Vietnam. In February, two former communications ministers, Nguyễn Bắc Son and Trương Minh Tuấn, were arrested for wasting millions of dollars in state funds in connection with public investment. Vietnam’s government has fought a fierce fight against corruption since 2016, and several high-ranking politicians and officials have been brought to justice.
The same month, a summit was held in Hanoi between US President Donald Trump and North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un. Alongside the meeting, Donald Trump met with Vietnamese politicians and business leaders. According to media, the talks resulted in, among other things, the Vietnamese airlines VietJet and Bamboo Airways signed a contract with the US aircraft manufacturer Boeing to buy 110 aircraft for a value of just over US $ 15 billion.
The United Nations Food Organization called on Vietnam in March to announce a national emergency after the African swine fever took hold in the country. More than 1.2 million pigs were feared to have been infected with the disease in May, and in June, the Vietnamese state stated that close to 10% of the country’s pig population had so far been killed to stop the infection. The African swine fever began to spread in Vietnam in February and has its largest spread in Africa. In recent years it has also spread to Asia and some EU countries.
- ABBREVIATIONFINDER.ORG: Click to see the meanings of 3-letter acronym and abbreviation of VNM in general and in geography as Vietnam in particular.
In October, 39 refrigerated and deceased people were found in a truck container outside London. A few weeks later, the British and Vietnamese police announced that all of the victims were Vietnamese migrants, many of whom came from the poor provinces of Nghệ An and H角 Tĩnh. Two Northern Ireland men, aged 23 and 25, were arrested in the UK on suspicion of 39 cases of murder and 39 cases of murder, as well as money laundering and human smuggling. At the same time, two more men were sought by British police.
In Vietnam, the government condemned human smuggling in strong terms and called for international cooperation to combat it. Authorities began an investigation into suspected human trafficking and ten people were arrested.
Two men are sentenced to death by 39 Vietnamese
A 24-year-old truck driver from Northern Ireland and a 43-year-old Romanian were sentenced by a London court for the murder of 39 Vietnamese migrants and for human trafficking. The Vietnamese were strangled to death trapped in a roasting container on a truck outside London in the UK in October 2019. The victims were both men and women aged 15 to 44 years. Many of them had tried to reach their relatives via mobile phones but there was no coverage in the container. The sentences of the convicted men will be announced in January 2021. They risk life imprisonment. A total of eight people in a network of human traffickers have now been convicted of involvement in the case.
Free trade agreement with the United Kingdom
Vietnam concludes a free trade agreement with Britain that applies after the British leave the EU. The agreement enters into force on 1 January 2021. Previously, the United Kingdom has entered into similar bilateral free trade agreements with Singapore and Japan. When the agreement enters into force in full, almost all import duties and customs duties between the two countries will be abolished. The agreement is very similar to what applies today between Vietnam and the EU.
First local spread of covid-19 in three months
Vietnam gets its first confirmed local spread of the covid-19 virus disease in almost three months. It concerns a 32-year-old man in Ho Chi Minh City who was probably infected by a family member who is a flight attendant. Dozens of people believed to have met the infected man are being quarantined. Local closures are made in places in the city that the authorities know the man has visited. Through intensive sampling, infection tracing and isolation, Vietnam has succeeded in limiting the spread of the coronavirus. Since January 2020, Vietnam has had 1,347 confirmed cases of covid-19 and 35 deaths from the viral disease. The country’s population is just over 96 million.
Asian countries form record trade cooperation
Fifteen countries in Asia and the Pacific region sign the RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership) trade agreement. The members are some of the world’s largest economies: China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, as well as the ten Southeast Asian Asian countries. Together, they account for almost a third of the world’s total GDP. The cooperation needs to be ratified by nine countries, of which six are ASEAN members, in order to enter into force. India participated for a long time in the negotiations, but chose to withdraw in 2019 due to concerns about the consequences for domestic production. The United States stands outside the RCEP, which has been seen as a Chinese response to the major US trade initiative TPP, which when Washington withdrew from 2017 was renamed the CPTPP.
According to CountryAAH, the population of Vietnam in 2019 was 96,461,995, ranking number 15 in the world. The population growth rate was 0.960% yearly, and the population density was 311.0978 people per km2.