Read what is in the news today, September 9!

Society

— About 25-27 million Chinese yuans in non-refundable official development assistance (ODA) from China will be used to upgrade three traditional medicine hospitals in the northern Vietnamese provinces of Quang Ninh, Ha Giang and Lao Cai, according to a prospective memorandum of agreement to be signed between Vietnam’ Ministry of Health and the Chinese side.

— The Buddhist Sangha of Vietnam has issued a dispatch requesting that Buddist temples and pagodas nationwide refrain from producing plastic waste in hosting water lantern festivals, after an annual Buddhist festival in northern Vietnam last month attracted environmental criticism as it purportedly involved people setting as many as 30,000 plastic lanterns afloat on a local bay.

— Vietnam is among the top three target countries for phishing websites in Southeast Asia in the first half of the year, according to the global cybersecurity company Kaspersky, which said it detected a total of 14 million phishing attempts against internet users in the region for the first six months of 2019.

Business

— Vietnam’s fiscal deficit, including principal repayments, is projected to come in at 6.6 percent of GDP this year and next year, up from 5.9 percent in 2018, according to a Fitch Solutions Macro Research forecast.

— More than 200 businesses from ten countries and territories are expected to participate in an international food and beverages expo in Hanoi on November 6-9, where local specialties such as ginseng, lingzhi mushroom and peach juice will be showcased.

— The Vietnamese Ministry of Planning and Investment is seeking government approval for the Vietnam Electricity Corporation (EVN) to develop two gas-fired power plants, Dung Quat 1 and Dung Quat 3, with a combined generation capacity of 1,500MW in the central province of Quang Ngai, using natural gas extracted from the Blue Whale oil field in the East Vietnam Sea.

— The Saigon Newport Corporation, which manages the Cat Lai sea port in Ho Chi Minh City, has requested that a regulation limiting the number of ships allowed to make port calls each day be scrapped to increase the port’s capacity, despite concerns such an upgrade would worsen the already bad traffic around the southern port.

— The number of automobiles with nine seats or fewer imported into Vietnam in the first half of 2019 saw a whopping increase of 652 percent from the same period in 2018, according to statistics from the Ministry of Planning and Investment.

Lifestyle

— The northern province of Bac Giang is celebrating the tenth anniversary of its folk singing styles “dan ca quan ho” and “ca tru” being recognised by UNESCO as part of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity.

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