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Social News 7/5

Film based on literary work of the 1940s to be screened in August

Actress Thu Trang performs in Chi Pheo Ngoại Truyện, a film about love, jealousy and murder based on a work by Nam Cao, one of Viet Nam’s great literature figures. The film will be released in August. (

A film about love, jealousy and murder, based on a work by Nam Cao, one of Việt Nam’s great litarature figures, will begin post-production in HCM City this week.  

The tragicomedy Chí Phèo Ngoại Truyện (Chí Phèo’s Untold Stories) is produced by YEAH1 CMG, one of HCM City’s private film agencies.

The film depicts the love story between Chí Phèo, a member of the underworld, and Thị Nở, a poor girl, in a modern style that young audiences find attractive.

It is directed by Vietnamese-American Danny Đỗ, a well-known music and film director and producer who lives in the city.  

Danny said he and his staff had worked hard to incorporate simple and humorous language to meet the tastes of their audiences. 

“Each of our talented young actors is a star in the making,” said Danny. “They bring an energy and passion to their characters which are extraordinary in people so young.”

The film features famous comedians Thu Trang and Tiến Luật, and young promising talents including Kiều Minh Tuấn, Phương Trinh Jolie, Lilly Nguyễn and Nam Thư.

Pop star Phương Thanh was invited to play a supporting role in the film.  

Chí Phèo Ngoại Truyện is based on Chí Phèo, a short story written by Cao around 1941.

The work involves the decline of moral standards and loss many traditional values related to family and love in a colonial and semi-feudal society in the 1930s and 40s.  

The work is often studied in Vietnamese schools.  

It was adapted into a 90-minute feature film under the name Làng Vũ Đại Ngày Ấy (Vũ Đại Village in the Past), a production by Việt Nam Film Studio and directed by Phạm Văn Khoa in 1982.

“I love working to bring the genius of Nam Cao to young generations. His themes are intensely human, timeless and relevant in any time and culture,” Danny said.

Chí Phèo Ngoại Truyện will be released in cinemas in August.

Economic student hope to solve land dispute with transparency

Trần Ngọc Anh, a junior student at the National Economics University (NEU), likes to study in the cool and quiet atmosphere of the Hà Nội Library reading room. Capable of hosting 100 readers at once, the library serves retired elderly, students cramming for exams and researchers.

“I’m studying for finals. I’m a student of the Real Estate department, focusing on real estate governance. I hope to be able to find a job as the land officer at the district or 

communal board member.”

New residence development, land clearance and rehabilitation have been the top issues in the right to use land for business and citizens. Việt Nam’s law has it that land ownership belongs to the state. People have their right to use land and build on top of it. Land disputes are highly controversial and if not solved properly can lead to serious public unrest.

Just last month, a group of uncontended villagers from Đồng Tâm village held hostage a group of nearly 30 policemen and local authorities, who they claimed to have wrongly assigned the village’s land for business purposes.

“I’m studying land governance, focusing on the government management of land use and allocation. Concerning what happened in Đồng Tâm, I believe the process should 

have been transparent from the beginning. The land mobilisation needed to be explained in detail to the villagers so that they could understand and support local goverment.”

“What I liked most about what I’m studying is pricing: how to help a property owner understand all 12 factors that can make property price go up or down.”

Hà Nội police arrests suspected drug trafficker

The city’s Drug Crime Investigation Police Department announced on Thursday the arrest of Dương Đình Đăng, who was suspected  to be leader of a large-scale drug trafficking ring.

City police had issued a special wanted order for Đăng, 30, who had been allegedly trafficking large quantities of drugs from the northwest region and northern Quảng Ninh Province to sell in the city.

Police also seized two loaded guns, three drug packets, VNĐ147 million in cash at a house in the city where Đăng was hiding.

At the police office, Đăng, living at Thổ Quan Ward, Đống Đa District of the city, allegedly declared he had transported 4.4kg of synthetic drugs in connection with other northwest rings to develop drug trafficking in the city.     

On September of 2016, police forces apprehended two suspects of Đăng’s drug trafficking ring when they were transporting 1.4kg of synthetic drugs in Gia Lâm District.

According to the two suspects’ testimony, police seized exhibits, drugs, five telephones, two cars, and a gun from their ring.

Phạm Văn Minh, 43, living at Quảng Ninh Province’s Móng Cái City and Nguyễn Văn Tùng, 37, living at Hà Nội’s Sóc Sơn District told the investigative body that they were transporting drugs under Đăng’s direction.

Police are now expanding their investigation.

An unidentified woman, 34, was caught allegedly smuggling over four kilogrammes of ivory and pangolin scales worth VNĐ250 million (US$11,000) hidden in a frozen salmon’s belly and milk cartons on a flight from Angola to Việt Nam on Thursday.

Customs officers at HCM City’s Tân Sơn Nhất International Airport said the ivory, which was in the form of bracelets and bead necklaces, and the scales, which were in 

small pieces, were divided and wrapped in several pieces of silver paper before being hidden.

The woman has been taken in for questioning.

Pangolin scales are used in Chinese traditional medicine to cure a variety of ills.

Missing fisherman’s body found in port city

The body of a fisherman who went missing in a boat accident off Hòn Dấu 15 Island close to northern Hải Phòng City was found at 11.20am on Friday.

Việt Nam Maritime Search and Rescue Co-ordination Centre (VNMRCC) said the body of Nguyễn Văn Được, 38, from central Thanh Hóa Province, was found in the 

engine room of fishing boat HP 09364 TS and moved to the rescue ship coded SAR 411.

Rescue ships and fishing boats have been mobilised to continue searching for the other missing fisherman, identified as Đinh Như Thắng, 38, from Hải Phòng City.

Fishing boat HP 09364 TS was reportedly hit by cargo ship Nguyễn Nam Khánh 168 late on Wednesday, following which it capsized.

The cargo ship was carrying some 3,000 tonnes of clinker from the city’s Chinfong port to HCM City.

Two fishermen were rescued by VNMRCC by 6am on Thursday. They were identified as Phạm Văn Hùng, 41, boat captain from Hải Phòng City, and Bùi Văn Đông, 37, 

from Thanh Hóa Province.

Surveillance cameras installed in Central Highland region

Twenty surveillance cameras have been installed in key locations in nine communes and towns and on provincial road No. 8 in Cư M’gar District in the Central Highland Province of Đắk Lắk.

The district is the first locality in the Central Highland region to have surveillance cameras installed to help police inspect traffic flow and incidents in a timely manner.

Thanks to the cameras, relevant agencies detected and cracked down on 10 illegal timber trafficking cases, seizing over 20cum.m of timber, and charged five traffickers.

The police, meanwhile, cracked down on a case involving a drug dealer and drug users. They also arrested three motorbike thieves and succeeded in curbing illegal motorbike racing.

The district plans to install more cameras in crowded residential areas and administrative centres to ensure better public order and security and improve public service delivery quality.

In the last few years, surveillance cameras have been installed in public places in large cities such as Hà Nội and HCM City.

These cameras have proved very effective in curbing crime, ensuring public security and detecting traffic violations in the country.

Poisoning from fake herbal medicine on the rise in Vietnam

Recently, the Poison Control Center and the Department of Nephrology of Bach Mai Hospital in Hanoi have received many patients suffering lead poisoning after taking herbal medicine of unknown origin.

According to Dr. Nghiem Trung Dung, the Department of Nephrology at Bach Mai Hospital admits three to four such patients every month on average.

Those with minor poisoning can be easily treated by dialysis while patients in severe conditions normally develop several side effects such as renal and hepatic failures after treatment.

From 2011 to 2016, of 2,800 children that had their health checked at Bach Mai, 900 were found to have a lead content in blood above the safety limit (10 mcg/dL), and two of those were reportedly dead.

According to pharmacist Le Kim Phung, there are many fake or substandard herbal medicine or medicinal substances on the market, mostly ginseng, lingzhi mushrooms, and velvet antlers.

Those products are normally processed and preserved with substances containing toxic chemicals such as sulfur and lead.

Taking in a high amount of those chemicals can result in various negative effects such as headache, diarrhea, vomit, hypertension, renal failure, hepatic failure, and heart failure.

Due to their high demand, many of the following medicinal herbs are often faked such as ginseng, lingzhi mushrooms, and Chinese knotweeds.

According to Tran Thi Hong Phuong, deputy director of the Department of Traditional Medicine, fake ginseng usually has the sweetness like that of yam and its appearance looks very smooth.

Real Chinese knotweeds have grains in their core and are red-brown while the counterfeit ones do not have grains and are usually brown in color.

Bui Thanh Tung, of the Department of Traditional Medicine, advised that people should only buy herbal medicine from certified and reputable stores.

“People should not use them excessively without chemists’ advice,” Tung added.

One million Vietnamese to benefit from better transport and sanitation infrastructure

The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors on May 5 approved US$315 million in financing to improve water transport infrastructure in northern Vietnam, and sanitation and transport services in coastal cities in central Vietnam.

Of the total approved funding, US$236 million will be directed to the Vietnam Coastal Cities Sustainable Environment Project, with US$190 million from the International Development Association (IDA) and US$46 million from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD). 

It will be implemented in the coastal cities of Dong Hoi, Quy Nhon, Nha Trang, and Phan Rang – Thap Cham, and expected to benefit around 1.1 million residents.

Investments under the Vietnam Coastal Cities Sustainable Environment Project will focus on flood reduction; drainage and wastewater collection networks; waste water 

treatment plants, school sanitation and public toilets; revolving funds for household connections and solid waste management. 

It will also improve priority roads and bridges along canals, drains, and rivers, thereby strengthening connectivity and relieving traffic pressure. Relevant institutional arrangements and sustainability aspects will also be comprehensively addressed and enhanced though the project implementation.

 “Given Vietnam’s rapid urbanization, an integrated approach to the development of transport, water, and sanitation services is vital to sustained growth, as is strong 

environmental protection,” says Ousmane Dione, the World Bank Country Director for Vietnam. “As highlighted in the Vietnam 2035 report, we are strongly committed to 

the partnership with Vietnam to deliver solutions efficiently and effectively.”

The remaining US$78.74 million is an IDA credit that will support the Northern Delta Transport Development Project. It will finance the construction of a canal to connect the Day and Ninh Co rivers with a navigational lock to improve freight vessel access to Ninh Phuc port, the main inland waterway port in the Ninh Binh region. 

Construction of the canal is expected to facilitate economic activity by reducing logistics costs, and to mitigate the risks of climate change by reducing the emission of greenhouse gases incurred in freight transportation.

In conjunction with other inland waterway infrastructure investments already financed under the project, the Day-Ninh Co canal will complete a through-corridor for 

seagoing vessels between the estuary of the Ninh Co River and Ninh Phuc port. 

This will enable round-the-clock waterway access to vessels up to 3,000 tons in capacity to service this important transport network. 

Major ASEAN golf tourney gets underway in Binh Dinh

Some of the best players in the ASEAN region are geared up for one of the major championships of the season, the Biscom Open, which teed off today (May 6) at the FLC Resort in the southern province of Binh Dinh

More than 700 golfers are competing for total cash and prizes (including cars) valued at US$869,600 (VND20 billion) in five categories: three for men, one for women and one for amateurs over the 2-day competition.

Fruit and veggie safety to be tightened

The pilot project to put origin-tracing stamps on vegetable and fruits has gained initial successes after three months, a senior official has said.

Speaking at the May 4 review meeting for the project, Tran Ngoc Ho, deputy director of the HCM City’s Agriculture and Rural Development Department, said “At the beginning, the project met customer demand for safe vegetables and fruits.”

Phuoc An and Phu Loc cooperatives are producing a total of eight to 10 tonnes of vegetable and fruits per day.

The products have been sold in supermarkets including Co.op Mart, Big C, Aeon and Vinmart.

In the coming time, the department would encourage more cooperatives to join the project, but “they will have to meet quality and safety for products,” said.

To encourage more suppliers for safe vegetables and fruit, the city has applied an interest-support policy and set aside 30 per cent of investment capital to set up organic agricultural production.

“Authorities should announce standards about origin-tracing stamps in order to ensure quality of the service,” Nguyen Truong Son, deputy chairman of the High-Tech Agriculture Club, said.

“Food processors are applying more modern technologies and higher standards for tracing origins so authorities should adjust regulations to be in line with the current 

situation,” said Nguyen Thi Hong Minh, chairwoman of the Traceverified Limited Company.

She said that 30 food companies had used origin-tracing services to build up customer confidence in their products.

Hanoi launches environmental sanitation campaign

The Health Department of Hanoi on June 6 launched a campaign to clean the environment in response to ASEAN Dengue Day (June 15).

Addressing the event, Tran Dac Phu, head of the Department of Preventive Medicine under the Ministry of Health, noted that Hanoi has been the locality suffered from 

dengue fever with thousands of infection cases every year.

There is a risk of outbreak of dengue fever and Zika-virus caused diseases in the city if it hesitates to apply preventive measures, he warned, urging the Party organisation, 

government, sectors and localities across the city, especially the health care sector, to actively take part in detecting and handling virus nests, thus preventing uncontrolled spreading of virus.

Meanwhile, Director of the Hanoi Health Department Nguyen Khac Hien highlighted the importance of environmental sanitation, killing mosquito larva among the community.

He noted that neither vaccines against dengue fever nor effective treatment have been found, underlining the need for higher responsibility of the government at districts of the city in preventing the disease in the locality.

Preventive Medicine Centres in districts should improve their capacity in forecasting and detecting risky factors for timely response, while preparing equipment and 

chemicals for necessary circumstances, he added.

Following the launching ceremony, the People’s Committee of Ha Dong district deployed five groups to inspect mosquito larva killing and chemical spraying in Phu Luong ward.

As of April 2017, Hanoi has recorded 563 dengue fever cases in 173 communes, wards and towns of 26 districts, higher than that of the same time last year. However, no death has been reported.

Siemens-authorised technology centre launched in Hanoi

New cutting-edge technology products will be introduced at the Hanoi-based Vietbay Technology Centre, an authorised training centre of Siemens Industry PLM in Vietnam. 

The centre was jointly inaugurated in Hanoi on May 5 by the Vietbay Company and Siemens Industry PLM. 

The centre will work on technological solutions applicable to different periods of the designing, production and business management process. 

It will also provide training on computer-aided design (CAD), computer-aided manufacturing (CAM), computer-aided engineering (CAE) and product lifecycle management (PLM). 

Vietbay General Director Dam Thi Hong Lan said, as a strategic partner of Siemens PLM, Vietbay has been authorised to implement the group’s education programmes in Vietnamese universities and colleges.

Besides, Viebay has also helped train engineers for businesses, she said. 

At the launching ceremony, Viebay signed a memorandum of understanding with the Military Technical Academy, the School of Mechanical Engineering under the Hanoi University of Science and Technology, and the University of Transport Technology. 

The cooperation deal aims to improve the qualifications of graduates and create jobs for them while raising the standards of software lecturers.

Vietnam, Denmark cooperate in preventing non-infectious diseases

Vietnamese and Danish health experts shared experience in preventing and controlling non-communicable diseases during a workshop in Hanoi on May 5.

Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Health Le Quang Cuong stressed the event was part of a cooperation strategy between the two countries in a bid to help Vietnam implement its action plan on non-infectious disease control for 2015 – 2025.

He noted that Vietnam has carried out a series of national target programmes to prevent and control non-communicable diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and lung diseases.

Danish Minister for Development Cooperation Ulla Tørnæs said the precaution, detection and management of chronic illnesses are an important part in the bilateral cooperation, adding that diabetes is now a challenge for both nations.

The discussion revealed current preparations between Vietnam and Denmark for a new strategic sector cooperation, which aims at boosting early detection as well as the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases via approaches to public health care.

In Vietnam, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, cancer and chronic lung diseases account for two-third of the total diseases and cause 73 percent of the annual mortality. 

It is estimated that there are 12 million people with high blood pressure, 3 million diabetes patients and 2 million others with chronic lung disease in Vietnam. Some 120,000 new cancer patients are detected each year.

Extravaganza street carnival in Danang

The central city of Danang on Friday evening stayed up in an extravaganza street carnival, which was part of the Danang International Fireworks Festival 2017.

About 150 Vietnamese and foreign artists in traditional costumes of their countries performed and danced with local residents.

Vehicles carried symbols of participating countries including Italy’s ancient Roman fort, Britain’s London Bridge and Big Ben Clock tower, China’s Great Wall, Australia’s kangaroo and Opera House, and Japan’s Fuji Mount.

Director of the carnival Le Quy Duong said, “Nine trucks decorated with flowers have created an impressive atmosphere. Each truck is a stage carrying Vietnamese and foreign artists. I hope the street carnival will leave good impression of visitors.”

Over $74.7 million hospital to be built in Dong Thap Province

A general hospital with 700 beds will be built in the Mekong delta province of Dong Thap, said the provincial People Committee.

The Prime Minister has given the green light to the project of the hospital.

 The hospital will be equipped with the state-of-the-art medical devices to meet the increased demand of treatment and to reduce the transferring of patients to bigger hospitals; subsequently, it can save time and cost for patients and reduce pressure on large infirmaries.

Additionally, the hospital will help prevent diseases, and provide training to clinics in the province.

Total cost of the hospital is VND1.725 billion ($ 74.7 million ), of which VND1,450 billion is from the government bond and the remaining is from local state budget and social contribution.

People’s Committee asked the local Department of Health in coordination with related agencies to finish paperwork for the hospital. It is scheduled to complete in 2019.

Smuggled medical equipment worth $140,000 detected

Customs officers and police yesterday detected a batch of smuggled medical equipment worth $140,753 after many days of keeping it under observation.

The Customs officers in Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh city, the department of smuggling prevention called C74 and the police department’s economic crime investigation division ( PC46) under the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security  followed and detected ten batches of the second hand CT tomography machines weighing 5.7 tons worth over VND3.2 billion ($140,753).

The batches were discovered while it was in transit procedure in Vietnam before they were exported to Cambodia through Xa Mat border gate in the southern province of Tay Ninh.

Second medical items are banned from import into Vietnam. Con Ong (Bee) Company at 39B Truong Son Street in District Tan Binh directed by Dinh Huu Thanh declared the shipments are new items in its declaration to evade the application for the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s license. 

Currently, some smugglers have taken advantage of transiting Vietnam before exporting to Cambodia. This is new tricks. Customs Department has increased inspections so officers discovered smuggling case.

Director of Olympic Company Nguyen Kien Hung was prosecuted for smuggling second hand medical equipment in order to evade license issued by the Ministry of Health last year.

Enhancing access to fourth industrial revolution

PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc has recently signed Directive 16/CT-TTg on enhancing access to the fourth industrial revolution.

Accordingly, the PM tasked ministers and ministerial-level leaders, provincial and municipal chairpersons to fulfill solutions and tasks by 2020.

Specifically, the Government chief asked for solutions to make breakthroughs in infrastructure, IT application and manpower improvement; develop digital connectivity infrastructure; ensure network safety; create equal conditions for both citizens and businesses to access and develop digital contents.

Ministries and agencies were asked to promptly develop e-Government; review and remove inappropriate business conditions; amend management regulations on exports and imports towards less administrative procedures.

They were assigned to review strategies and action plans in accordance with the development trend of the fourth industrial revolution; build strategies for digital transformation, smart administration, prioritize digital technology industry, smart agriculture, tourism, and urban areas; review and select key products and national strategic competitive products.

The PM assigned the Ministry of Industry and Communications to develop IT infrastructure and encourage businesses to develop new technologies while telecom enterprises were asked to perfect the 4G network as well as researching and developing a 5G network.

The Ministry of Science and Technology was instructed to develop the business start-up ecosystem; promote technological applications and transferring of key industries in the fourth industrial revolution.

The Ministry of Education and Training was asked to educate science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in universal education program.

The Ministry of Labor, Invalids, and Social Affairs was assigned to renovate vocational training.

The PM assigned the Ministry of Finance to build mechanisms, tax and financial policies to enable businesses to invest in technological research.

The Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology and the Viet Nam Academy of Social Sciences were asked to research and evaluate the development trends of the fourth industrial revolution.

Severe warnings issued for high-risk of forest fires in many localities

The Forest Protection Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has issued warnings for high risk of forest fires in several locales in the northern and central regions, due to hot and dry weather.

Accordingly, the districts of An Lao, Vinh Thanh, Phu My, Hoai An, Hoai Nhon (Binh Dinh Province), and Son Dong (Bac Giang Province) are at risk of forest fires at level 5 (extremely dangerous).

Meanwhile, the districts of Luc Nam and Luc Ngan (Bac Giang), districts of Tan Ky, Nghia Dan, and Quy Hop (Nghe An Province), and the whole Phu Yen Province are at level 4 (dangerous) risk of forest fires.

The Forest Protection Department requests the above-mentioned local authorities and forest owners to take serious measures to prevent and fight against forest fires in accordance with regulations.

* In Quang Ngai, due to prolonged hot weather, many localities in the province are in danger of forest fires. The provincial Forest Protection Department has assigned staff to be ready during the dry season, while putting measures in place across all levels to support forest fire prevention and control work when the fires occur beyond the control of localities.

* On May 6, Dak Lak Provincial Disaster Prevention and Search and Rescue Department said that, the recent heavy rains and cyclones severely damaged crops and buildings in Buon Don, Krong Buk, Ea Kar, Ea Sup districts, causing serious damage estimated at more than VND1.1 billion.

Local functional forces are joining people to address post-disaster consequences and form statistics on damages to request competent authorities’ assistance for local people to overcome difficulties and re-stabilise their lives.

Singapore-Vietnam Cancer Centre opens in Ho Chi Minh City

The Singapore-Vietnam Cancer Centre (SVCC) opened its doors officially to serve the community from Vietnam on May 6.

Conveniently located at 97 Nguyen Thi Minh Khai, District 1, SVCC is set up to offer treatments and services for all cancer types as its core operation in Vietnam. Bringing together a team of renowned cancer specialists from Vietnam and Singapore, it is a comprehensive cancer centre providing services ranging from preventive cancer programs, screening for early detection, cancer treatments to post-cancer treatment care.

SVCC is privileged to partner top cancer specialists from Singapore and Vietnam who have years of experience in treating cancer patients and, are recognised in its respective areas of sub-specialisation. With the sub-specialisations of partnering cancer specialists, SVCC treats all cancer types with complete treatment services including medical oncology, oncologic imaging, palliative medicine, surgical oncology and radiation oncology.

Besides, treatments for cancer patients, SVCC is an advocate of cancer prevention and early detection to keep the community in good health and increase the patient’s chance for successful treatments. The community can expect the centre to roll out a year of calendar of events which will include cancer prevention educational talks and forums as well as cancer screening.   

SVCC will be the first in Vietnam to offer post-cancer treatment services through Can-Care, a leading provider in post treatments services and related products to aid patients through their recovery process. Located within SVCC itself, Can-Care will also offer a range of products which patients can buy from conveniently.

SVCC strives to provide the best service to the community in Vietnam by offering them a one-stop comprehensive cancer centre where they can turn to for all cancer-related issues from preventive to treatments for all cancer types. It is a centre that is committed to deliver medical excellence and personalized care to patients. 

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