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What The Papers Say Oct 2013

(No.9, Vol.3, Oct 2013 Vietnam Heritage Magazine)

Deadly storm
www.thanhniennews.com, 24 September
Flash floods killed more than 20 people in several central provinces after a tropical depression over the East Sea intensified into Storm No.8 in September and brought heavy rains and strong winds.
The storm damaged nearly 5,000 houses and 2,491 hectares (4,942 acres) of rice.



Toxic waste woes
www.thanhniennews.com, 23 September
Authorities in Thanh Hoa Province have fined a military-owned pesticide firm more than $19,900 for discharging toxic waste into the environment and other violations of environmental laws.
Nicotex Thanh Thai Joint Stock Company was also temporarily closed down.
Earlier, 1,000 local residents submitted a petition to online newspaper Vietnamnet, saying the company should compensate them for illegally burying tons of toxic pesticides, which they said has seriously affected their health and farming activities.
In the last 15 years the number of local people dying of cancer and other diseases has increased.
Women have been giving birth to babies with deformities and disabilities and others have become infertile, they said.

Vietnamese-American millionaire charged with visa fraud
www.thanhniennews.com, 26 September
The US government has arrested the Vietnamese American man they have accused of orchestrating a multi-million dollar scheme to obtain non-immigrant visas for unqualified applicants who paid as much as $70,000 per visa.
Vo Tang Binh, 39, a millionaire businessman and long-time Ho Chi Minh City expatriate was immediately brought before a judge and charged with bribery, visa fraud and conspiracy to commit those offenses as well as to defraud the United States.

Ardor to build hydropower plants cooling off
www.thanhniennews.com, 12 September
An analyst for the hydropower plant-building industry said some investors had gained big profits - of 100 percent or even 200 percent - from hydropower projects a few years ago, and many others rushed to invest in the field. But later investors could not find good locations for their projects, he said.
High interest rates for loans have also affected the industry.
Construction of small and medium-sized hydropower plants would not be allowed from 2017, only big ones, Tran Viet Ngai, chairman of the Vietnam Energy Association, said.

SK to build durable goods
www.thanhniennews.com, 11 September
The northern city of Hai Phong has licensed South Korea’s LG Electronics to build a $1.5-billion high-tech complex to manufacture air conditioners, vacuum cleaners, smart phones and TVs.
The electronic giant plans to complete the first phase of the project in four years, and the second phase over the following six years.

Fire in a theatre
tuoitrenews.vn, 9 September
A fire broke out outside the Thang Long Puppetry Theatre in Hanoi in September during a show for foreigners. There were no injuries reported.
The fire was caused by a short circuit, according to police.

Lax borders for tourists
tuoitrenews.vn, 12 September
The Vietnamese tourism minister and his counterparts from Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, and Myanmar met last month in Ho Chi Minh City to discuss the plan to issue a single-visa policy for the countries by 2015.
Cambodia and Thailand are already running a pilot scheme on the single-visa policy, under which a tourist obtaining a visa to enter Thailand is allowed to enter Cambodia, and vice versa.

Government officials shot
tuoitrenews.vn, 12 September
A man in northern Thai Binh City shot five land officials in September at the municipal people’s committee, and then killed himself several hours later. One of the victims has died. The shooting allegedly occurred over a disagreement regarding compensation for site clearance.

No bike for you
tuoitrenews.vn
The Khanh Hoa Province Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism has issued a decision to ban tourist companies in the province from leasing motorbikes to foreign visitors who do not meet legal requirements.
Most foreign visitors to the south-central province do not have a Vietnam-issued driver’s license, and have not mastered local traffic patterns, yet they wish to hire motorbikes as a means of daily travel. As a result, several traffic accidents, some of which have been deadly, have been caused by foreigners driving motorbikes in Khanh Hoa.

More corruption in high places
tuoitrenews.vn
Ho Chi Minh City has suspended eight officials at four public service companies following an investigation into their abuse of wages, through which one of them paid himself up to $123,600 per year.
The suspended officials include four chairmen of the boards of management and four directors at the HCMC Urban Drainage Co Ltd, Saigon Traffic Works One-Member Co Ltd, HCMC Public Lighting Co Ltd, and HCMC Green Tree and Park Co Ltd.

Waste not, want not
vietnamnews.vn, 21 September
Construction began in September on Hanoi's first's industrial waste-to-energy facility at the Nam Son Waste Treatment Complex in Soc Son District with an expected completion by 2014.
The $29 million project includes over $22.5million in non-refundable aid from Japan and will be jointly carried out by the Hanoi Urban Environment Company and Japanese Hitachi Zosen.
The facility is designed to generate 1,930 kW of power per day, treating 75 tonnes of industrial waste daily.

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