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Hail damages roofs, crops in northern Vietnam

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A storm with hailstones as big as an egg swept through multiple areas in Lang Son Province, northern Vietnam on Sunday afternoon, causing damage to many house roofs and crops.

The hail, which was accompanied by thunderstorms and strong winds, was recorded in Hua Nhan, Ta Khoa, and Muong Khoa Communes in Bac Yen District, Chieng Dong Commune in Yen Chau District, and Chieng Sung, Chieng Chan, and Na Bo Communes in Mai Son District.

It lasted for about 15 minutes, according to Thao A Say, chairman of the People’s Committee in Hua Nhan Commune.

Hailstones as big as an egg are seen in this photo provided by a local resident.

Hailstones as big as an egg are seen in this photo provided by a local resident.

“Many hailstones were as big as an egg, which pierced through the fibro cement roofs of many houses,” Say stated.

In Tan Cuong Village, Ta Khoa Commune alone, 28 out of 33 houses had their roofs damaged.

The weather condition also caused damage to locals’ crops and strawberry gardens.

Residents and authorities in the affected localities were dealing with the consequences of the hailstorm as of Monday morning, according to the provincial steering committee for natural disaster prevention and control.

A house roof is severely damaged by hail in Son La Province, March 6, 2022 in this supplied photo.

A house roof is severely damaged by hail in Son La Province, Vietnam March 6, 2022 in this supplied photo.

Several mountainous areas in northern Vietnam have been affected by a cold front, the National Center for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting reported.

Rains have been recorded in some districts in Yen Bai, Thai Nguyen, Tuyen Quang, and Son La Provinces.

The cold snap is expected to continue affecting other localities in northern Vietnam as well as parts of the north-central region on Monday, bringing about rains and chances of thunderstorms, hail, and strong gusts.

The roof of the house of Hua Nhan Commune chairman Thao A Say was damaged by hailstones. Photo: Thao A Say

The roof of the house of Hua Nhan Commune chairman Thao A Say was damaged by hailstones. Photo: Thao A Say

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20220307/hail-damages-roofs-crops-in-northern-vietnam/66053.html

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Ho Chi Minh City seeks permission to culture novel coronavirus

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Ho Chi Minh City authorities have proposed that the Hospital for Tropical Diseases be allowed to culture the novel coronavirus to better assess herd immunity.

During a working session on Tuesday, Dr. Nguyen Van Vinh Chau, deputy director of the municipal Department of Health, asked the Ministry of Health to allow the Ho Chi Minh City Hospital for Tropical Diseases to culture the SARS-CoV-2 in the laboratory.

The clinical research unit of the University of Oxford, which has been participating in the genome sequencing process at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases, has a biosafety level-three laboratory.

This facility meets international biosafety standards and has its safety inspected by the General Department of Preventive Medicine under the Ministry of Health. 

The lab has been used to culture viruses such as multi-resistant tuberculosis and influenza.

If allowed to culture the coronavirus, the southern city will be able to better assess herd immunity, according to Dr. Chau.

The evaluation of herd immunity in the city was previously based on antibody concentration and the use of some techniques to replace neutralization reaction, the official elaborated.

However, the neutralization reaction is the most accurate method to evaluate protective antibodies.

To conduct a neutralization reaction, a live virus must be mixed with the serum, Chau stated.

At the meeting, a representative from the Ministry of Health stated that the number of COVID-19 cases in Ho Chi Minh City has been decreasing drastically.

However, the city must not let its guard down as new coronavirus variants could have entered the local community during the recent Lunar New Year holiday, posing a high risk for the elderly and unvaccinated people.

Municipal authorities should have recommendations on pandemic prevention at local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, pagodas, and festival places to minimize the spread of the virus in case a new variant is recorded.

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Ho Chi Minh City authorities have proposed that the Hospital for Tropical Diseases be allowed to culture the novel coronavirus to better assess herd immunity.

During a working session on Tuesday, Dr. Nguyen Van Vinh Chau, deputy director of the municipal Department of Health, asked the Ministry of Health to allow the Ho Chi Minh City Hospital for Tropical Diseases to culture the SARS-CoV-2 in the laboratory.

The clinical research unit of the University of Oxford, which has been participating in the genome sequencing process at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases, has a biosafety level-three laboratory.

This facility meets international biosafety standards and has its safety inspected by the General Department of Preventive Medicine under the Ministry of Health. 

The lab has been used to culture viruses such as multi-resistant tuberculosis and influenza.

If allowed to culture the coronavirus, the southern city will be able to better assess herd immunity, according to Dr. Chau.

The evaluation of herd immunity in the city was previously based on antibody concentration and the use of some techniques to replace neutralization reaction, the official elaborated.

However, the neutralization reaction is the most accurate method to evaluate protective antibodies.

To conduct a neutralization reaction, a live virus must be mixed with the serum, Chau stated.

At the meeting, a representative from the Ministry of Health stated that the number of COVID-19 cases in Ho Chi Minh City has been decreasing drastically.

However, the city must not let its guard down as new coronavirus variants could have entered the local community during the recent Lunar New Year holiday, posing a high risk for the elderly and unvaccinated people.

Municipal authorities should have recommendations on pandemic prevention at local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, pagodas, and festival places to minimize the spread of the virus in case a new variant is recorded.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230201/ho-chi-minh-city-seeks-permission-to-culture-novel-coronavirus/71255.html

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S.Korea tops list of foreign visitors to Vietnam in first month of 2023

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South Korea is the country accounting for the highest number of international visitors to Vietnam in the first month of this year, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).

The number of international tourist arrivals in Vietnam in January 2023 amounted to more than 871,000, making an increase of 23.2 percent compared to December last year, the GSO reported recently.

Among the total, some 259,000 travelers were from South Korea, placing the Northeastern Asian country in the first position on the list of international arrivals to Vietnam last month.  

Ranking second was the U.S. with nearly 77,900 tourists and the third place went to Thailand with some 55,000 travelers.

The fourth and fifth positions belonged to Australia and Japan with about 44,000 and 34,000 visitors, respectively.

This image shows a member of the group of 120 South Korean tourists being offered flowers by a local receptionist when they arrived in Khanh Hoa Province, in south-central Vietnam, on January 1, 2023. Photo: Minh Chien / Tien Phong

This image shows a member of a group of 120 South Korean tourists getting flowers when they arrived in Khanh Hoa Province, south-central Vietnam, January 1, 2023. Photo: Minh Chien / Tien Phong

International travelers to Vietnam by air occupied the largest portion, at 91.9 percent, while those by road and by sea represented 7.5 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively, the GSO said.

The figure of foreign arrivals to Vietnam in January 2023 rose 44.2 percent from a year earlier, but it fell 42 percent compared to the same period of 2019, when the COVID-19 pandemic had yet to hit the Southeast Asian country. 

Last month saw numbers of visitors to Vietnam from China and Russia, two of Vietnam’s major sources of tourists, reach nearly 47,000 and 12,000, respectively, far lower than over 660,000 and 36,000 in the same period in 2019, said the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), under the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism.

Total tourism revenue in January neared VND46 trillion (US$1.96 billion), lower than the expected monthly average of VND54 trillion ($2.3 billion) for 2023.

The tourism sector has set a goal of welcoming about eight million international visitors in 2023, equal to 45 percent of the 2019 target, the VNAT said.

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South Korea is the country accounting for the highest number of international visitors to Vietnam in the first month of this year, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).

The number of international tourist arrivals in Vietnam in January 2023 amounted to more than 871,000, making an increase of 23.2 percent compared to December last year, the GSO reported recently.

Among the total, some 259,000 travelers were from South Korea, placing the Northeastern Asian country in the first position on the list of international arrivals to Vietnam last month.  

Ranking second was the U.S. with nearly 77,900 tourists and the third place went to Thailand with some 55,000 travelers.

The fourth and fifth positions belonged to Australia and Japan with about 44,000 and 34,000 visitors, respectively.

This image shows a member of the group of 120 South Korean tourists being offered flowers by a local receptionist when they arrived in Khanh Hoa Province, in south-central Vietnam, on January 1, 2023. Photo: Minh Chien / Tien Phong

This image shows a member of a group of 120 South Korean tourists getting flowers when they arrived in Khanh Hoa Province, south-central Vietnam, January 1, 2023. Photo: Minh Chien / Tien Phong

International travelers to Vietnam by air occupied the largest portion, at 91.9 percent, while those by road and by sea represented 7.5 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively, the GSO said.

The figure of foreign arrivals to Vietnam in January 2023 rose 44.2 percent from a year earlier, but it fell 42 percent compared to the same period of 2019, when the COVID-19 pandemic had yet to hit the Southeast Asian country. 

Last month saw numbers of visitors to Vietnam from China and Russia, two of Vietnam’s major sources of tourists, reach nearly 47,000 and 12,000, respectively, far lower than over 660,000 and 36,000 in the same period in 2019, said the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT), under the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism.

Total tourism revenue in January neared VND46 trillion (US$1.96 billion), lower than the expected monthly average of VND54 trillion ($2.3 billion) for 2023.

The tourism sector has set a goal of welcoming about eight million international visitors in 2023, equal to 45 percent of the 2019 target, the VNAT said.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230201/skorea-tops-list-of-foreign-visitors-to-vietnam-in-first-month-of-2023/71250.html

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Work starts on operation building for Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line

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The groundbreaking for the operation and management building of Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line was held on Tuesday.

Upon completion, the operation and management (O&M) building will be the headquarters for Ho Chi Minh City No.1 Urban Railway Company with the primary function of operating the entirety of metro line No. 1.

The facility is located at Long Binh depot in Thu Duc City under Ho Chi Minh City.

The construction of the city’s first metro line is about 94 percent complete, Nguyen Quoc Hien, an official from the municipal Management Authority for Urban Railways (MAUR), the project developer, said at the ceremony.

The developer, contractor, and consulting team are working hard to complete the remaining categories and prepare for technical test operation of the metro route in 2023, Hien continued.

The groundbreaking of the operation and management building of Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

The groundbreaking of the operation and management building of Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

The O&M building covers an area of more than 1,500 square meters, has two stories, and has a lifespan of 100 years.

The construction is expected to last for nine months.

This year marks an important phase of the project as it will be the transition from the construction of the metro line to the official operation of the route in 2024, according to Hien.

Vice-chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Bui Xuan Cuong stated that 2022 marked many memorable milestones of metro line No. 1, especially the trial operation of the elevated section from Suoi Tien Terminal to Binh Thai Station.

Vice Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Bui Xuan Cuong greets workers at the construction site, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

Vice-chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Bui Xuan Cuong greets workers at the construction site, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

The O&M building is a very important ‘piece’ for the whole project, Cuong stressed.

The official requested that relevant units ensure the progress of the project and put it into operation in 2024.

The city’s first metro line is 19.7 kilometers long, including 2.6 kilometers of underground railway and 17.1 kilometers of elevated track.

It runs from Ben Thanh Market in District 1 to Suoi Tien Theme Park in Thu Duc City through three underground stations and 11 stops above the ground.

The project broke ground in August 2012 at a cost of VND43,700 billion (US$1.86 billion), most of which comes from Japan’s official development assistance loans.

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!

The groundbreaking for the operation and management building of Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line was held on Tuesday.

Upon completion, the operation and management (O&M) building will be the headquarters for Ho Chi Minh City No.1 Urban Railway Company with the primary function of operating the entirety of metro line No. 1.

The facility is located at Long Binh depot in Thu Duc City under Ho Chi Minh City.

The construction of the city’s first metro line is about 94 percent complete, Nguyen Quoc Hien, an official from the municipal Management Authority for Urban Railways (MAUR), the project developer, said at the ceremony.

The developer, contractor, and consulting team are working hard to complete the remaining categories and prepare for technical test operation of the metro route in 2023, Hien continued.

The groundbreaking of the operation and management building of Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

The groundbreaking of the operation and management building of Ho Chi Minh City’s first metro line, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

The O&M building covers an area of more than 1,500 square meters, has two stories, and has a lifespan of 100 years.

The construction is expected to last for nine months.

This year marks an important phase of the project as it will be the transition from the construction of the metro line to the official operation of the route in 2024, according to Hien.

Vice-chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Bui Xuan Cuong stated that 2022 marked many memorable milestones of metro line No. 1, especially the trial operation of the elevated section from Suoi Tien Terminal to Binh Thai Station.

Vice Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Bui Xuan Cuong greets workers at the construction site, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

Vice-chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Bui Xuan Cuong greets workers at the construction site, January 31, 2023. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tien Phong

The O&M building is a very important ‘piece’ for the whole project, Cuong stressed.

The official requested that relevant units ensure the progress of the project and put it into operation in 2024.

The city’s first metro line is 19.7 kilometers long, including 2.6 kilometers of underground railway and 17.1 kilometers of elevated track.

It runs from Ben Thanh Market in District 1 to Suoi Tien Theme Park in Thu Duc City through three underground stations and 11 stops above the ground.

The project broke ground in August 2012 at a cost of VND43,700 billion (US$1.86 billion), most of which comes from Japan’s official development assistance loans.

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to get the latest news about Vietnam!

Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20230201/work-starts-on-operation-building-for-ho-chi-minh-citys-first-metro-line/71248.html

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