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The Vietnam News Agency (VNA), a governmental agency, is the official state news provider of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
As the only news agency of the whole country, the state-run VNA is responsible for publishing official information and documents of the party and state, providing information in service of the party leadership and state management, while collecting and providing news via various forms to the mass media agencies, the public, and readers of all kinds, both at home and abroad.
The VNA is headquartered at 5 Lý Thường Kiệt Street, Hanoi, in the National News Centre. The organization's southern and central representative offices are located at 120 Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai Street, Hồ Chí Minh City, and 28 Lê Thánh Tông Street, Đà Nẵng.
The VNA is a media complex consisting of 32 affiliates, including news units (five editorial departments and two source news centers), various publication and press bodies (one publishing house and nine newspapers), and multi-media units (a television channel and e-portal), together with five news support centers and two printing, trade and services companies.
Boasting a network of 63 bureaus in all the cities and provinces nationwide and 30 overseas bureaus across the five continents, the VNA has a strong contingent of reporters and editors working all over the country and in most of the key locations around the world, which is its unique advantage.
With more than 60 media products by more than 1,000 reporters and editors out of its 2,400-strong staff, the VNA is now the media office having the largest number of products and forms in the country: bulletins, photos, television programs, dailies, weeklies, monthlies, magazines, pictorials, books, TV channel, e-newspapers and information programs on mobile platforms.
The agency also delivers news in the largest number of languages. In addition to official Vietnamese-language news provided for domestic and foreign media outlets, stories for foreign service are written in English, Chinese, French, and Spanish, not to mention print and e-newspapers in four other foreign languages, namely Lao, Korean, Japanese and Russian. That's why the VNA is now regarded as the most important Vietnamese external news center.
The VNA now maintains bilateral and multilateral partnerships with more than 40 international media organizations, including AFP, Reuters, AP, Itar-Tass, Xinhua, Yonhap, Kyodo News, and Prensa Latina. It is a member of the Non-Aligned News Agencies Pool (NANAP), the Organization of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (OANA) and the ASEAN News Exchange (ANEX). In June 2014, the VNA started a collaboration with the Italian news agency Agenzia Giornalistica Italia.
The VNA is also tasked with publishing currently eight printed materials in eight state-recognized ethnic languages in Vietnam.
Performing its function as the state news agency, the VNA supplies the latest official domestic and international news to major partners while satisfying the demand for information through various means, including the leading print and e-newspapers, online news and the television channel VNews. The VNA retains its position as the mainstream information source which guides public opinion, and the strategic and trustworthy information center of the party and state, contributing to national construction, development, and defense.
- The VNA is the government's official mouthpiece about domestic and international issues. It is entitled to announce the state's official stance on current events and correct the information not suitable to the national interest or misinformation. When necessary, it is allowed to release statements refuting distortions. (Decree 88/2013/ND-CP dated 1 August 2013 by the Government on the functions and tasks of the Vietnam News Agency).
- “Domestic press and media outlets must use the Vietnam News Agency’s official information in accordance with existing regulations”.
- “Ministries, agencies, localities, and units concerned are responsible for proactively prioritizing and providing the Vietnam News Agency with the latest and most accurate information and materials to ensure the best service to the Party leadership and the Government management so as to bring Party and State’s guidelines and policies to the public in a rapid and accurate manner.” (Excerpts from Decision No.1441 by the Prime Minister on enhancing the role of the Vietnam News Agency, issued on 14 September 2009).
On 15 September 1945, less than two weeks after President Ho Chi Minh delivered the Declaration of Independence at Ba Dinh Square in Hanoi, the full text of the document and a list of the members of provisional Government of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam were published in Vietnamese, English, and French and circulated worldwide from the Bach Mai wireless transmission station, under the initials VNTTX (representing the Vietnamese name ‘Viet Nam Thong Tan Xa’), VNA (Vietnam News Agency) and AVI (Agence Vietnammien D’Information), informing the world of the birth of the new Vietnam.
That is the content of the first transmissions by the VNTTX, the first name of the Vietnam News Agency. 15 September has since been recognized as the traditional day of the VNA. Before 1945, news agencies were unavailable in Vietnam, leaving official news about the country at the hands of the French and other western agencies. Therefore, the VNA is the first news agency to be founded in Vietnam.
The Liberation News Agency - the official news organization run by the Southern National Liberation Front for South Vietnam and the Provisional Revolutionary Government of the Republic of South Vietnam was established on 12 October 1960.
Following the reunification of the country, the Liberation News Agency merged with the VNTTX. On 12 May 1977, a resolution released by the National Assembly Standing Committee of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam officially changed the Vietnamese name of the new agency to TTXVN, which has since been performing the role of the only news agency in Vietnam to this day.
Since its establishment, the VNA's history has been inextricably linked to the revolutionary cause, national liberation, and reconstruction of Vietnam. There is not any other press agency that has had as many martyrs as the VNA. During the wars for national independence and construction, some 450 Vietnamese journalists laid down their lives, more than 260 of them working for the VNA. They include Tran Kim Xuyen, the first leader of the VNA and the first journalist-martyr of Vietnam's revolutionary journalism, who died in 1947 in Chuong My, formerly Ha Tay district; and Bui Dinh Tuy, Deputy Director of the Liberation News Agency who died in 1967 in southeastern Trang Dau and later a Ho Chi Minh City street was named after the journalist, the first of such case in Vietnam.
Throughout the nearly seven decades of fighting, construction and development closely linked with the country's historic milestones, the VNA is the first press agency awarded the titles “Labour Hero in the renewal period” and “Hero of the People’s Armed Forces”. Additionally, it has also been honored twice with the Gold Star Order, a Ho Chi Minh Order, along with many other Vietnamese and international honors.