Troi Oi March 2020

The Country in Numbers

2G service to be terminated by 2022. Vietnam will shut down all 2G services from January 1, 2022 under a roadmap planned out by the Ministry of Information and Communications. 2G, short for second-generation cellular networks, allows services such as phone calls, text messages, picture messages and multimedia messages. However, the technology does not let users download data, send and receive emails, or access the Internet. According to Minister Hung, the shutdown of 2G services plays an important role in promoting smartphone ownership, which in turn promotes e-government, online transactions and the digital economy. Vietnam’s telecommunications networks currently employ three different technologies, including GSM (2G), which was deployed in 1990, IMT 2000 (3G) launched in 2009, and LTE-A (4G) deployed in 2016. The number of registered mobile subscribers has exceeded 143 million compared to the nation’s population of nearly 97 million. About 72 percent of the population owned smartphones, according to a 2018 report by Appota.

USD 430 Million in loss revenue expected by Vietnamese Airlines due to the coronavirus. Vietnam declared a public health emergency over the epidemic on February 1 and banned all flights to and from China, where more than 1,000 people have died from the virus. The ban would affect about 400,000 passengers a month, the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam said in a statement. The number of passengers on all international flights fell 14.1 percent during the first week of February from a year earlier, it added. Vietnam Airlines, Vietjet Aviation and Jetstar Pacific Airlines conduct commercial flights on 72 routes between Vietnam and China. “The flights [to and from China] can only be resumed under the approval from the Prime Minister,” CAAV director Dinh Viet Thang said in the statement.

40,000 train tickets returned due to covid-19. Due to the reduction in passengers, railway transport joint stock companies had to cancel 78 passenger trains, 8.3 percent lower than planned. Passenger transport revenue is expected to fall by VND54.8 billion, decreasing 13.3 percent over the same period last year. Cargo transport revenue is expected to decrease by VND9.9 billion. In order to minimize damage, VR is implementing policies to reduce fares on NorthSouth trains, and promotion programs for groups and tourism companies with early booking, long distance or large number of passengers. However, the promotion of rail fares was not attractive enough to passengers, partly because of the continuing epidemic, partly because fares of other means such as aviation and road were also discounted.

80,000 workers are needed in Ho Chi Minh City for the first quarter of this year, according to the hcm city human resources forecast and labor market information (falmi) centre. Most jobs are available in business: sale, service, transportation and information technology, among others. In January, the city helped more than 23,100 laborers to get jobs and created over 10500 new jobs, or 7.73 percent and 7.84 percent of the yearly plan. According to the center, the city’s recruitment demand for February is lower than the initial plan with about 30,000 job vacancies. Of the number, the demand for trained laborers makes up 83.18 percent, including 14.06 percent of university graduates. Fields recruiting many laborers include garment-textiles, mechanical engineering, food processing, business-sale, real estate, information technology, and finance/accounting, among others. In 2020, the center forecasts the city will need about 323,000 workers, with 135,000 new jobs. The city’s demand for trained laborers stands at 85 percent, including 19.8 percent of university graduates.

99 years in prison granted to black credit gang in Thanh Hoa. They are considered the biggest loan shark gang, known as ‘black credit’, led by Thanh, who were lending money and demanding payback at extortionate rates. Thanh received ten years and six months in prison for his role in the operation. Chuong, a gang member, was sentenced to 16 years in prison and the remaining defendants were sentenced to between 18 months and ten years for the same charge. In July 2017, Thanh and Thang established a company without a license named Nam Long Financial Company. The company was located in District 1 in HCMC and was directed by Thanh. Thanh also established company branches in 63 provinces and cities nationwide. From late 2017 to June 2018, Thanh and his gang members lent money to around 95 people with total loans worth more than VND32 billion. They earned VND8.6 billion from the deals.

USD 19 Million will be used to renovate a historic site in Tay Ninh. Funds will come from the provincial budget and private sources. Among the historic sites to be renovated are the special national relic site of the Central Bureau of southern Vietnam’s Party Committee, Bau Rong Military Base, Trang Bang Revolutionary Youth Base, An Thoi guerrilla warfare tunnel, Rach Tram relic site, Binh Thanh Ancient Tower, Hiep Ninh Communal House, and the temple and tomb of Huynh Cong Thang. After the upgrade, the province will open them to the public as tourism destinations. In the 2021-25 period, the province will continue to renovate 25 more historic relic sites, including the first base of Tay Ninh Province’s Communist Party in Giong Nan Hamlet in Chau Thanh District’s Long Vinh Commune, the memorial site dedicated to war martyr Duong Minh Chau, Loi Thuan guerrilla warfare tunnel, and Rung Nhum Base, among others. There are 90 relic sites in the province, including one special national relic site, 25 national-level relics and 64 provincial-level relics.

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