Weekly Update Aug 23: Project 30, TPP, Palooza, Ports & Infrastructure

We, Aug 25 AmCham Young Professionals Palooza Party

Tu, Sep 7 Pre-Employment Screening in Vietnam

Sa, Sep 25 AmCham Scholarship 2010 Information Session

Tu, Sep 28 ADB Finance/Development Projects in Vietnam and the GMS

Tu, Sep 28 Business Networking: Credit guarantees for agricultural imports from the USA

Vietnam and the TPP Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement

Southern Key Economic Region: Ports, Industrial Parks, and Other Infrastructure

Project 30: Administrative Procedures Reform: Update (Jul 20, 2010)

Two Web Sites for Overseas U.S. Voters: Online Voter Registration & Ballot Delivery

Events, Meetings, Activities, and Special Offers for Members

201006W@082306GMTTropical storm approach Danang in 12 hours. At left is the past and forecast track of Tropical Storm MINDULLE as of Mon, Aug 23, 2010 1pm VN time, as it heads for Central and Northern Vietnam. Note that storm tracks can and do change frequently. Click the image for a close-up view and link to most recent forecast.

Su – Tu, Aug 15-31 “Churrascos” with a difference at Caravelle Churrascos, a big favorite in Argentina, Brazil and across South America. This is a great way to enjoy tender grilled meats. Featuring on the buffet at Nineteen Restaurant this is succulent slices of Latin America right in the middle of Saigon. VND 1,180,000++ per person including free flows of Italian and Spanish house wines.

Th, Aug 19 The World Wide Fund for Nature Vietnam (WWF Vietnam) has presented the WWF Green Office certificate to TANNER Vietnam for the successful implementation of an accredited environmental management plan in their workplace.

Legend Hotel Saigon’s Weekend Getaway Package Due to great response to the package, Legend Hotel Saigon has just confirmed to extend its validity two more months longer until 5 September 2010. Available for Vietnamese people and expatriates residing in Vietnam, the package is priced at only VND 1,881,000++ (US$ 99++) for single or double occupancy in a Deluxe Room for the first night, VND 1,661,000++ per night for following nights and VND 1,661,000++ per night for an additional room with several special benefits.

We, Aug 25 AmCham Young Professionals Palooza Party A platform to develop new friendships, networking opportunities and information exchange.

Th, Sep 2 National Foundation Day Official Vietnamese Holiday celebrating Vietnam’s Declaration of Independence and National Foundation. Offices closed. Click the link to learn more about this holiday.

Fr, Sep 3 Wine Dinner at Sheraton’s Signature Restaurant Join us for our extraordinary dinner to sample a selection of Peter Lehmann’s finest wines from Australia, paired with an exquisite 5-course menu especially designed by our acclaimed Executive Chef Adam Tanner. A fine dinner for wine lovers.

Mo, Sep 6 U.S. Labor Day is celebrated on the first Monday in September. U.S. Government offices closed. Click the link to learn more about this holiday, and links to a list of all Vietnamese and U.S. holidays.

Tu, Sep 7 Pre-Employment Screening in Vietnam Over 96% of HR professionals in the U.S. report that their companies do pre-employment checks of new employees, up from 66% in 1996.

Sa, Sep 25 AmCham Scholarship 2010 Information Session Meeting to explain AmCham Scholarship Program, Application and Selection procedures, to prospective applicants.

Tu, Sep 28 ADB Finance/Development Projects in Vietnam and the GMS The ADB is a major development assistance partner for Vietnam, for the period 2007-2010 the ADB provided US$ 3 billion in loans to Vietnam. This session will help you learn about ADB priorities and projects in Vietnam. In addition, you will understand the qualification and procurement requirements to do business with ADB-funded projects.

Tu, Sep 28 Business Networking: Credit guarantees for agricultural imports from the USA The U.S. Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) programs encourage imports of U.S. agricultural products from buyers in countries where credit is necessary, but where financing may not be available without CCC guarantees.

Project 30: Administrative Procedures Reform: Update (July 20, 2010) Vietnamese citizens and businesses have high expectations for Project 30 with its enormous target of reducing administrative procedures (APs) to save AP compliance costs, ensure openness and transparency of the administrative system, and to overcome needless and costly red tape.

Two Web Sites for Overseas U.S. Voters: Online Voter Registration & Ballot Delivery

Plan ahead. Click here to see all upcoming Events and Committee Meetings

Stay informed about Vietnam-U.S. trade and investment with Weekly Updates (Past Issues).

News and Issues Updates

Vietnam’s Dong Has Worst Week Since February on Devaluation Vietnam’s dong dropped to a record low after the central bank devalued the currency for a third time since Nov 2009 to help reduce the trade deficit. Government data show the trade deficit in the seven months through July almost doubled to $ 7.4 billion from a year earlier, while the IMF said on June 9 the nation’s foreign-currency reserves have fallen to the equivalent of seven weeks of imports from coverage of less than two-and-a-half months in December.

U.S. Secretary of Defense to attend ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting (Plus) which will be held in Hanoi in October. The Plus refers to the eight ASEAN dialogue partners that will also attend the conference, including the U.S. and China.

PepsiCo to Invest $ 250 Million in Vietnam over Next Three Years The new investment will be allocated to a variety of projects, including increasing manufacturing capacity, adding marketplace equipment like coolers, further strengthening existing brands and broadening the company’s product portfolio via innovation. The investment is in addition to PepsiCo’s investment over the past two years in two new manufacturing facilities, a new foods plant in Binh Duong and a new beverages plant in Can Tho.

Mekong Nations Gather in Hanoi on Aug 19-20 to Chart Regional Cooperation (GMS , ADB) ADB supports GMS nations’ efforts to modernize through the construction of international-standard roads, ports, railways, power generation facilities, clean water and sanitation services. ADB also provides support for ‘soft sector’ enhancement, including trade and transport agreements, and it works with Mekong nations to enhance environmental protection measures, to support clean energy solutions, and to bolster climate change mitigation efforts.

FDI in China looks to Southeast Asia As China loses its cost advantages due to recent labour unrest and rising wages, Vietnam has a big opportunity to become a low-cost alternative for manufacturing. But, it is also in fierce competition with other South East Asian nations.

Vietnam and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Trade Agreement) The TPP negotiating partners currently include Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Vietnam, and the United States. U.S. participation in the TPP Agreement is predicated on the shared objective of expanding this initial group to additional countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region, and several have already expressed interest in potentially participating in the agreement. Malaysia has official requested to join the TPP negotiations.

Vietnam’s Socio-Economic Development Strategy for 2011-2020 Essential reading for any serious student of Vietnam’s policy formation process, and an important public document designed to frame informed debate. It is a key step in the preparation for the eleventh national congress of the ruling Party that will convene in January 2011.

Click this link to read News Highlights: Business, Trade, and Investment in Vietnam and Asia.

Last week’s most popular links to events and articles

Tu, Sep 7 Pre-employment Screening in Viet Nam
Fr, Aug 20 Meeting for Comments on Draft Decree to Revise Decree 108/2006/ND-CP re Investment Law
We, Aug 25, Young Professionals Palooza Party
Most of Vietnam’s major projects managed by Chinese contractors
Vietnam and TPP Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Promotion Agreement
Ho Chi Minh City and Southern Key Economic Region: Ports, Industrial Parks, and Other Infrastructure
FDI in China Looks to Southeast Asia

Recent Events and Information Resources on AmCham Web Site

Event Presentations and PHOTO ALBUMS Did you miss an AmCham event? Were you there but wanted to have a copy of the presentation? Didn’t get the business card of the person you were talking with? Now you can download the presentations by clicking on the above link. Also, you can see a list of people that attended the event, with links to their company contact information.

Click the following links to download the

Project 30 Updates: Prime Minister’s Advisory Council on Administrative Procedures Reform, Jun 15, 2010.

“China Plus One = Vietnam and ASEAN Presentation at Asia-Pacific Business Outlook, Apr 19, 2010.

Real Estate Market Update Presentation by CBRE Vietnam at Real Estate Networking Night, Apr 21, 2010.

Bitexco Financial Tower in HCM City Presentation by Turner International at Real Estate Networking Night, Apr 21, 2010.

Online Membership Directory Looking for information on AmCham companies? Click here to browse the Online Membership Directory for information about and contact points for nearly 500 AmCham companies, and over 1,000 representatives. Members can contact other members by email via the AmCham web site. Also, links to company web sites for even more information about AmCham companies in Ho Chi Minh City.

Benefits and Services Review AmCham benefits and services and learn how you can benefit from Networking Online, with over 100,000 visitors and 260,000 page-views per month to www.amchamvietnam.com.

Your announcement in AmCham’s Weekly Update email Early each week, AmCham’s Weekly Update email goes out to over 1,000 representatives of nearly 500 AmCham companies, plus over 3,500 subscribers in Vietnam, Singapore, Japan, and the USA. We welcome event announcements that are of interest to our business readers.

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Keep up-to-date about U.S.-Vietnam trade and investment with Weekly Updates (Past Issues).