Editor’s note: Nhiep Phuong is a freelance Vietnamese photographer in Ho Chi Minh City. He has a keen interest in street photography. The most common reaction a Westerner has to a finely decorated plate of dog meat in Vietnam is that of outrage. This is absolutely outrageous now that larger (and equally cute) animals get slaughtered for meat without complaint from foreigners. Figures released by the Humane Society International in 2017 estimated that some 30 million dogs are consumed globally on an annual basis. The Asia Canine Protection Alliance estimated in 2016 that roughly 20 million dogs are consumed each year in China, two to three million in South Korea, and five million in Vietnam. Unfortunately, the generally cute-and-loyal animal being killed and served on a plate has raised eyebrows amongst dissenters in the Southeast Asian country. Their arguments, though, are weak. Argument #1: Dogs are friends, not food Cultural perceptions of particular animals vary wildly … [Read more...] about Telling Vietnamese to stop eating dog meat is barking up wrong tree
Barking up wrong tree
VietNamNet Bridge – A tree-felling project runs foul of public opinion, highlighting Hanoians' deep, spiritual ties with the city's trees. Luong Thu Huong and Le Huong talk to a few experts about the re-greening challenges that lie ahead. Fringe benefits: A view of the Thu Le Lake in dowtown Ha Noi. The tree coverage in the city is at around 2sq.m per person. The city plans to increase this slowly, by planting 1,500-2,000 trees every year. — VNS Photos Truong Vi He could not quite put his finger on the overwhelming sadness that he felt. "The street that has been so familiar to me suddenly became completely strange," said Nguyen Tuan Anh. The student of the Ha Noi University on Nguyen Trai Street, was referring to the felling of a row of xa cu (African mahogany) trees and their replacement with a species he did not recognise. The street was at the heart of the controversy last week as the chopping of 500 streettrees provoked widespread protests by Hanoians. The … [Read more...] about Is Hanoi barking up the wrong tree?
Many steel producers complain about the shortage of iron ore in the country even as the government continues to allow its export. Tuoi Tre newspaper reported that in the first five months exports of more than 3.07 million tons of minerals like iron, titanium, apatite, manganese, and copper has been licensed. Analysts said this is not only causing a drain on precious resources but also forcing processors to the verge of closing down due to a raw material shortage. The Vietnam Steel Association sought in April a halt on export of raw materials. Pham Chi Cuong, its chairman, said the export licenses only required exporters to clean the ores. Vietnam does not have a large reserves of minerals, including iron, and the government needs to rethink its export policies, Cuong said. Hoa Phat, a leading steel company, also called for a halt to export of raw minerals, and offered to buy iron ore at the export prices or even higher. The export rush came after a cabinet … [Read more...] about Vietnam allows mineral exports despite shortage at home
Government should instead plug loopholes in regulations since a clutch of taxes and fees that exist cannot prevent exports of minerals A caterpillar at work at a mine in northern Vietnam FILE PHOTO The Ministry of Finance has recommended a hike in mining tax on iron ore by half to 15 percent, saying this is aimed at restricting the mining of a non-recyclable resource. Vietnam has iron ore reserves of 960.6 million tons, almost 80 percent of them known, while annually 3.5 million tons have been mined in recent years, it said. If approved by the National Assembly, the increase will take effect next January. Ironically, there are 12 different taxes and fees already on mining, which have done little to curb exports or the smuggling of iron ore out of the country. As the economy continue to struggle and inventories of iron ore remain high, imposing higher export taxes or banning exports of ore would even encourage smuggling, Nguyen Manh Quan, head of Heavy Industry at the … [Read more...] about Higher iron mining tax: Barking up wrong tree?
Draft decree tightening controls over Internet and online gaming shops barking up the wrong tree, critics say Thanh Ha has been running an Internet and online game shop at her home for the last eight years, but now, she is thinking of hiring a place nearby. She would be forced to move if a draft decree banning the provision of such services within a radius of 200 meters from schools take effect. Her home is located just 30 meters or so from the Nguyen Cong Tru High School in Ho Chi Minh City's Go Vap District. Ha is puzzled, though. "It would be difficult for my business because I will have to pay the rent. But I do not think it would prevent students from playing online games. Surely they will know where my new shop is and come there as usual," she said. Ha is among many Internet shop owners who will be directly affected by the draft decree on Internet services that has attracted controversy over its feasibility. According to the draft decree on "management, supplying and … [Read more...] about End game, but for whom?