By Mai An – Translated by Tan Nghia
Attending the event hosted by the chapter were Senior Colonel Mac Duc Trong, Deputy Director of the Vietnam Department of Peacekeeping Operations (VNDPKO), Phan Thi Thanh Huong, Secretary of the Vietnam Youth Union’s Ho Chi Minh City chapter, and Senior Colonel Nguyen Van Tuan, Head of the Department of Politics of Military Hospital 175 under the Ministry of National Defense.
During the exchange, the participants recalled stories highlighting the role of Uncle Ho’s soldiers and the contributions of the military medical force of the Vietnam People’s Army to the UN peacekeeping operations. These contributions help realize the Party and State’s foreign policies, and raise the prestige and position of Vietnam in general and of the Vietnam People’s Army in particular in the international arena.
The Vietnamese peacekeepers also recalled their unforgettable memories and impressions when they performed their tasks as ambassadors of peace in people-to-people diplomacy.
An exhibition showcasing Vietnamese peacekeepers’ activities in South Sudan, a presentation of 200 national flags, 200 bandannas, and 200 “I love my Fatherland” badges from the chapter to the Level 2 Field Hospital (L2FH) Rotation 3 also took place on this occasion as part of the exchange.
The chapter and the L2FH Rotation 3 virtually signed a cooperation agreement under which they will periodically organize exchanges and dialogues, host a virtual exchange program themed “Youth and aspirations to rise”, and build a green space at the L2FH Rotation 3 in South Sudan.
They will also coordinate to implement international voluntary projects in South Sudan related to healthcare, social skills, cultural exchanges, online refresher courses on international youth affairs, and launch a painting contest under the theme “Love for peace”.
The exchange aroused municipal youths’ patriotism and pride of Vietnamese troops and military doctors and featured the role of Vietnamese youth in participating in UN peacekeeping operations.
Translated by Mai Huong
Businesswoman Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao receives the Legion of Honour awarded by the French Government
The French Embassy in Vietnam on April 14 held a ceremony to present the Legion of Honour from the Government of the French Republic to Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, chairwoman of Sovico Group, president and CEO of Vietjet.
The solemn ceremony was attended by diplomats from many countries, heads of government ministries and various state organizations, leaders of cultural agencies, and leaders of businesses among others.
|Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao at the ceremony of presenting the Legion of Honour awarded by the Government of the French Republic.|
The Legion of Honour, established by Napoleon Bonaparte, is the most prestigious, long-standing and highest order of merit awarded by the French government to individuals and organizations with special contributions.
As the Chairwoman of Sovico Group, President and CEO of Vietjet, Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao has made special contributions to promoting economic, cultural, development cooperation, making strong highlights in the strategic partnership, economic cooperation between Vietnam and Europe, and between Vietnam and the French Republic.
At the ceremony, Ambassador Nicolas Warnery honored the contributions of Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, highly appreciated her vision, wisdom and compassion, business philosophy for the development of the community, and the future generation.
He extended his gratitude to the businesses led by Madame Thao such as Sovico, Vietjet, HDBank, etc. for always accompanying and cooperating with French businesses and the French people, especially during the period of Covid-19.
|French Republic Ambassador to Vietnam Nicolas Warnery presents the Legion of Honour to Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao.|
Achievements of the businesses led by female billionaire Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao in the fields of finance, aviation, real estate, and international trade are admired by international friends and contribute to the economic development in Vietnam as well as in the world.
On the Vietnamese side, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs To Anh Dung attended the ceremony and delivered a speech: “Congratulations to Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao for the noble award that the French government has presented today. The event today will be a highlight in the diplomatic, cultural and economic relationship between the two countries. In front of the international friends, Vietnam is proud of the good values of a strongly developed Vietnam that the business community in which Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao is a typical female representative has joined hands to build”.
Madame Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao extended her thanks to the French government and people, French President Emmanuel Macron, the former French Ambassadors to Vietnam as well as Ambassador Nicolas Warnery. At the same time, the businesswoman also thanked everyone who has been supporting and cooperating closely with her personally as well as with her businesses such as Sovico, Vietjet, HDBank, etc. in the past time, bringing about great business results.
The Legion of Honour is the most recent award that female billionaire Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao has received. She is one of the few Vietnamese businesswomen who have received many domestic and international awards such as Asia’s Most Influential People for her philanthropy awarded by Tatler magazine, one of 100 Asian economic transformers voted by Business Insider Australia magazine, top 100 most powerful women in the world, most powerful female leaders in Asia, the Best Businesswoman Award in ASEAN, Asia-Pacific CEO of The Year 2019 voted by the world business community, etc. She was also included in a case study for teaching and research at Harvard University – USA.
|Diplomats, heads of ministries and organizations and leaders of businesses take a group photo at the ceremony.|
Sovico Group led by her has pioneered to become an official partner of the United Nations, together with member organizations such as UNESCO, UN-Habitat, UNIDO Vietnam and international bodies, etc. UN Resident Coordinator Kamal Malhotra once shared: “With this partnership, Sovico Group demonstrates its commitment to sustainable development in Vietnam as well as to the principles and values of the United Nations. We welcome them to become the pioneer group of Vietnam, and also to become a partner of the United Nations. We hope Sovico will be an inspiring example for other corporations and businesses in Vietnam to take practical actions to realize a sustainable future for Vietnam together”.
The Chief Representative of UNESCO in Vietnam Michael Croft expressed his admiration to the President and CEO of Vietjet: “With the decision of achieving a strategic partnership between Sovico Group and the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization – UNESCO, Madame Thao has clearly shown a preeminent vision beyond ordinary business thinking. She understands that the honest business philosophy and corporate responsibility are the foundation to go beyond financial strength. This is probably due to her in-depth understanding of the role of businesses in a large society and her kind heart alongside her overwhelming vision”.
Japanese companies increase presence in Vietnam’s retail market
By Hung Le
|Hirai Shinji, chief representative of JETRO in HCMC, presents a Japanese product at the press conference announcing the seventh Japan Vietnam Festival – PHOTO: HUNG LE|
HCMC – Japanese companies have increased their presence in Vietnam’s retail market instead of focusing on the manufacturing sector, according to the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO).
Addressing a press conference on April 15 announcing the seventh Japan Vietnam Festival, Hirai Shinji, chief representative of JETRO in HCMC, said Vietnam remains an attractive destination for Japanese companies to invest in the manufacturing sector. However, Japanese companies are gradually shifting to non-manufacturing sectors, especially retail, to take advantage of a growing middle class in Vietnam and a population of nearly 100 million.
A report of JETRO several years ago showed that up to 40% of Japanese investors in Vietnam were active in the manufacturing sector. However, the figure has dropped to some 20% at present.
Japanese food manufacturer Meiji recently announced the establishment of its operations in Vietnam with charter capital of 200 million yen (US$1.8 million) to sell the Meiji-branded infant formula imported from Japan.
Sojitz Corporation and Vietnam Livestock Corporation, a subsidiary of Vietnam’s leading dairy producer Vinamilk, have reached an agreement to establish a new joint venture for the purpose of importing, processing and selling beef products in Vietnam.
Aeon opened its sixth shopping mall in Vietnam last December and fashion brand Uniqlo opened its seventh outlet in the country in March 2021.
Many other Japanese retailers such as household goods chain Muji, pharmacy chain Matsumoto Kiyoshi and fashion brand Miki House have opened their first outlets in HCMC and have plans to expand to other cities.
At the Japan Vietnam Festival organized in HCMC this weekend, Japanese retailers such as FamilyMart, Hachi Hachi, Kamereo, Akuruhi and Logitem will present a wide variety of Japanese products, from clothes and food to cosmetics from 50 Japanese producers. Many of the products will be introduced to Vietnamese consumers for the first time.
In terms of e-commerce, JETRO and Japanese companies have collaborated with large e-commerce platforms in Vietnam such as Shopee, Lazada and Tiki to enable Vietnamese consumers to access Japanese goods.
Japan’s exports of agriculture-forestry-aquaculture products and food to Vietnam in 2020 rose 17% compared with 2019, helping Vietnam become Japan’s fifth biggest importer of these products after Hong Kong, the United States, mainland China and Taiwan.
Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, Japanese instant products such as ice cream, spices, natto (fermented soybean), vinegar and masks have become more familiar among Vietnamese consumers.
The seventh Japan Vietnam Festival will be held at September 23 Park in District 1, HCMC, from April 17 to 18, featuring hundreds of booths selling Japanese and Vietnamese products.
Visitors will also enjoy music performances by famous artists from both countries such as girl band Elfin, boy band Amatoudanshi and singers Exile Atsushi, Dong Nhi, Ong Cao Thang and Minh Hang.
Besides, there will be a Karate Show, a Bon Odori performance (Japanese traditional dance) and other cultural events.