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AmCham Vietnam | American Chamber of Commerce

Event Description

How will the China trade war affect Vietnam and your business? Gain insights on the current situation straight from Washington as board members report on the current state of play affecting short and medium-term strategic decision making.

Join in this unique, front-line update from members of our own Board of Governors who spent several days last month in Washington D.C. with top U.S. policy makers, economic experts and other business leaders from around the Asia Pacific region as part of the annual AmCham “DoorKnock”. Among many of the business and political topics was the current trade war escalating between the U.S. and China, and how that stand-off impacts and creates both opportunities and challenges in other countries, including Vietnam. In addition, our attending board members heard about other U.S. policies affecting overseas Americans and business operations.

Moderated by our new Executive Director, Mary Tarnowka, our panel members will present their observations and insights from Washington’s policy makers and how these are playing out in here in Vietnam, including the opportunities for businesses operating or investing in Vietnam today. The panel members will also report on their meetings with the Vietnam Trade Office, Ministry of Industry, and Trade and members of the Embassy of Vietnam while in D.C.

Panelists include Board of Governor members Ms. Hang Nguyen, Partner–Baker & McKenzie (Vietnam) Ltd; Mr. Walter Blocker, Chief Executive Officer-Vietnam Trade Alliance; and Mr. Mark Gillin; Founder, Chairman, and Managing Director-AIM.

More about the DoorKnock 2019:

Known as the annual Washington D.C. “DoorKnock”, AmCham Vietnam participated in several days of meetings organized by the Asia Pacific Council of American Chambers of Commerce (APCAC). Our participating board members shared dialogue and advocated for stronger U.S. engagement in Vietnam with senior U.S. Administration officials, such as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, members of the Office of the President, Department of Treasury, Department of Commerce, Department of Agriculture, and over a half dozen U.S. senators and representatives, including Senator Rand Paul and Representative Ted Yoho. Over 40 APCAC members from 12 other regional American Chambers of Commerce also attended to share their business outlooks and experiences and push collectively for stronger U.S. engagement in the region, including on the current China trade war and for consideration of free trade agreements to level the playing field for regional trade with the U.S.

Who Should Attend:

  • Executives and Investors Doing Business in Vietnam with the U.S.
  • SMEs and Entrepreneurs affected by China-U.S. trade war
  • Supply Chain and Logistics Specialists
  • Real Estate Sector
  • Technology Sector
  • U.S. expatriates living and working in Vietnam


04:00 PM Registration
04:30 PM Welcome Remarks
04:35 PM Presentation, followed by Q&A
05:45 PM Networking
07:30 PM Event ends


AmCham Members: VND 850,000 | Non-members: VND 1,050,000

Reservations/cancellations must be received by 24 hours before the event, and must be made on-line or by email. We are unable to accept reservations/cancellations by telephone.


Hang Nguyen
Baker McKenzie (Ho Chi Minh City)

Nguyen Thuy Hang is a Partner in Baker McKenzie’s Ho Chi Minh city office. Her practice focuses on Employment and Labor, Compliance and Investigation, Corporate Restructuring and Reorganization, and general M&A. She is one of the few Vietnamese lawyers dually admitted to practice law in New York State and Vietnam. Ms. Nguyen has been assisting in various compliance investigation and advice. During her 13 years with Baker McKenzie, she has worked in the Vietnam, Barcelona and London offices. Ms. Nguyen is a Governor of the Board of Governors of American Chamber of Commerce, Ho Chi Minh City Chapter, and chairs its HR Committee.

Walter Blocker
Vietnam Trade Alliance

Walter Blocker is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Vietnam Trade Alliance, with offices in Ho Chi Minh City, Binh Duong, Can Tho, Da Nang, and Hanoi Vietnam. He is a native of Kentucky and has been a resident of Vietnam since 1995. The firm provides nationwide FMCG and Material distribution from 6 hubs and cross docking in 45 provinces. The Vietnam Trade Alliance offers nationwide, 24 hour direct distribution, and cash collections with real time reporting using its own proprietary Alli management software.

Walter served three terms as Chairman of the American Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam, served on the board of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO) Vietnam, YPO Southeast Asia, and is past Chairman of the Asia Pacific Council of American Chambers.

Walter is first and foremost an entrepreneur. Over the past 20 years, he founded several business units encompassing industrial scale milk, juice, and tea production, nationwide warehousing and distribution, brand management, and general asset management. The group serves as the exclusive supply chain provider for numerous multinational consumer product companies in the beer/beverage, cosmetic, pharmaceutical, and industrial chemical space. His firm was twice recognized by the Vietnamese Government for being one of the top 10 foreign enterprises in both Ho Chi Minh City and Dong Nai and is one of the nation’s largest private American investors.

Mark Gillin
America Indochina Management Ltd. (AIM)

Mark Gillin has been identifying, developing and investing in business opportunities in Indochina since 1993. He is a founder, Chairman, and Managing Director of America Indochina Management Ltd. (AIM) a diversified Holding Company with operations throughout Vietnam and Cambodia. Since its founding in 1996, AIM has established market leadership in a variety of product categories covering a diverse range of industries including Construction Materials, Specialty Furniture, Consumer Products and Industrial Consumables.

He is also a founder and Chairman of AIM Capital Management Ltd, an investment management company that provides expansion capital and strategic and operational support to small and medium sized companies throughout Indochina. AIM Capital Management has invested in Healthcare, Media, Technology, Furniture, Hospitality, and Consumer Products.

Mark has successfully managed businesses in a number of different markets at various stages of development (Japan, Hong Kong, Guam, Vietnam, Cambodia). Prior to coming to Vietnam in 1993, he spent five years with Getz Bros., the oldest and largest US non-commodities trading company, where he worked closely on marketing and distribution issues with leading MNCs including Nestlé, Mobile Chemical, Kimberly-Clark, Abbott Labs, Colgate-Palmolive, Heineken and others.

He has served as non-executive board member of Navigos, AA Corporation, Japan Vietnam Medical Corporation and Indochina Assets Limited.  During his previous six years service as a member of Board of Governors, 2010-2015, he was Chairman in 2013  and Vice Chairman in 2012 and 2014.


Mary Tarnowka
Executive Director
AmCham Vietnam

Mary Tarnowka serves as the Executive Director of AmCham Vietnam in Ho Chi Minh City.

Prior to her time with AmCham Vietnam, Mary worked extensively to help U.S. businesses thrive in Asia. As U.S. Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City from August 2016 to July 2019, she oversaw a period of tremendous growth in the U.S. comprehensive partnership, including two unprecedented visits by a U.S. president to Vietnam in 18 months. Mary actively promoted mutual peace, prosperity, and people-to-people ties in central and southern Vietnam. She particularly focused on strengthening the bilateral trade and investment partnership in the dynamic southern region.

Mary was a member of the senior Foreign Service, with decades of experience in Asia, including postings in Seoul, Delhi, Shanghai, and Taipei, as well as at the State Department’s China Desk and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. Prior to joining the State Department, Mary worked as a Certified Public Accountant and Manager at KPMG’s International and High Tech Tax Division in San Francisco.

Mary has two daughters, one who lives in San Francisco, and one who lives with her and attends high school in HCMC.

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