Daily Archives: May 26, 2020

Philips launches next generation wearable biosensor for early patient deterioration detection, including clinical surveillance for COVID-19

May 26, 2020

  • Wireless wearable biosensor (Philips Biosensor BX100) receives 510(k) clearance from the FDA and CE mark to help monitor COVID-19 patients in hospital, with first install at OLVG Hospital in the Netherlands
  • Further enhances Philips portfolio of devices, software and services for identifying patients at risk for deterioration while limiting exposure to help improve staff and patient safety and preserve valuable personal protective equipment

Amsterdam, the Netherlands – Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA), a global leader in health technology, today announced it has received 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its wearable biosensor (Philips Biosensor BX100) to help manage confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients in the hospital. The next generation wireless wearable biosensor enhances clinical surveillance in the Philips patient deterioration detection solution to help clinicians detect risk so they can intervene earlier and help improve care for patients in lower acuity care areas. The solution has already received CE mark, and is currently in use with the first install at the OLVG Hospital in the Netherlands to help manage the triage and clinical surveillance of COVID-19 patients.

The Philips Biosensor BX100 is designed to address a new approach to vital signs measurements, supporting surveillance of higher acuity patients moving from intensive care units into lower acuity general care areas of a hospital.  The lightweight, disposable biosensor is a 5-day, single-use wearable patch which can be integrated with a scalable hub to monitor multiple patients across multiple rooms. Built to incorporate into existing clinical workflows for mobile viewing and notifications, the device requires no cleaning or charging. The medical-grade wireless wearable biosensor, intended for use by healthcare professionals on patients 18 years of age and older, adheres discreetly to the chest to collect, store, measure and transmit respiratory rate and heart rate every minute – the top two predictors of deterioration – as well as contextual parameters such as posture, activity level and ambulation.

OLVG, a top clinical, referral and training hospital in the Netherlands is responding to the COVID-19 emergency situation by remotely monitoring patients in isolation rooms who are diagnosed or suspected of COVID, but don’t need ventilation. To meet the hospital’s need to support COVID-19 patients in isolation, OLVG has implemented Philips patient deterioration detection solution comprised of data-driven intelligent analytics software (IntelliVue GuardianSoftware) for early warning scoring, advanced patient monitors (EarlyVue VS30), and the Philips Biosensor BX100 wearable sensors.

“During this unprecedented time of COVID-19, the Philips Biosensor BX100 helps provide rapid deployment for clinical surveillance to help decrease risk of exposure of healthcare workers while acquiring frequent patient vitals, and easing the demand for personal protective equipment (PPE),” said Peter Ziese, General Manager Monitoring and Analytics at Philips. “The biosensor is an integral component in our Patient Deterioration Detection solution which helps aid in the identification of the subtle signs of deterioration in a patient’s condition at the point of care, hours before a potential adverse event would occur.”

“With the help of this new biosensor, we can continuously and remotely monitor patients, which is especially important on the COVID-19 wards,” said Florian van der Hunnik, Chief Nursing Information Officer and team leader of the COVID-19 ward at OLVG Hospital in Amsterdam. “Because we cannot walk in and out of the patient rooms without protective gear, we welcome this innovation as it helps improve how we can do our jobs better.”

The Philips next generation wearable biosensor is part of the Philips comprehensive portfolio of solutions to address patient deterioration, supporting general care around the world with smart clinical intelligence. For more information on how Philips is addressing the Coronavirus globally, please visit the Philips centralized COVID-19 hub.

For further information, please contact:

Kathy O’Reilly
Philips Global Press Office
Tel.: +1 978 221 8919
E-mail: kathy.oreilly@philips.com
Twitter: @kathyoreilly

Pieter van Meer
Philips Benelux
Tel.: +31 6 25 2690 65
Email: pieter.de.meer@philips.com

About Royal Philips

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a leading health technology company focused on improving people’s health and enabling better outcomes across the health continuum from healthy living and prevention, to diagnosis, treatment and home care. Philips leverages advanced technology and deep clinical and consumer insights to deliver integrated solutions. Headquartered in the Netherlands, the company is a leader in diagnostic imaging, image-guided therapy, patient monitoring and health informatics, as well as in consumer health and home care. Philips generated 2019 sales of EUR 19.5 billion and employs approximately 81,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. News about Philips can be found at www.philips.com/newscenter.


The Canadian Oil Service Sector supports the Emergence of New Canadian Geothermal Developers

CALGARY, Alberta, May 26, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — At the end of April, The Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors (CAODC), Clean Energy Canada and the Petroleum Services Association of Canada (PSAC) joined together to establish an alliance with the existing geothermal industry participants to promote Canadian geothermal development and to create jobs for displaced oil and gas drilling contractors and oilfield service workers.

See the link for details on this Geothermal Alliance here.

Under such an initiative, Eavor believes Alberta could attract up to $4 billion in private and foreign investment capital, to create 400MWe of clean dispatchable power and eliminate 2,000,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year, all the while eventually employing 5,000+ displaced oil service workers. Such a plan could kickstart a geothermal ecosystem in Canada that could lead the world and represent a clean sunrise export industry for the nation.

To rapidly scale a Canadian geothermal industry, however, will require an incentive plan that can attract new developers and participants to the market. Such an incentive plan will need to include Power Purchase Agreements (PPA’s) or their equivalent to provide guaranteed offtake at a reasonable price for the value delivered (no different than for any new power generating asset). The advantage of such incentives are that they are technology agnostic and let the market decide which technologies and developers are involved.

In anticipation of these changes, we are pleased to announce that a number of geothermal developers have already indicated a desire to enter the market. They have done this by signing licensing and technical support agreements with Eavor. Each license to be focused on a specific area of interest for that developer in Western Canada.

Some of these developers new to Western Canada are:

This is just the start as once a stable geothermal business environment is in place, more (and larger) market participants are also expected to join this emerging industry. Some of these developers are already in discussions but are as of yet unwilling to show their hand without clarifications from the government first. The important thing is that a lot of developers means a lot of work for service companies and a rapid ramp-up of clean dispatchable power.


Kevin Krausert (CAODC Drilling Rig Executive Chair) – “Having a diverse and growing stable of active geothermal developers in Canada is absolutely essential if we are going to generate a meaningful amount of geothermal related work for our drilling and oil service company members.”

Janice Tran (Kanin Energy, CEO) – “A PPA will attract long-term sustainable investment into Alberta and put the province on the map as a geothermal leader. We have seen it work in the US where States have used targeted PPAs to rapidly grow nascent energy industries like the biogas and energy storage sector. As a developer, it keeps us in the province because we move where the industry moves.”

John Redfern (Eavor, President & CEO) – “Eavor has facilitated the early entry of multiple developers by reducing the time, risk and cost of the exploratory stage of traditional geothermal projects.”

Kevin Neveu (Precision Drilling, President & CEO) – “Geothermal power development projects are an ideal opportunity to reactivate unemployed oilfield workers and utilize the idle oil and gas drilling infrastructure in Western Canada.  Stimulating the geothermal investments with PPA’s guaranteeing reasonable prices will have to bring significant opportunities to the labour-intensive drilling services sector.”

Chief Blackjack (Little Salmon Carmacks First Nation) – “We have long wanted to share the benefits of Eavor-Loop with some of our fellow First Nations outside of the Yukon. This incentive plan could finally make this possible”.

Nathan Drader (Subsurface Renewables, President) – “Having been involved with, and witnessed firsthand, the recent rapid PPA-driven geothermal growth in Turkey, I’m very keen to participate as a new developer in a similar process here in Canada”.


Eavor (pronounced “Ever”) is a technology-based Energy company led by a team dedicated to creating a clean, reliable and affordable energy future on a global scale. Eavor’s solution (Eavor-Loop™) represents the world’s first truly scalable form of green dispatchable power. Learn more about Eavor here.

Please find attached:

If you have any questions or would like to schedule a Zoom meeting, please contact:

Eavor Technologies Inc.
John Redfern
President & CEO

Pivotal Preclinical Oncology Platform Expands to Include New Patient-Derived Organoid Models

~ HUB patient-derived organoids (PDO) added to CrownBio’s unique platform designed to disrupt traditional drug discovery workflows ~

SAN DIEGO, May 26, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Crown Bioscience today announced the expansion of their unique organoid platform with the addition of 130 Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB) patient-derived organoids (PDO). This marks a significant milestone in the development of CrownBio’s innovative organoid platform and the first, large-scale commercial availability of HUB PDO for oncology drug discovery services.

Organoid technologies are transforming oncology drug development and disrupting the traditionally followed workflows. CrownBio holds an exclusive license from HUB to provide preclinical oncology drug development and validation services using world-leading HUB Organoid Technology, originally developed by the Clevers lab.

“Organoid models will revolutionize the way preclinical oncology research is performed,” said Henry Li, PhD, chief scientific officer at CrownBio. “Using organoids, drug screening will evolve from current linear workflows to a matrixed high throughput screening approach, allowing lead candidates to be tested simultaneously across multiple patient populations in an easily scalable and clinically-relevant model system.”

The newly available models join CrownBio’s established and ever-expanding platform of PDX-derived organoids (PDXO). PDXO are generated using HUB protocols to derive tumor organoids from CrownBio’s PDX collection, which is the world’s largest commercially available panel of PDX. The complementary panels of patient and PDX-derived organoids, alongside parental PDX models, provide the opportunity to change the way drug discovery is conducted.

The combined collection of in vitro and in vivo patient-derived models are clinically relevant and predictive, and the matched model pairs offer a more efficient and informed transition from in vitro to in vivo studies to help reduce the currently high attrition rates of anticancer agents.

“I am delighted to see the HUB Organoid biobank becoming available to the wider research community for oncology drug discovery,” said Rob Vries, PhD, chief executive officer of HUB. “Our partnership with CrownBio is continuing to equip pharmaceutical and biotech companies with the cutting-edge models needed to transform their anticancer agent development programs.”

Benefits of the newly available PDO models include the availability of non-malignant, healthy tissue-derived organoids. This enables PDO studies to be well controlled for studying compound toxicity and therapeutic windows, including matched tissue controls.

The new models cover the important indications of breast, colon, lung, and pancreatic cancer and are directly derived from European patients. The collection includes PDO from primary and metastatic lesions, multiple lesions from the same patient to capture intra-patient heterogeneity, as well as both healthy and tumor organoids.

CrownBio’s organoid platform is available to clients globally. The newly acquired PDO models have completed transfer to CrownBio. They are available for client studies immediately for efficacy and potency evaluation, combination strategy optimization, and lead candidate selection.

About Crown Bioscience Inc.

Crown Bioscience, a JSR Life Sciences company, is a global drug discovery and development service company providing translational platforms to advance oncology, inflammation, and metabolic disease research. With an extensive portfolio of relevant models and predictive tools, Crown Bioscience enables clients to deliver superior clinical candidates. For more information, visit:

About HUB

Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB) was jointly founded by the Hubrecht Institute, the University Medical Center Utrecht, and the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. It constitutes a paradigm-shifting platform for drug discovery and development, (pre)clinical patient stratification, predictive diagnostics, personalized medicine, and companion diagnostics. HUB benefits from the pioneering work of Prof. Hans Clevers, who discovered methods how to grow ‘mini-organs’ (HUB Organoids) out of adult stem cell-derived human epithelial tissue. HUB Organoids, which are part of the living biobanks, are characterized by genome sequencing, expression profiling and sensitivity to known and experimental drugs to establish a database linking genetic and transcriptional information to drug responsiveness. HUB offers licenses to its patented Organoid Technology and provides (pre)clinical and clinical trial services, research and development collaborations, predictive diagnostics, and access to its `living biobanks`. More info at https://huborganoids.nl/

Media Enquiries:

Crown Bioscience
Jody Barbeau

Svenja Meiler

แพลตฟอร์ม Pivotal Preclinical Oncology ขยายเพื่อรวมกับโมเดลออร์แกนอยด์ที่ได้รับจากผู้ป่วยใหม่

~ ออร์แกนอยด์ที่ได้รับจากผู้ป่วย (PDO) ของ HUB ได้ถูกเพิ่มลงในแพลตฟอร์มอันโดดเด่นของ CrownBio ที่ออกแบบมาเพื่อเปลี่ยนแปลงกระบวนการทำงานในการค้นพบยาแบบดั้งเดิม ~

ซานดิเอโก, May 26, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — วันนี้ Crown Bioscience ประกาศการขยายแพลตฟอร์มออร์แกนอยด์ที่โดดเด่นของตนด้วยการเพิ่มเติมออร์แกนอยด์ที่ได้รับจากผู้ป่วย (PDO) ของ Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB) 130 ชุด นี่เป็นความสำเร็จที่สำคัญในการพัฒนาแพลตฟอร์มออร์แกนอยด์ที่ทันสมัยของ CrownBio และเป็นครั้งแรกที่มีการจำหน่าย HUB PDO เชิงพาณิชย์ครั้งใหญ่สำหรับบริการค้นพบยาด้านมะเร็งวิทยา

เทคโนโลยีออร์แกนอยด์กำลังจะเปลี่ยนแปลงการพัฒนายาด้านมะเร็งวิทยาและทำให้กระบวนการทำงานตามรูปแบบดั้งเดิมสะดุดลง CrownBio ได้รับใบอนุญาตพิเศษจาก HUB เพื่อให้บริการด้านการพัฒนายาและการตรวจสอบด้านมะเร็งวิทยาโดยใช้เทคโนโลยีออร์แกนอยด์ของ HUB ชั้นนำของโลก ซึ่งพัฒนาโดยห้องปฏิบัติการ Clevers

“โมเดลออร์แกนอยด์จะปฏิวัติวิธีการวิจัยด้านมะเร็งวิทยาแบบพรีคลินิก” Henry Li หัวหน้าเจ้าหน้าที่วิทยาศาสตร์ปริญญาเอกที่ CrownBio กล่าว “ด้วยการใช้ออร์แกนอยด์ การคัดกรองยาจะพัฒนาจากกระบวนการแบบเชิงเส้นในปัจจุบัน ไปเป็นวิธีการคัดกรองได้พร้อมกันในปริมาณมาก ช่วยให้ผู้สมัครได้รับการทดสอบพร้อมกันกับผู้ป่วยหลายราย ในระบบโมเดลที่ปรับขนาดได้อย่างง่ายดาย และมีความเกี่ยวข้องทางคลินิก”

โมเดลที่มีวางจำหน่ายใหม่จะเข้าร่วมกับแพลตฟอร์มออร์แกนอยด์ที่ได้มาจาก PDX (PDXO) ที่ได้รับการพัฒนาและปรับขยายอย่างต่อเนื่องของของ CrownBio PDXO ถูกสร้างขึ้นโดยใช้โปรโตคอล HUB เพื่อรับออร์แกนอยด์รักษาเนื้องอกจากคอลเลคชัน PDX ของ CrownBio ซึ่งเป็นกลุ่มที่มีจำหน่ายในเชิงพาณิชย์ที่ใหญ่ที่สุดในโลกของ PDX กลุ่มเสริมของออร์แกนอยด์ที่ได้รับจากผู้ป่วยและ PDX ร่วมกับโมเดล PDX ต้นกำเนิด จะให้โอกาสในการเปลี่ยนแปลงวิธีการค้นพบยา

คอลเลคชันที่ผสมผสานของโมเดลที่ได้รับจากผู้ป่วยทั้งในหลอดทดลอและในร่างกายมีความเกี่ยวข้องทางคลินิกและคาดการณ์ได้ และการจับคู่โมเดลที่เหมาะสมจะช่วยให้เกิดการเปลี่ยนแปลงที่มีประสิทธิภาพและมีข้อมูลมากขึ้นจากการศึกษาในหลอดทดลองไปสู่การศึกษาในร่างกายเพื่อช่วยลดอัตราการเสียดทานสูงในปัจจุบันของยารักษาโรคมะเร็ง

“ผมยินดีที่ได้เห็นที่เก็บตัวอย่างทางชีวภาพของ HUB Organoid กำลังจะพร้อมใช้งานในชุมชนการวิจัยที่กว้างขวางขึ้น เพื่อการค้นพบยาด้านมะเร็งวิทยา” Rob Vries, PhD, ประธานเจ้าหน้าที่บริหารของ HUB กล่าว “การร่วมมือของเรากับ CrownBio นั้นมุ่งมั่นพัฒนาบริษัทด้านเภสัชกรรมและเทคโนโลยีชีวภาพอย่างต่อเนื่อง ด้วยรูปแบบที่ทันสมัยที่สุดที่จำเป็นในการเปลี่ยนแปลงโครงการพัฒนายารักษาโรคมะเร็ง”

ประโยชน์ของ PDO ใหม่ได้แก่ความพร้อมใช้งานของออร์แกนอยด์ที่ได้รับจากเนื้อเยื่อที่ไม่เป็นอันตรายและมีสุขภาพดี ซึ่งจะช่วยให้การศึกษา PDO ได้รับควบคุมเป็นอย่างดีสำหรับการศึกษาความเป็นพิษและผลข้างเคียง รวมถึงการควบคุมเนื้อเยื่อที่ตรงกัน

โมเดลใหม่นี้นี้ครอบคลุมการบ่งชี้ที่สำคัญของโรคมะเร็งเต้านม มะเร็งลำไส้ใหญ่ มะเร็งปอด และมะเร็งตับอ่อนและได้รับจากผู้ป่วยในยุโรปโดยตรง คอลเลคชันรวมถึง PDO จากรอยโรคระยะขั้นต้นและระยะแพร่กระจาย และรอยโรคหลายรอยจากผู้ป่วยรายเดียวกันเพื่อจับภาพความแตกต่างระหว่างผู้ป่วยภายใน รวมถึงออร์แกนอยด์ที่ดีต่อสุขภาพและเนื้องอก

แพลตฟอร์มออร์แกนอยด์ของ CrownBio พร้อมให้บริการแก่ลูกค้าทั่วโลก ได้ถ่ายโอนโมเดล PDO ที่ได้รับใหม่ไปยัง CrownBio เรียบร้อยแล้ว โมเดลเหล่านี้พร้อมสำหรับการศึกษาของลูกค้าทันทีเพื่อประเมินประสิทธิภาพและความแรงของฤทธิ์ยา การปรับกลยุทธ์การผสมผสาน และการเลือกผู้สมัครทดสอบ

เกี่ยวกับ Crown Bioscience Inc.

Crown Bioscience เป็นบริษัทในเครือ JSR Life Sciences เป็นผู้ให้บริการด้านการพัฒนาและการค้นคว้ายาระดับโลกที่ที่นำเสนอแพลตฟอร์มที่สร้างความเปลี่ยนแปลงต่อการพัฒนาด้านมะเร็งวิทยา การอักเสบ และการวิจัยโรคเกี่ยวกับการเผาผลาญขั้นสูง ด้วยผลงานที่ครอบคลุมด้านโมเดลและเครื่องมือการคาดการณ์ที่เกี่ยวข้อง Crown Bioscience จึงช่วยให้ลูกค้าสามารถนำเสนออาสาสมัครทางคลินิกที่เหนือกว่าได้ สำหรับข้อมูลเพิ่มเติมไปที่:

เกี่ยวกับ HUB

Hubrecht Organoid Technology (HUB) ถูกก่อตั้งร่วมกันโดย Hubrecht Institute, University Medical Center Utrecht และ Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences ซึ่งจะประกอบด้วยแพลตฟอร์มที่เปลี่ยนกระบวนทัศน์สำหรับการค้นพบและพัฒนายา การแบ่งชั้นผู้ป่วยในระดับพรีคลินิก การวินิจฉัยแบบคาดการณ์ ยาส่วนบุคคล และการจำลองทดสอบยา ประโยชน์ของ HUB จากผลงานนำร่องของศาสตราจารย์ Hans Clevers ผู้ค้นพบวิธีการปลูก ‘อวัยวะขนาดเล็ก’ (HUB Organoids) จากเนื้อเยื่อต้นกำเนิดจากเซลล์เยื่อบุผิวของมนุษย์ HUB Organoids ซึ่งเป็นส่วนหนึ่งของที่เก็บตัวอย่างสิ่งมีชีวิตที่ได้รับการถอดรหัสพันธุกรรม การจัดทำเกี่ยวกับการแสดงออก และความไวต่อทั้งยาที่รู้จักดีแล้ว และที่อยู่ระหว่างการทดสอบ เพื่อสร้างฐานข้อมูลที่เชื่อมโยงด้านพันธุ์กรรมและการถอดรหัสข้อมูลเพื่อการตอบสนองของยา HUB มอบลิขสิทธิ์ให้กับเทคโนโลยีออร์แกนอยด์ที่ได้จดสิทธิบัตร และให้บริการทดลองด้าน (พรี) คลินิกและคลินิก การวิจัยและการพัฒนา การวินิจฉัยแบบคาดการณ์ และการเข้าถึง `ที่เก็บตัวอย่างของสิ่งมีชีวิต` ดูข้อมูลเพิ่มเติมที่ https://huborganoids.nl/


Crown Bioscience
Jody Barbeau

Svenja Meiler

Legislators to debate several draft laws on May 26

The draft revised Law on Environmental Protection will be tabled for discussion on May 26 as part of the ninth session of the 14th National Assembly.


Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Tran Hong Ha will present a proposal for the bill and Phan Xuan Dung, Chairman of the NA Committee for Science, Technology and Environment, will present a verification report on the draft law.


With 16 chapters, 192 articles and one appendix, the draft law has great socio-economic effects and relates to many other laws. Therefore, it has received feedback from deputies at the 44th session of the NA Standing Committee last month.


Lawmakers will then hear a report on the draft law on amendments and supplements to some articles of the Law on the Organisation of the National Assembly, which will be presented by Chairman of the NA Committee for Legal Affairs Hoang Thanh Tung. They will engage in video discussions on contentious contents of the bill.


Submission and verification agencies will clarify some issues relating to the draft law raised by deputies during the discussions.


In the afternoon, the legislators will scrutinise the draft revised Law on Investment that comprises seven chapters and 81 articles stipulating investment activities in Vietnam, and Vietnamese investment overseas.


Source: Vietnam News Agency


Pharmaceutical enterprises enjoy good earnings in Q1

Increasing demand for medicine amid the COVID-19 pandemic has helped most pharmaceutical enterprises report positive business results in the first quarter of this year.


Pharmaceutical stocks have attracted investors since the outbreak of the disease due to rising need for medical equipment and drugs, as well as forecasts that the pandemic may be prolonged due to the long timeline of vaccine manufacturing.


DHG Pharmaceutical Joint Stock Company (DHG), the largest Vietnamese pharmaceutical firm by market capitalisation and revenue, recorded the highest profit among the listed pharmaceutical firms in Q1 at 177 billion VND (5 million USD).


This represented an increase of 31 percent year-on-year, fulfilling 27 percent of the yearly target.


DHG was followed by Pymepharco Joint Stock Company (PME) and Imexpharm Corporation (IMP) with 75 billion VND and 41 billion VND, up 8 percent and 13 percent against last year, respectively.


Imexpharm expects its business to grow strongly thanks to the ethical or prescription drugs (ETC) channel. Revenue in 2020 is expected to reach 1.75 trillion VND, up 23.3 percent from the same period last year.


Pre-tax profit is estimated to reach 260 billion VND, up 17 percent. Therefore, the company has completed 17 percent of this year’s revenue plan and 20 percent of the profit plan.


Shares of IMP decreased by 14.5 percent from an all-time high of 62,000 VND per share, recorded on February 24, to 52,900 VND per share on May 25.


In Q1, Agimexpharm Pharmaceutical JSC (AGP)’s revenue increased slightly by 1.2 percent year-on-year to 131 billion VND.


However, profit dropped by nearly 12 percent to 8.2 billion VND.


The pharmaceutical industry is also expected to grow strongly thanks to the ageing Vietnamese population and the increasing demand for health care services, especially in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak.


However, the pandemic may bring advantages to the industry in the short term, but if it is prolonged, it will harm supplies of imported raw materials from China. This will force pharmaceutical enterprises to switch to importing from other regions at higher prices.


Binhdinh Pharmaceutical and Medical Equipment JSC (DBD) said more than 80 percent of the main raw materials for the company’s products were imported from China.


But due to the disease, many factories in China had to halt operation, it said.


Domesco Medical Import-Export JSC (Domesco) also said it was facing a production halt and interruptions in some products that rely heavily on imported raw materials from China.


Although recording positive earning results, many pharmaceutical stocks could not maintain the uptrend and have been retreating recently.


After reaching early 100,000 VND per share at the end of January, shares of Pharmaceutical Joint Stock Company (DHG) quickly decreased to hover at around 90,000 VND.


Compared to early this year, DHG has recorded a decrease of about 6 percent.


Ha Tay Pharmaceutical JSC (DHT) surprised investors as it surged to nearly 60,000 VND per share in early February while in previous months, its shares hovered at a price of less than 50,000 VND per share.


However, DHT has dropped deeper since then, closing on May 25 at 45,000 VND per share.


According to Nguyen Hong Khanh at Vietnam International Securities Co (VIS), pharmaceutical shares are often traded thinly as most stay in the hands of a few insiders, which makes it easier to push prices.


“As pharmaceutical stocks have a low free transfer rate, price movements in the short term will be unpredictable, especially if the demand increases sharply,” Khanh said.


Source: Vietnam News Agency


Local airlines hopeful of increased ceiling prices

Increasing ceiling rates for airfares would bring more opportunities for local aviation firms to have flexible and suitable price policies in the domestic aviation market.


Domestic aviation firms made the statement after the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) proposed the Ministry of Transport temporarily halt the adjustment of ceiling rates for airfares, which was submitted to the ministry in March.


This change is likely to push domestic airfares up, according to the CAAV.


The authority said in the context of COVID-19 pandemic, stabilising prices to reduce socio-economic impacts is necessary. At present, passenger volume, seat occupancy and airlines’ revenues have plummeted due to the pandemic.


Vietnam Airlines deputy general director Le Hong Ha said that according to this proposal on adjusting airfares in March, the ceiling rate of airfares for routes with a distance of less than 500km will be unchanged. While, the ceiling rates for routes with a distance from 500km will increase. Those are expected to not affect the consumer price index (CPI) this year.


In addition, Ha said the ceiling price mechanism needs to be abolished to help local aviation firms gain revenue in the short-term.


“This will help Vietnam Airlines and other local aviation firms have flexible airfare policies and improve quality of services for customers,” Ha told the Voice of Vietnam (VOV).


“That will also help them have more cheap rates.”


An expert in the aviation industry said increasing the ceiling rates for airfares does not mean higher airfares. The increase of ceiling rates would create good conditions for the airlines to improve quality of services for passengers, especially those willing to pay high prices.


At the same time, the aviation companies will have chances to build more rates of air ticket prices and more stimulus programmes with suitable airfares, the expert said.


Aviation expert Nguyen Thieu Tong said now the State should not permit aviation companies to set their own airfares.


Vietnam has a small number of aviation companies while domestic demand is increasing. Therefore, if the local aviation market does not have a ceiling price mechanism, those local firms could work together to increase air ticket prices. It will create disadvantages for passengers, Tong said.


When the domestic aviation market has a healthy and transparent competitive environment, the State could remove this ceiling price mechanism for air tickets, he said.


CAAV director Dinh Viet Thang said now this market still needs the State to manage air ticket prices. The State management could be removed when the aviation market has a healthy competitive environment and the State would only intervene in the local aviation market when this market faces a crisis.


The Ministry of Transport has requested the CAAV to review those issues and report to the ministry before May 31.


According to Vietnam Airlines, the transport cost per passenger was 1,933 VND per km in 2015. The cost rose to 2,027 VND per km in 2018 and 2,345 VND per km in the first three months of this year. It is expected to increase to 12,925 VND per km by year-end.


Fluctuations in input costs of the aviation industry from 2019 have made the CAAV propose the increase of ceiling rates for airfares in March. Specifically, in February, the jet fuel A1 price in Asia was 65.27 USD per barrel, up by 11.36 percent compared to August 2015. Environment protection tax increased by 200 percent compared to that in August 2015.


According to the proposal, the ceiling price for routes for socio-economic development and other routes less than 500km are unchanged at 1.6 million VND and 1.7 million VND per one way ticket, respectively.


Maximum ticket price for the routes of 500km to under 850km increases by 2.27 percent from 2.2 million VND to 2.25 million VND per one way ticket.


Meanwhile, the routes of 850km to under 1,000km have maximum ticket price of 2.89 million VND per one way ticket, an increase of 3.58 percent from 2.79 million VND.


Routes with a distance of 1,000km to under 1,280km have a maximum fare of 3.4 million VND per one way ticket, a surge of 6.25 percent from 3.2 million VND.


For flights with a distance of 1,280km upward, the maximum ticket price is 4 million VND, 6.67 percent higher than the current rate of 3.75 million VND per one way ticket.


Source: Vietnam News Agency