Weekly Update Oct 08: Vietnam’s Consumer Future, Watson Wyatt Total Rewards Survey

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

Upcoming Events, Committee Meetings, and Other Activities

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

Sat, Dec 1: AmCham Governors Ball – SAVE THE DATE 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.

Membership Directory 2008 Please update your contact information. We are sending faxes to all members for updated contact information. If you have new or changed contact information, please contact Ms. Huong at the AmCham office (824 3562). And, as you plan your advertising, be sure to include the AmCham Membership Directory. We update it at the end of every year (Oct-Nov), print it over the holidays (Dec-Jan), and deliver it after TET (Feb-Mar).

Tue, Oct 9: Asian Trends and Vietnam’s Consumer Future What are the latest consumer trends in Vietnam, ASEAN, Asia-Pacific and how does this affect your company’s local and regional business? What is the economic and cultural impact of ASEAN trade and investment integration? In the Asia Pacific region, trom Australia to Japan, China to New Zealand, TNS has created the strongest custom research network in the region with over 30 years’ experience in 15 countries.

Wed, Oct 10: Deadline to submit applications for AmCham Scholarship Program 2007 In partnership with National University of Ho Chi Minh City (NUH), AmCham will grant scholarships to 20 top students of NUH including: University of Technology, University of Natural Sciences, University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Faculty of Economics.

Oct 10-14 HCMC International Furniture & Handicrafts Fair
Vietnam’s export of furniture for bedrooms has prospered for three years with export to the U.S. gaining the strongest growth. As a result, export revenue of bedroom furniture in 2005 was over US$ 200 million and surged to US$ 500 million out of US$ 2 billion of woodwork export turnover.

Oct 15, Nov 8, Nov 12: Watson Watt 2007 Vietnam Total Rewards Survey Finding Reports will be available Oct 15. Seminars are scheduled on Nov 8 in HCMC and Nov 12 in Hanoi.

Tue-Wed, Oct 30-31. Southern Economic Zone Investment Mart 2007 The Southern Key Economic Zone includes Ho Chi Minh City, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Binh Duong, Binh Phuoc, Dong Nai, Long An, Tay Ninh, Tien Giang, and is the most dynamic growth hub of Vietnam—representing 50% of the nation’s GDP, absorbing 60% of the FDI, accounting for two-thirds the international air traffic, and 80% of all containerized exports. the Investment and Trade Promotion Center of HCM City, together with all the provinces in the Southern Economic Zone, will organize a conference for international investors.

Nov 4-8 U.S. Commerce Secretary Mission to Vietnam The mission will highlight export opportunities for U.S. businesses, and is the first Secretarial Business Development mission to visit Vietnam. 25 leading U.S. enterprises will join the mission. AmCham plans to host a gala dinner in HCM City on Nov 7.

Mon, Nov 5: Lunch: United Airlines CEO Glenn Tilton will provide comments on United’s current strategies and plans for the Asia Pacific Region including route initiatives and enhanced customer service programs.

News and Issues Updates

Click this link for these and more News Highlights

Boeing executives visit Ho Chi Minh City
Indicating continuing high-level interest in Vietnam by senior executives of major U.S. firms, three Boeing executives recently visited Vietnam to learn more about business opportunities, culture, and history.

Cummins CEO T.M. (Tim) Solso visits HCM City, along with JV partner Jorge Wolle, DKSH CEO
“For over 40 years Diethelm has very successfully represented Cummins in Thailand, and with this venture we are taking that relationship to the next level, a level which will benefit Cummins, Diethelm, and, most importantly, our customers in the region,” said Walter Brenneis, President of Diethelm Limited

IP Challenges in an Emerging Market: Lessons from China
While counterfeiting is not unique to China, the country’s unprecedented economic growth has led to a surge in counterfeiting that, in terms of size, scope and severity, appears to have no parallels in history. How members of the Quality Brands Protection Committee are dealing with these challenges in China and the Asia Pacific region.

How diethylene glycol was discovered in toothpaste made in China
Setting off a worldwide hunt for tainted toothpaste that turned out to be manufactured in China. Health alerts have now been issued in 34 countries, from Vietnam to Kenya, from Tonga in the Pacific to Turks and Caicos in the Caribbean. Canada found 24 contaminated brands and New Zealand found 16. Japan had 20 million tubes. Officials in the United States unwittingly gave the toothpaste to prisoners, the mentally disabled and troubled youths. Hospitals gave it to the sick, while high-end hotels gave it to the wealthy.

Vietnam at the bottom of Corruption Perceptions Index (Transparency International)
Vietnam has been named on TI’s CPI ranking list since 1997. For the past four years, the country’s points have remained at 2.6 out of a possible maximum 10 points. A CPI score of below 3.0 indicates that corruption is perceived as “rampant.” Vietnam ranks 123 out of 180 countries.

Low wages rile Vietnam workers
Demand for higher wages is the cause of 78 percent of all strikes at foreign-invested factories in Ho Chi Minh City and nearby provinces like Binh Duong and Dong Nai, according to statistics from the Vietnam General Confederation of Labor.

ADB Electric Power Investment in Vietnam
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a US$ 28 million first-stage loan for Viet Nam’s Mong Duong thermal power project. The plant will ultimately add 2,200 megawatts of generating capacity to Viet Nam’s electricity system. Total ADB funding under the two-stage financing program will be $ 931 million.

Apparel: Import Monitoring Program for Textile and Apparel Imports from Vietnam
There is low possibility of removing the monitoring scheme on apparel imports from Vietnam prior January 2009, said David Spooner, Assistant Secretary of Commerce to Import Administration at the meeting with Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Bui Xuan
Khu September 26 afternoon. U.S. apparel imports from Vietnam Jan-Jul are up 25%, and will reach $4.25 billion this year (up from $3.4 billion in 2006), accounting for more than 40% of total U.S. imports from Vietnam of $10.1 billion in 2007.

Report on World Bank’s anti-corruption efforts
“For much of the Bank’s history, the impact of corruption on development generally, and on the Bank’s lending operations in particular, was not faced squarely. . . . There remains now resistance among important parts of the Bank staff and some of its leadership to the work of INT.” Robert B. Zoellick, the bank’s new president, declared that the Volcker report was “excellent” and that “stealing from the poor is not acceptable.”

Event Presentations, Downloads, 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. Download the AmCham HCMC Board of Governors Report on

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 200,000 page-views per month to www.amchamvietnam.com.

Your announcement in AmCham’s Weekly Update email
Every Monday or Tuesday, 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.

Tips and hints 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 and your safe list or “white list” (if applicable).

“The Nigerian Letter” and “The Spanish Prisoner” – Advance Fee Frauds and Scams
Variations on a 16th Century scam are updated witၨ email in the 21st Century. One common scam is the “advance fee fraud”—an offer from a relative of a “high level political or business leader,” who has “millions of dollars” in hiding, but needs your help to transfer the money. You (the tarၧet) are offered a percent of the total. If you respond, you are persuaded to advance relatively small sums of money in the hope of realizing a much larger gain, which never comes. 22 Sep 07

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