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PM orders halt to commercial flights after new cases




The centralised quarantine site for Vietnam Airlines crew located in Ward 2, Tân Bình District is closed. VNA/ Photo

HCMC – Two more community infections of COVID-19 have been detected in HCM City, both connected to the teacher who broke Viet Nam’s three month run of no locally transmitted cases.

One is a 28-year-old woman who is a student of the patient, and the other is reported to be his 14-month old nephew.

Health Minister Nguyễn Thanh Long confirmed the new cases during a meeting on Tuesday.

The English teacher lives in Ward 3 of District 6 and had caught the virus from his friend, a flight attendant with Vietnam Airlines who had breached quarantine rules.

The pair of new cases both came into contact with the teacher, his student during classes he was taking and the toddler who was staying at his home.

All the new cases were confirmed positive after being taken into quarantine.

A number of other people who have come into close contact or secondary contact with the teacher have been tracked by the authorities, tested, and removed to quarantine facilities.

The teacher is a friend of a flight attendant from Vietnam Airlines who tested positive on Sunday. They came into contact when the attendant was under quarantine at a rented house.


Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc on Tuesday ordered clarification of responsibilities of those committing the violation.

He also ordered a temporary suspension of all commercial flights to Việt Nam. Repatriation flights will continue, but only for people in difficult situations and special cỉrcumstances. All repatriated passengers must undergo 14 days in quarantine.

The HCM City’s authorities on Tuesday closed a centralised quarantine site for Vietnam Airlines crew located in Ward 2, Tân Bình District.

All crew members being quarantined there have been moved to a different camp in Củ Chi District.

Two primary schools in District 6 were closed on Tuesday after four teachers became F1 and F2 of the community-transmitted case confirmed on Monday.

The city’s Disease Control Centre on Tuesday sent a notice asking people who went to places that Patient 1347 visited to report to local healthcare facilities and take the tests.

The places include Highlands Coffee at Vạn Hạnh Shopping Mall in District 10 from 8pm to 9pm on November 22; ICOOL karaoke bar at 120 Thành Thái Street, District 10 from 10pm to 12pm on November 23; a snail restaurant at 47 Công chúa Ngọc Hân, District 11 from 8pm to 10pm on November 25; CityGym at 119 Phổ Quang, Phú Nhuận District from 1pm to 5pm on November 18, 23, 24, 25 and 26; Key English centre at 59 Nguyễn Bá Tuyển, Tân Bình District from November 18 to 26; Key English centre at 285/24 Cách Mạng Tháng Tám, District 10 from November 18 to 27.

The city’s Disease Control Centre warned that those quarantined at home not to go out in unnecessary situations, limit contact with others and record daily activities in at least 28 days since they visited the above-mentioned places.

If there they show symptoms like fever, coughing or breathing difficulties, they must report to local healthcare facilities.

Minister of Health Nguyễn Thanh Long warned the infection risk in Việt Nam always remained high, especially when the number of repatriation flights will increase during the holiday season.

The minister asked the national flag carrier to follow quarantine protocols at their registered sites and people’s committees of Hà Nội and HCM City where the airlines’ quarantine sites are located to supervise the process.

The minister also proposed not resuming commercial flights due to possible risks they might pose.

He said all Vietnamese nationals, even those on repatriation flights must have virus-free certificates to be qualified to enter the country.

He warned that people must continue to wear face masks, sanitise their hands, social distance, avoid crowds and fill in medical declarations.

Meanwhile, two more imported cases were detected on Tuesday evening. The men, aged 47 and 57, were both repatriated from Canada.







Cold front returns, temperature to dive in northern, central Vietnam



The temperature is forecast to plummet below zero degree Celsius again in northern mountainous provinces from Sunday, while it is likely to drop in the central region, under the influence of an increased cold front from Saturday night.

The cold spell is moving southward, according to the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting, and will leave its first impact on the northern mountainous provinces, then other places in the region, the central area and finally some south-central localities.

There will be rain and medium rain in the northern region Saturday night to Sunday morning and light rain in the central area on Sunday.

Localities in northern and north-central regions will experience extreme cold, especially in northern Cao Bang, Bac Kan, Lang Son, Ha Giang, and Lao Cai Provinces, with temperature falling to 8-11 degrees Celsius.

The temperature in the mountainous region will range between 4 and 7 degrees Celsius, with some high mountainous places to see mercury as low as below zero degree Celsius.

Sleet – a mixture of rain and snow – will be expected in Ha Giang and Lao Cai Provinces.

Temperatures in north-central provinces from Quang Tri to Quang Ngai will be around 14-18 degrees Celsius.

In the Central Highlands and south-central regions, people may feel extremely cold in the early morning and night of Sunday.

Meanwhile, in the southern region, the weather will also get colder.

From Monday, northern localities will see the return of sunlight during the day while the extreme cold will continue in the early morning and at night.

The Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control has ordered subordinate authorities to implement measures to keep the elderly, children, and students safe, in order to avoid similar damages caused by a previous strong cold spell hitting the north and north central provinces from January 7-11.

The students can be allowed to stay home if necessary.

Protection measures for animals and plants should also be carried out.

In addition, there must be proper safety guidelines for visitors looking to see frost and snow at tourist destinations.

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Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street



Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

Upgrade of the 3.2 kilometer (2 mile) long street, which connects downtown District 1 with District 2 through Binh Thanh District, was launched in October 2019 at a cost of VND470 billion ($20.39 million).

Work on the section from Ton Duc Thang Street to Thu Thiem Bridge has been completed, with the remaining section from Thu Thiem Bridge to Saigon Bridge still under repair.

Phan Duc, head of the project management board, said it is 70 percent complete and that work would commence through the upcoming Lunar New Year, or Tet, to complete before April 30.

The construction site currently hosts 70 types of machinery, equipment, transport vehicles and about 150 workers, including more than 50 for night shifts.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

Near the foot of Saigon Bridge, drill operator Nguyen Truong Phuc works to reduce subsidence, one of the first stages in upgrading the flood-prone street.

“I have been working here for two months, mainly at night. It’s quite stressful, operating the machine all night and concentrating for long hours,” the 32-year-old said.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

A few meters away, Ngoc Nam repairs drills chipped during construction.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

Near an overpass, a group of workers use excavators and dump trucks to relocate the old drainage system to replace with a new version.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

Workers from Gia Dinh Water Supply Company install a new water supply pipe. Affected families are usually informed before work commences at night to avoid disturbances.

The upgrade will see the road surface rise from 0.5 to 1.2 meters. Low-lying houses on both sides will benefit from new, wide sidewalks accessible via three-step staircases.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

Bulldozers operate at the intersection of Dien Bien Phu and Nguyen Huu Canh streets.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

Built in 1997 and opened to traffic in 2002, the VND420 billion ($18.1 million) Nguyen Huu Canh Street was expected to improve traffic flow in HCMC.

But not long after its opening, the street subsided and began flooding each time it rained.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

Tran Van Cuong guides a pump into a manhole on a newly-surfaced road section.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

As temperature drops to 19 degrees Celsius at night, Dao Van Xuyen, 40, often wraps himself in a scarf, two layers of T-shirts, and a pair of gloves.

Xuyen only moved to HCMC two months ago. His main work involves leveling crushed stones, watering and pouring concrete. He often chooses to work the night shift because the salary is higher than the day shift, at about VND500,000 ($21.64) per night.

“For me, this job is quite suitable since it doesn’t require high expertise but pays well. I’ll try earn some money to return home to celebrate Tet,” the worker from Thai Binh Province in northern Vietnam said.

Workers brave the night to speed up work on HCMC flood-prone street

At about 2 a.m., Dang Minh Tri eats a cup of instant noodles. He works about four nights a week drilling and mixing mortar.


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Vietnam to become first country to produce vaccine for ASF



Vietnam completed the study and pilot programme of its vaccine for ASF and is expected to start commercial production from the second quarter of this year.

vietnam to become first country to produce vaccine for asf
Vietnam to issue vaccine for ASF in second quarter

Once the products are officially launched, Vietnam will become the first country in the world manufacturing a vaccine for ASF.

Navetco National Veterinary JSC (Navetco) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development finished the pilot programme on 72 pigs in normal condition with a 100 per cent success ratio. The pilot was also applied to crossbred pigs. According to Navetco, the vaccine takes 14 days to show results..

Phung Duc Tien, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development said, “The vaccine is sure to be effective because no pigs tested positive for the ASF epidemic after being injected.”

The vaccine was developed basing on the gene I177L from the US. The US studied this virus for 10 years. In February last year, Vietnam requested the United States to transfer genetically altered samples of the ASF virus it has developed to facilitate vaccine production. Vietnam plans to manufacture four batches of the vaccine with 10,000 doses each.

Vietnam National University of Agriculture started researching a vaccine last March. Thus far, it has developed four vaccines, one of which has shown encouraging results in 13 of the 14 pigs tested.

The Vietnam Academy of Agriculture Sciences’ research teams has also created a new vaccine piloted at three pig farms in the northern provinces of Hung Yen, Ha Nam, and Thai Binh. Of the total vaccinated animals, 16 out of 18 sows and all 15 pigs for meat were in healthy condition after two months, with some of the sows giving birth to healthy piglets. VIR

Ha Vy


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