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Labor exports to Japan, RoK up 180%

10:35 | 03/07/2014

VGP – Vietnamese workers sent abroad numbered more than 55,000 in the first half of 2014, accounting for 63.5% of the plan set for the whole year.

Illustration photo

According to the Overseas Workers Management Department under the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA), the labor exports to Taiwan (China) increased 187%, Japan up 180% and the Republic of Korea up 182% compared to the same period last year.

However, the total laborers sent to work in Malaysia decreased, equal to 70% of the same period last year.

Over the first half of the year, 16 businesses have been licensed to operate in labor exports, raising the total number of businesses in this field to 196 nationwide.

Last year, Viet Nam sent more than 88,000 people to work overseas.

By Thuy Dung

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Sovereignty evidence over Hoang Sa, Truong Sa on display

23:13 | 02/07/2014

VGP – Evidence proving Viet Nam’s sovereignty over Hoang Sa and Truong Sa archipelagoes are on display at an exhibition in Ly Son island, the central Quang Ngai province.

The event, jointly organized by the Ministry of Information and Communications and the local authorities, aims to introduce to the public 80 maps and 50 documents collected from Viet Nam and other countries, including China.

Collecting, verifying and publicizing evidence proving the country’s sovereignty over the two archipelagoes is of significant importance, said Deputy Minister of Information and Communications Truong Minh Tuan.

Since early May this year, China illegally placed the oil rig Haiyang Shiyou 981 in Viet Nam’s exclusive economic zone, threatening peace in Southeast Asia and the world as a whole, according to an Argentine professor.

For this move, China created a crisis of international law, he said.

Viet Nam’s consistent stance is to resolutely demands China immediately withdraw the drilling rig as well as its escort ships from Viet Nam’s waters, Vietnamese leaders have affirmed.

Talking with voters in Hai Phong on Wednesday, PM Nguyen Tan Dung said he urged the Vietnamese competent agencies are preparing dossiers which will be submitted to the high-ranking leaders for considering a legal action against China in conformity with international law./.

By Huong Giang

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Posted in News

Press Releases: On Retirement of Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, James Dobbins, and Appointment of Special Representative Daniel Feldman

I was just weeks into my time as Secretary when Bill Burns, Tom Donilon, and I sat down with the President to think about the right person to lead this effort during what we knew would be a year of big decisions for Afghanistan and Pakistan. We quickly decided that Jim Dobbins would be the right person if we could lure him out of retirement from the Foreign Service. Jim cut his teeth as a young Foreign Service officer working the Paris Peace Talks during the Vietnam War, played a vital role in the Balkans, and is forever known as the guy who raised the first flag over our Embassy in Kabul after the fall of the Taliban. He is simply one of the finest foreign service officers of his generation, a man who has dedicated his life to public service and earned respect throughout the region and in Washington. He has been at the forefront of our work in Afghanistan and Pakistan. He has played an outsized role on the ground negotiating the BSA, making preparations for historic elections, growing our counterterrorism cooperation with Pakistan, and planning for a transition for the Afghan people after more than a decade of progress.

Last year when we asked Jim to come back to the Department take on this role, I asked him to give us a year of service. He agreed. And because he’s who he is, he gave us more than that both in the quality and the longevity of his commitment. He’s got a lot to be proud of. His relationship with President Karzai was invaluable, particularly at difficult moments, and he departs at a time when both of Afghanistan’s presidential candidates have been unwavering in their commitment to sign the BSA. I am grateful for his service and look forward to his counsel in the months ahead.

I am equally confident in the public servant we have asked to serve as the next Special Representative, Daniel Feldman. I’ve known Dan since 2003 when he joined my presidential campaign in its earliest days, and my respect for him only deepened during the years I served as Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee when Dan often traveled with me to Afghanistan and Pakistan. My friend Richard Holbrooke thought so highly of Dan that he quickly made him his Deputy in 2009, and for the last five years, Dan has been not just a mainstay of our diplomatic engagement with Afghanistan and Pakistan, but one of its most thoughtful architects. He has also played a particularly central role in strengthening our relationship with Pakistan. Now Dan is charged him with the same mandate as his esteemed predecessors: to align, focus, and implement policies and programs that support our national security interests in a secure, stable and prosperous Afghanistan and Pakistan. To this important effort, he brings not only continuity and vital institutional muscle memory, but creativity and leadership at a critical moment. I am absolutely confident Dan will help us build on the gains we have made.

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Posted in Local Activities

Sam Sung to build big plant in Bac Ninh

19:56 | 02/07/2014

VGP – Bac Ninh province’s authorities on July 2 handed over an investment license to the Republic of Korea’s Samsung Display Co. Ltd. to start the construction of a US$1 billion plant at the Yen Phong Industrial Park, according to the Viet Nam News Agency.

The plant is designed to produce 48 million pieces per year. It is expected to create jobs to about 8,000 employees and generate an annual turnover of about US$6 billion.

Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Nguyen Nhan Chien said his province considers foreign investment as vital resources to promote the locality’s socio-economic development, adding that Bac Ninh has taken many measures to improve investment environment.

He also pledged that the local authorities will spare no efforts to ensure security, while facilitating enterprises to operate stably and effectively in the province.

The province has so far granted investment licences to 742 projects totalling US$9.1 billion, of which US$8 billion came from FDI projects. These projects generated jobs for more than 151,000 employees.

Apart from attracting FDI to its support industry, the province also favours projects that are globally competitive.

Bac Ninh has finalised a plan approved by the Government to develop 15 industrial parks in an area of over 7,500 ha by 2015 with a vision to 2020, and eight have already been put into service./.


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HSBC: VN’s manufacturing PMI posts 52.3 in June

13:42 | 02/07/2014

VGP – The Vietnamese manufacturing sector continued to see improvements in business conditions in June, according to the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC).

Illustration photo

The bank said the Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) posted 52.3 in June, down slightly from 52.5 in May and signaling a further improvement in business conditions in the sector.

New manufacturing  orders rose for the seventh consecutive month in June. The rate of expansion was solid, but slowed for the second month running.

The enforcement of weight restrictions on trucks added to cost burdens in June. Input prices increased sharply again, albeit at a slightly weaker pace than in May. The tonnage limits also impacted on delivery times, with vendor performance deteriorating sharply again during the month.

Panelists responded to sharp rises in input costs by raising their output prices in June. The increase was modest, but the first since January and the strongest in 15 months.

The rate of job creation in the Vietnamese manufacturing sector remained marginal. Purchasing activity continued to increase, however, the rate of growth eased to the weakest since September 2013. Finally, stocks of finished goods decreased as firms delivered products to clients.

The HSBC Vietnam Manufacturing PMI is based on data compiled from monthly replies to questionnaires sent to purchasing executives in around 400 manufacturing companies on five of individual indices of new orders, output, employment, suppliers’ delivery times, and stock of items purchased./.

By Khanh Phuong


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Viet Nam Airlines opens direct HN-Tokyo air route

10:55 | 02/07/2014

VGP – The National flag carrier Viet Nam Airlines (VNA) on July 1 launched a new direct air route linking Noi Bai International Airport in Ha Noi and Haneda Airport in Tokyo.  

Illustration photo

With seven flights per week, the new air route departs at 8.00am from Noi Bai international airport.

This is the fifth air route from Viet Nam to Japan’s airports after Narita, Kansai, Chubu and Fukuoka.

As schedule, VNA would launch another route linking Narita (Japan) and Da Nang (Viet Nam) with four flights per week using Airbus A321 aircraft, bringing the number of flights to Japan’s airports to 61 flights per week.           

The demand for air travel between Viet Nam and Japan has been on the rise thanks to the fine relations, saidDirector of the Viet Nam Airlines’ branch office in Japan Hoang Thanh Quy.

In 2013, around 620,000 Japanese guests arrived in Viet Nam. Meanwhile, 120,000 Vietnamese people travelled to Japan. The numbers are expected to surge sharply in 2014./.

By Kim Loan  



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Diva Coffee: 100% Carbon Offset ECO Coffee

SYDNEY, July 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — When Jim Storey started Diva Coffee, he believed that through business he could make the world a better place.

“When you run your own business you get to make your own choices,” said Jim, owner of Diva Coffee. “So I decided to make positive choices for our planet and the communities supported by the coffee industry.

And so Diva ECO Coffee was born – coffee that’s Ethical, Community focused and Organic. It’s also 100% carbon offset.

“We’ve chosen the best of the best in terms of Ethical products,” Jim said. “The coffee is Fair Trade certified which ensures that farmers get paid a reasonable amount for their work. By choosing Organic we’re ensuring the sustainability of the coffee farms and communities that the beans are from, and 100% carbon offsets are helping keep the planet safe for our children.”

A study in 2012 published in the Journal of Agricultural Science and Technology regarding the carbon footprint of coffee found that for every kilo of coffee harvested, approximately 5kg of carbon was released in its journey across the supply chain. So from the tree to your waste bin 5kg of carbon is released as the coffee is harvested, transported, roasted, packaged, ground and consumed. The packaging in capsules is even higher with a greater carbon footprint.

“The most exciting part of launching this product is choosing where to buy the carbon credits,” said Jim. “It’s like Christmas having money to spend helping others, especially choosing projects like the Kenya Lifestraw Project.

Traditionally water is purified in Kenya by boiling it – and the fuel for heating the water is the local forest. The Kenya Lifestraw Carbon Offset Program reduces deforestation by providing a healthy alternative using clean drinking water filters. Not only is this reducing carbon, providing clean drinking water is also saving lives.

“As soon as I saw the Kenya LifeStraw program I fell in love with it,said Jim. “As a parent I can only imagine the anguish of having to give your children potentially harmful drinking water. The LifeStraw project ticked all the environmental and ethical boxes for me.”

To read more about this project, or Diva Coffee, head over to


Jim Storey, CEO
15/20 Narabang Way
Belrose NSW 2085
Phone: +612-9986-3053
Email: [email protected]

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China Fruits Corporation to Enter into Fruit E-commerce Market

BEIJING, July 2, 2014 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — China Fruits Corporation (OTC: CHFR) (“China Fruits” or “the Company”), a distributor and producer of fresh tangerine and other fresh fruits in People’s Republic of China, decides to open its flagship sto…

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Remarks by the President at Nomination of Robert McDonald as Secretary of Veterans Affairs

The White House

Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release

June 30, 2014

Department of Veterans Affairs
Washington, D.C.

4:34 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Good afternoon, everybody.  Please be seated.  Let me start by thanking Acting Secretary Gibson for welcoming us here today.  I am pleased to be joined by our Vice President, Joe Biden, from leaders across this department, and our many partners, particularly representatives from our incredible veterans and military family service organizations.

I want to begin by making a basic point:  Those of you who serve here at the VA do absolutely vital work every single day for our veterans and their families.  I know how deeply you care about our veterans.  Many of you are veterans yourselves — veterans serving veterans.  You help them transition to civilian life, go to college, buy their first home, start a new business.  You have some of the best doctors and nurses in the country and provide some of the best specialized health care.  At our national cemeteries, you lay our veterans to rest with dignity and compassion.  I know that millions of veterans are profoundly grateful for the good work that you do.  And I am grateful, as well.

But we’re here today because of problems that have outraged us all.  That includes the inexcusable conduct that we’ve seen at too many VA health care facilities.  So I’m here for two reasons — to update you and the American people on how we’re fixing these problems, and to announce my choice for the next Secretary of Veterans Affairs to help move us forward. 

The first thing everyone should know is that those responsible for manipulating or falsifying records at the VA — and those who tolerated it — are being held accountable.  Some officials have already been relieved of their duties.  Investigations are continuing.  And as I’ve said, where we find misconduct, it will be punished.  And I’ve made it clear that I expect the VA’s full cooperation with all the ongoing investigations into wrongdoing.

Second, we’ve reached out to 135,000 veterans so far to get them off those wait lists and into clinics.  We’ve added more staff, sent mobile medical units, and we’re making it easier for veterans to use hospitals and clinics outside the VA.  And we’re going to keep at it until every one of our veterans is off a wait list and they receive the care that they have earned.

Third, we’re moving ahead with urgent reforms at the Veterans Health Administration.  That 14-day scheduling goal has been removed from employee evaluations so there is absolutely no incentive to engage in inappropriate behavior.  Providing the highest quality care when our veterans need it — that’s your incentive.  There will be new measures of patient satisfaction from the veteran’s perspective.  And today’s outdated VA scheduling system is going to be overhauled with the latest technology.  

More broadly, the review that Rob Nabors conducted of the VHA found — and I’m quoting — “significant and chronic systemic failures,” including too little responsiveness, transparency and accountability.  And that is totally unacceptable.  It recommends that the VHA be “restructured and reformed” with stronger management, leadership and oversight, as well as more doctors and staff.  And I totally agree, and we’re going to make that happen. 

I’ve asked Rob to remain at the VA for now to help move these reforms forward.  Hiring of new VWA [sic] leaders has been frozen — VHA leaders has been frozen to make sure the new team we’re putting in place is the right one.  And based on the recommendations of our panel of experts, I will be nominating the next leader of the VHA.  I want to get the best leader on the job and get going on these reforms.  And we’re going to work with Congress to make sure that the VHA has more of the doctors and resources it needs to deliver the care that our veterans deserve.

Fourth, we’re instituting a new culture of accountability.  The very idea that senior VHA executives would receive bonuses this year rightly appalled many Americans.  And those bonuses have already been cancelled.  A review is now underway to make sure that when employees speak up about a problem, action is taken -— not to intimidate or retaliate against the employee, but actually to fix the problem.  Everyone is going to be held accountable for doing better.  And Congress can help by giving the Secretary more authority to remove senior leaders.

Finally, we’re rebuilding our leadership team here at the VA.  I want to thank Sloan and others here who have stepped up to serve in new roles during this critical time.

And I have to say, Sloan, you have been an outstanding driving force behind the reforms that are now underway.  We’ll be relying on your steady hand during this period of transition and through your continued service as Deputy Secretary.  And I know all of you will have an outstanding partner and Secretary in my choice to lead the VA going forward -— one of our nation’s most accomplished business leaders and managers, Robert McDonald. 

Now, I’ve gotten to know Bob a bit over the years.  He’s come to the White House to share his perspectives as we’ve worked through complicated issues.  He’s no-nonsense.  He’s pragmatic.  He does not seek the limelight.  He repeats a Japanese saying -— he worked and lived in Japan for six years while at Procter & Gamble.  The saying goes:  “He who climbs Mount Fuji is a wise man; he who climbs it twice is a fool.”  (Laughter.)  Now, Bob actually climbed Mount Fuji -— once.  (Laughter.)  Bob is a wise man.  (Laughter.)  And if you need any more evidence that he’s wise, you need to meet Diane and his family who are here today, because they are a wonderful family, and obviously they’ve served along with him in the past. 

For Bob and his family, the mission of caring for our veterans is deeply personal.  His father served in the Army Air Corps after World War II.  Diane’s father was a POW.  Her uncle was exposed to Agent Orange in Vietnam and still receives treatment from the VA.  So this is not an abstract mission for them.

Bob is a veteran himself.  He graduated from West Point, where he and Sloan were classmates, so this is a bit of a reunion.  Bob served as an Army Ranger in the 82nd Airborne Division.  Back home in Cincinnati, he and Diane have teamed up with the USO to honor our veterans.  

But what especially makes Bob the right choice to lead the VA now is his three decades of experience in building and managing one of the world’s most recognized companies, Procter & Gamble.  The VA is not a business, but it is one of our largest departments -— some 340,000 employees working in more than 1,700 facilities, serving nearly 9 million veterans.  And the workload at the VHA alone is enormous -— some 85 million appointments a year and some 25 million consultations.  

As CEO of Procter & Gamble, Bob oversaw more than 120,000 employees, with operations around the world, selling products in more than 180 countries, in more than 2 million stores, reaching some 5 billion customers.  In other words, he knows the key to any successful enterprise is staying focused on the people you’re trying to serve.  He’s renowned for his operational excellence.  He started his career out in the field and worked his way up, serving at virtually every level of Procter & Gamble.  He understands that grand plans are not enough.  What matters is the operations that you put in place and getting the job done.

Bob is an expert at making organizations better.  In his career he’s taken over struggling business units.  He knows how to roll up his sleeves and gets to work -— putting an end to what doesn’t work; adopting the best practices that do; restructuring, introducing innovations, making operations more efficient and effective.  In short, he’s about delivering better results.

He also knows the importance of building what he calls a “high-performance team” -— putting the right people in the right jobs, rewarding them when they do well, and holding them accountable when they do not.

And, finally, Bob is known for his integrity.  He’s still guided by that cadet prayer from West Point:  “Choose the harder right instead of the easier wrong.”  He served our country in uniform.  He’s now prepared to answer the call once more.

So let me state the obvious — this is not going to be an easy assignment.  Bob knows that.  But like any Army Airborne Ranger, Bob has a reputation for being ready, jumping into tough situations, taking charge, and going “all the way.”  So Bob, on behalf of all of us — to you, to Diane and your family, thank you for your readiness to serve again.

My bottom line is this:  We’ve got to change the way VA does business.  Over the past five years, this agency has done some excellent work in dealing with a whole range of real difficult challenges.  And I don’t want people to forget that.  We have had a huge influx of returning Iraq and Afghanistan veterans.  We have had — I think had to manage what was a good decision to make sure that folks who previously had difficulty accessing VA services were finally admitted, whether it was because they had PTSD, or folks with cases previously of Agent Orange, all of which meant more people coming into the system.  We have had to get up and running, and it’s now — we’re doing quite effectively work in terms of the Post-9/11 GI Bill to make sure that our young people are able to get the training they need after they leave our military.

So across the board, there’s been some terrific work, but there’s a lot more that has to be done.  We’ve got to fix some things that are broken.  And Sloan has started that process, but we’re going to have to keep in driving until we get it done.

We’ve got to regain the trust of our veterans with a VA that is more effective, more efficient, and that truly puts veterans first.  Bob is the manager we need to help get this done.  So I urge the Senate to confirm him as soon as possible.

I also urge the Senate to finally confirm my nominee for CFO, Helen Tierney; my nominee for Assistant Secretary for Policy, Linda Schwartz; my nominee to lead the Board of Veterans’ Appeals, Constance Tobias.  They have all been waiting and waiting and waiting for a vote — in Constance’s case, for more than a year.  We need them on the job now, and Congress needs to act and help us do right by our veterans.

And we’ve got to do right by veterans like Corporal Kyle Carpenter.  Some of you may have seen the story of Kyle.  I recently had the privilege of presenting Kyle with the Medal of Honor for his actions in Afghanistan where he used his body to shield his best friend from a grenade blast.  Kyle spent two and half years in the hospital.  He endured nearly 40 surgeries to rebuild his body and his face, and he’s gone through excruciating rehab.  And to see him standing in the White House, strong and proud, receiving his Medal of Honor, was something I will never forget.  It was an inspiration. 

Today, Kyle is medically retired, so part of his journey of recovery has involved the VA.  On the one hand, he’s now in college and with the help of his VA educational benefits.  And it’s an example of the good work that the VA has done.  On the other hand, his experience with VA health care has often been frustrating.  He said it was okay that I share this with you today, so I just want to use Kyle as an example.  He is an American hero — by any definition.  Sometimes we use that word too loosely.  This guy is a hero and deserves everything we can do.

But like other veterans, Kyle sometimes had trouble just making an appointment, or had to wait a month to see his doctor, only to be referred to another doctor and wait another two months for that appointment.  He often felt like a number, he said, being passed between doctors, who sometimes didn’t know his situation or why he needed a certain medication.  He’s relied on the help of a patient advocate.  But at so many steps along the way, it’s just been a lot harder than it should have been.  As his advocate said, it “shouldn’t be this way.” 

So the VA does many things well — like delivering Kyle’s educational benefits.  And we need all of you to keep doing that important work, like reducing the disability claims backlog, and improving care for post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury, building on the good work that’s already been done in reducing homelessness among our veterans, helping veterans get their education under the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and helping find new civilian jobs so they can enjoy the American Dream they help to defend.  And it’s a good time to mention the great work that the VA has done with Jill Biden and Michelle in partnering with the private sector so that that transition from military to civilian life is a lot easier for our veterans.

But when it comes to delivering timely, quality health care, we have to do better.  We have to do better for Kyle.  We have to do better for all our wounded warriors.  We have to do better for all our veterans, from all our wars.  They’re looking for us to fulfill Lincoln’s pledge — to care for those who have borne the battle and for their families and survivors.  I’m confident we can do that.  And so long as I am President, we’re going to keep doing everything in our power to uphold what is a sacred obligation.   

With that, I want to invite Bob to say a few words.  Thank you so much, Bob, for taking on this assignment.  (Applause.) 

MR. MCDONALD:  Thank you, Mr. President.  Mr. President, thank you for your confidence in me that this nomination demonstrates.  It would indeed be an honor and a privilege, if confirmed by the Senate, to serve as the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to improve the lives of our country’s veterans and to help change the way the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs does business.

Mr. President, in your remarks just now, you’ve made it clear what you expect — a VA that is more effective, more efficient, and that truly puts our veterans first.  If confirmed by the Senate, my priority would be to lead that transformation.

My life’s purpose has been to improve the lives of others.  I went to West Point to be an officer in the Army to try to help free people who were living in non-free societies.  I became an Airborne Ranger Infantry Officer in the 82nd Airborne Division because I wanted to be on the front line in leading that change.  I joined the Procter & Gamble Company 34 years ago because of its purpose, which is to improve the lives of the world’s consumers.

Mr. President, thank you for mentioning my father, Diane’s father and uncle.  Yes, for our family, taking care of our veterans is very personal.  We need to put care for the veteran at the center of everything that we do at Veterans Affairs.  At Procter & Gamble, we always focus on our customer.  At the VA, the veteran is our customer, and we must all focus — all day, every day — on getting them the benefits and the care that they’ve so earned.  That’s the only reason we’re here.  I look forward to working with the dedicated men and women of the Veterans Affairs to accomplish this mission. 

I’d like to thank my family for supporting me throughout my life, but especially during this next chapter.  My wife, Diane; my daughter, Jenny; my son-in-law, Scott; and my son, Rob are all here today.  My parents and Diane’s mother could not attend today, but thank you for your love and support.

Thank you again, Mr. President.  I look forward to working with you to transform Veterans Affairs to better serve our country’s veterans. 

Thank you.  (Applause.)

4:51 P.M. EDT

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French-sponsored bus route opens in Ha Noi

17:34 | 01/07/2014

VGP –  A bus lane in Ha Noi’s Yen Phu Road, sponsored by the Ile De France region of France, was inaugurated on June 30.

The 1.6km long and 7.5 metre wide lane links Long Bien interchange and Thanh Nien road.

At the launch ceremony, Ha Noi’s Transport Department Deputy Director Nguyen Hoang Linh appreciated Ile-de-France province’s funding of the project.

“The project marks a turning point in the friendship and cooperation between Ha Noi and Ile-de-France,” he said.

Vice Chairman of the Ha Noi People’s Committee, Nguyen Quoc Hung said that in the bilateral cooperation framework, Ha Noi and Ile de France have agreed to share experience and improve capacity in planning and urban management.

The transport department was assigned to build another bus interchange in Hoang Quoc Viet street and implement several transport projects within the Viet Nam-France partnership.
                                                                                                                                By Ngoc Van

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