8.
This year’s event will feature eight teams from the UK, Italy, Poland, France, Australia, Canada, Finland, and Vietnam competing over five nights across two months.
Each team will put on a 20-minute performance based on five themes: No Distance Love, Peace for the World, Equality for Human Being, No Limits Innovation, and Sustainable Tourism Development. The two best teams will compete to take the top prize on the final night – July 8.
The latest festival in 2019, seen as the most successful performance with more than 1 million visitors, was completed with victory for Finland’s Joho Pyro Fireworks.
Da Nang is the only place in Vietnam to have hosted a fireworks festival, making it a magnet for the best fireworks producers from around the world each year since 2008. It has been building a “Fireworks Festival City” reputation to promote it as a top destination in central Vietnam and Asia.
The DIFF has helped the city win recognition as Asia’s Leading Festival & Event Destination in 2016 and 2022 by the World Travel Awards.
Red River Delta provinces move to promote agritourism
Four provinces in the southern part of the Red River Delta, Ninh Bình, Hà Nam, Nam Định, and Thái Bình, have been taking steps to tap into their natural advantages to develop agricultural and rural tourism.
The southern region of the Red River Delta boasts large farmland areas, mainly fertile alluvial soil, relatively developed intensive farming, and favourable climate conditions for not only agricultural development but also agricultural and rural tourism.
Over the past years, a number of domestic and international travellers have viewed agricultural and rural tourism as a novel experience worth to try, especially in the post-COVID period, when a trend of low-cost travel in rural places with pristine and beautiful landscapes has been rising.
Grasping that chance, these localities have specified strategies for developing agricultural and rural tourism.
Among them, Hà Nam aims to turn this type of tourism into one of its main tourism products by 2030.
Thái Bình has approved a plan to promote agriculture and rural areas in tandem with tourism for 2022 – 2025, with a vision to 2030, under which the province will develop 80-85 farming zones, each with their own features; assign authorities to use nearly 5,000ha of mangrove forest and coastal wetland to protect the environment, prevent natural disasters, and create livelihoods for locals via agricultural tourism; and establish 3-5 agritourism cooperatives to maximise local potential and advantages.
Meanwhile, Ninh Bình has assisted residents to grow sunflowers in Khánh Thiện Commune of Yên Khánh District on a trial basis, along with Japanese lotus varieties in Ninh Hải and Ninh Thắng communes and grapes in Ninh Giang Commune of Hoa Lư District. The move aims to create unique agritourism products to attract more visitors, thus helping raise the added value of farmland and people’s income.
For its part, Nam Định targets that by 2025, agritourism destinations will be standardised, at least two agritourism sites and 50 per cent of the establishments providing rural tourism services recognised, 70 per cent of the owners of agritourism sites given training in tourism management, and 80 per cent of agritourism workers trained in tourism skills. The province also plans to pilot some agritourism models connected with agricultural value chains, the “One Commune, One Product” (OCOP) programme, and digital transformation.
Ngô Mạnh Ngọc, deputy director of the Hà Nam Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, said localities in the region should step up training in agricultural tourism for local residents, build pilot agritourism models to encourage people to preserve rural landscapes and the wet rice culture’s identity, and create typical agritourism products.
Recommending centres be set up to introduce unique agritourism products to travellers, Đinh Vĩnh Thụy, director of the Thái Bình Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, pointed out the necessity to increase communications to popularise images of local agriculture, rural areas, and farm produce, which will help to not only fuel agritourism, improve people’s life quality, but also accelerate the new-style countryside building in the south of the Red River Delta.
Parent’s reminded of dangers ahead of summer holidays after tragedy
Hà Nội’s Department of Education and Training has reminded parents of the risks of organising trips to dangerous locations after an adult and child were drown at Xuân Thủy National Park in northern Nam Định Province.
The department has also requested schools review safety issues when organising extracurricular activities for students. Schools should regularly remind students about safety issues during summer vacation.
The Nam Từ Liêm District’s Education and Training Office reported that on May 20, a group of about 50 visitors, including parents and students from a private school located in Tây Mỗ Ward, Nam Từ Liêm District, arrived as part of a travel programme to Xuân Thủy National Park in Nam Định Province.
During the journey, a boat took the group to a sandbank between the Red River and the Trà River, allowing students to experience clam catching.
When the children reached the sandbank, the water was shallow. However, soon the water began to rise.
As it was a sandy area, the rising water and changing currents caused the sandbank to erode, sweeping the students away with the water.
A boatman threw life jackets, however, due to the rapidly rising tide, one student and one parent were swept away.
With the assistance of local fishermen, the provincial border guard forces found the bodies of the two victims.
Local authorities have temporarily suspended the operation of Xuân Thuỷ National Park until further notice.
After the incident, the leaders of the Giao Thủy District People’s Committee visited the families of the two victims.
Nguyễn Xuân Mạnh, chairman of the People’s Committee of Giao Thiện Commune, said most of the group visitors contacted the boat owners and service providers for excursion and experiential activities without informing the management board of the national park.
Mạnh said these boats were licensed to operate. Tourists searched for information online, made contact, and signed contracts with them.
A representative of the Xuân Thủy National Park Management Board also confirmed to VTC News online newspaper that this group of visitors did not register their visit.
The boat owner was only informed at around 10am on May 20.
The representative said that all boat owners had been instructed that swimming was prohibited in the area.
As usual, the boat owners anchored at a safe area for visitors to have recreational activities, the representative said, adding that the safe area was approximately 500 metres away from the accident site.
Long Biên District launches contest to create logo
The People’s Committee of Long Biên District, Hà Nội, is coordinating with the Việt Nam Architecture Magazine to launch a contest to create the logo for Long Biên District on Wednesday.
The contest is one of a series of activities to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the establishment of Long Biên District (November 6, 2003 – November 6, 2023).
The contest aims to promote the image of Long Biên District with a youthful, dynamic and progressive new vitality.
Prize money will total VNĐ350 million, including one First Prize (VNĐ150 million); one Impressive Prize (VNĐ50 million); one Idea Prize (VNĐ25 million) and one Distribution Prize (VNĐ25 million).
The contest organisation board will start to receive contest entries for the preliminary round from May 24 to June 29. An exhibition will be organised from August 11 – 25 to collect votes from experts and the public. Results will be announced on August 28, 2023.
Participants can submit entries online via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or send them directly to the Architecture Magazine’s address at No. 40 Tăng Bạt Hổ Street, Hai Bà Trưng District, Hà Nội or the Urban Management Department, Long Biên District at No. 1, Vạn Hạnh Street, Long Biên District, Hà Nội.
Information about the contest is published on the websites www.longbien.hanoi.gov.vn and www.tapchikientruc.com.vn.
Developing high-quality human resources in southeastern region
Human resources, especially high-quality human resources, must be planned and it is essential to incorporate the human resource planning in a regular and long-term development strategy to promote socio-economic development and ensure national defence and security in the southeastern region.
Localities in the region need a strategy for training and effective use of post-training human resources, meeting the current demands for industrial, service, commercial, and tourism development.
At the Conference on Education and Training Development in the southeastern region until 2030, with a vision to 2045, recently organised by the Ministry of Education and Training in Bình Dương Province, Deputy Prime Minister Trần Hồng Hà directed localities to continue investing resources and overcoming difficulties to comprehensively develop the educational sector, as well as to train high-quality human resources.
The reality shows that countries are shifting their mindset and development methods from relying solely on natural resources to investing in intellectual resources.
He said that only investment in education and training can create a driving force for national development.
In the past ten years, from 2012 to 2022, the scale and network of educational institutions in the region have been invested in and developed synchronously and diversified in line with the actual conditions of each locality.
This has created favourable conditions and learning opportunities for the people, improving education and training levels, and developing human resources for the provinces and cities within the region and the country.
The region’s higher education is increasingly affirming its role as a centre for training high-quality human resources in the country.
The entire region, which includes HCM City and five provinces managed by the central Government, Tây Ninh, Bình Phước, Bình Dương, Đồng Nai, and Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu, has nearly 60 universities and over 300 vocational education institutions.
Each year, more than 76,000 graduates contribute to the region’s supply of high-quality human resources.
The employment rate of graduates is nearly 87 per cent. The region’s total number of trained workers aged 15 and over has reached nearly 30 per cent. The proportion of the population with a university degree or higher in the entire region is approximately 7 per cent.
As the economic locomotive and the largest centre for science and technology in the country and the southeastern region, HCM City aims to increase the proportion of trained labour to 87 per cent of the total workforce by 2025 and to 89 per cent by 2030.
By 2025, at least 10 per cent of public vocational education institutions will undergo quality accreditation based on international and ASEAN region’s standards for their training programmes. This percentage will increase to at least 30 per cent by 2030.
Nguyễn Văn Lâm, deputy director of the HCM City Department of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs, stated that to achieve this goal, the city is focusing on training human resources to meet the demands of the labour market and the requirements of economic restructuring.
Training is closely linked to the overall plan for training internationally competent human resources in key sectors such as information technology, mechanics and automation, artificial intelligence, business administration, finance and banking, healthcare, tourism, urban management, and the shared university model.
The city is setting up connections between training and improving the quality of human resources at university and vocational education levels.
It selects and invests in developing some public vocational institutions according to the direction of high-quality schools.
It also develops criteria for evaluating and ranking vocational institutions in the locality as a basis for restructuring public vocational units. Furthermore, it encourages and provides incentives for the private sector to invest in vocational training.
Dr Nguyễn Đức Nghĩa, former deputy director of the Việt Nam National University-HCM City, recommended that universities and vocational institutions closely coordinate with the State agencies, businesses, and educational institutions to align supply and demand so this workforce will contribute to accelerating economic growth more effectively, especially in the current digital economy.
HCM City needs to gradually shift from relying on labour-insentive advantages to relying on a highly skilled workforce, prioritise attracting human capital, and transition from an investment-based economy to an economy based on intellectuals.
According to Master Nguyễn Chu Du from Union University, the southeastern region should review, rearrange, and plan the network of higher education and vocational institutions in alignment with the socio-economic development plans and the demands of the national labour market and regional and local needs.
Research from HCM City University of Economics shows that localities in the region need to concretise their plans for developing human resources in each sector and development project.
Localities need to identify training needs and attract human resources linked to prominent industries and the advantages of the locality through market demand surveys, workshops, and dialogues with relevant stakeholders, including businesses, local authorities, and training institutions. Businesses are the ones who understand the labour force’s needs so that they can provide accurate and effective requirements for additional training and skill enhancement for workers.
The development of human resources must be closely linked to the optimal utilisation of resources to attract and retain high-quality human resources.
Depending on the operational characteristics of businesses in the locality, the plan for high-quality human resources should be regularly updated and adjusted to match both the demand and policies for attracting and utilising human resources.
To promote the training of human resources by businesses, the State and local authorities need to have supportive and encouraging policies for training institutions. According to the research, the State plays an intermediary role in connecting businesses and educational institutions by forecasting labour demand, providing information to training institutions, and facilitating meetings and discussions between businesses and training institutions regarding specific industries.
Minister of Education and Training Nguyễn Kim Sơn said the southeastern region needs to plan the education system, particularly the university level.
Currently, the distribution of universities in the region is uneven.
For example, HCM City has many universities, while Tây Ninh and Bình Phước provinces do not have any universities.
In addition, the region needs to promote socialisation, internationalisation, modernisation, digitisation, and universalisation of education. The Government invests and manages the education sector while opening a space for creativity and innovation to attract and mobilise social resources into education. Education policies should not differentiate between the public and private sectors.
The minister emphasised that the education sector must promote internal resources, focusing on attracting scientists and talents who are overseas Vietnamese and foreigners. Furthermore, there is a need to enhance the quality of foreign language teaching further, as it serves as a tool for Vietnamese labourers to integrate into the global workforce.
62 gamblers sentenced total of more than 208 years in prison
The People’s Court of An Giang Province has sentenced 62 defendants of a gambling ring, with a scale of over VNĐ1 trillion (US$42.6 million), to a total of 208 years and six months in prison for ‘organising gambling’ and ‘gambling’ on Wednesday.
The court also forced the defendants to pay back over VNĐ4.84 billion (US$206,850) of illicit profits from gambling.
Defendant Nguyễn Thị Thủy Liên, 57, the ring leader of Mỹ Xuyên Ward in the province’s Long Xuyên City, was sentenced 10 years in prison.
Huỳnh Sĩ Nguyên, 46, of Long Xuyên City, was sentenced to 10 years in prison on the same charges, while Dương Văn Hoàng, 64, of Long Xuyên City, was given eight years and six months.
Lương Kim Khá, 43, of Long Xuyên City, was sentenced to six years and three months.
The above were all found guilty of ‘organising gambling’ and ‘gambling’.
Liên, Nguyên, and Hoàng were forced to pay an additional fine of VNĐ70 million ($2,985), while Khá had to pay an additional fine of VNĐ50 million ($2,132).
Thirteen other defendants of the ring were charged with “organising gambling”, while 45 other defendants were charged with “gambling.”
These defendants received sentences from six months probation to five years in prison.
Each defendant also has to pay an additional fine of VNĐ10-20 million ($426-852). The fines total more than VNĐ1 billion ($42,652).
According to the indictment, in May 2021, the provincial Police Department received information from local people about the ring.
After inspection, on June 5, 2021, the department issued an urgent-search warrant for the residences of Liên, Hoàng, Khá, Nguyên and some defendants of the ring, including La Thị Hồng Yến, Lê Tấn Hảo, Trương Thị Bích Hạnh, Nguyễn Thị Hồng Sơn, Trần Thị Ánh Tuyết, Huỳnh Thị Thu Sương.
Police seized 108 mobile phones, eight printers, three fax machines, two sets of money counters, three cameras, 27 computers, eight iPads, one photocopy machine, 12 motorbikes, five cars, and more than VNĐ7.1 billion ($303,000), along with other valuable assets.
Famous actor’s web drama about Vietnamese folk story launched
A web drama based on Vietnamese tales starring famous theatre actor and director Thành Lộc of HCM City will be released on YouTube in August.
The show, Thạch Sanh-Lý Thanh (The Story of Thạch Sanh and Lý Thanh), is based on a popular Vietnamese fairy tale called Thạch Sanh (The Tale of Thạch Sanh).
Thạch Sanh tells the story of an orphan who grows up to be a brave woodcutter and defeats monsters to save a princess. Finally, he and the princess get married.
In the web drama, love, honestly and bravery will be highlighted. Family issues will also be included.
The show stars Lộc as the lead character, and young artists Ngọc Thanh Tâm and Võ Tấn Phát.
Filming began on May 14.
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