Deputy General Director of  the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) Le Quoc Minh speaks on information and sovereignty. (Source: VNA)

Da Nang (VNA) - The production of external information has helped promote the country’s image and culture to the world, boosting the country’s sovereignty over sea and islands as well as human rights.

Deputy head of the external information service board under the Central Party Committee’s Commission for Information and Education, Hoang Ngoc Ha, said this at a conference in the city on December 21.

Ha said the conference was a chance to review the first phase of the Government’s action plan on external information strategy until the year 2020.

He said that 63 provinces and cities had set up instruction boards on external information services and portals in Vietnamese and English since 2014.

“Many cultural festivals, landscapes, destinations and traditional lifestyles of Vietnam have been vividly broadcasted worldwide through external media system. Local media also posted numerous news, video clips, photos and information of the country’s sovereignty sea and islands,” Ha said, adding that the world had a positive view of Vietnam because of this.

He said the service had yet received full financial support in developing an information service, while information content via internet, social network had not been attractive to foreign readers.

According to the Ministry of Information and Communications, 500 films on Vietnam were screened at Vietnam’s Culture Week in 15 countries over the past four years.

Mai Anh Hong, from the ministry, said Vietnam News Agency (VNA), Vietnam Television (VTV) and Digital Television (VTC) had promoted their external information service in multi languages with longer broadcast time.

He said VNA’s Vietnam Pictorial was the largest language publication in Vietnam. It was printed in eight languages.

Hong said VNA also had 30 representatives in 28 countries around the world.

Doan Thi Minh Phuong from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment said Vietnam was one of nine countries hosting World Ocean Day communications recently.

Vice director of Da Nang City’s Department of Information and Communications, Nguyen Thi Phuong, said the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)’s Leaders’ Week in Da Nang was seen as milestone for the external information service.

She said more than 9,000 news and features on APEC were posted in 2017, including 6,000 were broadcast during Leaders’ Week. Meanwhile, more than 6,000 news and stories covering the Da Nang International Fireworks Festival and Asia Beach Games were also run.

Deputy General Director of VNA, Le Quoc Minh, said the national news agency had 10 boards in charge of external information services.

“We have built up relationships and co-operation with 40 new agencies over the world, including giant Reuters, AP, Xinhua, Yonhap and new ties with Poland, Kazakhstan and Australia,” Minh said.

“VNA has eyed infotainment (information and entertainment), technology applications and new styles in renewal information service to meet increasing demands of foreign readers,” he said.

He said VNA’s mega stories item, 2013-launched Rapnews (Rap combined with news) – which were seen as non-tradition and non-press product – were the latest media products in attracting young readers.

He also said the agency also planned to build data journalism and boost Artificial Intelligence (AI) in boosting information service in the near future.

Nguyen Thi Phuong Lien from Vietnam Television (VTV) Channel 4 said external information broadcast at the channel increased from one hour to three hours per day in five languages - English, French, Japanese, Chinese and Russian. - VNA