Vietnam launches Trade Facilitation Agreement implementation program

TFA could reduce Vietnam’s trade costs by 20%, according to the World Trade Organization, more than any Free Trade Agreement tariff reductions. Read more

Message From The Chair – July 2019

What a celebration! AmCham Vietnam and over 900 of its members and guests kicked off the month with our signature “4th of July” holiday all-day celebration. Thanks to the great support from over 100 sponsors, our 25th annual US Independence Day Celebration & Family Picnic was great success. All aspects of the day contributed to the real feeling of an American-style July 4th holiday.

In addition to this signature event, AmCham has continued to lead with advocacy activities. On June 26, AmCham Board Member Mark Gillin addressed political leaders, business associations and other delegates at the mid-term Vietnam Business Forum (VBF) in Hanoi. AmCham’s joint HCMC-Hanoi Chapters’ statement focused on promoting a more sustainable and growing business environment for our members in Vietnam. The VBF provides a forum between the Vietnam government and private sector to promote the development of trade and investment and conducts bi-annual meetings and other working group dialogues through-out the year. Several AmCham working-groups participated in the mid-term dialogue, as well as through-out the year on many critical areas affecting the business environment.

The past month has also included many AmCham committee and business meetings:
  • With the new Competition Law to take effect from July 1, 2019, LNT & Partner held an information sharing event for AmCham Members on June 13, 2019.
  • On June 20, AmCham partnered with Aetna to organize a special event focusing on “Mental Wellness” with a robust speaker panel and yoga.
  • On July 9, AmCham’s ICT committee (co-hosted with BBGV and SBG) held “Digital Transformations—Less Hype More Practicality”, with a panel of five industry experts who shared practical examples of this transformation in various sectors and ways to get started and how to stay current.
  • The Legal Committee continues to lead with advocacy efforts and information sharing, with meetings on July 9 and 11th.
  • This month’s Manufacturing Committee July 10 meeting, members had an update on “Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership” (CPTPP), including the CPTTP’s impact on business in Vietnam.
  • HR Officers attended a June 25 HR Committee meeting with the topic “Design Thinking”, where participants joined an interactive forum to identify solutions for their current HR related issues.

On a topic that affects most businesses in Vietnam, the HR Committee will have an important update on notable changes proposed in the Draft Revised Labor Code and a quick view on labor provisions that have been ratified in the newly signed EVFTA. Our speakers from Baker & McKenzie will present the overview of those updates that may impact your business in Vietnam.

Please register in advance to make sure you have a seat:

AmCham committees continue to lead by the leaders of member companies. Beside advocacy and technical meetings, business monthly sessions are very helpful for members to participant to get update on new regulations or network with other professionals.We encourage members to get involved to get the most out of your membership!

Upcoming Events

Several members of our Board of Governors and committee leaders have represented AmCham Vietnam at the annual Washington D.C. “Doorknock” where they have attended programming the Asia Pacific Council of American Chambers of Commerce (APCAC) from July 14-18. AmCham Vietnam has met “with U.S. and Vietnamese trade and policy makers during their visit to the US Capital.

Please save the date for AmCham’s National Retreat in Ho Chi Minh City September 6th – 8th. We also look forward to welcoming the new Consul General Marie Damour at a special dinner on September 19th. Check our website and future communications about the details and registration details of these important events.

New Members and Thank You Premium Members

We are very excited to welcome our recently new and rejoined Corporate Members: Alta Planning + Design Singapore Pte, Bao Minh Ong Lang Limited Company, Vu Thien Hoang Phuc Company, Enterprise Rent-a-car Vietnam, Hong Ky Company.

Thank you to our members who have participated in the AmCham Survey that was emailed to members in early June. We have extending the time another few weeks–If you haven’t completed the survey, I ask that you take the few minutes to give us this feedback. The survey will close on July 23.

Thank you!

With Best Regards,

Amanda Rasmussen

Message From The Chair – June 2019

Dear AmCham Members,

June is the first month of summer in the United States–the day light is longer across most of the U.S., schools are out, and yet the days always seemed to go by quickly…and before you know it, we are celebrating the 4th of July Independence holiday! AmCham Vietnam has been hosting its own special U.S. Independence Day events for a quarter century—be sure to get your tickets to this year’s event happening June 29, 2019 in HCMC, District 2. You won’t want to miss a taste of America’s 4th of July traditions!

The past month has continued to be a vibrant time for AmCham, including many advocacy efforts lead by our committees and other business events, including an inspiring business outlook dinner with our U.S. Ambassador in early June. I am also proud of the CSR activities of AmCham and its members. I’m pleased to report an overview of some of these highlights from the past 30 days and look ahead to some upcoming events.

AmCham’s committees have been hard at work on very important advocacy issues related to proposed laws and newly enacted regulations. The efforts of the Human Resources (HR), Food and Beverages Sector (FBSC) and Direct Selling (AVDSC) Committees resulted in the release of four position papers on various topics in the past 30 days:

  • AmCham FBSC submitted its Comments on Draft 3 of the circular guiding some articles of Decree 43/2007 on good label to General Department of Standards, Measures and Quality Control. The Committees raised 09 concerns of the current guidance of the Draft 3 of the circular, stated the difficulties that companies have to face and proposed solutions for each concern.
  • AmCham FBSC also raised the concerns over Notice No. 1234/TB-ATTP dated 19 April 2019 and Draft Circular guiding good manufacturing practices (GMP) during production and trading of health/dietary supplements.
  • AmCham AVDSC submitted its position paper to Phu Tho People’s Committee and DoIT to raise the concern on the procedure of multi-level sale activities registration in accordance with decree 40/2018/ND-CP.

Other committees have also been leading the way with advocacy efforts, such as the AmCham Power & Energy Committee who has released its Made in Vietnam Energy Plan 2.0 2020-2030 (MVEP 2.), which provides recommendations for use of Vietnam’s domestic energy for the short and long term. The AmCham Board thanks the strong committee leadership and efforts of many of our industry-expert members. Many of these issues will be raised by AmCham, as well as several of our working groups, at the mid-year Vietnam Business Forum, scheduled for June 26, 2019 in Hanoi.

AmCham also hosted several business and committee topics over the past 30 days, to include the impact of the U.S.-China trade dispute (co-hosted with member KPMG); an update on Criminal Law as it impacts foreigners (lead by LE & TRAN, Mr. Stephen Le); a robust introduction to Intelligence Augmentation (IA) by the Logistics and Supply Chain committee and representatives of Yedda; and an overview of the newly implemented Competition Law by LNT & Partners. AmCham’s Women in Leadership Committee also hosted a committee planning round-table in May and a Women’s Empowerment Social in June with programming by Dr. Astrid Matarrita-Chinchilla.

I am also very proud of ongoing CSR efforts lead by AmCham and its members. On June 7, AmCham in cooperation with Intel Products Vietnam, Coca-Cola Vietnam, Axcela Vietnam organized the 9th AmCham Women in Engineering Scholarship Award Ceremony. The scholarship purposes are to encourage and support female students to study in science and engineering fields and to pursue technical careers. During the period of 8 years, the program has successfully awarded 315 scholarships for female engineering students in HCMC and Da Nang.

Another on-going CSR effort is our World Blood Donor Days. With the theme “Safe Blood For All”, this year AmCham, BBGV and Hospital of Hematology and Blood Transfusion have organized blood drives at 9 different locations from June 10 to June 20, 2019. It is efforts of the business community, including of our partners and members, that gives AmCham great pride in helping supply safe blood to those in need, which contributes to a stronger community and health in Vietnam.

Finally, one of our most anticipated events this past month was our Business Outlook dinner on June 6th with U.S. Ambassador Daniel J. Kritenbrink who shared his insight on the economic climate and political relations of Vietnam and the United States.

Thank you again to the U.S. Mission, InterContinental Saigon, our participating members and our sponsors for an incredible evening:

Gold Sponsors: Becamex Hospitality Company Limited (our new member for 2 months); and our long-term members: Coca-Cola Beverages (25 years), Suntory Pepsico (25 years), The Grand Ho Tram Strip (9 years), Vietnam Waste Solutions (10 years).

Silver Sponsors: Green Speed Company (4 years), ITL Corporation (3 years).

Bronze Sponsors: AETNA (5 years), America Indochina Management Ltd. (18 years), Baker & McKenzie (Vietnam) Ltd. (25 years), Diversatek (9 years), Streets International Inc. (2 years), Pfizer (15 years).

Upcoming Events

One of the most celebrated U.S. holidays is almost here! We look forward to celebrating with many of you on June 29th our U.S. Independence Day with our AmCham members, families and friends. This will be the 25th year of AmCham’s 4th of July celebration and family picnic. All-in-one tickets are on sale now. It is a fantastic celebration, with many favorite USA holiday foods and entertainment.

Upcoming next month two members of our Board of Governors will represent AmCham Vietnam at the annual Washington D.C. “Door Knock” where they will attend programming the Asia Pacific Council of American Chambers of Commerce (APCAC) from July 14-18. Representatives from the different AMCHAMS of the Asia Pacific region will meet face to face with senior policy makers and members of Congress to discuss issues affecting U.S. business in the region. If you are interested in learning more, please contact Cindy Tran by July 5, 2019 at [email protected].

New Members and Thank You Premium Members

We are very excited to welcome our recently new and rejoined Corporate Members: ANZ Bank, Austin Labs (, Cimigo Sole Member LLC, Construction Joint Stock Company No. 1 (COFICO), Dilinh Legal, Platinum Global Company Limited, Phan Law Vietnam, Ranpak Pte Ltd, Vietsway.
Individual Member: Mr. Andy Tran

AmCham very much appreciates Coca-Cola, Suntory PepsiCo, Intel, and Truong Phat for their continuous being our Premium Members.

We know that June is busy for many of our members before summer holiday plans, but please complete the AmCham Survey that was emailed to members in early June. If you haven’t completed the survey, I ask that you take the few minutes to give us this feedback. The survey will close on June 21.

Thank you and “Happy 4th of July”!

With Best Regards,

Amanda Rasmussen

Message From The Chair – May 2019

Dear AmCham Members,

April and early May have been a very busy time for AmCham and its members.  We have continued our efforts to forge relationships and partnerships within both the U.S. and Vietnam governments.  Our business programing and committee work have also remained robust.  I am pleased to report on a few of the highlights of the past month and look ahead to some upcoming events.

Our efforts to strengthen our connection with the U.S. government’s interest and development in Vietnam included welcoming the U.S. Congressional Staff Delegation on April 18, 2019. AmCham Board Members welcomed this delegation of 10 assistants to U.S. Senators and congressmen from the Democrat and Republican parties on their working visit to Vietnam.  AmCham shared with the delegation the opportunities and challenges in doing business here.

As for new partnerships in Vietnam, AmCham’s Food & Beverage committee entered into an important Memorandum of Understanding with the Vietnam Standards and Quality Institute, under STAMEQ, to build new Vietnam Quality Standards which focus on the food and beverage category.  The MOU was signed on May 10 in Hanoi during the U.S.-Vietnam Business Summit.  As part of that agreement, AmCham’s F&B committee will work with VSQI to support workshops and other ways to promote these standards.  One such joint workshop with STAMEQ, which took place April 24, prior to the formal MOU signing, was held on “Consultation on the Draft of Circular on Guidelines for good labels”.  I was honored to welcome over 160 participants to that event where 16 issues were addressed. Click for full speech here; For more about both events click HERE.

Of course, our business seminars and committees meeting opportunities also provided insight and value.  Some of those included:

  • On April 25th we welcomed Mr. Jimmy Thai, speaker and U.S. business leader originally from Vietnam, on the topic “How to win and lose contracts with America Companies.” The attendees heard several case studies with solutions for Vietnamese companies to in terms of culture and opportunities with American companies.
  • AmCham also saw the launch the newly-formed Agriculture committee, which met on May 13, with member interest to focus on two advocacy issues related to wheat importation into Vietnam from the U.S. and African Swine Fever (ASF) in Vietnam.
  • Several other AmCham committees have been very active on advocacy related to tax issues and the new draft Labor Amended Labor Code, for which an AmCham Position paper is set for release.

In addition to many business topics and events, AmCham members also had fun together.  On May 4th, over 130 members and their guests participated in the 2nd Annual AmCham’s Cinco De Mayo Fiesta. All had a great networking time and enjoyed fabulous Mexican food and drinks.

Upcoming Events

AmCham is excited to offer two unique opportunities in the next month to engage with U.S. and local HCMC officials.

The first is a dinner on June 6th for U.S. Ambassador Daniel J. Kritenbrink and Consul General Mary Tarnowka, who will be transitioning out of her role in July. Ambassador Kritenbrink will share insight on the economic climate and political relations, and will also recognize Mary Tarnowka on her accomplishments as Consul General during her tenure.  I encourage you to secure your place soon–tickets for the evening event (to be held at the Intercontinental Hotel, which also include a four-course meal, free-flow beverages and live music), are selling now; and with various sponsorship packages offered, there are several ways to gain additional benefits from the event. Click HERE for event information.

We are also pleased to offer an opportunity to participate in a half-day meeting with HCMC City Leaders in June (date to be informed).  We have gathered several issues from our committees on opportunities and challenges that AmCham companies are encountering in HCMC and plan to present those as part of renewed engagement with the City leadership. This meeting is open to AmCham members only.

We also look forward to celebrating on June 29th our U.S. Independence Day with AmCham members, families and friends. This will be the 25th year of AmCham’s 4th of July celebration and family picnic. All-in-one tickets are on sale now.

The next month will also continue with many AmCham committee and business seminars, and I invite you to regularly check with your Committee chairs and the AmCham website as new opportunities are added every week.  Click HERE to see our Calendar. Of specific note, Women in Leadership (another new committee) will host its planning meeting on May 28.  If you or a woman in your organization is interested in planning the mission, events and programming, please RSVP and join in shaping this important initiative. See Committees page HERE.

And as a reminder: Although committee participation and meetings are limited to AmCham members, please note that Company AmCham members can involve any employee of their organization to join in committees, as participation is not limited to the named Company representative members.

New Members and Thank You Premium Members

We are very excited to welcome our new and recently joined Corporate Members: Cimigo Sole Member LLC, Construction Joint Stock Company No. 1 (COFICO), Cuchi Shipping Co., LTD.; Hill Risk Consulting (Thailand) Ltd; Holiday Inn & Suites Saigon Airport; LMG (World Luxury Mattress Gallery Company Limited); Platinum Global Company Limited, Tiki Corporation.

AmCham very much appreciates Coca-Cola, Suntory PepsiCo, Intel, and Truong Phat for their continuous being our Premium Members.

Please watch in the coming weeks for an AmCham Survey as we seek to check-in with our members on the benefits and ways we can improve our Chamber.  I ask that you take the few minutes to give us this feedback.   But also know, the Board and Staff at AmCham are always ready to hear your comments, suggestions, and ideas to strengthen the Chamber. Please get involved and we hope to see you at our events soon!

With Best Regards,

Amanda Rasmussen

SGS accredited as a 3rd Party Certifying Body for FDA and FSMA in Vietnam (Food Safety FAQ)

SGS has been accredited for two FDA programs under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA): Voluntary Qualified Importer Program (VQIP) and Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP). These two programs allow expedited entry through Customs into the USA for Vietnamese food facilities/exporters certified under these programs. Read more

Message From The Chair – March 2019

Dear AmCham Members,

Firstly I would like to share that I am honored and grateful for the privilege to serve as this year’s Chairwoman of AmCham Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City Chapter and National Chair for AmCham Vietnam. AmCham has long been a staple in the business community in Vietnam, and we are very excited to celebrate our 25th Anniversary this year along with continuing our focus on our 3 pillars of value creation for our members – Networking, Information Sharing & Advocacy.

2019 is off to a busy start! We have already held many events with active participation from our members and have many more planned upcoming. Below are a few key highlights.

On Mar 7, 2019, AmCham was very pleased to host the “Members Night and Meet the U.S. Consulate” evening for more than 100 participants. Besides welcoming new members and networking with U.S. Consulate officers, we also had an outstanding presentation regarding our Committees delivered by our BOG members. The Committees are a driving force of AmCham especially with respect to advocacy across several industries. We heavily encourage our members to join to share and exchange information, concerns or issues they are currently facing. To learn more about our Committees, please click this link:

On Mar 14, 2019, with the support from Lexcomm, AmCham successfully organized the business lunch entitled “Liquefied Natural Gas: Financing Vietnam’s Large-scale Multibillion-dollar Greenfield LNG Projects”. The event attracted more than 60 AmCham members and guests. The presentation from Mr. Pham Ba Linh, Managing Partner of Lexcomm, highlighted the critical points of Vietnam’s energy security, exploration and production capacity and trends.

We also had some fun – in connection with International Women’s Day on May 8th, the AmCham HR Committee hosted a special event on May 5th, “Beauty Tips for Professional Women”. The speaker from John Robert Powers, Ms. Sylvia Pengson, shared some exciting topics like style tips for empowered professionals, power dressing essentials and elements of personal branding. Likewise AmCham announced its new Committee “Women in Leadership” on the eve of International Women’s Day, for more information, please click this link:

Please also remember to join us at the March Palooza at Q Bar on March 27th in District 2, please follow this link to register: We are looking forward to seeing you all there for another exciting networking evening and the first time we hold the event in D2. Please join us!

Last but never least, we are very excited to welcome our new and recently joined members; Corporate Members: Boustead Projects Land; Caleres Inc (Leeway International); Connect Company; Dan On Foods Corporation; Dentsply Sirona Vietnam Co. Ltd.; Ecolab Vietnam; Enterline & Partners Company Limited; Evolve Mobility; FedEx Trade Networks Transport & Brokerage (Vietnam) Company Limited; Gaw NP Industrial JSC; Hotel Majestic Saigon; Institute of American Education; International School Ho Chi Minh City – American Academy; Kelsey Consulting M&A JSC; Legal House & Partners; Minor Hotels – Vietnam; Nexif Energy Management Pte.; Pillow Kingdom Inc.; RSM Vietnam; SCE Project Asia; The St.Nicholas International School; Viet International Company; Vinpearl JSC; Ms. Tram Bao Ngoc Ho – Young Professional Member.

As we close towards the end of the first quarter of the year, please don’t forget to maximize your benefits as an AmCham member such as:

– 3 free announcements in the AmCham Weekly Update Email per year, and member rates for advertising online

– Company profile updated on AmCham website for convenient referral

– Enhanced number of representatives per company member, each company can register 5 representatives instead of 2 as in previous years

As always, the Board and Staff at AmCham are always ready to hear your comments, suggestions, and ideas to strengthen the Chamber. Please get involved and we hope to see you at our events soon!

With Best Regards,

Amanda Rasmussen

Food Safety Training Summit

In 2017, Vietnam plays host to the Global Food Safety Forum’s highly anticipated annual conference. Vietnam’s food and seafood products play a vital role in the global supply chain; in 2016, Vietnam’s seafood exports reached $7 billion, of which $1.4 billion of fish and shellfish exports went to the U.S., accounting for over 40% of U.S. imports of $3.5 billion of agriculture products and food from Vietnam.

Read more

Vietnam, U.S. team up for food safety

The High Quality Việt Nam Products Business Association, the American Chamber of Commerce in Việt Nam and the Washington-based Global Food Safety Forum signed a memorandum of understanding on co-operation in food safety.  The US imports 15% of its food, 20% of vegetables, 50% of fruit and 80% of seafood, according to the U.S. FDA, which has established an International Food Safety Capacity Building Plan to train foreign governments and food producers on U.S. requirements for food safety. Read more

Vietnam – U.S. Visa Reciprocity Agreement

Issue:             The U.S. State Department and AmCham requested that Vietnam issue temporary visitor visas to U.S. citizens on a basis of reciprocity, so that U.S. citizens would receive “one-year validity and multiple-entry visas” as do Vietnamese citizens that apply for temporary visitor status to the U.S., B1/B2 Visa.

Read more

Networking Online at AmCham Vietnam