Integrity Legal

Posts Tagged ‘Business in Cambodia’

8th May 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the issue of inflation has been on the minds of policymakers in some of the member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Officials is Laos and Cambodia were recently noted by media outlets in those jurisdictions to have commented upon this issue. To quote directly from the official website of the Vientiane Times, VientianeTimes.org.la:

The government is concerned about rising inflation in Laos, triggered by the high price of oil and food, which is expected to impact on the economy and poverty reduction efforts. Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Dr Bounthavy Sisouphanthong said on Thursday the government is studying measures it can take to minimise the impacts on the economy and livelihoods of local people… Dr Liber warned that the government needs to respond to the situation quickly, as rising inflation will cause more serious impacts on the economy and efforts to reduce poverty levels. The government cabinet’s monthly meeting was held in Vientiane on April 25-26 and assigned the relevant sectors to study measures to minimise the impacts of rising fuel prices on the economy.

The administration of this web log asks readers to click upon the hyperlinks noted above to read further from this interesting article. Clearly, Lao officials are aware that inflation may become an acutely pressing issue at some point, but it would seem, at least for now, that measures are being considered to respond to issues pertaining to inflation in Laos.

Meanwhile, Laos is not the only ASEAN member nation whose officials are analyzing the issue of inflation. It would seem as though authorities in the Kingdom of Cambodia are also concerned about the possibility of inflation. To quote directly from the official website of the Phnom Penh Post, PhnomPenhPost.com:

Cambodia should expect price inflation of 6 percent this year, according to a United Nations report released yesterday, which government officials said was a tolerable level…Minister of Economy and Finance Deputy Secretary General Ros Seilava said at the report’s release in Phnom Penh that 6 percent inflation for 2011 was a manageable level. “A six to seven percent increase in inflation is expected this year, however to a certain level, this could be tolerated,” he said.

Again, the administration encourages readers to click upon the hyperlinks noted above to gain further perspective and insight into this issue in a Cambodian context from a well written and informative posting.

It would seem apparent that issues associated with inflation are likely to be of possible concern for those conducting business in Cambodia or business in Laos going forward. The same may also be true for those conducting business in the neighboring Kingdom of Thailand. In any case, inflation is an important economic issue that must be discussed. It is certainly a positive sign that officials in Laos and Cambodia are aware of these issues, but the ramifications of possible future inflation have yet to be fully realized. Issues associated with inflation are a cause for concern in countries such as the United States, but in the context of so-called “developing nations” this issue can be extremely important. Therefore, those interested in the issue of inflation in a Southeast Asian context may be prudent to continue following this developing story.

For related information please see: Thailand business.

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7th May 2011

It is unfortunate that there is a seeming trend within the zeitgeist of the American collective consciousness to immediately associate the term “States’ Rights” with notions of slavery, discrimination, and, in a sense, political corruption. It is this author’s opinion that much of the animosity surrounding the term “States’ Rights” is derived from some egregiously wrongheaded positions held by bigoted and xenophobic American politicians in years past. This trend is unfortunate because it is this author’s opinion that the very diversity of jurisprudence in an intrastate and interstate jurisdictional context within the American Union (by this term, this author refers to the United States of America as enshrined in the United States Constitution and the amendments thereto in conjunction with the 50 several sovereign United States each having their own State Constitution) is the very sinew which reinforces America’s economic strength on the global stage. Others associate the term “States’ Rights” with secessionist movements in years past. To be clear, this author has always believed that America’s strength is in the Rights of the Several States WITHIN THE UNION! American Founder Benjamin Franklin once famously stated: “We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately”. This statement is no less true now than at the time it was uttered. America’s strength lies in her simultaneous interstate and intrastate diversity buttressed by a virtually monolithic national government in matters pertaining to foreign affairs and national defense. It is something of a paradox that is both vexing to outsiders and the source of America’s ability to remain fluid in both a political and economic sense. In short: this duality is the secret to America’s historical success.

Full Faith and Credit: The Clause That Binds The American Republic

The Full Faith and Credit Clause of the United States Constitution could be viewed non-literally as the mortar securing the bricks which maintain the indomitable structure acting as a repository for the ideals of the American republic. Around the Full Faith and Credit Clause the Union of American jurisprudence is maintained. Therefore, analysis of said Clause is important for our purposes. This author has come to find much insight in studying the thoughts of Justice Robert H. Jackson on this issue, to quote directly from Justice Jackson:

“By other articles of the Constitution our forefathers created a political union among otherwise independent and sovereign states. By other provisions, too, they sought to integrate the economic life of the country. By the full faith and credit clause they sought to federalize the separate and independent state legal systems by the overriding principle of reciprocal recognition of public acts, records, and judicial proceedings. It was placed foremost among those measures which would guard the new political and economic union against the disintegrating influence of provincialism in jurisprudence, but without aggrandizement of federal power at the expense of the states.”

This author has often found that Justice Jackson is a unique resource on these issues as he understood the fundamentals of American law through long practice and study of New York law and later study of Federal law in his capacity as a Supreme Court Justice. Concurrently, Justice Jackson also was a trailblazer in matters pertaining to international law especially in his capacity as prosecutor during the Nuremberg trials. Therefore, this author finds Justice Jackson’s epitaph to be one of the most fitting: “He kept the ancient landmarks and built the new.” Such a notion should be palpable as America looks across the horizon of the 21st century.

Legal Diversity in an American Context

The motto on the Seal of the United States is “E Pluribus Unum”. This phrase is Latin and translates to English as “Out of Many, One”. Many Americans have long associated this phrase with the notion of the American “melting pot,” a phrase which alludes to the fact that America is a racially, ethnically, ideologically, and religiously diverse nation. This is very true and this fact has been one of the cornerstones of America’s relative economic success since her founding. However, rather few take note of the fact that from the perspective of an attorney this phrase could also allude to the notion of a legally stratified republic in a geographic sense as each sovereign American State has her own jurisprudence which operates simultaneously with much of that of the United States federal government. Under some circumstances, the federal government’s authority may override that of the States, but such circumstances, in this author’s opinion, are likely to be of less concern moving forward in light of the fact that the internet and World Wide Web have integrated the global economic platform to the point that true “Long Tail” economics is creating novelty and comparative advantage for the 50 states in both an interstate context as well as an intrastate context. This is also true in a global context as businesses located in the 50 States are likely to continue to do business in increasingly creative ways both domestically and internationally. The author does not mean to imply that there will be less Federal oversight in the future as there will likely be regulations and scrutiny emanating from federal authorities, but America is incredibly flexible when it suits her interests and as the business environment in America evolves so too does it seem likely that State and Federal regulatory schemes will evolve as well. This current state of affairs is likely to be the precursor to future economic dynamism in the relatively long term and could be the key to economic success in the short term as well.

Meanwhile, an understanding of States’ Rights, in conjunction with an understanding of the enumerated powers of the United States Federal government can provide a sort of framework for thinking about the opportunities which can be exploited by Americans in an increasingly economically integrated global marketplace of not only goods, services, and commodities; but ideas as well. For example, the State of North Dakota and the State of Utah have made interesting decisions regarding intrastate monetary and financial policy. North Dakota has opted for a sort of miniaturized Federal Reserve in that State in the form of the Bank of North Dakota, which is considered by some to be a departure from “mainstream” thinking regarding State finances. Also, the State of Utah has recently enacted a legal tender reform bill which appears to recognize gold and silver coinage minted by the federal government as legal tender within that jurisdiction. This legislation also appears to have changed the way in which the exchange of gold and silver coins are taxed in an intrastate context as the bill apparently repeals state taxation of such coinage. Those interested in further information on these issues are well advised to contact an attorney licensed to practice law in the State of Utah (and/or North Dakota, for that matter), as further commentary by this author on that subject would simply be an exercise in speculation. What is clear merely from the information noted above: American States are becoming increasingly creative and dynamic in terms of intrastate activity and this relatively new dynamism may be the driving force behind an eventually resurgent American economy.

America: A Nation of Webmasters

The Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte once snidely declared: “L’Angleterre est une nation de boutiquiers.” This statement could be roughly translated to state that: “England is a nation of shopkeepers”. Unfortunately for Napoleon that nation of shopkeepers went on the defeat his Grand Army at the Battle of Waterloo and thereafter administer an Empire upon which the sun never set. This historical factoid is important for the reader to understand because it elucidates an analogy in a modern context. Namely, the United States of America, due to the rise of e-commerce, appears set upon the path to becoming a nation of e-shopkeepers. These e-shopkeepers, e-commerce businesses, and webmasters are increasingly coming to form a major component of the American economy at a time when some areas of the economy are showing signs of stagnation. Bearing this in mind, the reader is encouraged to note a quotation from Sir Winston Churchill: “Some see private enterprise as a predatory target to be shot, others as a cow to be milked, but few are those who see it as a sturdy horse pulling the wagon.” The reader is encouraged to note the fact that Churchill was a British-American and quite proud to be so. Churchill understood that strong nations are built upon the foundation of a vibrant free market as well as a thriving business environment and he knew this from long study of American, British, and world history. In this author’s opinion, the wagon of America will continue to be drawn by the forces of her citizenry’s entrepreneurialism, but much of the commerce which emanates from the United States in the future will be on platforms which exist in cyberspace. Therefore, such commerce will not have all of the same attributes as that of years past.

America, China, Thailand, ASEAN, and Greater Asia

As the 21st century rolls on it seems likely that America will be increasingly engaged with Asia in both a diplomatic context as well as a commercial context. This commercial engagement is increasingly likely to occur across the spectrum of business as American companies large and small trade goods, services, and intellectual property with jurisdictions in Asia. While most Americans are aware of the growing economic might of Greater China comparatively few are aware of increasingly vibrant economies of countries such as the Kingdom of Thailand and the Kingdom of Cambodia. Meanwhile, the somewhat young Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) would seem to be on track toward creating economic efficiencies across Southeast Asia to the apparent benefit of all concerned. In this author’s opinion, Americans would be wise to remain mindful of the East Asian and Southeast Asian markets as there appears virtually no limit to the economic potential inherent in some of these economies. Hopefully, through skillful statesmanship, keen understanding of relevant law, and shrewd business acumen America and the American people can benefit from economic developments in Asia and throughout the world.

For related information please see: Full Faith and Credit Clause or ecommerce.

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4th March 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention via Mr. Paul Huang at the Law Firm of Cenlaw in Shanghai, China that Chinese government officials have promulgated new rules for reviewing mergers and acquisitions in a national security context. To quote Mr. Paul Huang directly:

The State Council of China has laid out long-awaited rules and procedures for national security reviews of foreign mergers and acquisitions. The new acquisition rules will commence operation in March of 2011. Under the rules, the new National Security Review Committee led by China’s National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Commerce that already review mergers under the Chinese antitrust rules will review mergers and acquisitions targeting key companies in the defense, agriculture, energy, resources, infrastructure, transportation and equipment-manufacturing and technology industries. It will apply a broad definition of national security, assessing the impact of deals on economic stability, social order and China’s ability to research and develop key technologies for national defense.

The administration of this blog encourages readers to check out the publications section of the Cenlaw website as it is filled with relevant and detailed information regarding the legal issues which can arise in the context of Chinese business.

As more international investors seek business opportunities in Asia, it will become increasingly necessary for such investors to comply with applicable local laws and regulations. The legal systems in Asian jurisdictions can be very similar or extremely different from Western legal systems. For example, the SAR of Hong Kong, China has a legal system which has its roots in the common law tradition. This state of affairs could be attributed to the fact that Hong Kong was once a Crown Colony of the United Kingdom. Meanwhile, so-called “Mainland China” has a legal tradition that is quite unlike any other jurisdiction in the world. At the same time, the Kingdom of Thailand in Southeast Asia has a legal system which draws upon many different legal traditions around the world while maintaining a uniquely Thai complexion.

Many Western stock exchanges have announced various plans to consolidate through multi-jurisdictional merger or acquisition. This state of affairs will likely raise increasingly complex legal issues as business transactions increasingly occur in a transnational context. As Southeast Asia sees the creation of new stock exchanges in countries such as Laos and Cambodia. It appears increasingly likely that the legal systems in those countries will be of ever increasing interest to international investors seeking information about doing business in those jurisdictions. It will be interesting to follow these developments as business in China and the countries which comprise the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) become increasingly dominant in a global business context.

For related information please see: Laos Stock Exchange.

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23rd January 2011

Those who read this blog may have taken notice of the fact that the country of Laos in Southeast Asia recently announced the opening of a Lao securities exchange in the capital city of Vientiane. It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the Kingdom of Cambodia also plans to unveil their own securities exchange in 2011. To quote directly from a posting on DAP-news.com:

“Now we are our stock exchange in the process of establishing and developing Cambodian securities exchange which is going to be implemented in the middle of 2011, H.E Dr. Hean Sahip, deputy secretary general of ministry said in his speech during the workshop on IT for securities exchange in Phnom Penh.

The relatively small Southeast Asian Kingdom has been working on opening a securities exchange for some time. Now it would appear as though all of this effort may soon bear fruit, to quote DAP-news.com further:

“I would like to inform you that that to reach our objective of inaugural preparation of Cambodia securities exchange in the forth coming middle 2011, Cambodia securities exchange will start their operation soon  Canadia Tower, level 25”He added…

Some governmental agencies such as Autonomous zone of Sihanouk port, Electricity du Combodge, autonomous water supply authority of Phnom Penh, Telecom Cambodia will likely be listed in the stock exchange.Other dozen of private baking and companies will join the stock.

In the case of Laos, the opening of a stock exchange marks a significant step toward acquisition of investment capital as securities exchanges are often utilized in an effort to raise capital for companies wishing to expand. It would appear that the Kingdom of Cambodia offers substantial business opportunities to would-be investors of foreign origin. Some examples of the business opportunities in Cambodia are succinctly summed up on the BuyUSA.gov website:

Cambodia offers potential investment opportunities in tourism infrastructure and resorts; education; architecture, construction, and engineering services; household goods and appliances; agribusiness and food processing; used cars and automotive parts; power generation equipment; fast food and beverage franchises; pharmaceuticals, medical supplies, and medical equipment; and banking.

Clearly, there are business opportunities in the Kingdom of Cambodia, but those looking to conduct business in the Southeast Asian Kingdom may be prudent to conduct research or possibly retain the services of an attorney to conduct due diligence into proposed investments prior to making irrevocable business decisions. The same could easily be said for those looking to conduct business in the Kingdom of Thailand, Laos, or any jurisdiction with which a prospective investor is not familiar as research into the business and legal issues associated with a new undertaking in an unfamiliar jurisdiction can help ensure that risks are avoided which stem from unforeseen complications.

For related information please see: US Company Registration or US Visa Cambodia.

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