What you need to know today in Vietnam:
-- Vietnam reported seven local COVID-19 infections on Thursday and zero ones on Friday morning, with the national tally standing at 2,421, including 1,520 domestic cases.
-- Ho Chi Minh City authorities said on Thursday that non-essential businesses will be allowed to reopen from March 1, except for discos, bars, clubs, karaoke parlors, and sports facilities with a closed setting. The city has recorded zero community coronavirus cases since February 11.
-- Vietnam debuted a national population database on Thursday. The database is managed by the Ministry of Public Security.
-- Vietnam is considering approving vaccines produced by the U.S.'s Moderna and Russia's JSC Generium for emergency use to fight COVID-19, the government said on its verified Facebook account on Thursday. A batch of 117,600 AstraZeneca doses arrived in Ho Chi Minh City on Wednesday, ready for vaccination next month.
-- Police in Long An Province, located in southern Vietnam, said on Thursday that they were detaining four people on suspicion of illegally transporting people across the border into Cambodia.
-- Casino operators in Vietnam have suggested that the government allow them to open more venues in major tourist attractions and permit locals to gamble there, at a time when domestic tourists prove a lifeline for tourism given COVID-19 travel restrictions.
-- Japanese trading house Mitsubishi Corp. decided on Thursday to withdraw from the Vinh Tan 3 coal-fired power plant project in Vietnam amid growing international concern about climate change, according to Nikkei Asia.
-- The White House has not made a final decision on whether the United States will take part in the 2022 Winter Olympics in China, President Joe Biden’s spokeswoman said on Thursday, even as some Republicans call for a boycott, according to Reuters.
-- "U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday directed U.S. military airstrikes in eastern Syria against facilities belonging to what the Pentagon said were Iran-backed militia, in a calibrated response to recent rocket attacks against U.S. targets in Iraq," Reuters reported.