15th Anniversary AmCham Scholarship 2015 Info Session

welcomed hundreds of interested students on Sep 5 to a morning session at the Riverside Palace. This is the AmCham Scholarship’s 15th anniversary, 2001 – 2015, and 50 scholarships valued at VND 10,000,000 each and 30 scholarships valued at VND 4,000,000 each will be awarded to students from 12 leading universities in Ho Chi Minh City. Read more

Vietnam’s Engineering Talent Pipeline

Intel's Vietnam Engineering Talent PipelineAs she finished a two-year program at Portland State University in June, Cuc Duong was one of 16 women and 5 men in this year’s class of Vietnamese students at the Oregon school, the final class of a three-part program sponsored by Intel. If more Vietnamese women consider careers in engineering, she says, “I think there will be rapid change in the near future.”

Duong and her classmates are returning to Vietnam, where Intel opened a $1 billion plant in 2010. The facility is Intel’s largest for testing and assembling chips, and the company says its 1,000-employee staff will triple in the next few years. To staff up in a market where engineers are suddenly in hot demand, the chipmaker is turning to women, who, while a big part of Vietnam’s workforce, are underrepresented among the nation’s engineers. Read more

Electronics manufacturers bet big on Vietnam

shutterstock_160390868Attracted by low labor costs and other advantages, global electronics manufacturers invested billions in Vietnam over the past few years. As they continue to build new factories in 2014, Vietnam’s economy will benefit from the influx of foreign capital, talent, and technology.

A small player in the global electronics supply chain just a decade ago, Vietnam exported $38 billion in devices and components last year, according to data from the International Trade Center. Although this pales next to the $560 billion shipped by China, the world’s leading producer of electronics, Vietnam now ranks as the 12th largest electronics exporter in the world. (The country also has a fast-growing IT services sector, which Techonomy surveyed last month.)

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Vietnam Engineering Education Conference, Mar 25-26

Vietnam Engineering Education Conference, Mar 25-26, 2014The 2014 HEEAP Alliance Partners and Arizona State University will host the 2nd annual Vietnam Engineering Education Conference (VEEC) on March 25-26, 2014 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. A major event bringing together global industry, government and academic professionals to discuss transformative ideas and solutions to engineering and technical education programs in Vietnam, the conference includes interactive plenary sessions, panel discussions, technical sessions and seminars with emphasis on partnerships between education, industry and government to innovate and build capacity in engineering, and technology innovation in teaching, research and discovery. Read more

Secretary of State John Kerry: Remarks to AmCham and Fulbright Economics Program

SecState John Kerry, Ambassador David Shear“I want to thank the American Chamber of Commerce. The American Chamber of Commerce Vietnam and the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and industry have made just a gigantic difference here. AmCham’s experience in Vietnam has really ushered in a new era of cooperation for the bilateral trade agreement in 2001, to the WTO session in 2007, and now we are working on the TPP, Trans-Pacific Partnership. I’ll say a word about it.

But just think about this for a minute: Our bilateral trade has grown 50-fold, 50 times since 1995, to more than $25 billion a year now. Vietnam has the potential to become one of the United States’ leading economic partners in the region, and we’re going to continue to work at that. Read more

AmCham Scholarship 2013 Award Ceremony, Nov 30, 2013

131130 AmCham Scholarship Award CeremonyAmCham awarded scholarships to 45 AmCham Scholars and 29 Honorable Mentions from top universities in HCM City on Nov 30, 2013. In 13 years since launching the AmCham Scholarship Program in 2001, AmCham has awarded nearly 600 scholarships with a monetary value of more than five billion vnd (about $238,000 at 21,000 vnd = US$1). The universities included: University of Technology, University of Natural Sciences, University of Social Sciences and Humanities, University of Economics and Law, University of Information Technology, International University, Hoa Sen University, Foreign Trade University in Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh City University of Law, and University of Technical Education. Read more

Crunch time as Vietnam set for education shakeup, again

LHP students, Crunchtime for VN EducationIn the most explicit gesture to shore up an education system that has been dogged by crisis at all levels, Vietnam’s top leadership has passed a resolution on an across-the-board overhaul of the sector. But will educators and experts, disenchanted with government platitudes about an education quagmire that threatens to drag down the workforce and stall the country’s development, buy into this latest move in the education reform?

“It is crunch time for a shakeup,” Hoang Tuy, a prominent Vietnamese educator, told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper. “The leaders must decide if they want to fix the system or keep the status quo and hold back the country’s development with a backward education system.” Read more

Is Vietnam still attractive to foreign investors?

Steve Almond, Deloitte

Vietnam is still a very popular destination in Southeast Asia for attracting FDI. There are challenges and government policies such as providing tax incentives can certainly help.

Much more important to business are things like the quality of the physical infrastructure, the connectivity of technology and communication and the access to high-quality skills in the labor force.

For Vietnam to attract more FDI, it should continue to invest more into removing trade barriers, and improving the infrastructure and education for the young work force to ensure they have the right skills.
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AmCham Scholarship 2013: seeking volunteer interviewers

2012 Interview Panel ?We invite volunteer interviewers for AmCham Scholarship candidates, as the application and selection process is well underway. We will conduct panel interviews with 90 candidates on Saturday, November 23, 2013, from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm at the Pullman Saigon Centre Hotel Grand Ball Room. At the interviews, a panel of three interviewers will interview one candidate. We will need around 75 interviewers and the schedule is as follows.

The 90 candidates will be divided into four groups of about 23 students each and will be scheduled for interviews at four time batches of about 45 minutes each: starting at 8:00am, 9:00am, 10:00am, and 11:00am. Click the read more … button below for additional details, and join us in this signature AmCham community development program. Read more

Vietnam’s new rules on foreign workers likely to make things messy for employers [work permits]

Vietnam Work PermitThe recent tightening of regulations on foreign workers, which involves even more red tape, is likely to exacerbate the already dire human-resource situation facing the corporate sector, experts warn.

A decree to take effect on November 1 superseding an earlier one will continue to make it incumbent on employers to prove that they require foreign workers and that Vietnamese cannot replace them.

One bizarre provision in the decree is that it enlarges the category of foreign workers exempt from obtaining a work permit, but then requires them to apply for a certificate saying they do not have to obtain one.

Employers now have to get approval from the provincial chief to hire foreign workers.

The decree reduces the validity of work permits for a broad category of foreign workers from three to two years, a provision that could aggravate the shortage of skilled workers already felt acutely by both foreign and local companies, the experts point out.

Experts also say if the government wants to keep more jobs for locals, what it also needs to do is improve training to produce more workers relevant to the investments that are going to be made. Read more