Vietnam News Today (Nov. 27): Seventh Vietnam-Laos Political Consultation Held in Hanoi

Vietnam News Today (Nov. 27): Additional 427 Covid-19 cases confirmed on November 26; Vietnam records boom in number of Japanese restaurants nationwide; Seventh Vietnam-Laos political consultation held in Hanoi; Conditions in place for Vietnam to boost wellness tourism.

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Vietnam News Today (Nov. 27) notable headlines

Additional 427 Covid-19 cases confirmed on November 26

Vietnam records boom in number of Japanese restaurants nationwide

Seventh Vietnam-Laos political consultation held in Hanoi

Conditions in place for Vietnam to boost wellness tourism

International experts transfer advanced cell therapy technologies to Vietnam

PM calls for new mindset, breakthroughs, values to develop southeastern region

Event held in India to introduce Vietnamese culture

Thua Thien-Hue art programme celebrates anniversary of Vietnam-RoK ties

Vietnam ready to contribute more to UN peacekeeping operations: minister

A student gets vaccinated against Covid-19. Photo: VNA
A student gets vaccinated against Covid-19. Photo: VNA

Additional 427 Covid-19 cases confirmed on November 26

The national Covid-19 caseload rose to 11,514,174 with 427 new cases recorded on November 26, according to the Ministry of Health.

With 208 patients given the all clear during the day, the number of recoveries rose to 10,608,059.

Meanwhile, there are 108 patients needing breathing support, cited VNA.

No death from Covid-19 was recorded in the past 24 hours. The total fatalities stood at 43,170.

With 106,663 doses administered on November 25, the total number of doses of Covid-19 vaccines injected rose to 263,977,971.

Vietnam records boom in number of Japanese restaurants nationwide

The number of Japanese restaurants across the country has enjoyed strong growth in terms of scale and number, particularly in Ho Chi Minh City.

According to Nobuyuki Matsumoto, chief representative of the Japan Trade Promotion Organization (JETRO) office, there are roughly 2,500 Japanese restaurants throughout the nation, with more than 1,180 located in Ho Chi Minh City.

He noted that the number of Japanese food hubs has tripled over the last five years, not only in major cities, but also in other provinces. Half of Japanese restaurants are owned and operated by Japanese nationals, with the rest ran by local Vietnamese through franchise models.

Japanese restaurant in Vietnam. Photo: goku.agency
Japanese restaurant in Vietnam. Photo: goku.agency

Matsumoto also revealed that 90% of customers who come to the restaurants are Vietnamese, although they had been originally opened to serve the Japanese community living and working in Vietnam.

He went on to say that many people who come to Japanese restaurants not only enjoy the traditional cuisine, but are also keen to experience the Japanese culture and lifestyle. This is reflected in the investment in architecture and space in the restaurants.

According to Jeffrey Au, head of International Sales Office Asia at Informa Markets, Food & Hotel Vietnam 2022, which will take place from December 7 to December 9 in Ho Chi Minh City and feature 22 international pavilions from many countries, is a golden opportunity for Japanese suppliers to expand their market.

A variety of products and services, including confectionery, tea and coffee, catering services, equipment for restaurants and hotels, as well as packaging materials, will be exhibited at the event, reported VOV.

Au added that the spending on F&B currently accounts for the highest portion in terms of the monthly expenditure structure of Vietnamese consumers at 35%, with this set to increase in the 2022 to 2025 period.

Therefore, he added, the Vietnamese food, restaurant, and hotel industry is expected to enjoy growth in the future.

Seventh Vietnam-Laos political consultation held in Hanoi

The seventh Vietnam-Laos political consultation took place in Hanoi on November 25 under the co-chair of Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Hieu and his Lao counterpart Phoxay Khaykhamphithoune.

The two sides expressed their delight at the positive and sustainable development of the great friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between Vietnam and Laos, including contributions from the two foreign ministries.

They also showed their satisfaction at the results achieved in defence and security cooperation, and noted that economic, trade and investment collaboration has made positive progress as well, with two-way trade turnover topping 1.4 billion USD in the first 10 months of 2022, up 28.2% year-on-year.

Attention has also been paid to cooperation in education – training, energy, transportation, agriculture, culture, tourism, and cooperation between localities.

Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Hieu (R) and his Lao counterpart Phoxay Khaykhamphithoune. Photo: VNA
Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Hieu (R) and his Lao counterpart Phoxay Khaykhamphithoune. Photo: VNA

The two officials agreed on orientations and measures to further promote the roles of their ministries in contributing to strengthening the close and trustable political relations, as well as boosting bilateral cooperation, VNa reported.

They reached consensus on the continuous implementation of the cooperation agreement between the two ministries in the 2021-2025 period; maintenance and effective promotion of consultation mechanisms at ministerial and deputy ministerial levels; strengthening the exchange of information and experience, and coordination, especially in the study of polices and strategies on external affairs, economic diplomacy, consular affairs, expatriates, and border.

Regarding international and regional issues of mutual concern, the officials agreed that in the context of complicated developments in the world and region, the two sides need to promote close coordination and mutual support at international and regional forums, especially the United Nations, ASEAN and sub-regional cooperation mechanisms, particularly in strategic issues related to peace and stability in the region.

The Vietnamese official affirmed that Vietnam will closely coordinate with and provide maximum support for Laos to successfully assume the role of the ASEAN Chair in 2024.

Conditions in place for Vietnam to boost wellness tourism

Wellness tourism is becoming increasingly popular among travellers, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic, and Vietnam is believed to hold much potential for developing it.

The country boasts many advantages for wellness tourism, including about 3,260km of coastline which is home to a large number of beautiful beaches such as Tra Co, Ha Long, Cat Ba, Cua Lo, Lang Co, Nha Trang, Mui Ne, Long Hai, Vung Tau, and Phu Quoc, to name a few; and various islands of all sizes that are suitable for relaxation and health improvement.

Besides, the country also houses rich mineral water resources, about 400 hot spring sources nationwide, that can be used in health care or production of bottled water. A diversity of herbal plants, about 3,850 species, is also a source of materials for traditional medicine or nutritional food. A system of historical and cultural relic sites, including Buddhist temples and Zen monasteries, with scenic landscapes can also be optimised to develop wellness tourism, according to the Institute for Tourism Development Research under the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism.

Over the recent past, many localities have moved to promote wellness tourism on the basis of their potential and advantages, according to VNA.

The Mekong Delta province of Long An has been known for many special ecological, relaxation, and wellness tourism products among domestic and foreign visitors. A highlight is relaxation and wellness tourism services in the “Canh dong bat tan” (Endless Field) tourism area in Moc Hoa district.

The Long An provincial Tourism Promotion Centre said this tourism area, operated by the Mephydica company, is supplying sightseeing and wellness tourism services and also producing herbal products, becoming a typical ecological and wellness tourism site of the province as well as the Mekong Delta as a whole.

Illustrative image. Source: Crystal Holidays
Illustrative image. Source: Crystal Holidays

Deputy Director of Mephydica Duong Van Toan noted all tourism products here are based on nature to help visitors relax and improve their physical and spiritual health.

Located in the southeastern region, Ba Ria-Vung Tau province also boasts various of wellness tourism products connected with maritime and insular resources in Vung Tau and Ba Ria cities, as well as Con Dao and Long Dien districts.

Trinh Hang, Director of the provincial Tourism Department, said Ba Ria-Vung Tau is renowned for many beautiful beaches and attractive landscapes, making it an ideal destination for maritime, relaxation, and MICE tourism.

He noted its Vung Tau city, with sunshine duration of up to 2,000 – 2,600 hours per year, an average temperature of 27 degrees Celsius, and low rainfall, offers a variety of wellness tourism products for travellers to enjoy.

The Binh Chau – Ho Tram – Ho Linh complex is another worth-to-visit place in the province as it is home to primeval forests, about 43km of perennial rivers, and hot springs, which are all favourable conditions for health improvement. The Con Dao tourism complex with imposing and beautiful natural landscapes, rich biodiversity, mild climate, pristine islands, and hot springs is also suitable for those planning to seek a destination for refreshing themselves and regaining energy, according to the official.

International experts transfer advanced cell therapy technologies to Vietnam

Belgium and American experts will train on cell therapy technology and transfer CAR-T cell culture techniques to the National Institute of Hematology-Blood Transfusion (NIHBT) to improve the ability to diagnose and treatment of blood diseases in VN.

Belgium and American experts will train cell therapy technology and transfer CAR-T cell culture techniques to the National Institute of Hematology-Blood Transfusion (NIHBT) to improve the ability to diagnose and treat blood diseases in Vietnam, participants heard at the National Conference on Hematology-Blood Transfusion on November 24-25.

The country’s largest scientific conference of haematology-blood transfusion attracted the participation of nearly 1,500 delegates who are international experts from the United States, Belgium, Singapore and domestic scientists.

Experts discussed the cooperation project on training and technology transfer on cell therapy implemented by the University of Liège, Belgium and the National Institute of Hematology-Blood Transfusion.

The project aims to support training and technology transfer on cell therapy at the University of Liège in Belgium for three years (2022-2024). The overall goal of the project is to strengthen the training of medical staff in cell therapy techniques, specifically training medical staff on developing sources and the application of cell therapy in practice in Vietnam for malignancies and chronic blood diseases.

In addition, experts will provide on-site training on mesenchymal stem cells, JAICE stem cell quality standards, and clinical stem cell transplants. It is expected that the project will train human resources and serve as a basis for implementing cell therapy in Vietnam in the coming years.

Also within the framework of the conference, Dr. Richard Childs, Clinical Director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) at the National Institutes of Health, also worked with the NIHBT on the preparation for the CAR-T cell culture technology transfer project.

NIHBT director Assoc. Prof. Dr Nguyen Ha Thanh said that the haematology-blood transfusion sector has made very rapid progress in recent years.

Blood research scientists at the National Institute of Hematology and Blood Transfusion in Hà Nội.  Photo Cong Thang
Blood research scientists at the National Institute of Hematology and Blood Transfusion in Hanoi. Photo Cong Thang

“Now we have done most of the latest techniques that the region and the world are doing such as targeted treatment with the latest drugs, hematopoietic stem cell transplants, and high-quality blood transfusion for patients. We have also implemented programmes on preventing thalassemia to improve the quality of life for patients with inherited blood diseases,” said Ha.

Specifically, Vietnam has applied the world’s advances in targeted drugs in the treatment of blood cancer, successfully carried out an epidemiological survey on thalassemia nationwide and a genetic screening programme towards gradually reducing the number of children born with the hemolytic disease in some localities. The sector also focused activities on stem cell transplant activities with the successful transference of autologous stem cell transplant techniques to many hospitals in provinces and cities across the country.

The industry also achieved positive results in the study of gene mutations in blood cancers, thalassemia, and Hemophilia, contributing to improving the quality of treatment and pre-diagnosis of hereditary blood, cited VNS.

Ha added that the conference was an opportunity for scientists and officials in the industry to meet, share experiences, and update new techniques and advances in the diagnosis and treatment of blood diseases.

At the forum, experts and scientists focused discussion on topics such as Clinical Hematology, Subclinical, Blood Transfusion, Stem Cells, Coagulation, Thalassemia, and Immunology – Genetics – Molecular Biology. They also shared achievements and advances in the field of stem cell transplants, mesenchymal stem cells – clinical applications and cell therapy.

In the coming time, the haematology-blood transfusion sector will focus on the development of the latest techniques such as Hematopoietic stem cell transplants, mesenchymal stem cell transplants, cell treatment (such as CAR-T cell therapy), and targeted therapy with new drugs. These therapies will help to predict and treat patients much more accurately than before, helping patients to better improve their quality of life and recover from illness in some cases.

Rosie Nguyen