US launches formal trade investigation into China

VietNamNet Bridge – Nam Tra My District in Quang Nam Province will host the first monthly Ngoc Linh ginseng market from September 29 to October 1. Promising root: Ngoc Linh ginseng harvested at a mountain farm in Nam Tra My District.  The chairman of the district people’s committee, Ho Quang Buu, told Viet Nam News the market in the south central province would provide a meeting point for tourists, investors, traders and local growers of Panax vietnamensis, better known as Vietnamese ginseng. He said the market, to be held every month between the 10th and 12th, would help boost the sale of local medical herbs, farm produce and forestry products, as well as improve the living standard of ethnic groups in the mountainous district. “We will allocate the culture and sport centre in the district to display farm produce, ginseng and herbs at 20 pavilions. Villagers will bring their products to introduce and sell at the market under strict control of quality and brand,” Buu said. Ngoc Linh ginseng, grown both in Nam Tra My District in Quang Nam and Kon Tum Province in the Central Highlands, has been designated a national brand. Earlier this year, the district introduced the first ever Ngoc Linh ginseng and medical herbs centre in Tra Mai Commune as a major source of seed and saplings. The district plans to develop 15,000ha of ginseng farm in seven mountain communes by 2030. According to district authorities, more than 42,000ha of primary forests have been well preserved…... [read more]

President Donald Trump on Monday authorized an inquiry into China's alleged theft of intellectual property in the first direct trade measure by his administration against Beijing, but one that is unlikely to prompt near-term change. Trump broke from his 17-day vacation in New Jersey to sign the memo in the White House at a time of heightened tensions between Washington and Beijing over North Korea's nuclear ambitions. The investigation is likely to cast a shadow over relations with China, the largest U.S. trading partner, just as Trump is asking Beijing to step up pressure against Pyongyang. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will have a year to look into whether to launch a formal investigation of China's trade policies on intellectual property, which the White House and U.S. industry lobby groups say are harming U.S. businesses and jobs. Trump called the inquiry "a very big move." Trump administration officials have estimated that theft of intellectual property by China could be as high as $600 billion. Experts on China trade policy said the long lead time could allow Beijing to discuss some of the issues raised by Washington without being seen to cave to pressure under the threat of reprisals. Although Trump repeatedly criticized China's trade practices on the campaign trail, his administration has not taken any significant action. Despite threats to do so, it has declined to name China a currency manipulator and delayed broader national security probes into imports of foreign steel and aluminum that could indirectly affect China.…... [read more]

Trade tensions between the United States and China heated up on Tuesday as Beijing warned that it "will not sit idle" if a US probe into its intellectual property practices leads to sanctions. President Donald Trump's decision to order the investigation comes on top of strains between the two nations over how to handle Beijing's ally North Korea. Trump on Monday signed a memorandum directing US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to determine whether Chinese policies hurt American investors or companies -- with retaliatory measures a possible outcome. "We will stand up to any country that unlawfully forces American companies to transfer their valuable technology as a condition of market access. We will combat the counterfeiting and piracy that destroys American jobs," Trump said. "Washington will turn a blind eye no longer," Trump said, vowing to safeguard copyrights, patents and other intellectual property that are "vital to our security and to our prosperity". The president said the US would no longer tolerate Beijing's "theft" of US industrial secrets, long a concern of major foreign corporations seeking a share of the huge Chinese market. "We will engage in a thorough investigation and, if needed, take action to preserve the future of US industry," Lighthizer said. China's commerce ministry issued a statement voicing "serious concern" and warning that any US trade protectionism "will definitely harm bilateral trade relations". "If the US side take actions that impair the mutual trade relations, disregarding the facts and disrespecting multilateral trade rules, China will not sit…... [read more]

WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump will sign a memorandum Monday that could lead to sanctions against China over its intellectual property practices, administration officials said on Saturday (Aug 12.) Trump will direct US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to determine whether any Chinese laws, policies or practices discriminate against or harm American innovators and technology companies. (Photo: AFP/Jim Watson) Trump will direct US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to determine whether any Chinese laws, policies or practices discriminate against or harm American innovators and technology companies, the officials said. If so, Lighthizer would have "broad powers" to seek remedial action. The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, bluntly accused China of "stealing our intellectual property" - long a concern of Western companies seeking a share of the enormous Chinese market. The new measure comes amid high tensions between Washington and Beijing. Trump has accused China of failing to rein in the nuclear ambitions of its ally North Korea, even as he makes ever sharper threats against Pyongyang. The officials said that matter, and the trade issue, are not linked. The process Lighthizer will initiate, under Article 302b of the US Commercial Code, could take as long as a year to yield its findings. The latest step follows the opening by the Trump administration of several other investigations into Chinese commercial practices, notably in the steel sector. On Tuesday, Washington announced…... [read more]

Many farmers in the northern mountainous province of Lang Son have constructed an improvised cable car to carry custard apples from the mountains. Custard apple harvesting is taking place in Chi Lang District. Since early morning, many people come to local Lan Giao Mountain to harvest the fruit. Lanh Van Long, a local resident, said that it is very difficult to climb to mountains, so he can only pick up 6-8 baskets of custard-apples every morning.     Farmers in Lang Son Province invent cable car to carry custard apples Another local farmer named Hua Van Cuong said that his family grew around 500 custard apple trees covering a hectare on the mountain. After being harvested, custard apples are brought to Dong Banh Market for sales. People in Chi Lang have made a winch which they describe as a cable car to transport custard apples from the mountains to the ground. The tool is made from motorbike engines and cables. The cable length depends on different heights of mountains and can run up to 700m. The brake is used to adjust the speed. In 2011, the National Office of Intellectual Property of Vietnam issued a trademark for Chi Lang custard apples, aiming to raise the profile of Lang Son's speciality fruit and its value. Chi Lang District grew custard apples across 1,500ha by 2016.   …... [read more]

President Donald Trump warned North Korea again on Thursday not to strike Guam or U.S. allies, saying his earlier threat to unleash "fire and fury" on Pyongyang if it launched an attack may not have been tough enough. After North Korea disclosed plans to fire missiles over Japan to land near the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam, Trump said the move would prompt "an event the likes of which nobody's seen before." He took specific aim at North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, saying he had "disrespected our country greatly. He has said things that are horrific. And with me, he's not getting away with it," Trump told reporters in New Jersey. "It's not a dare. It's a statement," Trump said. "He's not going to go around threatening Guam. And he's not going to threaten the United States. And he's not going to threaten Japan. And he's not going to threaten South Korea." North Korea's army will complete the plans in mid-August to fire four intermediate-range missiles over Japan to land near Guam, when they will be ready for Kim's order, state-run KCNA news agency said. The plans called for the missiles to land in the sea 30-40 km (18-25 miles) from Guam. "Let's see what he does with Guam. He does something in Guam, it will be an event the likes of which nobody's seen before, what will happen in North Korea," Trump said, without offering specifics. Shortly after Trump spoke, U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis told reporters…... [read more]

U.S. trade officials have agreed to investigate Qualcomm Inc's allegations that Apple Inc infringed on patents with its iPhone 7 and other devices, the U.S. International Trade Commission said on Tuesday. The new iPhone 7 smartphone is displayed inside an Apple Inc. store in Los Angeles, California, U.S., September 16, 2016. The ITC will make its decision "at the earliest practicable time" and will set a target date for completing its investigation within the next 45 days, the commission said in a statement. Qualcomm filed the complaint in early July, asking U.S. trade regulators to ban certain models of the iPhone that contain so-called broadband modem chips, which help phones connect to wireless data networks, that were not made by Qualcomm. Apple began using broadband modem chips made by Intel Corp in the iPhone 7. Qualcomm has not alleged that Intel chips violate its patents but says the way Apple uses them in the iPhone does. "We look forward to the ITC’s expeditious investigation of Apple’s ongoing infringement of our intellectual property and the accelerated relief that the commission can provide,” Don Rosenberg, executive vice president and general counsel of Qualcomm, said in a statement. Intel declined to comment. Apple pointed to Chief Executive Tim Cook's earlier comments that Qualcomm had not yet offered it "fair and reasonable" licensing terms for Qualcomm's technology. "I don't believe anyone is going to decide to enjoin the iPhone based on that," Cook told investors in May on the company's earnings call, his most…... [read more]

The Vietnamese Chamber of Commerce in Singapore, known as VietCham Singapore (, was established in 2013 to support Vietnamese businesses with their regional and global expansion. VietCham drives bilateral and multi-lateral trade and investments in five countries On August 19, VietCham Singapore will host a workshop entitled “Singapore as a launch-pad for Vietnamese businesses” in Ho Chi Minh City, aiming to help local firms expand their horizon and move beyond boundaries ( The workshop will focus on establishing and operating company in Singapore, taxation, multilateral trade, banking facilities, capital mobilisation, initial public offerings, and mergers and acquisitions in both Singapore and Vietnam. Over the years, VietCham Singapore has been supporting various Vietnamese firms to reach out to regional and global market through Singapore gateway. According to Dr. David Nguyen Quang Vu - VietCham Singapore’s president, his organisation’s goal is to enable Vietnamese businesses with setting up and maintaining companies in Singapore, obtaining all necessary licences and certificates, product distribution and marketing, exhibition, tradeshow and roadshow, business matching, market research and business intelligence, trademarks and   intellectual property protection, wealth and asset management, deal-making, M&A and corporate advisory. “In Singapore, most procedures and applications can be processed online, helping to save time and travel. Businesses may acquire Singapore business licences within 24 hours,” Vu said at a recent workshop on export promotion via Singapore in the Mekong Delta region this April. VietCham Singapore…... [read more]

NDO - The EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), which is considered a comprehensive trade agreement covering a wide area of sectors and also has an equal elimination of tariffs from both sides, is anticipated to bring about benefits and opportunities for both economies in multiple ways throughout the years. According to the agreement, the EU and Vietnam has committed to further market access and the removal of over 99% of tariffs on industrial and agricultural products, in addition to zero-duty Tariff Rate Quotas on a number of goods including clothing, footwear, seafood, tropical agricultural products, furniture and others which will come from Vietnam and automobiles, machinery, equipment, beverages, medicine, and temperate agricultural products and others which will come from the EU. In addition, the two sides' commitments on services sectors go largely beyond both WTO commitments and any other FTA that Vietnam has concluded. Therefore, EU companies will have more benefits when investing and doing business in the Vietnamese market, particularly in the sectors of their strength which include finance, banking, insurance and maritime transport. Vietnam's commitments to ensure an open and transparent investment and business environment will help to boost high quality investment from the EU into Vietnam. With anticipated benefits from the agreement along with the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community in late 2015, Vietnam will have an opportunity to become a hub of trade and investment between the EU and ASEAN countries. Furthermore, Vietnam has made commitments in regards to new areas which include government procurement,…... [read more]

Three top Democratic senators, in a rare show of bipartisanship, on Wednesday urged U.S. President Donald Trump to stand up to China as he prepares to launch an inquiry into Beijing's intellectual property and trade practices in coming days. "We should certainly go after them," said Schumer in a statement. Senators Ron Wyden of Oregon and Sherrod Brown of Ohio also urged Trump to rein in China. Tensions between Washington and Beijing have escalated in recent months as Trump has pressed China to cut steel production to ease global oversupply and rein in North Korea's missile program. Sources familiar with the current discussions said Trump was expected to issue a presidential memorandum in coming days, citing Chinese theft of intellectual property as a problem. The European Union, Japan, Germany and Canada have all expressed concern over China's behavior on intellectual property theft. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer would then initiate an investigation under the Trade Act of 1974's Section 301, which allows the president to unilaterally impose tariffs or other trade restrictions to protect U.S. industries, the sources said. It is unclear whether such a probe would result in trade sanctions against China, which Beijing would almost certainly challenge before the World Trade Organization. The Chinese Embassy in Washington said in a statement to Reuters that China "opposes unilateral actions and trade protectionism in any form." Leverage for negotiations U.S. Section 301 investigations have not led to trade sanctions since the WTO was launched in 1995. In the 1980s,…... [read more]

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