Quang Phu Cau Village in Ung Hoa District, 35 km south of Hanoi's downtown, always has brightly colored incense sticks stacked by its entrance. Its products are consumed not only in Vietnam but also in India, China, Malaysia, and other countries. Ha, a craftsman, chops bamboo to make the joss sticks. "In the last five years the number of families buying machines to chop the bamboo or buying chopped bamboo has risen into the hundreds," he said. Some also chop the bamboo by hand for others. For chopping a ton of bamboo they earn VND200,000 ($8.6). "If they work hard, workers can chop 700 to 800 kilograms of bamboo a day," Ha said. Besides fragrant sticks, Quang Phu Cau villagers also produce high-end products by hand from fresh bamboo. Cau is one of the few skilled craftsmen known for his ability to manually chop bamboo. "I don’t earn much but my living is steady because there is demand," he said. A worker bunches sticks together and selects the best ones. Before … [Read more...] about Hanoi incense village has blazed pink for 100 years and counting
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The FLEGT-VPA will help Vietnam boost its wood exports to the EU market where the demand keeps growing strongly Heidi Hautala, Vice President of the European Parliament, told VIR during her recent working visit to Vietnam that the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade Voluntary Partnership Agreement (FLEGT-VPA), which took effect from June 1, 2019 will turn Vietnam into a more attractive location for European investment. “The FLEGT-VPA process and implementation will add to the confidence of European businesses in Vietnam’s business environment,” Hautala said. “This will help Vietnam attract more investment from the EU, which is tending to increase now.” “Currently, European consumers and enterprises have a growing demand for imported wood products whose production and origins are quite transparent,” she added. “This will further prompt European investors to come to Vietnam to both implement projects directly and co-operate with … [Read more...] about Wood exporting blocks chopped down by VPA
A Bornean Clouded Leopard, found only on Borneo and Indonesia's Sumatra, is seen in the Deramakot Forest Reserve in Malaysia's Sabah state, November 6, 2017. Photo by Reuters/Michael Gordon The fine of MYR1.56 million is the highest fine ever levied for poaching in Malaysian history, the U.K.-based wildlife conservation organization TRAFFIC reported. The court also sentenced Hoang Van Viet, 29, and Nguyen Van Thiet, 26, to jail for two years for "illegal use of snares, illegal possession of totally protected species as well as protected species." The duo would have to spend an additional 16 years in jail if they failed to pay the fines, the court ruled. The two men were discovered with 141 wildlife animal parts and 22 snares on April 15 by Malaysia’s Wildlife and National Parks Department on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Media reports said the department believed the individual parts belonged to at least two leopards, three sun bears, and 12 wild boars. The case … [Read more...] about Malaysia slaps highest ever poaching fine on two Vietnamese men
KUALA LUMPUR — Malaysia's former leader Najib Razak will go on trial Wednesday over a multi-billion-dollar financial scandal that contributed to his long-ruling coalition's downfall last year and sent shockwaves around the world. The 65-year-old will face the first of several trials over his alleged involvement in the looting of sovereign wealth fund 1MDB, a state investment vehicle established to develop the economy of the Southeast Asian nation. The former premier and his cronies are accused of plundering billions of dollars from the fund and spending it on everything from high-end real estate to artworks in a fraud that stretched around the world. He had been tipped to win another term in office easily last year and extend his coalition's six-decade stranglehold on power, only to be soundly defeated by his former boss, Mahathir Mohamad, who rode a wave of public anger to the premiership. In the months that followed, once-dormant investigations into 1MDB were relaunched and … [Read more...] about Malaysia ex-PM Najib to go on trial for corruption
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (CNN) — Once you let the meaning of the word simmer in your mind for a while, you'll realize Indian restaurant Nadodi could have no better name. A word that translates to "nomad" in a couple of South Indian languages, it harks to the journey the people of that region took to faraway lands, such as Malaysia, where this eatery is located. It's also laden with history; forced migrations of laborers by British overlords, opportunities sought by intrepid traders or movements of civil servants seeking new pastures. It's still happening today. In place of the white dhotis and bare backs of estate workers, you now see the checkered shirts and starched khakis or business suits of the modern-day nomads who make good as professionals in foreign countries. Nadodi is also a story of how food itself travels -- how generations of migrants and travelers bring their culture and cuisine to alien lands, contributing to the melting pots of the nations they … [Read more...] about Is the world’s next great Indian restaurant in Malaysia?