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Handling goods from Covid-19 epicenter: provinces have differing practices



Each province is setting its own rules on dealing with vehicles and goods from the Covid-19 epicenter in Hai Duong, which is under economic duress.

Handling goods from Covid-19 epicenter: provinces have differing practices

A vehicle is refused entry to Hai Phong on February 20

Tran Dac Phu, former director of the Department of Preventive Medicine, senior advisor to the Public Health Emergency Response Center, has made proposals related to the area so as to ensure uninterrupted implementation of the dual task – fighting the pandemic and ensuring smooth business activities.

Phu said provincial authorities have arbitrarily set up policies on dealing with goods, vehicles and people from localities where Covid-19 patients have been found. The rules have been set not based on general guidelines, but ‘every province for itself’.

In principle, localities need to apply drastic measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, but the measures must not affect goods circulation, which affects economic development.

Farm produce and industrial goods, for example, are getting stuck because of different measures to fight the pandemic applied by different localities.

Luu Van Ban, deputy chair of Hai Duong, said that provincial authorities have sent many documents to other provinces, asking them to reconsider the strict regulations to pave the way for goods-carrying vehicles from Hai Duong to go through their localities.

The provincial authorities have also made an appeal to the central government for solutions to help Hai Duong sell its products.

“It is necessary to keep calm and flexible when fighting the epidemic so as to not drive businesses to bankruptcy, and not cause losses for farmers,” Ban said.

Hai Duong’s people are facing problems caused by the Covid-19 outbreak. The crops due for harvesting and products due for export still cannot be circulated because of Covid-19 prevention measures applied by other localities, especially Hai Phong.

Hai Duong’s people are facing problems caused by the Covid-19 outbreak. The crops due for harvesting and products due for export still cannot be circulated because of Covid-19 prevention measures applied by other localities

Hai Phong’s Vice Mayor Nguyen Duc Tho on February 20 told VietNamNet that on February 16 the city decided to stop receiving citizens, workers and goods carrying vehicles from Hai Duong.

On February 18, the city loosened the regulation, allowing goods-carrying vehicles from Hai Duong to enter Hai Phong, provided that they can meet epidemic prevention requirements.

Vehicle drivers must show contracts and order forms from production facilities and delivery units to the recipients, and meet safety requirements. Vehicle drivers must show certificates on testing negative for SARS-CoV-2 with the more reliable PCR testing method. The certificate from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) Hai Duong must have been granted within the last three days.

The drivers carrying goods from Hai Phong to Hai Duong must show certification from vehicle owners or local authorities. When returning to Hai Phong, they must quarantine for 14 days and take a test.

Quang Ninh province’s deputy chair Nguyen Thi Hanh denied that Quang Ninh is creating obstacles for trading of goods, saying that provincial authorities are creating the most favorable conditions for goods exchange between the two localities.

According to Hanh, vehicles carrying food and foodstuff are prioritized to enter Quang Ninh. However, there must be only one driver for each vehicle.

Drivers of goods-carrying vehicles must show contracts and travel plans during their stay in Quang Ninh for easier control.

Bac Giang province’s Party Committee Secretary Duong Van Thai on February 20 also affirmed that the province does not prevent vehicles from the neighboring province of Hai Duong from entering Bac Giang.

“Drivers of vehicles with goods from Hai Duong must make medical declarations and wear protective clothing. The drivers and vehicles must be disinfected. Covid-19 testing certificate is not required,” he said.

Deputy chair of Bac Ninh province Vuong Quoc Tuan on February 19 signed a document requesting check-points to create favorable conditions for goods-carrying vehicles to go through the locality or enter the province.

However, only one driver per vehicle is accepted. When entering Bac Ninh, drivers must make medical declarations and show lawful documents about the goods.

Meanwhile, the chair of Hung Yen province Tran Quoc Van has affirmed that the province is not receiving people from Hai Duong at this time.

“We accept goods-carrying vehicles. But there must be only one driver for each vehicle,” he said.

Thai Binh province’s Party Committee Secretary Ngo Dong Hai said that Thai Binh hasn’t placed difficulties for Hai Duong. The province has spent VND1 billion to buy N95 face masks to give to Hai Duong.

“Helping Hai Duong fight the epidemic is what Thai Binh is doing,” he said.

The official said that Thai Binh is “doing everything it can to share difficulties with the neighboring province”.

“We try to assist and create favorable conditions for them (Hai Duong) to reach the dual goal (developing local economy and fighting epidemic) and contribute to the country’s social development,” he said.

“Hai Duong’s people have undergone three outbreaks. But it is really serious this time. Thai Binh will not do anything that may cause difficulties for them,” he said, adding that vehicle drivers are not required to show Covid-19 test results to enter Thai Binh. 

Nguyen Thu Hang – Pham Cong



Vietnam to begin COVID-19 vaccination this week



Vietnam is expected to begin COVID-19 vaccination this week following a request from Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

During a regular meeting of the government in Hanoi on Tuesday, PM Phuc called for further efforts to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, focusing on the five important rules including wearing face masks, disinfecting, keeping safe distance, avoiding gatherings, and filling out health declaration forms.

He requested the Ministry of Health to begin COVID-19 vaccination for prioritized groups of individuals within this week.

Dang Quang Tan, head of the General Department of Preventive Medicine under the health ministry, told Tien Phong (Youth) newspaper that the agency is exerting all efforts to prepare for the vaccination.

The process will begin as soon as a factory certificate is issued for the batch of COVID-19 vaccine doses having arrived in Vietnam last month, Tan elaborated.

The vaccine was developed by the UK’s AstraZeneca and manufactured by South Korea, he continued, adding that South Korea has promised to send the certificate within this week.

The vaccine had already been assessed by the World Health Organization and is now being reviewed by Vietnam’s National Institute for Control of Vaccine and Biologicals.

According to the government’s resolution on the use of COVID-19 vaccine, the inoculation will start in provinces and cities with ongoing pandemic outbreaks, urban areas with large populations, and important transport hubs.

The northern province of Hai Duong is currently the country’s largest epicenter, while northern Quang Ninh Province and Hai Phong City have recently recorded local infections, Tan said, adding that Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City are important transport hubs with a large population.

These localities may be the first to receive COVID-19 vaccination, the official continued.

Health workers and employees of local steering committees for COVID-19 prevention and control are among the prioritized groups of individuals, he added.

Vietnam previously received the first batch containing 117,600 doses of COVID-19 vaccine on February 24.

The next batch with several millions of doses is expected to arrive in late April, said Deputy Minister of Health Truong Quoc Cuong.

The health ministry said last week that Vietnam aims to obtain 90 million COVID-19 vaccine doses this year, including 30 million through the WHO-led COVAX scheme, 30 million from AstraZeneca, and the rest from negotiations with U.S. producers.

Talks were also taking place to secure Russia’s Sputnik V jab, the ministry added.

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Province in central Vietnam encourages households to plant uniform flowering trees



The leader of the central Vietnamese province of Thua Thien-Hue has called on households and agencies to deck the streets of the province with hoa mai (Ochna integerrima), a popular type of flowering tree.

The direction was confirmed by Phan Ngoc Tho, chairman of the Thua Thien-Hue People’s Committee, on Monday.

According to Tho, the tree-planting campaign aims to convince each institution and residential household to plant one or two Ochna integerrima trees at the front of their buildings or houses.

It is recommended that participants choose the local variety of Ochna integerrima, which differs from other types by its consistent five-petal flowering and highly scented blossoms.

The initiative is expected to paint the whole province with the yellow shade of Ochna integerrima during its blossom season in spring, which would add another charm to the place and consolidate the position of the flowering tree as a representative of Thua Thien-Hue.

The campaign is also part of local authorities’ effort to assign a kind of blossom tree to each of the four seasons in the locale.

According to Tho, the first step involves the planting of at least two Ochna integerrima trees at the head office of the municipal People’s Committee, followed by an advocacy campaign for tree planting among residents.

Earlier, local authorities have planted lines of Ochna integerrima trees along two streets in Hue City’s Imperial City heritage site, one of the must-sees for tourists.

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“Magic eyes” – great help for traffic police officers



Lieutenant Colonel Doan Ngoc Minh Tuan, Deputy Head of the Da Nang Traffic Police Department, said the deployment of traffic cameras has eased work pressure on police officers.

'Mắt thần' giúp CSGT không phải đứng đường, tài xế thay đổi lớn

The central city of Da Nang is one of the first cities to place traffic cameras on main street arteries. Up to 143 cameras have been installed in 47 locations. The installation of cameras has raised people’s awareness, and encouraged them to follow traffic lights and control their speed. It has also reduced the presence of police officers at major traffic points.

According to the Da Nang Traffic Police Department, from 2016 to 2020, these “magic eyes” helped to find and report 48,118 traffic violations, of which 38,004 cases were issued total fines of 55 billion dong and 7,590 driving licenses were withdrawn.

Mr. Nguyen Van Phuong, a resident on Vo Chi Cong street, said that when there was no surveillance camera, many drivers did not follow traffic lights. After cameras were installed, people were more aware of compliance, causing fewer accidents.

Interviewed by VietNamNet on February 23, Lieutenant Colonel Thai Anh Tuan, Head of Propaganda and Inspection of Traffic Accidents and Violations (Da Nang Traffic Police Department), said the surveillance cameras detect violations such as speeding, using wrong lanes and running red lights, and monitor traffic vehicle flows.

“Annually, the cameras detect about 10,000 violations. Many people used to cross at yellow lights. Currently, the people are more responsive, hence reduction in accidents. Drivers are well aware of surveillance cameras,” said Tuan.

Reduce on-site work for police

'Mắt thần' giúp CSGT không phải đứng đường, tài xế thay đổi lớn

Lieutenant Colonel Doan Ngoc Minh Tuan, Deputy Head of Da Nang Traffic Police Department, said that “magic eyes” have been placed at important traffic points, monitor traffic for 24/24 and record violations correctly and clearly. Cameras are also useful for detecting and tackling crime.

According to Tuan, surveillance cameras have eased on-site pressure for police officers. “They used to be present all the time at key traffic points to monitor traffic. Since the installation of cameras, they instead patrol to inspect and improve their efficiency,” said Tuan.

He further revealed that cameras have been placed on such street arteries as Vo Nguyen Giap and Nguyen Tat Thanh. His department and the transportation department plan to ask Da Nang People’s Committee to invest and install more surveillance cameras on other roads for social security.

Ho Giap


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