CBP offers classification and valuation assistance program to U.S. exporters

U.S. Customs and Border Protection will provide technical assistance to help U.S. exporters resolve issues involving tariff classification and customs valuation treatment by other customs administrations. Read more

USTR Froman travels to Guatemala to continue push for workers’ rights

Portrait of Michael FromanGuatemala City, Guatemala – As part of USTR’s efforts to ensure the full implementation of the labor provisions under the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR), U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman traveled to Guatemala on Aug 1  to meet with government ministers and congressional, labor and business leaders after meeting with Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina in Washington, D.C. last week.

Ambassador Froman met with Guatemalan leaders to press their government to follow through on work that remains to effectively implement the Enforcement Plan signed by Guatemala last year and to effectively enforce Guatemalan labor laws. In his meetings, Ambassador Froman emphasized that respecting workers’ rights and the rule of law will help Guatemala attract the investment needed to create opportunity for the country’s growing workforce. Read more

Vietnam sets textile plan to 2020, with vision to 2030

Vietnam sets textiles plan to 2020, vision to 2030Vietnam aims to achieve 55 per cent local content (yarn-forward) by 2015, which will increase to 65 per cent and 70 per cent by 2020 and 2030 respectively. The US is the largest importer of Vietnamese textiles and apparel, accounting for 48% of the industry’s total export revenue. Vietnamese textile and apparel products will enjoy zero per cent tax rate in the US and EU when the TPP and EU-VN FTA are signed. At present, the average tax rates are 17.5 per cent and 9.6 per cent in these two markets, respectively. Read more

USTR Froman Explains U.S. Trade Policy

USTR Michael From anWe increased exports to a record high of $2.3 trillion in 2013, contributing to a third of our total economic growth.  11.3 million Americans now owe their jobs to exports.  1.6 million of those jobs have been created in the last four years, and those jobs pay 13-18 percent more on average than non-export related jobs.

Last week, the United States and Japan crossed an important threshold in our bilateral market access discussions.  In doing so, we have identified a path forward on agriculture and autos, two of the most challenging areas of our negotiations with Japan.  Although work remains to close the gaps, this milestone achievement will provide significant momentum to the overall TPP negotiations. Read more

Vietnam Airlines and many other SOE IPOs expected in 2014

Aerial View of Coastline of TahitiVietnam Airlines, earned a pre-tax profit of VND533 billion ($25.3 million) in 2013, 34% more than the year’s target on total revenue of VND72.6 trillion (USD3.4 billion), up 8.5% from the year’s plan. They carried 15 million passengers, with ooccupancy ratios of 79.5%, setting a record. The Vietnam Textile and Garment Group (VINATEX) is expected to conduct an IPO in the first quarter 2014. Vietnam’s garment exports in 2013 were estimated at $20.4 billion. In 2014, foreign investors looking for investment opportunities in the textile and apparel industry will be strong because the sector will be one of the biggest gainers from TPP, with exports estimated at $30 billion in 2020 and $55 billion in 2030. Read more

TPP Update: $1.6 billion planned investment in textiles to prepare for TPP

TPP Countries
The BIDV $600 million loan to VINATEX …  to prepare for Vietnam’s plan to enter the TPP. VINATEX plans to have 60% local content by 2015 and 70% by 2020.
BIDV to loan VINATEX $600 million to prepare for TPP Rules of Origin
Trần Bắc Hà, Chairman of BIDV, “With the support of BIDV funds and services, Vinatex in particular, and Vietnam’s textiles and apparel industry in general will have the best preparation for Vietnam’s TPP entry, and increase the production efficiency of the industry. 
Trần Quang Nghị, General Director of Vinatex, “With BIDV’s commitment to provide capital, Vinatex will have sufficient funds for all the investment projects of the group, especially the integrated textiles and apparel project in Binh Dinh province, which will increase the share of local content, we expect to reach a local content level of 60% in 2015 and 70% by 2020. http://baodautu.vn/bien-binh-dinh-thanh-thu-phu-det-may.html Read more

TPP Update: Vietnam leads U.S. textiles and apparel imports growth; bright future ahead

Tran Quoc Khanh, Deputy Minister of Trade
Textiles and Apparel to Benefit Most “With TPP, exports to the US would increase by 13% to 20% a year until 2017, fetching total exports of $25 – 30 billion. Viet Nam has around 4,000 garment factories employing about 2.5 million workers. Garments and textiles are one of the core benefits for us with the TPP agreement,’  said Deputy MoIT Minister Tran Quoc Khanh.” chief TPP negotiator]
Industry insiders said that the TPP agreement would help stimulate investment in making raw materials, helping to increase the rate of localized products. By 2015, the localization rate for export products is expected to be between 60 per cent and 70 per cent, VCCI Vice Chairman Le Tien Truong said, adding that this would open up many opportunities for the sector.
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BIDV to loan Vinatex $600 million to prepare for TPP rules-of-origin

Vietnam National Textile and Garment Group (Vinatex) will invest in a garment and textile complex in the central province of Binh Dinh with a closed production process thanks to a US$600-million loan from Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV).
Given strong investment to meet TPP rules-of-origin requirements, the local garment and textile industry will be able to increase trade surplus, added value and localization ratio. Local enterprises target to reach a localization ratio of 60% in 2015 and 70% in 2020. Read more

Technical assistance to help Vietnam implement TPP, 2014 – 2018

Kerry and MinhSecretary of State John Kerry announced a technical assistance program for Vietnam to help implement the TPP Commitments during his visit to Vietnam Dec 14-16, “And today, I am happy to announce USAID’s Governance for Inclusive Growth. It’s a program to help implement the Trans-Pacific Partnership. This is not aid. I want to make that clear. This is an investment, and it’s an investment in broad-based and sustainable growth.” Secretary of State John Kerry, Dec 14, 2013 in Ho Chi Minh City.

On Jan 14, USAID signaled its robust support for the U.S.-Vietnam Comprehensive Partnership with an event to launch its Country Development Cooperation Strategy (CDCS), which outlines the USAID’s development assistance program in Vietnam from 2014 through 2018.  At the event, USAID signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Justice to officially begin USAID’s new “Governance for Inclusive Growth” program. Read more

Vietnam – U.S. Trade Status and Outlook, 2013 – 2021e

Vietnam - U.S. Trade, 2001 - 2013 - 2021eHCM City, Dec 1, 2013. Despite the continuing difficult domestic and international economic environment, Vietnam – U.S. trade in 2013 continued to grow steadily. Based on nine months’ data (Jan-Sep 2013) from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Vietnam – U.S. bilateral trade may reach $28.7 billion in 2013, a healthy increase of 15.3% over 2012. Most noticeably, U.S. imports of apparel from Vietnam may reach $8.5 billion, a double-digit increase (10.4%)  over the $7.7 billion in 2012. In addition,  Vietnam’s exports of higher-value-added products from “modern manufacturing” FDI are increasing sharply. Read more