Daily Archives: May 18, 2018

President Ho Chi Minh’s 128th birth anniversary commemorated

Top Vietnamese leaders paid tribute to President Ho Chi Minh at his mausoleum in Hanoi on Friday ahead of the late leader’s 128th birth anniversary (May 19).

The group included Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, President Tran Dai Quang, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, National Assembly (NA) Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, and President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee Tran Thanh Man.

The Sen Village Festival 2018 opened in Nghe An province on Thursday as part of activities to mark the event. The festival features film screenings, camping, sporting events, a photo exhibition, a music festival, and a kite flying contest. Le Minh Thong, Vice Chairman of Nghe An province’s People’s Committee, said: This is an opportunity to show gratitude to President Ho Chi Minh and promote the campaign to study and follow his moral example, and keep the fine Vietnamese tradition of remembering the source of the water we drink.

An exhibition on President Ho Chi Minh and Vietnam � Russia friendship opened in Moscow, Russia, on Thursday to celebrate 95 years since he first came to Russia. On display are nearly 150 documents, photos and other items. Ms. Cao Thi Hai Yen, deputy head of the Presidential Palace Historical Site in Hanoi, one of the event’s organizers, said: The exhibition highlights the time-honored friendship between Vietnam and Russia fostered by President Ho Chi Minh during his time there. It also teaches young Russian people about President Ho Chi Minh’s life and revolutionary career.

On this occasion, St. Petersburg city authorities also held a ceremony attended by Secretary of Ho Chi Minh City’s Party Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan, Russian representatives and Vietnamese expats in St. Petersburg. Mayor Georgy Poltavchenko said President Ho Chi Minh’s trip 95 years ago laid the foundation for today’s relationship between the peoples of Vietnam and Russia.

A delegation of Ho Chi Minh City leaders led by Deputy Secretary of the Municipal Party Committee Ngo Thi Thanh Hang paid tribute at the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum on Friday to commemorate President Ho Chi Minh’s 128th birthday.

The same day, leaders of Nghe Anh province organized an incense offering ceremony at the Kim Lien relic site, Nam Dan district, Nghe An province.

Also on Friday, the Vietnamese Consulate General in Savanaket, Laos and the Management Board of the province’s Historical and Cultural Relic Site organized an incense burning ceremony at the President Ho Chi Minh Memorial House.

Activities to mark the occasion were also held at the Vietnamese Embassy in Algeria.

Source: VOV5

US hospital ship joins Pacific Partnership Program

The US Navy’s hospital ship USNS Mercy docked in Nha Trang port on Thursday, beginning its Pacific Partnership Program 2018 until June 2.

More than 500 US officers and crewmembers and their Vietnamese partners will work with Nha Trang hospitals to provide health examinations and treatment to people, administer first-aid to victims at local beaches, and repair and upgrade local medical facilities in localities. Commissioned in 1986, the USNS Mercy is a super hospital of the US Navy. The annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission in the Pacific and Indian Ocean aims to strengthen national capacities and medical preparedness for disaster response. In addition to the US and Japan, the program includes the UK, Canada, France, Australia, Sri Lanka, Chile, and Peru.

Source: VOV5

Vietnam ratifies Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

Vietnamese Ambassador Nguyen Phuong Nga, head of the Vietnam Permanent Mission to the United Nations, deposited with the UN Secretary General Vietnam’s instrument of ratification of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons on May 17, becoming the 10th country to do so. Once ratified by 50 countries, it will enter into force.

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh signed the treaty last September, in the framework of the 72nd UN General Assembly’s High-level Meeting. Being one of the first countries to sign and ratify the treaty, Vietnam has shown its consistent policy for peace and supporting nuclear disarmament across the world.

The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons has a historical significance, as this is the first international document comprehensively prohibiting the development, testing, producing, manufacturing, possessing and stockpiling nuclear weapons, as well as threatening to use them.

Source: VOV5

Vietnam welcomes AES’s gas investment

Vietnam welcomes AES Corporation and its investment in the Mong Duong 2 power plant in Quang Ninh province, Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue said at a reception in Hanoi on Thursday for AES Vietnam’s President David Stone.

Stone said his company is carrying out research for an investment in the Son My 2 gas-fired thermal power project in the southern province of Binh Thuan. He also discussed AES’s coordination with PetroVietnam Gas on the Son My liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal project in the province.

Deputy PM Hue said he supports the LNG terminal projects and urged the signing of a contract to carry out the project as soon as possible.

Source: VOV5

The Philippines, Usually a Receiver of Foreign Aid, Offers Some

The Philippines, usually a receiver of international aid, got a unique chance this week to give some as the government agreed to help struggling Papua New Guinea with rice cultivation.

Philippine and Papua New Guinean officials signed an agreement Wednesday on cooperation in agriculture, particularly rice production, inland fish farming and industrial crops, the presidential office in Manila said.

Rice will probably lead their agreement as the Philippines has shared growing techniques abroad before, said Jonathan Ravelas, chief market strategist with Banco de Oro UniBank in Metro Manila.

Planting rice is a bit sensitive, especially when you’re in a tropical country, Ravelas said. Before a harvest it rains. We have a facility that gives you different strains of rice that could be water resistant or whatever.

Receiver of foreign aid

The Philippines as a developing country has accepted billions of dollars in aid and investment pledged by other countries.

Much of it comes from China, Japan and the United States. For example, China is helping build railways now as part of a $169 billion plan to build Philippine infrastructure through 2022. Two years ago Beijing pledged an eventual total of $24 billion in aid and investment to the Philippines.

Now Papua New Guinea needs help diversifying its economy because drops in world oil prices have hurt oil and gas, said Christian de Guzman, vice president and senior credit officer with Moody’s in Singapore.

With the downturn in oil prices, the problem here is that a few years ago there was this expectation that oil prices were going to be like $100 per barrel, and so they jacked up spending, de Guzman said. They’re a bit struggling right now.

This is part of the diversification story, said de Guzman, referring to any boost in farming from the Philippines. They don’t want their economy to be so tied so closely to the oil cycle.

In 2014 Papua New Guinea began commercial operations of liquefied natural gas. Gas, crude oil and other fuels could potentially comprise about 60 percent of the country’s export revenues, professional services firm PwC said. The impoverished country’s GDP growth slowed from 10.5 percent to 2 percent in 2016, and the Asian Development Bank forecasts a 1.3 percent fall this year.

Papua New Guinean Prime Minister Peter O’Neill told a business forum in Australia the economy must be diversified to avoid booms and busts.

Reputation for rice

O’Neill was quoted by the Philippine presidential website saying agriculture cooperation will help ensure food security for both countries. He met Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte in Manila this week.

The Philippines can offer expertise in hundreds of rice strains, including some that hold up in severe weather such as typhoons, said Jaime Manolo in the development and communications section of the Philippine Rice Research Institute.

The government-funded, 33-year-old institute also called PhilRice has previously helped Brunei and countries in Africa with rice technology, he said.

We’ve got a lot of location-specific technologies that are being promoted in different ecosystems, which I think is also true in any country that attempts to grow rice, Manolo said. So I guess PhilRice has the expertise and technologies that can help for instance PNG improve its rice production.

Quid quo pro

The Philippines may get something in return for its aid to Papua New Guinea, some analysts say.

Filipinos already work in PNG, part of a labor diaspora that totals about 2.3 million people worldwide.

Just 15,500 of those were working in Papua New Guinea as of 2012, Philippine media say, but the number has been growing. Philippine technical workers may eventually be able to help Papua New Guinea advance in farming, de Guzman said.

Their earnings would contribute to billions of dollars in remittances sent back to the Philippines.

Manila may also want Papua New Guinea to scrap a rule against tuna fishing by foreign boats, said Carl Baker, director of programs with the think tank Pacific Forum CSIS in Honolulu.

Boats used to reach its waters from the southern Philippine island Mindanao and take tuna catches back for processing. Duterte asked O’Neill last year to reconsider the ban.

The Philippine Rice Research Institute is well known in Southeast Asia and has done a lot of research on optimizing small farm production, so that makes sense for PNG, Baker said.

The Philippines does not really provide a lot of assistance to other countries in the region, he added. I suspect this really is being driven by an interest in trying to protect the interests of the tuna processors.

Source: Voice of America

Indonesia tightens security to minimize terrorism risks

Indonesia’s national police chief Tito Karnavian on Thursday said security has been strengthened to deal with terror threats following a recent series of suicide bombings.

Talking to representatives from embassies and international organizations in Jakarta, the general confirmed that bomb attacks targeting Christian churches and police stations were acts of revenge by JAD and JAT � two terrorist groups – after Indonesian police arrested their leaders.

Since the bombings, the police have conducted an intense investigation and carried out raids against suspects. In the past 10 days, 48 terror suspects have been arrested, and several others were shot dead.

For a long-term solution, general Karnavian emphasised the importance of strong anti-terrorism laws and a bolstering of Indonesia’s security network and anti-terrorism forces.

Source: VOV5

US President says no “Libya model” for North Korea

US President Donald Trump on Thursday said he will not implement a Libya model for denuclearization that would force Pyongyang to give up its arms and see the North Korean President ousted.

Trump said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will have solid back-ups to run his country.

Pyongyang on Tuesday threatened to cancel the summit with the US set for June 12 in Singapore to protest a US-South Korea defense drill, and criticized Washington’s demand that North Korea unconditionally end its nuclear program.

White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders said the US is preparing for the meeting with North Korea, adding that the event will occur whenever Pyongyang is ready.

Source: VOV5