"“We have lent a huge amount of money to the U.S. Of course we are concerned about the safety of our assets. To be honest, I am definitely a little worried.” "

Chinese premier Wen Jiabao 12th March 2009

""We have a financial system that is run by private shareholders, managed by private institutions, and we'd like to do our best to preserve that system."

Timothy Geithner US Secretary of the Treasury, previously President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.1/3/2009

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Socialist republic of Vietnam - Everyone wants to sell to them - Nguyen Tan Dang Viet PM in London and Berlin

In a little noticed meeting (BBC hasn't reported it) ,Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung was in London yesterday after meeting Frau Merkel and popped into No 10 Downing Street yesterday to meet Gordon Brown for the 1st time, and have a chat over tea and crumpets about - co-operating on trade, development - reform of the UN - ways to improve English language learning and teacher training in Vietnam ( v.interesting see lower down) - climate change - illegal people trafficking and organised crime. In 2007, bilateral trade was around US $1.7 billion, the highest yet. (Full Statement)

Across town Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung also met Lord Mayor of the City of London, Alderman David Lewis and witnessed the signing of five agreements worth US$1 billion in total bwteen UK and Vietnamese enterprises.

1. Salamander / Vietnam Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam) to explore oil fields in Savannakhet, Champasak and Saravan. PetroVietnam also signed another deal with SOCO.

Salamander Energy (IPO LSE Jan 2006 250p today 301p) independent exploration and production company development and exploration assets concentrating on Indonesia and the Greater Mekong region (which includes Thailand, Laos and Vietnam) has approximately 42 million barrels of oil equivalent in proved plus probable reserves and is producing around 7,700 barrels of oil equivalent per day. Standard Chartered Private Equity (SCPE) has a stake of approximately 4.2% in Salamander Energy plc.

SOCO is a London based international oil and gas exploration and production company, quotd on LSE and is a FTSE 250 company. The Company has interests in Vietnam, Yemen, Thailand and the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville), the Democratic Republic of Congo (Kinshasa) and Angola with ongoing production operations in Yemen.

2. A US$600 million deal between the Vietnam Industrial and Commercial Bank (Incombank) and the Standard Chartered Bank on cooperation in payment services, capital raising, consulting, etc.

3. A consulting and training contract between the Bao Viet Insurance Group and HSBC Insurance.

4. A contract between Lilama and Mott MacDonald on the provision of consulting and training for a US$1 billion thermo-power project in Vietnam.

The Vietnamese PM of the Socialist republic attended talks with around 70 UK leading financial investment consulting experts at the headquarters of Prudential in London. The talks were co-organised by Prudential, HSBC, Dragon Capital, and Standard Chartered Bank. The Vietnamese Government has granted licenses to HSBC and Standard Chartered Bank to establish 100% foreign-owned banks in Vietnam in line with their WTO commitments.

Other important attenders included Deputy PM Pham Gia Khiem, Minister of Planning and Investment Vo Hong Phuc, Prudential CEO Mark Tucker, Prudential Vietnam General Director Alex Hambly, and Standard Chartered Bank CEO Mervyn Davies (Salary £ 2.26 Mn.)and chum of Gordon Brown a non-Exec at Tesco PLC (and Spurs).

The Vietnam-UK Business Forum at the Intercontinental Hotel in London, was also visited by the Vietnamese PM and saw deals signed bringing th e total for the day to of US$4.5 Bn.

5. The biggest deal is the one between the Saigon Investment Group (SIG) and International Power (Results announced today profis up 17%) to develop a 1,200 MW thermo-power project in central Vietnam worth $1.5 billion.

6. The Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) and JP Morgan signed a memorandum of understanding worth $280 million. Ex PM Tony Blair is of course an advisor to J P Morgan.

7. The Vietnam Shipping Lines Corporation (Vinalines) signed a memorandum of understanding with Standard Chartered Bank on a $200 million loan.

8. IEC Quoc Anh Co., Ltd signed scholarship granting deals with six UK universities and high schools worth $2.46 million which will involve an increasing number of Vietnamese lecturers studying PhDs in the UK. There are currently more than 6,000 Vietnamese students studying in the UK today. The Apollo University in Vietnam has an association with University of London to provide science and technology training.

Over the next 3 years, between 40 and 60 new school links between UK and Vietnam will be established.

Currently the UK provides over £8 million per year for the training of 50,000 primary teachers, the building of 14,000 classrooms and providing over 1 million poor children with textbooks.

9 .The New World Fashion Plc signed a 5 year US$900 Mn. contract with Tesco Group who are rapidy expanding their interests in Vietnam.

10. The Nha Be Garment Company signed a contract worth US$53 million with Jayroman, a retail group.

Other deals were signed with BP, Premier Oil, Mott McDonald, and BHP Billiton.

Vietnam, one of Asia’s most dynamic economies in the past two decades
Vietnam is looking to avoid the US economic slowdown and plans to maintain strong growth in exports and the overall economy this year by focusing on the Middle East and Europe.

The German government also sees strong economic potential in Vietnam, and Nguyen Tan Dung met Economics Minister Michael Glos and Chancellor Merkel to discuss trade relations.

Germany is Vietnam's largest trading partner within the EU, with mutual trade rising 40 % in 2007 to 3.4 billion euros (US$2.4 Bn.)

Siemens is currently aiming to secure contracts in providing signals and control systems. underground rail system being built in Ho Chi Minh City for an estimated 800 million euros (US500 Mn.).

At the same time German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier visited Vietnam with German businessmen during a tour of the region.

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