Integrity Legal

Posts Tagged ‘US Company Registration’

17th August 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that a former officer at the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has been sentenced in connection to charges stemming from apparent corruption. In order to provide further insight it is necessary to quote directly from the official website of the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Service (USICE, although sometimes colloquially referred to as ICE) website, ICE.gov:

LOS ANGELES — A former supervisor with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and his son were sentenced Thursday on federal corruption charges to 60 months and 48 months in prison, respectively, following an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations and the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General. Fernando Jacobs, 72, of Upland, Calif., and his son, Patrick Jacobs, 44, of Ontario, Calif., were sentenced by U.S. District Judge George H. King. Judge King also ordered Fernando Jacobs to pay a $30,000 fine. Fernando Jacobs was remanded into custody to begin serving his prison sentence immediately. Patrick Jacobs has been in custody since his arrest in December 2009. Fernando Jacobs, who was a supervisory immigration services officer with USCIS, and Patrick Jacobs were convicted by a jury of conspiracy, bribery and honest services wire fraud. Additionally, Fernando Jacobs was also convicted of visa fraud. The evidence presented during the two-week trial in U.S. District Court in April showed the elder Jacobs accepted bribes in exchange for helping aliens seeking status in the United States and that his son acted as a middleman brokering deals with those individuals. “The significance of public corruption cases like this cannot be overestimated,” said U.S. Attorney André Birotte, Jr. “The American public demands honest government service and the Department of Justice is committed to policing government and preserving the public trust.” The evidence showed the elder Jacobs and his son engaged in a scheme to defraud USCIS of Fernando Jacobs’ honest services, using his authority and official position to enrich themselves by receiving payments in return for various actions…

The administration of this web log encourages readers to click upon those relevant hyperlinks noted above to learn further details from this interesting article.

It has always been this blogger’s experience that officers of the USCIS are upright, hardworking, and forthright individuals; but notwithstanding this fact there are instances where corruption can exist in any organization. Therefore, it is a genuine relief to see prompt action to discourage this behavior while simultaneously seeing that those engaged in illegal activity are brought to justice. Hopefully further efforts will yield more efficient and effective government in the future as such factors could result in more efficient and faster processing times for adjudication of bona fide immigration petitions and applications.

In news pertaining to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), it recently came to this blogger’s attention that China considers engagement with ASEAN in the future as both important and strategic. To provide further insight it is necessary to quote directly from the online Asia Times website, ATimes.com:

Under its “good neighbors policy”, Beijing naturally considers improving relations with ASEAN an important strategic task. China has built up a strategic partnership with the 10-member ASEAN since 2003, and also with some of its members, one after another…

This article was also very noteworthy to this blogger because it highlighted some interesting issues arising in ASEAN and the future of the geopolitical situation in said region. The author, “an Assistant Professor of the Institute of International Studies at Fudan University,” Dr Jian Junbo, provides fascinating insights into the possible role of China in the Asia-Pacific region in the coming years:

China should help ensure regional public security with its growing military capability. Beijing should be broader-minded than its neighbors in regard to the use of its military to maintain regional stability by fighting piracy, terrorism and other international crimes in the Pacific Ocean. Instead of flexing its military muscle in territorial disputes, China should encourage political, economic and cultural integration in East and Southeast Asia. All in all, China should reshape its Asia strategy with an aim to functioning as a stabilizing force, while maintaining its strategy to keep a balance with the influence of the US in this region…

This blogger strongly encourages readers to click upon the hyperlinks noted above to read this incisive article in detail.

As economic and cultural integration increases in ASEAN, the so-called BRICS countries, the Asia-Pacific region, and the United States of America it stands to reason that further economic development will occur exponentially as a result of the current economic “cross-pollination” phenomenon which is happening at a rather rapid rate in the Pacific compared to roughly 10 years ago. As the economies of Greater Asia continue to prosper there are some who could argue that many financial and economic benefits will be accrued to the benefit of all concerned.

– Benjamin Walter Hart

For information about registering a company in America please see: US Company Registration.

For information pertaining to legal services in Southeast Asia please see: Legal.

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13th July 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the Judiciary Committee of the United States Senate is poised to hold a hearing to discuss the repeal of the so-called “Defense of Marriage Act” (DOMA) and a possible replacement piece of legislation referred to as the Respect for Marriage Act. To provide further information on these developments it is necessary to quote directly from the Washington Blade website, WashingtonBlade.com:

The Senate Judiciary Committee has announced that an anticipated hearing on legislative repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act has been set for July 20. According to a notice, the hearing on DOMA repeal legislation, also known as the Respect for Marriage Act, will take place July 20 at 10 a.m. in Room 226 the Dirksen Senate Office Building. Witnesses who will testify will be announced in the coming days. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is co-sponsor of the legislation that would repeal DOMA, which prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages. In the Senate, the legislation is sponsored by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.)…

The administration of this web log asks readers to click upon the relevant hyperlinks noted above in order to read this article in detail.

In the context of American immigration the provisions of the so-called “Defense of Marriage Act” (DOMA) result in a situation where the LGBT community is subject to legal discrimination. For instance, same sex bi-national couples cannot receive the same visa benefits as their different-sex counterparts. Therefore, visas such as the K-1 visa, the CR-1 visa, and the IR-1 visa are not available to those who have a same sex partner or for those couples who have entered into a same sex marriage. This discrimination occurs even where the same sex couple in question has been married in one of the sovereign American States or the District of Columbia where same sex marriages are legalized and/or solemnized. Currently, pending legislation such as the aforementioned Respect for Marriage Act (introduced in the United States House of Representative by Representative Jerrold Nadler, who also introduced the Uniting American Families Act designed to deal specifically with the immigration implications of DOMA) and the Reuniting Families Act (introduced by Representative Mike Honda) would address certain aspects of DOMA. In fact, the Respect for Marriage Act is designed to provide a doctrine of “certainty” whereby those couples married in one of the sovereign American States which recognize such unions can rely upon federal recognition of such unions regardless of their physical location.

In news pertaining to business in China and the United States of America it recently came to this blogger’s attention that China may be poised to import as much as 2 million metric tons of American corn. In order to provide more specifics it is necessary to quote directly from an article written by Tom Polansek and posted to the website of the The Wall Street Journal, WSJ.com:

The U.S. Department of Agriculture raised its estimates for corn exports to China fourfold, another nod to the country’s rising demand in a market under strain. In addition, the amount of the grain used to make ethanol is expected to eclipse its use in animal feed in the U.S. for the first time ever. China is now forecast to import 2 million metric tons of U.S. corn in the next marketing year, which begins on Sept. 1, compared to the previous projection of 500,000 tons…Traders also point to China as the likely buyer behind hundreds of thousands of tons that the USDA lists as going to “unknown destinations.” “The increase in Chinese imports is likely lagging what is really going to happen,” said Joel Karlin, analyst for Western Milling, a producer of animal feed in California. The USDA left its estimates for export to China in the current crop year, which ends Aug. 31, unchanged at 1.5 million metric tons…

This blogger asks readers to click upon the relevant hyperlinks above to read this story in detail.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is responsible for the regulation of American agricultural matters. This agency routinely publishes information related to the state of the American agricultural sector. It would appear that the rising demand from China for American agricultural products is not set to diminish anytime in the immediate future. The Chinese-American trade relationship is often noted for the fact that China exports a large amount of manufactured goods to America, but it seems as though less attention is paid to the amount of agricultural products which America provides to China. One issue on this blogger’s mind is the impact that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) might have upon the demand for American agricultural products. As this regional grouping becomes increasingly geopolitically and economically potent it stands to reason that demand for agricultural products from the ASEAN jurisdictions (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and Vietnam) may be on the rise. Hopefully any and all of these developments prove to be a boon to America’s farmers and agricultural community.

For information pertaining to same sex marriage recognition please see: Full Faith and Credit Clause.

For information related to American company registration please see: US Company Registration.

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3rd July 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that the Kingdom of Thailand may see a female Prime Minister for the first time in that country’s history. In order to provide further insight into these developments it may be best to quote directly from the official website of Reuters, Reuters.com:

Yingluck Shinawatra, a 44-year-old businesswoman who wasn’t even in politics two months ago, is poised to get the top job after the stunning election victory of Puea Thai (For Thais), whose de facto leader is her brother, fugitive ex-premier Thaksin Shinawatra. Yingluck, known as Pou (Crab), the nickname her parents gave her, has never run for office or held a government post, so she has a lot to prove to show she can run the country. But some Thais, especially females, want to give her the benefit of the doubt and see this as a big step for women in a country where they have struggled for equal representation in government…

The administration of this web log encourages readers to click upon the relevant hyperlinks noted above to read further about the details of this story.

The Kingdom of Thailand is a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and political events occurring in this jurisdiction can have ramifications for the business community in Thailand and Greater Asia. Concurrently, the prospect of a first time election of a female leader in any nation is significant news by any estimate. It should be interesting to see how these events unfold.

In American news, the government of the sovereign State of Minnesota recently shut down and has remained so for a few days. To provide further insight into these events it may be best to quote directly from the official website of CNN, CNN.com:

The government shutdown in Minnesota could drag on for days as a spokeswoman for Gov. Mark Dayton said talks probably won’t happen until after the July 4 holiday. ”I do not expect formal meetings to resume before Tuesday,” Katharine Tinucci said in an e-mail Saturday night. The Minnesota government was forced to shut down Friday for the second time in six years after lawmakers failed to reach a budget agreement before a midnight Thursday deadline…

The administration of this web log encourages readers to click upon the hyperlinks above to learn more.

In a previous posting on this web log the possibility of an American federal government shutdown was discussed, but did not actually occur as American legislators came to a consensus regarding some of the issues associated with the United States budget and this consensus resulted in the American government remaining open. As the United States has a separate sovereignty system the various American States maintain separate governments from that of the federal government. The shutdown of any government can have implications for a State’s economy and therefore it is likely hoped by many around the USA (and the world) that Minnesota’s government can resolve their issues and get back to the business of governing that State.

For related information please see: Legal or US Company Registration.

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14th May 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that some have criticized the current process associated with adjudication and issuance of United States visas. Notably, it would seem that this criticism is mostly concerned with non-immigrant visas such as the B-2 visa (US tourist visa) and the B-1 visa (US business visa). To quote directly from a Reuters story posted on the website airwise.com:

The complicated US visa system hurts tourism and must be reformed if the United States wants to attract lucrative tourism from countries such as China, India and Brazil, travel industry officials said…

Readers of this blog are encouraged to click upon the hyperlinks noted above to read this story in detail and also gain greater insight into this developing issue.

At the time of this writing the United States maintains a system which allows for some nations to receive admission to the USA through a visa waiver program. As noted above: China, India, and Brazil are not included in the visa waiver program. This situation exists notwithstanding the fact that these three nations in association with two others (South Africa and Russia) compose the so-called BRICS group of developing countries with what some would claim is a virtually unlimited capacity for economic growth in the future.

This visa waiver program also entails the so-called “ESTA” (Electronic System For Travel Authorization) program, which requires foreign nationals to pre-register for admission to the United States before beginning their journey to America. It should be noted that in its current form the ESTA program only pertains to nationals from visa waiver participating countries. Therefore, nationals from countries such as China, India, Brazil, Indonesia, and the Kingdom of Thailand cannot benefit from the visa waiver program and the ESTA program as of the time of this writing.

Those interested in further information on such topics are encouraged to visit a few official websites: HERE and HERE. To quote further from the aforementioned piece:

“The challenge we have is the unnecessary, burdensome US visa system,” said USTA president Roger Dow. “It’s really self-imposed barriers that we put on ourselves as a country that have caused us to lose international travel and that have stymied international growth.”

This blogger has heard this argument made in the past and it is certainly salient especially at a time when tourism income is in high demand in an international context. To continue quoting further:

The US visa process from beginning to end can take as long as 145 days in Brazil and 120 days in China, a USTA report said. In contrast, Britain takes an average of 12 days to process visas in Brazil and 11 days in China…

Clearly, the visa processing time differential between the United States and the somewhat similarly socioeconomically situated United Kingdom is a stark contrast. To quote further:

US Senator Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat who chairs a subcommittee focused on export promotion and competitiveness, said the travel industry was important to help President Barack Obama meet his stated goal of doubling exports by 2014. “We see it as part of our economic recovery. I see this as a way to get jobs in our country,” Klobuchar said…

It is refreshing to see a federal legislator like Senator Amy Klobucher from the sovereign State of Minnesota taking the time to investigate an issue that may, at first glance, seem mundane. In point of fact, matters pertaining to United States non-immigrant visas are extremely important as they can have a significant impact upon foreign direct investment in the United States and the amount of money raised by American companies and enterprises offering services to foreign nationals both in the USA and abroad. Finally, a legislator trying to find reasonable solutions to American economic concerns in a reasonable manner! America: Let us not forget, we are one of the most historically fascinating and economically dynamic nations ever to have made our voices heard in the chorus of history. Why do we forget this? We seem to find ourselves constantly debating the minutia of our past transgressions or the history of our geopolitically unique grouping of jurisdictions. We do this when solutions to some of the current economic problems stare us in the face. The reality is that there are many around the world who wish to do business with those in the United States of America. There are many who want to buy our products. There currently exists the distinct possibility that the continent of Asia will have a constantly growing middle class of prospective international travelers for decades into the future. These travelers will likely be traveling for both business as well as pleasure. It stands to reason that many prospective tourists from Asia will make their initial international travel decisions with great care. Therefore, America should continue to be mindful of the fact there exists an international competitive market for income generated from tourism.  It stands to reason that more tourists in America means more tourism income.

From a legal perspective there is something to be said for allowing further membership in the United States visa waiver program as it would lead to fewer overall denied visa applications based upon section 214(b) of the United States Immigration and Nationality Act. Currently, many tourist visa applications are denied pursuant to a presumption in the aforementioned section of U.S. law. This section requires Consular Officers to make the factual presumption that a tourist visa applicant is actually an intending American immigrant unless the applicant can produce sufficient evidence to overcome this presumption. The visa waiver program gets around this 214(b) presumption by waiving the need for an American visa. Simultaneously, the visa waiver program also restricts those foreign nationals admitted into the United States from adjusting status to lawful permanent residence. One may adjust one’s status to lawful permanent residence (Green Card status) from tourist visa status in the U.S.A. under very limited circumstances. The visa waiver program does not permit such adjustment and therefore requires those foreign nationals seeking immigrant status to depart the United States and undergo Consular Processing abroad.

It remains to be seen whether or not US visa policy regarding non-immigrant visas such as those described above will be changed, but clearly there is some momentum behind this rather important issue in Washington D.C.

For related information please see: K-1 visa system, K-3 visa system, or US Company Registration.

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5th May 2011

It recently came to this blogger’s attention that an official within China’s foreign exchange authority was noted for comments made regarding the currencies of the so-called BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) and their future relationship to the so-called SDR or Special Drawing Right.  To quote directly from the Reuters Africa section of the official website of the Reuters news service, Reuters.com:

SHANGHAI May 5 (Reuters) – The IMF should consider including currencies of the BRICS countries and other emerging economies when it next reviews its Special Drawing Right (SDR) system by 2015, the head of China’s foreign exchange authority said in remarks published on Thursday.

Yi Gang, who is also a deputy governor of the People’s Bank of China (PBOC), called on the International Monetary Fund to kick off a research of a “shadow SDR” this year, the semi-official China Business News reported.

The administration of this blog strongly encourages readers to click upon the hyperlinks above to read this story in detail as doing so would likely add perspective on an insightful article.

Clearly issues related to the relationship of currencies of developing countries, rising economies, and those of developed countries are being considered of increasing importance to policymakers the world over. This is especially true in the context of East Asia while Southeast Asian nations seem to have different issues to ponder regarding currency.  As the constituent economies and jurisdictions comprising the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) continue to thrive economically, the question of a single currency seems to persistently manifest itself at the foreground of analysis pertaining to the long term outlook for the ASEAN region. To quote directly from the website of The Jakarta Post, TheJakartaPost.com:

Indonesia and its neighbors in the ASEAN region have been weighing the possibility of having a single currency such as the euro for years.

Some ASEAN representatives and economic ministers believed that the implementation of a single currency in ASEAN could take the economic community in the region to the next level, as it would enhance economic development in the area and forge stronger ties among ASEAN countries.

But currently, Europe’s crisis is a lesson to learn for Indonesia and ASEAN on the risks and to realize that the potential economic losses if the single currency policy fails is indeed massive.

The administration again encourages readers to click on the hyperlinks above to read this intriguing story in detail.

It would appear as though recent developments in Europe have been a cause of concern for those analyzing the issues associated with a single ASEAN currency, as they probably should be since the decision to implement a single currency for multiple jurisdictions is a serious undertaking that would likely require a great deal of logistical as well as financial investment. While exploring The Jakarta Post website this blogger also came upon an interesting letter posted on that site. To quote directly from the posting Letter: On ASEAN Currency at TheJakartaPost.com:

I hardly see a future for a single ASEAN currency. What is lacking in ASEAN is unity. ASEAN is mainly focused on an economic agenda while the European Union (EU) has adopted extensive and expensive integration programs not only on an economic scale but also on a social, cultural and demographic platform.

Again, readers are strongly encouraged to click upon the hyperlink above to read this letter in detail. Some could argue that one of the strengths of the ASEAN community in her current form arises from the fact that there is not a single currency since some could argue that it would be extremely difficult to integrate the, sometimes radically, different economies of the ASEAN region via currency unification. Therefore, this reasoning posits, the creation of a relatively unified market platform in combination with multiple currencies operates as a sort of “best of both worlds” scenario under the current prevailing circumstances. That stated, anything further than simple analysis of the current factual circumstances pertaining to this issue would arguably be an exercise in mere speculation.

It is this blogger’s personal opinion that the issues above are likely to be debated for some time to come while it is hoped that business in China, business in ASEAN, business in Thailand, and business in the United States of America will continue to show growth in coming years.

For related information please see: US Company Registration or Thailand Company Registration.

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1st May 2011

As the world economy continues to re-stratify in ways that have not been predictable, it recently came to this blogger’s attention that recent shareholder voting activity at a local Thai bottling company may have placed the soft drink giant Pepsi upon something of a “back foot”. To quote directly from the official website of Reuters, Reuters.com:

BANGKOK, April 29 (Reuters) – Shareholders in PepsiCo Inc’s Thai bottler, Serm Suk Pcl , voted on Friday to terminate its contracts with the U.S. soft drink maker after more than half a century in business together.

The move means the U.S. giant will have to find other partners to tap growth in the Southeast Asian country of 67 million people. It had no immediate comment.

From an American’s perspective as an observer in the Kingdom of Thailand the re-stratification mentioned above can be best observed by the increasing importance of regional organizations such as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Concurrently, American companies doing business in Thailand and Greater Asia are finding that some jurisdictions have different rules regarding corporate governance when compared to the United States. To continue quoting further from the aforementioned article:

About 99.41 percent of shareholders voted to end the business with PepsiCo. PepsiCo, maker of Pepsi-Cola, Sierra Mist and Tropicana juice, owns 41.54 percent of Serm Suk through Pepsi-Cola (Thai)Trading and Seven-Up Nederland BV. It remains unclear what it will do with this stake.

The administration of this web log recommends readers click upon the hyperlinks above to read further about this story in detail.

It is interesting to note that shareholder voting rights can have a tremendous impact upon the governance of a corporation in Thailand as a Thai Company may be governed by Thai corporate law which can be substantially different in many ways to U.S. law on the same subject matter. For American readers, it should be noted that there may be benefits to be had for US companies in Thailand pursuant to the provisions of the US-Thai Treaty of Amity. That stated, although Amity Treaty Companies may be of benefit to some endeavors not all business activity can be undertaken pursuant to this Treaty. Therefore, those interested in further information on this subject may be best informed by contacting a Thai lawyer.

The ramifications of the shareholder vote noted above may be felt not only by Pepsi, but by others in the soft drink business in the Kingdom of Thailand and Greater Southeast Asia. To quote directly from a recent article entitled SSC Seals Pepsi Divorce from the Business section of the Bangkok Post‘s official website BangkokPost.com:

The transition period could create opportunities for rival Coke and new players such as the fast-rising Peruvian brand Big Cola to steal market share from Pepsi. Thailand has long been one of only a handful of cola markets in the world where Pepsi outsells Coke.

The administration of this web log strongly recommends that readers interested in these topics click upon the hyperlinks above to read further from this insightful article in order to gain insight and perspective on this story and the possible ramifications thereof.

Clearly the reverberations of the recent corporate vote could accrue to the benefit of Pepsi’s competitors within the Thai market. This blogger, simply as a consumer, has noticed what appears to be some increasing popularity for Big Cola mentioned above. This recent popularity may not necessarily mean that this soft drink will take Pepsi’s place as the number one soft drink in Thailand, but the whole incident may go to show the way in which the local Thai soft drink market is beginning to show an increasing taste for novelty. This trend toward novelty is increasingly palpable across much of the Thai economy as consumers are presented with increasing purchasing choices in the Kingdom. Meanwhile, it could be argued that the biggest beneficiary of the recent vote is Pepsi’s major international rival Coca-Cola which might pick up further market share as a result of a possible Pepsi decline.

For related information please see: business in China or US Company Registration.

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17th April 2011

This blogger recently read a rather interesting piece about the future of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). It is becoming increasingly clear that ASEAN will continue to play a key role in the regional politics of Southeast Asia notwithstanding the seemingly ever present role of domestic politics and bi-lateral relationships in all international contexts. To quote directly from a concisely written article by Amitav Acharya, American University, Washington and posted on the website EastAsiaForum.org:

ASEAN’s irrelevance or even death has been predicted several times before. At its birth in 1967, few people thought it would live to see another decade, given that the two previous attempts at regional cooperation in Southeast Asia — the Association of Southeast Asia and the MAPHILINDO (Malaysia, Philippines and Indonesia) concept — ended within a few years after their creation. The Malaysia-Philippines dispute over Sabah in 1969, the aftermath of the US withdrawal from Indochina in 1975, the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia in 1979, the end of the Cold War in 1991 and the outbreak of the Asian financial crisis in 1997, have all been seen as critical blows to ASEAN. But ASEAN not only survived, it actually grew a bit stronger each time. So there is precedent, and hope, that ASEAN will be around in 2030.

But surviving is not the same as thriving. In 2030, ASEAN might keep plodding on, but will it still be a key player in regional peace, stability and prosperity in Asia? This question is more difficult to answer.

Clearly, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has been a steadfast regional organization and seems likely to remain one in the future. It would appear from implications in the above quotation as if there are those who believe that dynamism must be maintained by ASEAN in the future in order to ensure continued prosperity. That stated, deftly maintaining coherent regional policies amidst intra-ASEAN tensions also appears to be of concern:

A second question about ASEAN’s future is what the state of intra-ASEAN relations will be. The ongoing skirmishes on the Thai-Cambodian border do not inspire confidence. Simmering rivalries and mistrust continue to cloud relationships between Singapore and Malaysia, Thailand and Burma, and Malaysia and Thailand. But this is a far cry from the 1960s and 1970s, and there is every reason to hope that these intra-ASEAN conflicts will not doom the organisation. They would need, however, to be managed carefully, especially with the help of existing and new mechanisms that ASEAN is currently seeking to develop.

Meanwhile, it would appear as though looking ahead at all regions of the world the prospects for some nations are not nearly as upbeat as those of ASEAN. It would appear as though tensions are arising in the countries of Saudi Arabia and Iran to the point that some commentators in the United States and on the World Wide Web are dubbing the situation a “New Cold War”.  To quote directly from an article written by Bill Spindle and Margaret Coker and posted on the Wall Street Journal‘s official website WSJ.com:

For all the attention the Mideast protests have received, their most notable impact on the region thus far hasn’t been an upswell of democracy. It has been a dramatic spike in tensions between two geopolitical titans, Iran and Saudi Arabia.

This new Middle East cold war comes complete with its own spy-versus-spy intrigues, disinformation campaigns, shadowy proxy forces, supercharged state rhetoric—and very high stakes.

Those reading this blog are highly encouraged to click on the hyperlinks noted above to read further from what may prove to be an important article. Although the political and economic winds of change tend to move about the global geopolitical landscape incrementally there come times where changes can occur quite rapidly and the unfolding situation in the Middle East would appear to be evolving in unprecedented ways. That stated, if two poles of regional geopolitical power are indeed coalescing, then that would be an issue of interest for all nations throughout the world since such information can have a substantial impact upon trade, economics, and political matters in an international context. Hopefully, the current turbulence will resolve itself toward the maintenance of peace for all concerned, but such a hope may in the end prove to have been optimistic.

For related information please see: US-Thai Treaty of Amity or US Company Registration.

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13th April 2011

Those who have been reading this blog with any degree of regularity may have noticed that the economies, polities, and geopolitics of the world are in something of a state flux. This is not to say that this is either a positive or negative thing as such events occur from time to time. Therefore, astute followers of such events must be careful about making rigid predictions about how such matters will play out in the future. That being stated, it has recently come to this blogger’s attention that representatives from the so-called BRICS countries (an acronym denoting Brazil, Russia, India, China, and, now apparently, South Africa) are  having a summit. To quote directly from a concisely written article by, On Wednesday April 13, 2011, 5:37 am EDT as posted on Yahoo.com:

SANYA, China (AP) — The leaders of the world’s largest emerging economies gather this week in southern China for what could be a watershed moment in their quest for a bigger say in the global financial architecture.

Thursday’s summit comes at a crucial moment for the expanded five-member bloc known as the BRICS, which groups Brazil, Russia, India, China, and, for the first time, South Africa.

Chinese President Hu Jintao, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and South African President Jacob Zuma will attend.

With the G-20 group of major economies seeking to remake parts of the global financial architecture, it’s time for the BRICS to test whether they can overcome internal differences and act as a bloc pursuing common interests.

The ramifications of this meeting could prove historic as the countries noted above, along with those that comprise the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), appear on track to become increasingly economically dynamic in the forthcoming years.     While reading this article, this blogger was especially impressed by this writer’s insightful analysis of the characteristics of the BRICS countries. To continue quoting directly from the aforementioned article:

The five countries are loosely joined by their common status as major fast-growing economies that have been traditionally underrepresented in world economic bodies, such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

All broadly support free trade and oppose protectionism, although China in particular has been accused of erecting barriers to foreign competition. In foreign affairs, they tend toward nonintervention and oppose the use of force: Of the five, only South Africa voted in favor of the Libyan no-fly zone.

At the time of this writing, the summit noted above would appear to be geared mainly toward economic matters or matters pertaining to the economic realm, but how increasing ties among these nations could impact affairs playing out in the international political arena remains to be seen.

On a related note, Stock Exchanges in some of the Nations which compose the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), including Thailand, have recently announced collaborations apparently referred to as ASEAN Brand Identity, an ASEAN Exchanges website, and ASEAN Stars. In following up on that story it would appear that the ASEAN Exchanges website is now live, to quote directly from the website AsiaToday.com:

Launched today was the ASEAN Exchanges website (www.aseanexchanges.org) that will feature the ASEAN Stars and other ASEAN centric products and initiatives giving investors an integrated single-window view into the ASEAN capital market; a market that has a combined market capitalisation of approximately USD1.8 trillion and participation of more than 3,000 companies. Some of these companies are the largest and most dynamic companies in the world including leaders in finance and banking, telecommunications, commodities, automotive manufacturing and other industrial sectors.

The administration of this blog highly recommends that readers click upon the hyperlinks above to learn more details about these issues and the various exchanges within the ASEAN region as the whole Southeast Asia area is quickly becoming a vibrant economic force both on a regional and global level.

Meanwhile, it should be noted that the nation of Laos has recently brought a Lao stock exchange online while Cambodia appears poised to take the same steps soon. Even the developing Union of Myanmar (referred to by some as Burma) has signaled interest in the opening of a Myanmar stock exchange. Whether such a development comes to pass remains to be seen. What is clear is that economic relationships are becoming increasingly stratified as economically dictated by the interests of the players in each of the markets of the world. Those interested in such matters are highly encouraged to conduct their own research and come to their own informed conclusions.

For related information please see: US Company Registration or Company in Thailand.

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8th February 2011

ผู้เขียนบทความนี้เห็นว่า บทความจากหน่วยบริการข่าวรอยเตอร์ซึ่งเจ้าหน้าที่พิเศษของเจเนอรัล อิเล็คทริควิจารณ์เกี่ยวกับสถานการณ์ทางเศรษฐกิจในจีนและผลกระทบต่อความสัมพันธ์ระหว่างสหรัฐอเมริกาและสาธารณรัฐประชาธิปไตยประชาชนจีนทั้งแง่เศรษฐกิจและการเมือง อ้างโดยตรงจากหน่วยบริการข่าวรอยเตอร์

(รอยเตอร์)- สำหรับ เจฟฟ์ อิมเมลท์ ซีอีโอของเจเนอรัล อิเล็คทริค (GE.N) อุตสาหกรรมยักษ์ของสหรัฐอเมริกาที่มีอายุกว่า 130 ปี วิกฤตการณ์ทางการเงินกำลังมาถึงจุดจบของวิกฤตการณ์เศรษฐกิจของสหรัฐอเมริกา

บล็อกเกอร์เห็นว่ามีบางอย่างที่เหมือนกับการมองในแง่ที่ไม่ดีของระบบเศรษฐกิจสหรัฐอเมริกา แม้ว่าปัจจุบันนี้จะก้าวสู่ความวุ่นวายทางเศรษฐกิจและเป็นอยู่ในช่วงระยะเวลาหนึ่งของระบบเศรษฐกิจสหรัฐอเมริกา ผู้เขียนเห็นว่า อเมริกายังคงเป็นประเทศที่ดีที่สุดในโลกในด้านการค้าและเศรษฐกิจ ผู้ที่ดำเนินธุรกิจในสหรัฐอเมริกาอาจจะได้รับสิทธิพิเศษทางด้านการเงิน เศรษฐกิจ และโครงสร้างทางสาธารณูปโภค หวังเป็นอย่างยิ่งว่า มุมมองของอเมริกาในอดีตคงจะไม่ทำให้ระบบเศรษฐกิจของสหรัฐอเมริกาล้มลงอีกครั้งหนึ่ง รอยเตอร์กล่าวต่อไป

แต่นาย อินเมลท์ กล่าวว่า อนาคตจะแตกต่างออกไป อีก 25 ปีข้างหน้า เขากลล่าวว่า “ผู้บริโภคชาวอเมริกัน ไม่ไดด้กลายเป็นแรงขับเคลื่อนของการเติบโตของเศรษฐกิจโลก มันจะกลายแป็นเรื่องคนหลายพันล้านที่เป็นกลุ่มชนชั้นกลางในเอเชีย มันจะกลายเป็นประเทศที่อุดมไปด้วยทรัพยากรธรรมชาติกับการค้นพบความมั่งคั่งของราคาน้ำมันที่สูงขึ้น นั่นเป็นเกม”

ผู้คนจำนวนมากเล่นเกมนี้ในจีน ในขณะนี้เมื่อมีการบังคับในสิทธิของขาวอเมริกันในการจ่ายเงินประกันของสหรัฐอเมริกา นายอินเมลท์ ผู้ที่เป็นรีพลับลิกันมาอย่างยาวนาน เป็นเรื่องราวของข้อเท็จจริงเกี่ยวกับจีนที่ปฏิเสธไม่ได้

ข้อมูลที่เป็นที่น่าสนใจตามที่บล็อกเกอร์อ้างในบทความก่อนหน้านี้ในข้อเท็จจริงที่ว่า ซีอีโอของจีอีอ้าถึงข้อเท็จจริงที่ว่า กลุ่มของชนชั้นกลางในเอเชียกำลังขยายตัวอย่างรวดเร็ว แนวความคิดที่ว่าชนชั้นกลางในเอเชียกว่า 1 พันล้านคนและมากกว่านั้นมีผลกระทบต่อการเติบโตทางเศรษฐกิจ ชาวเอเชียโดยทั่วไปกลายเป็นผู้ที่มีความมั่งคั่งจากผลกระทบที่มีแนวโน้มจะเพิ่มมากกขึ้นทางการค้าและเศรษฐกิจเนื่องจากเป็นสมาชิกใหม่ของชนชั้นกลางที่มีความมั่งคั่งโดยการจับจ่ายสินค้า บริการ (ในเออเชีย ในยุโรป ในสหราชอาณาจักร และในสหรัฐอเมริกา) เรื่องที่สะเทือนอารมณ์ของบทความจากรอยเตอร์คือ:

“กำลังจะกลายเป็นระบบเศรษฐกิจที่ใหญ่ที่สุดในโลก” นายอิมเมลท์กล่าวถึงประเทศจีน “คำถามเดียวก็คือ เมื่อไหร่”

ข้อที่น่าสังเกตประการหนึ่งคือ ประเทศจีนมีอัตราการเติบโตทางเศรษฐกิจที่สูงมากขึ้นและผู้ที่มองหาการลงทุนระหว่างประเทศหรือโอกาสทางธุรกิจนั้นควรจะค้นหาข้อมูลเกี่ยวกับตลาดในจีน อาจกล่าวได้ว่า จีนไม่ได้เป็นเพียงแค่ตัวแทนของเอเชียซึ่งมีโอกาสทางเศรษฐกิจที่รองรับสำหรับนักลงทุนและผู้ลงทุนเนื่องจากโลกาภิวัฒน์ ราชอาณาจักรไทยซึ่งเป็นหนึ่งในสมาชิกของสมาคมประชาชาติแห่งเอเชียตะวันออกเฉียงใต้ (ASEAN) ได้เปิดโอกาสการลงทุนในรูปแบบของทรัพย์สินในไทย อสังหาริมทรัพย์ในไทยและธุรกิจในไทย นอกจากนี้ สำหรับการประกอบการธุรกิจอเมริกันในไทยสามารถที่จะพิสูจน์ผลกำไรได้ตั้งแต่สนธิสัญญาพันธไมตรีไทย-อเมริกันซึ่งอนุญาตให้ชาวอเมริกันเป็นเจ้าของ 100% ในบริษัทไทยพร้อมกับการได้รับใบรับรองตามสนธิสัญญาไทย-อเมริกัน (บางครั้งเรียกว่า บริษัทตามอมิตี้)

ในขณะเดียวกัน ประเทศลาวซึ่งล้อมรอบไปด้วยแผ่นดินได้มีการเปิดตลาดหลักทรัพย์ลาวด้วยความพยายามที่จะเพิ่มทุนในการลงทุน เมื่อเร็วๆนี้ ราชอาณาจักรกัมพูชาได้ประกาศเปิดตลาดหลักทรัพย์กัมพูชาในกลางปี 2011ซึ่งรายงานว่า ทางการพม่าหวังที่จะดำเนินการเปิดตลาดหลักทรัพยเช่นกัน การพัฒนายังคงเป็นสิ่งที่ต้องตระหนักถึงแต่มีตัวอย่างที่ชี้ให้เห็นว่า จีนแผ่นดินใหญ่ไม่เพียงแค่เป็นเกมในเมืองเมื่อมีการเพิ่มโอกาสการลงทุนในเอเชียและการเจริญเติบโต

To view this information in English please see: US Company Registration.

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26th August 2010

Fee Increases for the L1 Visa

Posted by : admin

The United States L-1 visa can be a very useful travel document for those who wish to work in the United States for a multi-national corporation. In recent months, many of the fees associated with visa processing have increased. For example, the Consular Processing fees for the K1 visa and the K3 Visa have risen as demands upon resources required an adjustment of costs payable by customers. Other visa categories were also subjected to fee increases.

The L1 visa is the latest subject of a fee increase as noted by the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) in this quotation from a press release distributed through their network:

WASHINGTON—On Aug. 13, 2010, President Obama signed into law Public Law 111-230, which contains provisions to increase certain H-1B and L-1 petition fees. Effective immediately, Public Law 111-230 requires the submission of an additional fee of $2,000 for certain H-1B petitions and $2,250 for certain L-1A and L-1B petitions postmarked on or after Aug. 14, 2010, and will remain in effect through Sept. 30, 2014.

These additional fees apply to petitioners who employ 50 or more employees in the United States with more than 50 percent of its employees in the United States in H-1B or L (including L-1A, L-1B and L-2) nonimmigrant status. Petitioners meeting these criteria must submit the fee with an H-1B or L-1 petition filed:

• Initially to grant an alien nonimmigrant status described in subparagraph (H)(i)(b) or (L) of section 101(a)(15), or

• To obtain authorization for an alien having such status to change employers. USCIS is in the process of revising the Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker (Form I-129), and instructions to comply with Public Law 111-230.

To facilitate implementation of Public Law 111-230, USCIS recommends that all H-1B, L-1A and L-1B petitioners, as part of the filing packet, include the new fee or a statement of other evidence outlining why this new fee does not apply. USCIS requests that petitioners include a notation of whether the fee is required in bold capital letters at the top of the cover letter. Where USCIS does not receive such explanation and/or documentation with the initial filing, it may issue a Request for Evidence (RFE) to determine whether the petition is covered by the public law. An RFE may be required even if such evidence is submitted, if questions remain. The additional fee, if applicable, is in addition to the base processing fee, the existing Fraud Prevention and Detection Fee, and any applicable American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act of 1998 (ACWIA) fee, needed to file a petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker (Form I-129), as well as any premium processing fees, if applicable.

A Request For Evidence (RFE) is analogous to the 221g refusal in that both are requests for further documentation. These types of requests essentially “freeze” the application or petition until the Petitioner, Beneficiary, or their attorney provides the requested documentation or evidence. That said, waiting too long to respond can cause problems as the case could be deemed to have been abandoned. Generally, such forms are issued when the adjudicating officer feels that further evidence is necessary in order to decide the case.

Those interested in learning more about RFEs and visa refusals should see: US Visa Denial

To learn more about L1 visas in the context of American LLC formation please see: US Company Registration.

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