Delegates speak during the break of the APEC Economic Committee’s Friends of the Chair on Strengthening Economic and Legal Infrastructure (SELI) meeting. — VNS Photo Bo Xuan Hiep Strengthening economic and legal infrastructure can bring significant benefits to APEC-member economies through economic growth and improvements in living standards, experts said at a meeting held on Friday in HCM City. International delegates took part in the APEC Economic Committee’s Friends of the Chair on Strengthening Economic and Legal Infrastructure (SELI) meeting at the third Senior Officials Meeting (SOM 3) now being held in the city. Representatives from international organisations, including the UN’s Commission on International Trade Law, the World Bank and International Institute for the Integration of Investment Law, also attended the event. SELI serves as a network of focal points for legal advisors … [Read more...] about APEC discusses legal infrastructure
Viet Nam News
Delegates at APEC’s Committee of Industry and Trade (CIT) meeting in HCM City. — VNS Photo Thu Ngan APEC’s Committee of Industry and Trade (CIT) on Friday continued its two-day meeting in HCM City. Marie Sherylyn D Aquia, chair of the CTI, told Viet Nam News: “We continue to have discussions so we can have some very good deliverables for the November meeting. So we had a discussion on free trade facilitation in the Asia-Pacific. We also had discussions on trade facilitation.” “APEC is very supportive of the WTO, so we are trying to have economies implement their commitment under the trade facilitation agreement. We had discussions on digital trade and also services -- which is a very important issue they are discussing in the CTI -- because services are an important component of our economies.” At the meeting, the CTI sub-committees and groups, including the sub-committees … [Read more...] about APEC officials debate freer trade
The villagers planted custard apples in their gardens because they liked the fruit, but over the last 30 years or so, it has found even greater favour as an economic staple. Custard apples are packed before being delivered to customers. The custard apple is among several fruits that have found a niche in the northern province of Bac Giang, which has emerged as one of the largest fruit-growing areas in the nation. Different districts in the province has become well-known in Viet Nam and beyond for their lychees, longans, pineapples and custard apples. The custard apple, or na in Vietnamese, has become a specialty of the mountainous district of Luc Nam, and local authorities have been encouraging its cultivation with several supporting policies. The district grows the fruit on 1,700ha, of which 700ha follow the Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) standard. The custard apples are planted mainly in the communes … [Read more...] about Luc Nam finds a fruitful niche
Religion meets nature in a cultural and tourism festival to promote the Bach Ma National Park in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue that kicked off on Wednesday. Entitled An Tuong Bach Ma (Impressions of Bach Ma), the two-day festival features various cultural and religious activities, including Buddhist incense offerings at the Bach Van Pagoda, religious dancing, a sacred fire procession and bell tolling for peace. The week will also feature some sporting events including a relay race entitled Conquer the Bach Ma Peak, a rock climbing competition and a martial arts performance. A food fair will introduce the area's specialities, giving tourists a chance to enjoy local cuisine. "The festival is an event to kick off this year's tourism season in the area," said the deputy director of the provincial Tourism Department, Nguyen Quoc Thanh. The week is hosted by the Bach Ma National Park's Management Board and the Thua Thien-Hue Provincial People's Committee. The park is well … [Read more...] about Bach Ma Park launches tourism festival
The Culture, Sports and Tourism Department of central Khanh Hoa Province has banned local travel agencies letting foreign visitors hire motorbikes without driving licences. The move came after the National Administration of Tourism requested all tourism departments nation-wide to seriously follow regulations when hiring motorbikes to foreigners. It said this was an attempt to ensure the safety of foreign visitors travelling in Viet Nam where the traffic often seemed out of control. Under the regulations, all foreigners unable to get driving licences for the first three months of their stay can use licences issued in their countries or international driving licences. What do you think about the crackdown? Would it discourage you from visiting many of the nation's distant attractions? Does the move conflict with policies promoting national tourism? If Viet Nam allows foreign visitors to drive motorbikes without licences, do you think this is discriminatory in any way or a move in … [Read more...] about What do you think about the crackdown?
Dong Son village offers visitors the chance to learn more about the country's archaeology, its countryside, culture, history and architecture. As one of the most beautiful ancient villages in Viet Nam, Dong Son offers visitors the chance to learn more about the country's archaeology, its countryside, culture, history and architecture. Tucked away in Ham Rong Ward, in the central province of Thanh Hoa, Dong Son is a small village of just over 300 families by historical Ham Rong Bridge, which is associated with the anti-American war when the Vietnamese air defence force shot down many US aircraft, and the Ma River. The river is connected closely with various legends like the Dragon-Horse God who created the river to save local people from droughts. Lying near the foot of Canh Tien Mountain, the village reflects the simplicity of many Vietnamese villages, with a vast area of fertile fields to the front of it and a busy wharf, which is always teeming with boats. It is also a typical … [Read more...] about Historic village captures Vietnam through the ages
In recent years, the Northwest has become a popular destination for eager Vietnamese and Western backpackers with a taste for the unfamiliar. Long and winding road: Pha Din Mountain Pass in Son La Province, a famous landscape and a must-see for tours to the northwest. — VNA/VNS Photo Xuan Truong On a rainy summer's day in Ha Noi, a group of Western backpackers, bags fastened to their muddy motorcycles, return to the crowded city after trekking through some of Viet Nam's northwest provinces. It is no surprise that in recent years, the Northwest has become a popular destination for eager Vietnamese and Western backpackers with a taste for the unfamiliar. Cultural diversity is among many reasons why tourists have flocked to the region. "I had heard a lot about the Northwest of Viet Nam, particularly the famous [battle of] Dien Bien Phu, but only after I'd been there could I really experience the beauty of the colourful culture here. In particular, I was impressed with the … [Read more...] about Viet Nam tourists head north by northwest
To many, Viet Nam is a peaceful and friendly destination, abundant in culinary delights, natural treasures and local smiles. But according to some, Viet Nam faces a crisis of image. A recent article by Dea Birkett on the Travel page of the Daily Mail (online) has sparked a debate about how visitor's perceive Viet Nam. In her article, Birkett wrote the country was haunted by "the scars of conflict," that "it's not easy to forget the war" and that "the American war is still evident" throughout the country. Since being published on Sunday, the story has received a predominantly negative reaction from readers, many arguing her preoccupation with war (unfairly) overshadowed her perception of Viet Nam. Do you agree with Birkett? What was your mindset before and after visiting Viet Nam? Please reply by email to: [email protected], or by fax to (84-4) 3 933 2311. Letters can be sent to The Editor, Viet Nam News, 79 Ly Thuong Kiet Street, Ha Noi. Replies to next week's questions … [Read more...] about What was your mindset before and after visiting Viet Nam?
Ha Noi's Information and Communications Department plans to provide free wi-fi internet access around Hoan Kiem Lake. Authorities believe the service will attract more tourists to the city and stimulate local economic growth in the bustling heart of the city. In early 2012, Hoi An city in central Thua Thien Hue Province became the first city in the country to set-up a wi-fi network to serve tourists. The city spent about VND25 billion (US$1.1million) to install 350 wi-fi hotspots with a internet access speed of 256Mb/s. However, some local residents in Hoi An say that the service sometimes suffers from slow connections, making surfing the internet a frustrating experience. In the meantime, experts have raised concerns over the network's security as they claim people on smart phones, laptops or Ipads accessing the internet via the free wi-fi network, have to face to a high risk of having their private information stolen by hackers. Do you like using free wi-fi when you visit places … [Read more...] about Do you think that free wi-fi will attract more tourists?
Located at the top of Son Tra Mountain, the 39ha resort offers panoramic views as well as a private beach. Want to live like billionaire financier George Soros? Perhaps his lifestyle is out of your reach, but at least you can experience what he did during his vacation in Da Nang last year by staying at the InterContinental Da Nang Sun Peninsula Resort. Located at the top of Son Tra Mountain, the 39ha resort opened last summer and offers panoramic views as well as a private beach. It also has the unique distinction of being the only resort in Viet Nam selected by the luxury travel and lifestyle magazine DestinAsian for last year's Luxe List. Additionally, Conde Nast Traveller placed it among 154 best new hotels in the world. A two-night stay with extras costs about VND20 million (US$950) - a decent price to travel like a billionaire. The mountainous area features evergreen forests that are home to rare langurs. When designing the resort, American architect Bill Bensley … [Read more...] about Luxurious Son Tra mountainside resort offers taste of high life