First Major Business Delegation of the New Year Engages Government of Vietnam on Key Priorities for 2020 ASEAN Chairmanship and 25th Anniversary of U.S.-Vietnam Relations

(Hanoi) – This week, the US-ASEAN Business Council is bringing a delegation of more than 40 leading American companies to Hanoi on the Council’s annual Vietnam Business Mission and Health & Life Sciences Industry Mission to Vietnam to engage with the highest level of the Vietnamese government on key priorities for Vietnam’s 2020 ASEAN Chairmanship, the 25th Anniversary of U.S.-Vietnam bilateral relations, and overall trade and investment cooperation and opportunities. 
 
During the Vietnam Business Mission, the Council delegation met with key Government officials, most notably Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on March 4. Immediately following this meeting, Prime Minister Phuc witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Council and the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) on strengthening industrial trade and cooperation in order to create a favorable business environment that promotes regular exchanges between the U.S. private sector and MOIT.

Over the course of three days, the delegation also engaged Chairman of the Central Party Committee on Economic Affairs Nguyen Van Binh, Chairman of the Office of the Government Mai Tien Dung, Minister of Planning & Investment Nguyen Chi Dung, Minister of Information and Communications Nguyen Manh Hung, Minister of Culture, Sports & Tourism Nguyen Ngoc Thien, and leaders of other key Ministries and State agencies.
 
The mission was co-led by Alexander Feldman, Chairman, President & CEO of the US-ASEAN Business Council, Ambassador Michael Michalak, Senior Vice President & Regional Managing Director of the US-ASEAN Business Council and Jocot De Dios, CEO of GE Philippines & Managing Director for Government Affairs & Policy of GE Asia Pacific, and Chair of the Council’s Vietnam Committee.
 
“As the first major business delegation to engage the Vietnamese Government in the new year, the strength of our mission reaffirms the American business community’s commitment to investing in the growth of Vietnam and expanding our local footprint in the country,” said Feldman. “As the Covid-19 outbreak prolongs and disrupts ASEAN economies, the swift and effective measures taken by the top leadership of the Vietnamese Government, along with the CDC’s removing Vietnam from their Covid-19 list as no new cases have been identified in Vietnam for 21 consecutive days, gave the Council the confidence to continue with our mission as planned, allowing the private sector to signal its support for Vietnam’s Chairmanship of ASEAN and its national goals to pursue open economic policies and maintain growth momentum.”
 
“The Government of Vietnam under the leadership of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc continues to open its doors to American businesses and demonstrate year after year its commitment to improving Vietnam’s business and investment climate,” said Ambassador Michalak. “As former Ambassador to Vietnam, I have witnessed the country’s transformative growth over the years. As we celebrate the 25th anniversary of U.S.-Vietnam diplomatic relations, the Council and its members renew our commitment to the people of Vietnam and the future of the country.”
 
“The American business community applauds the Vietnamese Government’s initiative and leadership in facilitating remarkable economic growth and looks forward to continue making meaningful contributions towards a better trade and investment environment” said De Dios. “Throughout our mission this year, the business community also reaffirmed our ongoing support for Vietnam’s priorities as ASEAN Chair to promote a more cohesive and responsive ASEAN, especially given the current instability in global trade.”
 
Today also marked the start of the Council’s annual Health & Life Sciences (HLS) Industry Mission to Vietnam. This two-day health-focused mission immediately follows the Vietnam Business Mission and will engage the Ministry of Health and other government agencies to discuss how businesses can continue to support the government’s effort to strengthen healthcare in Vietnam. Mr. Feldman and Ambassador Michalak will stay in Hanoi to lead this mission with Son Pham, CEO of GE Vietnam and Country Manager of GE Healthcare Vietnam, a Co-Chair of the Council’s Health & Life Sciences Committee.
 
“On behalf of American businesses in the health sector, GE Healthcare would like to congratulate Vietnam and the Ministry of Health on its extraordinary efforts to contain the Covid-19 outbreak and manage the safety of its citizens,” said Pham. “The record number of companies on our health delegation this year, especially during this critical time, speaks volumes to the value the business community places on working with the Vietnamese government to make healthcare more accessible to patients across the country, to ultimately bettering the lives of the Vietnamese people and improving health outcomes in Vietnam.”
 
Over the course of the HLS mission, the delegation will meet with the Ministry of Health (MOH) and a number of Departments under the Ministry to discuss the progress of existing and new programs under the Council's Memorandum of Understanding with MOH. The delegation will also meet with representatives from the National Assembly Committee on Social Affairs, Vietnam Social Security, the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi, and Bach Mai Hospital. On March 6, the Council will organize a Working Luncheon Panel on: i) Addressing Antimicrobial Resistance in the Context of National Action Plan; and ii) The US-VN Oncology Program: Building towards a Center of Excellence.
 
Companies participating in the Vietnam Business Mission include 3M, AES, Amazon Web Services, Bank of America, Bay Global Strategies, Bayer, BowerGroupAsia, Cigna, Citibank, Coca-Cola, Discovery, ExxonMobil, Facebook, FedEx Express, Ford Motor Company, GE, Google, GSK, KKR, Herbalife Nutrition, Netflix, Pernod Ricard, PMI, P&G, Suntory PepsiCo, Scowcroft Group, UPS and Visa.
 
Companies participating in the Health & Life Sciences Industry Mission include Abbott, Amway, Bay Global Strategies, Boston Scientific, Cigna, Edwards Lifesciences, GE Healthcare, GSK, Herbalife Nutrition, Johnson & Johnson, KPMG, Medtronic, MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, Sanofi and Scowcroft Group.

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For over 35 years, the US-ASEAN Business Council has been the premier advocacy organization for US corporations operating within the dynamic Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Worldwide, the Council's membership, more than 160 companies, generate over $6 trillion in revenue and employ more than 13 million people globally. Members include the largest US companies conducting business in ASEAN, and range from newcomers to the region to companies that have been working in Southeast Asia for over 100 years. The Council has offices in: Washington, DC; New York, NY; Bangkok, Thailand; Hanoi, Vietnam; Jakarta, Indonesia; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Manila, Philippines; and Singapore.