Weekly Update Nov 17: Members Lunch, Palooza Party, Members Night and Meet the Candidates

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

Upcoming Events and Activities

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

Tropical Storm Noul Past and Forecast Track Tropical Storm Noul projected to be over HCM City at 1am Tue, Nov 18. Click the link for more info.

Membership Directory 2009 deadline: Fr, Nov 28 If you have new or changed contact information, please contact Ms. Huong at the AmCham office (3824 3562). And, as you plan your advertising, be sure to include the AmCham Membership Directory.

Megan Burtt at the Park Lounge . Park Hyatt Saigon is delighted to introduce Megan Burtt from Colorado, USA, who will provide live entertainment in the Park Lounge every evening (except Tue) until 12 Jan 2009.

We, Nov 19: Members Lunch: VN-US Educational Exchange and Vietnam’s Workforce Development Mark A. Ashwill, country director of the Institute of International Education-Vietnam, will discuss recent trends as Vietnam ascends to the top 10 countries sending students to the U.S., and what this means for Vietnam’s workforce development, including the job market.

Th-Fr, Nov 20-21/HCMC and Mo-Tu, Nov 24-25/Hanoi: Taxing Times – Navigating Vietnam’s Tax Regime, an evolving and complex domain. What effect will this have on your business in 2009? For Tax, HR, Finance Directors and Managers in Vietnam. Changes in the laws, implementation, planning issues, and best practice.

Th, Nov 20: AmCham Palooza Party, networking events and happy hours every month in order to increase communication amongst membership and expats.

Mo, Nov 24, Monday Night Football with Budweiser at Sheridan’s Irish House Enjoy an American tradition and watch an American Football Game of the Week.

We, Nov 26: Members Night and Meet the Candidates Come meet the Candidates for the 2009-2010 Board of Governors and mingle with AMCHAM members for a networking cocktail.

Th, Nov 27: Members Morning Briefing: New Personal Income Tax – Are You Ready? The new PIT system’s impact on employers and employees. Although the top marginal tax rate will be reduced from 40% to 35%, elimination of deductions and increase in taxable income could lead to a large increase in employers’ costs or considerable decrease in net income of employees.

Th, Nov 27: 8th Annual Thanksgiving “Turkey Shoot” (Friendly Golf) Register for this fun golf outing, held annually since 2001 to celebrate Thanksgiving. Enjoy golf, followed by comraderie at the Song Be Golf Resort Clubhouse.

Th, Nov 27: Thanksgiving Dinner at the New World Hotel Saigon A traditional American holiday that brings friends and family together. Celebrate Thanksgiving with a special buffet dinner, traditional roasted turkey and Beaujolais Nouveau, 6pm-10pm.

Sa, Dec 6: AmCham Governors Ball A formal event held in the festive style of the season, to raise funds for community support programs funded by and through the AmCham-United Way partnership. Tickets are limited.

We, Dec 10: AmCham Annual General Meeting and Members Night Join other AmCham members and guests to review the year’s activities, Report of the Board of Governors, etc., and election of members to the Board of Governors, then enjoy a Members Night Networking Cocktail Party. Spouses are welcome and encouraged to attend !

Th-Fr, Jan 15-16: Ambassador’s Education Conference in HCM City. Registration Deadline Dec 15, designed to bring together representatives from American universities, colleges, companies, and NGOs active in higher education in Vietnam and representatives from Vietnamese universities and colleges to explore partnership successes and map out future partnership strategies. Please register early, since space is limited.

Fr-Su, Feb 13-15 Dalat Winter Weekend and Roundtable discussion of key issues for U.S.-Vietnam trade and investment in 2009. Join AmCham Governors and other members for a networking weekend, with excursions, golf tournament, and spa. The Sofitel Dalat Palace epitomizes the seductive charm of Dalat. It is one of the few remaining historical hotels in Asia, and offers the finest in European atmosphere, amenities and service. Spaces are limited, so early registration is advised.

All upcoming events …

News and Issues Updates

As factories close, Chinese workers suffer, but factories in Vietnam could benefit The slowdown in China’s exports contributed to the closing of at least 67,000 factories across China in the first half of the year, according to government statistics. Soon the labor-intensive factories churning out low-end products could disappear from southern China, and foreign companies could contract with similar factories in Vietnam and other countries where costs are lower.

Korean firms in HCMC told to improve labor relations Over the past 13 years, there have been 437 work stoppages at South Korean firms and 566 at Taiwanese companies, at southern provinces and cities, particularly in HCMC. Recently, many South Korean firms have also made headlines for owing billions of dong to local social insurance agencies, the organizations entrusted to collect workers; contributions for their retirement funds. Up until the end of September, 87 South Korean-invested businesses in HCMC owed the municipal Social Insurance Agency contributions totaling some VND42 billion (US $ 2.5 million), the city’s Department of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs reported.

Prime Minister requests harmonious labor relations, stable investment environment, social order Action Plan for the implementation of Directive No. 22-CT/TW dated 05 June 2008 of the Secretariat of the Central Committee on enhancing leadership, providing direction for the development of harmonious, stable and progressive labor relations within enterprises.

U.S. retail sales worst in 30 years as consumers cut spending sharply Shoppers have cut purchases of discretionary items like clothes or computers and in some cases are carefully planning when they buy the most basic necessities. The crisis reduced spending even among the wealthy. Same-store sales fell 16.6% at upscale department store chain Saks Inc, 15.7% at Nordstrom, and 20% at Abercrombie & Fitch.

PCI execs admit bribery over ODA in Vietnam Prosecutors claimed that PCI pledged bribes totaling US$ 2.6 million, about 10% of the contract value, in exchange for favors in awarding consulting contracts to PCI in connection with road construction projects in the city. The executives allegedly provided a total of US$ 650,000 in bribes in January and July of 2002, and continued to pay bribes thereafter. The prosecutors read oral statements they took from former PCI President in which he admitted PCI repeatedly bribed foreign government officials in other instances, in addition to the Ho Chi Minh City case.

Japan’s International Cooperation Bureau representatives visit Vietnam regarding alledged corruption Both Vietnamese and Japanese Governments viewed the PCI case as very serious. Japanese relevant organizations accused PCI and its four former leaders in connection with Japanese ODA projects in Vietnam.

Vietnam needs US$ 48 billion to develop highways The World Bank (WB) Acting Country Director in Vietnam Martin Rama pledged to increase levels of assistance to Vietnam in developing its transport infrastructure and to mobilise all available investment resources and sharing experiences related to forming sustainable management and financial mechanisms.

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

Information Resources on AmCham Web Site www.amchamvietnam.com

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.

Vietnam’s New Personal Income Tax: Are You Ready?
Presentation: Vietnam’s New Personal Income Tax – (c) KPMG (used w/ permission)

Members Lunch: TNS Managing Director Ralf Matthaes, Consumer Trends in Vietnam
Presentation TNS Managing Director Ralf Matthaes, Consumer Trends in Vietnam

Online Membership Directory Looking for information on AmCham members? Click here to browse the Online Membership Directory for information about and contact points for our 400 member and associate companies, and about 800 representatives. Also with links to their company web sites for even more information about American and international businesses in Ho Chi Minh City.

Benefits and Services Review AmCham benefits and services and learn how you can benefit from Networking Online, with about 100,000 visitors and 250,000 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 nearly 800 representatives of over 400 AmCham member and associate companies, plus thousands of subscribers in Vietnam, Singapore, Japan, and the USA. We welcome event announcements that are of interest to our business readers.

Computing Tips from the AmCham Webmaster

Not receiving AmCham’s weekly update emails? Then, please check your spam of junk mail folder. To insure that you receive all future communication from AmCham, please add our email address to your address-book and to your “safe list” or “white list” (if applicable).

Computing Tips: Business Tips for Late Facebook Arrivals Choose your friends and photos carefully on social-networking sites, but by all means get on Facebook. Here are some basic lessons learned. 18 Aug 2009

Computing Tips: Facebook No. 1 Globally with 132 million users The site is the top global social network, nearly 63% of users are outside North America. The site had been translated into 20 languages including French, Spanish, and Mandarin, recently added 69 more. “Now, through translations, we are seeing a lot of growth in international countries,” says Javier Olivan, international manager at Facebook in a recent interview. 18 Aug 2008

Weekly Update emails are sent from [email protected], If you use a SPAM Filter please add this address email address book or “Whitelist.”

Please click this link if you want to update your email address.

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