Photo: VSP

The ZWP12 and ZWP15 rigs' bases are built at lots M9 and M11 in the Martaban basin, Myanmar waters at a depth of about 132m and 156m, according to the Vietnam News Agency.

The ZWP12 rig base weighs about 5,200 tonnes, and the ZWP15 rig base is about 6,300 tonnes. The construction and launch of the bases are expected to finish in 15 months, starting from this September.

According to Vietsovpetro, as the bidding and construction of the rig bases have being carried out amid COVID-19, the company has rolled out numerous measures to ensure the compliance with regulations on pandemic control and prevention, and the quality and progress of the project.

Vietnam pilots to welcome foreign tourists to Phu Quoc island

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has basically agreed with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism's proposal on a pilot plan to welcome international tourists with vaccine passports to Phu Quoc resort island in the Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang for six months from October.

A beach in Phu Quoc island (Photo:

In a document issued on September 10, Deputy PM Vu Duc Dam asked the provincial People’s Committee to coordinate with the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and relevant agencies to collect opinions from organisations, associations and businesses in order to develop and issue a specific plan for the implementation, according to Vietnam News Agency.

The Ministry of Health will work with the Ministry of Information and Communications, the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in guiding the issuance of certificates of vaccination against COVID-19, and distributing vaccines to swiftly inoculate people living and working in Phu Quoc island city.

The Ministries of Culture, Sports and Tourism; Health; Public Security; National Defence; Foreign Affairs; Transport; and Information and Communication and related agencies are required to coordinate with, guide and support the provincial People's Committee in implementing the plan.

According to a draft pilot scheme, the plan targets foreign tourists who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or those with certificates of recovery from COVID-19 recognised by an authorised agency in Vietnam.

Eligible tourists should be given their second shots at least 14 days and no more than 12 months before their entry. For those who have recovered from COVID-19, the time from hospital discharge to their entry date must not exceed 12 months. Travelers will be requested for a RT-PCR test within 72 hours prior to their departure, and certified negative for COVID-19 in English by authorities of the country that conduct the test.

The scheme will be applied for visitors who have registered to join package tours of travel agencies.

General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) Nguyen Trung Khanh said Phu Quoc needs to speed up the vaccination for its residents, and those that will directly involve in welcoming and serving holiday makers.

Attention should be paid to developing a specific plan for the pilot programme related to medical regulations, immigration procedures, procedures to welcome and serve tourists at accommodation establishments, tourist attractions, and plans for handling medical incidents.

Phu Quoc is one of the eight "green zone" districts and cities of Kien Giang province. It has to date recorded five COVID-19 infections which have been successfully treated.

Under the draft plan, Kien Giang needs to prepare human resources, materials, medical equipment and supplies, strengthen testing capacity, ensure safety plans for disease prevention and settlement of incidents.

Previously, the Government Office sent a document to the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, ordering "rapid" study and piloting of a ‘vaccine passport’ mechanism for foreign arrivals to some popular tourism destinations where COVID-19 outbreaks could be contained such as Phu Quoc island.

At a regular meeting of the Government on September 6, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh directed the implementation of the pilot plan, aiming to attract between 2-3 million foreign arrivals to the island this year.

Vietnam approves Hayat-Vax COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

The Ministry of Health has just conditionally approved a COVID-19 vaccine called Hayat-Vax for urgent use in the prevention and control of the COVID-19 pandemic, making it the 7th COVID-19 vaccine urgently approved in Vietnam.

Hayat-Vax vaccine is a suspension injection. Each 0.5 ml dose contains 6.5 units of inactivated SARS-CoV-2 antigen (vero cells), said the Nhan Dan newspaper.

Hayat-Vax COVID-19 vaccine (Photo: ITN)

The vaccine has been semi-finished by the Beijing Institute of Biological Products Co., Ltd. Of the China National Biotec Group Company Limited and packaged and delivered from Julphar (Gulf Pharmaceutical Industries) of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The Drug Administration of Vietnam was asked to license the import of the vaccine while the Administration of Science Technology and Training was assigned to select and guide the qualified units to assess the vaccine's safety and efficiency based on consultancy from the Health Ministry’s advisory council on use of vaccines and biologicals.

Hayat-Vax is the 7th COVID-19 vaccine urgently approved by the Ministry of Health. Previously, the Ministry of Health had approved six other COVID-19 vaccines, including: AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson (Janssen vaccine), Sinopharm's Vero Cell, and Sputnik V.

Vietnam currently has five vaccines against COVID-19 being injected, including: AstraZeneca, Sputnik V, Pfizer, Moderna and Vero Cell. The manufacturers of these vaccines all recommend two shots.

As of September 10, Vietnam has injected more than 26 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, of which about 4.3 million people have received two doses./.

Compiled by BTA