Vietnam attaches importance to coooperation with China

Dec. 25 (VNA) -- President Tran Duc Luong today, Dec. 25, began an official visit to China with the aim of fostering its comprehensive cooperation with China.

The visit made at the invitation of Chinese President Jiang Zemin is also to translate the two countries' line of good neighbourliness, comprehensive cooperation, long-lasting stability and looking towards the future into concrete areas of cooperation and strengthen mutual trust, cooperation and friendship between the two countries in the 21st century.

Fisheries sector expected to grow up

Ha Noi, Dec. 23 (VNA) -- The fisheries sector is trying to join the world's major exporters in the first decade of the century and its turnover is expected to reach USD 2.5 billion by 2005 and USD 3.5 billion by 2010.

Procedure for self-funded studies

Ha Noi, Dec. 23 (VNA) -- Procedures for self-funded studies abroad will be simplified, creating better conditions for the Vietnamese students can pay their own expenses for their studies abroad.

Representatives from consultative establishments for self-funded studies abroad nationwide gathered at a conference held by the Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) in Ha Noi on Dec. 22 to discuss draft legal documents and regulations relating to their management and enrolment procedures.

German and Japan grant aid to Vietnam

Ha Noi, Dec. 23 (VNA) --

* Germany Loans USD 11.7 million for Building A Dredger

The German Goverment will provide a preferential loan of USD 11.7 million to help build a dredger for Viet Nam's ports.

The loan was approved by the European Commission (EC) on Dec. 21.

The EC said that the loan, made as a development aid to Viet Nam's Nam's Waterway Dredging Company, confirmed with Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) regulations governing export credit for ship building.

Over 4 million students receive free dental care

Ha Noi, Dec. 20 (VNA)-- An additional 300 dental clinics were set up under the school-based dental care programme this year, providing oral care to 600,000 more students.

Seminar on implementation of Customs valuation

Ha Noi, Dec. 19 (VNA) -- A seminar was held in Ha Noi on Dec. 18 to discuss the Agreement on Implementation of Article 7 of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 1994 (Customs Valuation) - one of the annexes to the Uruguay Round Final Act.

The content of the agreement and its impact on the integration, business and customs were presented for discussion. The seminar also touched on how to apply the import-export duties in accordance with the agreement, as well as cooperation between relevant agencies in the preventation of illegal trade.

Japan and Denmark help Vietnam's healthcare and water supply

Ha Noi, Dec. 19 (VNA) --
* Japan Grants More than USD 67,000 to Upgrade Hospital in Bac Can Province

The Japanese Government will grant USD 67,357 as non-refundable aid to upgrade a hospital in Na Ry commune in the northern mountainous province of Bac Can.

Under an agreement for the project signed in Ha Noi on Dec. 18, the donation will be used to buy surgical equipment and instruments for the hospital.

Minimum wage to be increase from Jan. 1, 2001

Ha Noi, Dec. 19 (VNA) -- The minimum wage will be raised to VND 210,000 from the current VND 180,000 as from Jan. 1, 2001 for those receiving salaries and allowances from the State budget, according to Decree 72/2000/ND-CP issued by the Government on Dec. 15.

The rise in monthly benefits will be applied to pensioners and other social allowance beneficiaries as well as to both working and retired officials of the commune/ward and township level administration.

Vaccine and biological products company inaugurated

Ha Noi, Dec. 18 (VNA) -- Vaccines and Biological Products Company No 1 was inaugurated in Ha Noi on Dec. 18.

The company, with capital of VND 16 billion, USD 1.1
million, will make vaccines against encephalitis, hepatitis B, cholera and rabies. Its office has been built on the premises of the Central Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology.

The company will make two million doses of encephalitis and hepatitis B vaccines and more than one million doses of cholera vaccine in its first year.

Vietnam's military attache office opens in Seoul

Dec.18 (VNA) -- Viet Nam's embassy in the Republic of Korea, RoK, opened its military attache office in Seoul 's Dec. 18.

The inauguration was marked by a reception hosted by Ambassador Nguyen Van Xuong, and attended by, among others, director of the RoK's national intelligence service (NIS), Lt. Gen. Hong Sun-ho.