The U.S. shouldn't sell out human rights in Vietnam - Hillary Clinton announced in Hanoi last month that the US would sign the Trans-Pacific Partnership with Vietnam by year's end; yet journalists, bloggers engaged in legitimate forms of political expression still under detention - Washington Post (2012/08/26)
Vietnam's fractured investment thesis - what is lost amid all the negativity now surrounding Vietnamese financials is that the country's banks had $575 million in excess cash as of mid-April - MarketWatch (2012/08/29)
Vietnam to buy submarines from Russia - together with aircraft and other heavy weapons, Russia plans to sell Vietnam six submarines Project 636 Kilo-Class with a value of up to $ 1.8 billion - New America Media (2012/08/29)
Vietnam still hot for American investors - AmCham in Singapore found 57% of the companies polled intended to expand their operations in Vietnam, compared to a mere 6% in Indonesia and 11% in Thailand; sizable consumer market of 91 million, relatively low-cost labor pool still attractive despite significant slowdown in GDP growth; Vietnam (77%) also less corrupted than Cambodia (81%) and Indonesia (87%) - Wall Street Journal (2012/08/31)
Vietnam-Laos special ties highlighted - Two-way trade between the two countries has unceasingly increased, reaching US$ 734 million in 2011 and US$465.7 million in the first six moths of 2012, up 33.1 percent year on year; both striving to raise the figure to US$1 billion in 2012 and US$2 billion in 2015 - Voice of Vietnam (2012/09/05)
Reporter gets 4 years in Vietnam on bribe charges:
Vietnam puts journalist who exposed police corruption on trial for alleged bribery - Hoang Khuong's undercover investigation series last year triggered public anger about police corruption and led to the arrest of the officer who allegedly accepted the bribe; the state-run Tuoi Tre newspaper says the reporter is accused of offering a police officer a bribe of $710; Khuong faces 13 years in jail if convicted - Washington Post (2012/09/05)
Vietnamese anti-corruption journalist on trial - accused of paying 15 million dong ($715) to a traffic police officer, through a broker, in return for the release of an impounded motorbike; Khuong”¦s arrest in January caused public outcry in communist Vietnam and prompted a debate about the state of local journalism, with many experts expressing fears the case could deter reporters from tackling corruption - Daily Times (2012/09/07)
Vietnam risks biggest East Asia IMF rescue since 1990s - the nation may need IMF aid to recapitalize banks and must act quickly to clean up bad debt or risk "prolonged stagnation"; possibly an injection of 250 trillion dong ($12 billion) to 300 trillion dong - BusinessWeek (2012/09/06)
Pirate Bay founder arrested in Cambodia on request of Swedish government - Svartholm is one of the four co-founders of The Pirate Bay, all of whom were found guilty of criminal copyright infringement back in Sweden, fined $1.1 million but none paid, and given a year's jail time and none served; Cambodia does not have an extradition treaty with Sweden, the extradition is expected to through without difficulty - Digital Digest (2012/09/04)
Computer hackers target Cambodia - websites of armed forces, the Ministry of Public Works and Cambodia's Institute of Standards all hacked - Wall Street Journal (2012/09/05)
Peter Sunde, co-founder and former TPB spokesperson: The Pirate Bay co-founder asks for clemency - argued that the case against him was full of irregularities, sharing also details about The Video Bay - Gigaom (2012/07/05)
Carl Lündstrom, the millionaire financier: Pirate Bay 'financier' will serve sentence electronically tagged - surprisingly he won't be going to jail at all; under Swedish law anyone sentenced to spend less than six months in jail can apply to serve their time in the community; Lündstrom was sentenced to four months in prison - Torrent Freak (2012/03/19)
Cambodia helps squeeze WikiLeaks - commentators see US pressure on Cambodia and Sweden behind Svartholm Warg's arrest and deportation; cited US Trade Representative Ron Kirk's presence in Cambodia on the day of his arrest and WikiLeaked US cables that suggest US influence behind a 2006 Swedish crackdown on Pirate Bay; the crackdown could be more financial than legal - Asia Times Online (2012/09/14)
Let's hope the other side of the TPB case would help make Vietnamese realise the importance of intellectual proterty, as "Coca-Cola, Samsung pull ads from Vietnam site" - a website known for providing unlicensed downloads of Western and local songs - Wall Street Journal (2012/10/03)
Vietnam warns of water conflicts - Dam construction and stream adjustment by some countries in upstream rivers represents a concern; exploitation of the Mekong River – the world's 12th longest river, has loomed as an increasingly divisive issue among nations through which it flows – Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and its source country China - My Sinchew (2012/09/07)
Kazakhstan, Vietnam boost all-round cooperation - Vietnam mainly exports telephones and spare parts, computers, electronic products and components, seafood, fruit and vegetables, garments and textiles to Kazakhstan and imports iron, steel, other metals and cotton from the country - Voice of Vietnam (2012/09/08)
Vietnam loses glow as a market darling - bad bank loans cloud country's outlook; talk of bailout; nonperforming loans, many made to inefficient state-owned companies, could be as high as 15%, Fitch Ratings says - Wall Street Journal (2012/09/10)
Vietnam to cut fuel import duty - to avert further increases in retail prices after oil product importers asked for government approval to raise prices - Reuters (2012/09/11)
Thailand boosts trade, investment, tourism with Vietnam - Vietnam becomes Thailand's 15th most important trading partner and Thailand is Vietnam's 5th most important trading partner; Bangkok Bank has also obtained a licence to operate for 99 years in Vietnam - Bernama (2012/09/13)
Vietnam's FX reserves rise to $22-$23bn - owing to a shrinking trade deficit resulting from the slowing economy; the central bank has been a net buyer of foreign currencies so far this year and the reserves were enough to cover 11.5 weeks of imports - Business Recorder (2012/09/14)
Vietnam to start drive to attract GCC tourists - ministers from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam (CLMV) have endorsed a plan to work jointly to attract international visitors to the region; they consider issuing a single entry visa for the five countries in the Mekong sub-region including Thailand as their plan of promoting CLMV as one destination - Gulf Times (2012/09/17)
TPP will help raise Vietnam's global status - The 14th round of talks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement ended, paving the way for Vietnam to achieve FTA with the US; free trade agreements (FTA) already established with Japan and the Republic of Korea - Voice of Vietnam (2012/09/16)
Vietnam's population is aging rapidly - number of elderly people is growing faster than any other population groups; 39 percent of the elderly in Vietnam are still working (1 in each 10 people is above 60; 1 in 5 expected in 2050) - Vietnam Net (2012/10/01)
Vietnam to re-organize FDI management - new super power to deal with problems which cannot be settled by ministries and branches, hope to improve FDI quality instead of quantity - Vietname Net (2012/10/18)
Vietnam warns of slump, apologizes for 'weak' management - more slump than expected this year to its slowest pace since 1999; PM offered a rare apology for the government's "weakness" in managing an economy weighed down by a severe debt problem in the banking system - Wall Street Journal (2012/10/22)
Healing and Rehabilitation in Laos - 30 percent of the bombs the U.S. dropped on Laos did not explode, leaving a literal minefield that continues to injure and kill decades after the end of the war; Hilary Clinton says will speed up removal of American bombs; $9 million starting this year, as opposed to an average of only $2.6 million annually since 1997 - Huffington Post (2012/08/31)
Muslim acceptance in Laos stark contrast to Myanmar intolerance - anti-Islamic hostilities in Myanmar stand in sharp contrast to the treatment of Muslims in Laos, who have citizenship and have found cultural acceptance in an overwhelmingly Buddhist country; Myanmar has about 800,000 Muslim Rohingya, while Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand also have significant Muslim populations yet Muslims in Laos are much smaller in number - Bangkok Post (2012/09/02)
Despite new regulations drunken tubing goes on in Laos - it is believed more than 20 died last year as a result of tubing (i.e. floating downriver in the inner-tube of a tyre) – often alcohol or drug-fueled – on the fast-flowing river - ETN Global Travel Industry News (2012/09/16)
Laos says China to finance rail link - failing to reach an agreement for years, a Laotian official said China has agreed to finance a $7 billion railway link in Laos that will ship raw materials to the Chinese border - Wall Street Journal (2012/10/24)
Would Cambodia be next? See: "Vietnam drops objections to Laos dam on Mekong" - saying that the neighbor has made changes in the design to mitigate any negative downstream impact; Vietnam and Cambodia last year proposed a 10-year moratorium on any dams on the Mekong - BusinessWeek (2012/11/08)
Meanwhile: "Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina for two-way trade with Laos" - Bangladesh has also been achieving annual GDP growth rate of about 6.5 percent with inflation less than 5 percent, per capita income increase by 34.6 percent, average annual 20 percent increase in exports and increase of 10 percent in the inflow of remittances, an affordable labor and a liberal investment climate - Daily Star (2012/11/07)
Mass grave raises ghosts from Cambodia's past - new mass grave from Khmer Rouge years with unexamined bones of 35,000 victims discovered in village in northwestern Cambodia; mass grave clusters never investigated; ghosts not laid to rest - Times Dispatch (2012/09/02)
Indian trade promotion office opens in Cambodia - trade between India and Cambodia was at $72 million in 2011; of this India exports to Cambodia were at $64 million; India's private investment in Cambodia was $85 million (last year) in sugar plantations, sugar factories, power plants, and rice milling facilities - Two Circles (2012/09/02)
Cambodia opening its doors to investment - possibly the most investor-friendly environment in ASEAN with no exchange controls, no restrictions on repatriation of profit, and no discrimination between foreign and local investors plus a GDP growth averaging around 9% for the past decade - Bangkok Post (2012/09/10)
Cambodia gears for offshore drilling - relying on Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam for its oil imports, Cambodia begin its first offshore oil production next year; yet expert says potential production difficult to estimate - UPI (2012/09/27)
Another critic is silenced in Cambodia - a 71-year-old radio journalist is sentenced to 20 years in prison for allegedly encouraging a secessionist movement in a remote eastern village - New York Times (2012/10/02)
Introduction - absolute monarchy (Sukhothai period lasted from roughly the 12th to the 14th centuries AD); some rights that could be transferred or inherited (Ayuthaya period lasted from the 14th to the 18th centuries); absolute monarchy (Rattanakosin period, which began in 1782); constitutional monarchy began in 1932 and the issuance of Title Deed Acts from 1909 to 1943 paved the modern rights - Bangkok Post (2012/09/02)
The Land Code and the constitution - enacted in 1954 and last amended in 2008, the Land Code consolidated and made consistent the earlier laws relating to land; sets up a system of rules that govern the ownership of land etc. - Bangkok Post (2012/09/09)
Expropriation – Let the buyer beware - if you buy or long-lease after the government has decided to expropriate land and you don't know about that decision, there's really not much you can do - Bangkok Post (2012/09/23) - the other parts of the discussion moves into the more detail knowledge of property rights and you should Google them if you are interested
Thailand ranks 38th in competitiveness - Thailand's global competitiveness ranking has risen one place, to 38th, breaking a six-year streak of declines; ranking fell 10 places in terms of institutions to 77th, while public health at 71st and basic education standards at 89th were also considered weaknesses for the country's competitiveness - Bangkok Post (2012/09/05)
Thailand blames Myanmar after massive drug haul - a senior Thai politician on Thursday accused neighbouring Myanmar of failing to tackle drug production after 3.3 million amphetamine tablets were seized in Bangkok - My Sinchew (2012/09/06)
Thailand stresses its role as world food producer, insurer of food reserves PM Yingluck Shinawatra stressed Thailand's role as the world's food production house and its readiness to reach out to those in need in times of emergencies and crises, not only by providing food but also through other forms of emergency assistance, to countries in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond; she said leaders agreed that free trade should not be obstructed by trading measures - Pattaya Mail (2012/09/11)
Thailand to review taxes on overseas corporate investment - Thailand is looking at how to modify its current tax measures that cause its businesses to suffer double taxation on their overseas investments, thereby supporting Thai outward foreign direct investment; on the other side, the government has been active in attracting FDI by lowering corporate tax from 30% to 23% this year, with a plan to adjust to 20% in 2013 - Tax News (2012/09/17)
Thailand to step up rubber-purchase program as prices gain - also proceed with plans agreed with Indonesia and Malaysia in August to cut its shipments by 150,000 tons while rubber in Tokyo is entering a bull market, rebounding from a near three-year low - Bloomberg (2012/11/21)
- Thailand is the world's biggest rubber producer
Thailand eyes neighbours' power supply - was 8,500 megawatts ten years ago, now 20,000 megawatts more from Laos (hydropower) and Myanmar (coal-fired and hydro), all within 20% of what Thailand needs - Bangkok Post (2012/11/22)
How will Thailand react to a new US-China tug-of-war? - Thailand has shown "interest" in joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) as well as the new Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), will the two "free trade" ideas collide or complement each other - China Post (2012/12/07)
Next three years will be crucial - Thai investors should seize the opportunity to invest in Myanmar within the next three years before the ASEAN Economic Community is formed in 2015 - Bangkok Post (2012/09/10)
Burmese migrants in Thailand await changes back home - it seems that the Burmese government, the ministry of labor is to be taking up the issue of migrant workers and so hopefully they will start to put a little pressure on Thailand to improve the conditions there - VOA News (2012/09/10)
What might the US buy from Myanmar? - US about to lift restrictions on exports; Myanmar, the former top powerhouse of rice, also rich in energy resources (both oil and gas), needs huge investment and development - Financial Times (2012/09/10)
- meanwhile, a pipeline carrying both from Myanmar's Andaman coast into China's Yunnan province will begin operating next year
Japan vows aid for Myanmar, urges debt resolution - Myanmar owes about $950 million to the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank; they last extended loans in the late 1980s; Myanmar to focus on infrastructure such as power generation, roads, ports and rural development - BusinessWeek (2012/10/11)
Myanmar moving from North Korea - the country has taken "positive steps" to reduce its military relationship with North Korea, ahead of a historic visit by President Barack Obama to Yangon - iAfrica (2012/11/18)
- and so as to naturally allows: "South Korea to boost Myanmar ties" - Seoul wants to help Myanmar create greater economic opportunities for its people - Bangkok Post (2013/01/29)
Digital platform powered by Wyith Limited, Wyith Institute.
Wyith Limited and Wyith Institute are associated businesses operated by the Office of Dr Raymond Cheng • Dr Raymond Cheng & Partners Ltd and The Commentary Ltd.
Photo credits for top title bar, from left to right: Iza H (Work),
Lukasz Gumowski (Blue balls),
Marcin Bania (Smiling and naked),
Lautaro Gonda (Milan station),
Jan Abt (Girl taking a picture),
Daniel Tang (Hot switch),
Barbara Henry (Moriah reading),
Ralf Herrmann (Checkmate II),
Marko Roeper (Led #4),
Ian Russell (Girl in downtown LA).
Note: Animated GIF graphics and clipart obtained from
amazing-animations.com, gifs.net, findicons.com, clker.com and sevenoaksart.co.uk.
Sketches, cartoons and other handdrawings courtesy of Alice-the-Artist.
This is not the American Jewish Committee's Commentary Magazine
nor are we in any way affiliated with them. To visit AJC's magazine,
please go to commentarymagazine.com instead, thank you for your attention.
This site is best viewed with
Microsoft® Internet Explorer 6.0 or above,
minimum 1024x768 16M color-depth resolution.
The Commentary Group
and its personnel do not endorse external sites and are not
responsible for the content of these websites. All external sites
will open in a new browser window.
For those you who don't have time
to read all our news excerpts about the Asian island
disputes (links above), you may find the following video,
"The economic impact of a war between Japan and China",
"This trial is another example of the Kremlin's attempts to discourage and delegitimize dissent. It is likely to backfire."
John Dalhuisen, Director of Amnesty International's Europe and Central Asia Programme
I am proud to announce that
the Commentary.com website is now carrying the technology updates
from Usman Khurshid's Technize.net.
Usman is a network consultant and works in a mixed environment
of Windows and Linux platforms.
He likes to study about the
latest advancements in computer technology and shares his views on his blog.
Oh, please do not get me wrong.
This new section is not about computers, electronics or
any engineering stuff, but rather I am currently constructing
a new corpus based on Spectrum, the monthly publication
from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers USA,
from July 2007 to date. Having been a member for
over 20 years since 1992, I am always fascinated by
some of the terms scientists use when they talk about or
envision their new inventions or methodologies. How many of
them eventually come into practice? Could there be
some insights we could possibly derive, from
the linguistics perspective?
IMPORTANT NOTICE AND DISCLAIMER
This website is published and designed by Raymond Cheng, PhD DPA
and reflects only his personal views and opinions in his
individual capacity. It does not represent the views and opinions
of his firm, employer(s), students, etc., and is not in
any way sponsored or endorsed by any other thrid parties.
Click here to read my full disclaimer