Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Hello and welcome to VOV’s Letter Box, a weekly feature dedicated to our listeners throughout the world. We are Ngoc Huyen and Nhat Quynh.

A: Happy New Year. Welcome, dear listeners, to the very first Letter Box of 2017. Thank you very much for listening to VOV. We greatly appreciate your reception reports and comments on our programs. Many listeners have sent feedback on our broadcasts on a regular basis, by postal mail and email and phone.

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B: We try reply to everyone and verify your reports with our QSL cards and send you souvenirs of VOV and Vietnam. This year, we plan to make some changes to our broadcasts to make them more interesting and interactive. We will also improve the layout of our website to make it more user-friendly. So, we hope to hear more from you to confirm that our broadcasts are reaching you and giving you a better understanding of Vietnam, its land, culture, and people.

A: Over the past few days, we’ve been receiving New Year greetings from our listeners around the world. We’d like to thank Richard Nowak for his beautiful Christmas and New Year Card and his feedback on our programs. We wish you a happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year, Richard.

B: This week we received an e-greeting card from Jayanta Chakrabarty of India. He wrote: “Our good wishes to out to all the wonderful team members of the Voice of Vietnam and their loving families for a Happy New Year. As a long time listener, I hope and pray that VOV will continue to educate, entertain, and enlighten us in the coming year 2017. God bless all for peace, happiness, good health and prosperity.”

 A: SB Sharma of India sent us New Year greetings this week. He wrote: “Wishing you a Happy New Year with the hope that you will have many blessings in the year to come. I’m fortunate to have friends who bring so much information, entertainment, news, and craziness to our life. I can’t imagine what it would be like without your cheering me on. I wish a great New Year’s Eve celebration to all the Voice of Vietnam team. I hope year 2017 will give you more name and fame than previous years and that your life will be healthy, wealthy, and full of love and happiness. VOV touches the sky and reaches every corner of the globe. VOV always remains in our hearts”.

B: From Germany, Andrew Pitt wrote: “I’m writing to wish you all a Merry Christmas and best wishes for a Happy and Prosperous and Safe New Year 2017. I have been listening to your broadcasts on shortwave since 2014 and I always enjoy receiving your news and information about the culture and music of your country. Keep up the great work and I will continue to listen in 2017”.  

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B: Thank you very much for your warm New Year wishes, SB Sharma, Jayanta Chakrabarty, Andrew Pitt, and listeners Abdullah Rana and Abdu Razzak of Bangladesh, and Prithwiraj Purkayastha, Ratan Kumar Paul and Khakan Naskar of India. We appreciate your regular reports on our program over the past years.

A: Last week many listeners informed us that they had received our New Year cards and souvenirs. Ullmar Qvick of Sweden wrote: “With my sincere thanks for the delightful New Year’s card from you picturing two girls with flower baskets, which I scanned and published on my Facebook page. I return to you my wishes for a Happy New Year to the VOV English staff. Thank you for the many interesting programs I have enjoyed during 2016”.

B: Ullmar Qvick also sent us a reception report for the program on October 4 from 19:00-19:27 on the frequency of 7280 saying reception has been poor most of the time lately. He also made some suggestions for improving our reception. Thank you very much for your contributions. We’ll forward to your report to our technicians.

A: Neelakandan Visvanathan of India listened to our broadcast on December 20 from 16:00 to 16:28 UTC on the frequency of 7220 and rated SINPO at 45444. He wrote: “I was happy to listen to your English transmission today with good reception and learned a lot of about the Vietnam-Cambodia relationship and also about fish farming in Vietnam. Keep it up. I’m also a farmer but we usually grow sugarcane and tobacco. I would like to know whether sugarcane is grown in Vietnam”

B: Of course, sugarcane is grown in Vietnam, mostly in the central and southern regions. But Vietnam’s sugarcane industry is struggling not only to survive the competition against imported sugar, and the negative effects of climate change.

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A: The 2015-2016 season saw a decline in sugar output for the second year in a row, after many years of growth. According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the sugarcane covered an area of 280,000 ha in the 2015-16 season, a 6.7 percent decrease and produced 18 million metric tons.

B: Vietnamese sugarcane is also facing stiff foreign competition. New free trade agreements will allow foreign sugar to enter the Vietnamese market without much difficulty.

A: Tariffs on sugar have been reduced to 5 percent since 2010, and a new border trade agreement between Vietnam and Laos will allow sugar products produced by the Hoang Anh Gia Lai group in Laos to be imported into Vietnam with no tariff or value-added tax.

B: Pham Hong Duong, Chairman of the Sugar Committee of the TTC Group, thinks Vietnam’s sugarcane industry should invest in mechanization and cutting-edge technology. He says Vietnam has the extra resources to invest in mechanizing the sugarcane industry. If that is done properly, the sugarcane industry will be able to compete with imported sugar and even export its products.

A: That’s a brief answer to Indian listener Visvanathan’s question on Vietnam’s sugarcane industry. Before wrapping our first Letter Box of 2017, we’d like to acknowledge letters and emails from Hector Frias Jofre of Chile, Fachri and Eddy Prabowo of Indonesia, Timm Breyel of Malaysia, Sekar Thalainayar and Muhammad Shammim of India, and Mizanur Raman of Bangladesh. We’ll send you all QSL cards to confirm your reports.

B: We welcome your feedback at: English section, Overseas Service, Radio Voice of Vietnam, 45 Ba Trieu Street, Hanoi, Vietnam. You can email us at: You’re also invited to visit us online at, where you can hear both live and recorded programs. Good bye until next time.