Weekly Update Nov 5: Legal Committee, Global Antitrust Enforcement, Members Night, Thanksgiving

Highlights

Seeking volunteers to interview AmCham Scholarship Candidates
Tu, Nov 6, Legal & VBF Liaison Committee Meeting
Vietnam Business Forum
Tu, Nov 6, U.S. General Elections Day • Polls, Predictions, and Results
Nov 11-17 Infrastructure Trade Mission: HCM City, Hanoi, Jakarta
Mo, Nov 12 Members Lunch: Global Antitrust Enforcement – More Authorities, Increased Coordination, Higher Stakes
Tu, Nov 13 Members Night and Meet the Candidates
We, Nov 14 U.S. – Myanmar Business Summit, Yangon
Th, Nov 22 AmCham’s Thanksgiving Golf Tournament and Dinner
Sa, Nov 24 Seeking volunteers to interview AmCham Scholarship Candidates
Sa, Dec 8 AmCham Governors’ Ball • Christmas in San Francisco
Tu Dec 11 Annual General Meeting and Members’ Night
U.S. Visa Procedures for Business Travel to the USA
State sector minimum wage increase reduced to 9.5% percent, delayed two months
Private sector minimum wage adjustment for 2013
ADB, Viet Nam to Improve Skills, Close Labor Gaps with Better Education
ADB Country Partnership Strategy for Vietnam, 2012 – 2015
No signs of recovery in the real estate sector: the mood is toxic
Vietnam Consumer Trends 2012: “We haven’t hit bottom yet”
Vietnam’s Economic Development Outlook Update, Oct 3, 2012 (ADB)
New AmCham Companies – 2012
Coca-Cola to invest $ 300 million more in Vietnam
Party Secretary Remarks at Closing of Party Central Committee 6th Plenum

Events, Meetings, Activities, and Special Offers

Welcome to new AmCham companies 75 new companies have joined AmCham in Jan-Oct. Brief descriptions, activities, representatives’ names, and links to their web sites for additional information.

AmCham Membership Directory 2013 to be printed in January, and delivered after TET. AmCham Members update or provide company profiles to Cindy Tran no later than November 30, 2012. As you plan your marketing activities, be sure to consider this annual publication which is used daily by members and employees at AmCham’s more than 700 member companies, with over 1,400 representatives.

The Social Business guide whitepaper – Advent of a new age Organizations that successfully transform into a Social Business can potentially reap great benefits—among them the ability to deepen customer relationships, increase workforce effectiveness, and drive product and service innovation.

Special Fare For AmCham Members from Korean Air Up to 13% discount for all AmCham members on fares to the United States, Korea, Japan and China. Save your traveling costs and enjoy excellent service with Korean Air.

Oct 5 – Dec 16 Legend Hotel Saigon’s Weekend Getaway Package The luxury river-front five-star international hotel is offering Weekend Getaway Package from 5 October until 16 December 2012. Applicable to Vietnamese and expatriates residing in Vietnam for their stay on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night, the package is priced at only VND 2,121,212++ per night for single or double occupancy in a Deluxe Room with several special benefits.

Sa, Nov 10 RMIT Vietnam Postgraduate Open Day 2012 from 8.30 am to 2.00 pm at the New World Hotel, 76 Le Lai, Dist.1, HCMC. Expand your career opportunities by taking your knowledge, skills, leadership and thinking to a new level. Call (+84) 8 3776 1369 for RSVP by Nov 8, 2012.

Nov 12 (Hanoi), Nov 14 (HCMC) International Boarding School Fair. Join our International Boarding School Fairs with 14 schools from 4 countries (Canada, Jordan, Switzerland and USA) in Hanoi on November 12th and HCMC on November 14th. Organized by Capstone Vietnam – in association with Linden Boarding School Tours

Mo, Nov 12 Members Lunch: Global Antitrust Enforcement – More Authorities, Increased Coordination, Higher Stakes In what is now a truly global marketplace, the potential liability that may arise from unlawful agreements between competitors as to price, markets, and output, is an issue of growing importance to corporations, their managers, and their lawyers.

Tu, Nov 13 Members Night and Meet the Candidates AmCham invites you to attend a Members Night, with informal and fun networking cocktails and buffet reception. Meet the Candidates for election to the Board of Governors for a two-year term, Jan 2013 – Dec 2014. Spouses and invited guests are very welcome and encouraged to attend with you.

Su-Sa, Nov 11-17 Infrastructure Trade Mission to HCM City, Hanoi, and Jakarta will focus on the following sectors: Energy, Aviation, Environmental Technology, Architecture-Construction-Engineering.

Tu-We, Nov 13-14, U.S.-ASEAN Smart Grid Workshop: Partnering for Regional Power Cooperation for state-of-the-art electricity transmission and distribution projects throughout the region. Highlights regional smart grid projects and initiatives, U.S. smart grid technologies, and the regulatory frameworks, standards, and financing mechanisms available to support them. Participating regional delegates will represent power utilities, national transmission corporations and energy regulators from ASEAN member states.

Th-We, Nov 15 – Dec 26 Festive Takeaway Menu Are you planning a festive Christmas lunch or dinner but do not want to spend hours in the kitchen preparing it? By ordering a festive takeaway turkey dinner, ham or roasted imported beef rib-eye, you can enjoy a beautifully prepared meal in the comfort of your own home.

Th, Nov 22 AmCham Thanksgiving Golf Tournament and Dinner Join this fun golf outing and the old-fashioned Thanksgiving Dinner, held annually since 2001 to celebrate Thanksgiving. Enjoy 18 holes of golf, dinner with Turkey and all the trimmings, Pumpkin Pie, nice lucky draw prizes, and good entertainment

Mo, Dec 3 Vietnam Business Forum AmCham is working to make the VBF more effective at addressing the advocacy needs of our members. For over a decade, AmCham has been a strong supporter of the Vietnam Business Forum, which was financed and managed by the International Finance Corp., a member of the World Bank Group. In February 2012, the IFC officially transferred the coordination function of the VBF Secretariat to a consortium of 14 foreign and Vietnamese business associations, led by AmCham, EuroCham and VCCI. AmCham is working to make the forum more effective at addressing the advocacy needs of our members.

Sa, Dec 8 AmCham Governors’ Ball • Christmas in San Francisco The AmCham Board of Governors cordially invite you to the 17th Annual AmCham Governors’ Ball, to be held on Saturday, December 8, 2012. Tickets are limited, so please make your reservation request early to avoid disappointment. And get ready to enjoy this evening, and do some early Christmas shopping. Click the link for general information and thanks again to our generous 2011 Sponsors.

Tu Dec 11 Annual General Meeting and Members’ Night Annual Report of the Board of Governors and the previous years’ accounts, as well as the election of eight members to the Board of Governors for a two-year term: Jan 2013 – Dec 2014. Networking cocktail reception will follow the meeting. Members and spouses are welcome and encouraged to attend !

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

State sector minimum wage increase reduced from 24% to 9.5% percent, delayed two months State sector minimum wage will be increased from the current VND1.05 million/month to VND1.15 million (9.5% increase), instead of VND1.3 million (23.8% increase) as originally planned. In addition, it will be effective from July 1, 2013 instead of May 1 as planned earlier.

ADB, Viet Nam to Improve Skills, Close Labor Gaps with Better Education Viet Nam’s thriving economy has highlighted a gap between what schools teach and what employers need. Future growth will depend on a labor force skilled enough to meet the needs of the job market. At present less than 30% of young workers, who comprise half the workforce, have completed upper secondary schooling.

ADB Country Partnership Strategy for Vietnam, 2012 – 2015 Although Vietnam enjoyed a comparatively high growth rate in the past, inflation continuously stood at high levels (at about 13 per cent on average in 2007-2011 period) and the competitiveness of the economy was low due to a shortage of skilled workers, lack of infrastructure and obstacles in public administration. In addition, Vietnam is facing a high risk from environmental pollution and climate change.

No signs of recovery in the real estate sector “The mood regarding Vietnam is toxic, it is absolutely toxic. Very few people will even bother to listen to the story of the wise, the wave force, where it has come, where it is going to. I have got to go half way around the world before anybody actually wants to hear what is going on in Vietnam. But it is going to go a long way, certainly out of South-East Asia, for people to really feel comfortable with the Vietnam story.”

Business Travel to the USA and U.S. Visa Procedures Presentation by Nonimmigrant Visa Section Chief John Gregg, in response to requests by a number of AmCham companies, details on U.S. visitor visa application procedures, visa renewal procedures, and procedures for group visits (incentive tours, etc.).

Coca-Cola to invest $ 300 million more in Vietnam bringing total investment 2010 – 2015 to about $ 500 million. Coca-Cola in Vietnam employs about 2,000 people, of which 99% are local hires. These direct jobs support an estimated additional 20,000 job opportunities in supporting industries.

Closing of the 6th Plenum of the Party Central Committee, XI Closing remarks by Party Secretary, Important Decisions Made, Comments by a Number of Politburo Members. The whole Politburo agreed to propose that the Central Committee impose a form of discipline on it, and consider disciplining a Politburo member. The Committee discussed carefully and considered comprehensively all aspects at the current time and then decided to not take any discipline on the Politburo and one of its members. It asked the Politburo to apply active measures to repair shortcomings.

Vietnam’s Economic Outlook (Update), Oct 3, 2012 (ADB) “The historic tendency for stop-start policy should be avoided. The focus needs to remain on structural reforms” said Tomoyuki Kimura, ADB Country Director for Vietnam. “A government commitment to a credible reform roadmap with time-bound actions should revive lending and improve market confidence.”

Moody’s downgrades Vietnam’s govt bond rating to B2, outlook stable The restoration of macroeconomic stability has not adequately offset the vulnerabilities posed by weaknesses in the banking system.

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

Last week’s most popular links to events and articles

Tropical Storm Drenches Hanoi
AmCham Scholarship 2012 – Seeking volunteer interviewers for AmCham Scholarship candidates
U.S. Visa Procedures for Business Travel to USA
Tu, Nov 13 Members’ Night and “Meet the Candidates”
Coca-Cola to invest $ 300 million more in Vietnam
Vietnam Consumer Trends 2012: “We haven’t hit bottom yet”
17th Annual Governors’ Ball • Christmas in San Francisco, Sa, Dec 8
Other popular information downloads

Recent Events and Information Resources

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.

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 250,000+ visitors and 350,000+ 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 about 1,000 representatives of nearly 500 AmCham companies, plus about 3,000 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).