Doing Business in Vietnam and Thailand: Southeast Asia's Dynamic Economic Powerhouses

December 14, 2022
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Doing Business in Vietnam and Thailand: Southeast Asia's Dynamic Economic Powerhouses


Companies interested in doing business in Vietnam and Thailand are invited to join experts for an exciting presentation on the region’s latest trends on Dec. 14th from 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m..

Conference speakers and business experts will provide an overview of the opportunities and challenges of doing business in Thailand and neighboring Vietnam. As the two most promising and fastest-growing nations in Southeast Asia, you will learn why they have a rising demand for U.S.-made products, services, and technologies. You will also hear how Thailand and Vietnam have become fully integrated into the global supply chain.

With a 2021 GDP of $506 billion, Thailand is the second-largest economy in Southeast Asia, serving as the epicenter for the automotive industry. The nation’s free market reforms are highlighted by its 14 preferential trade agreements with 18 countries worldwide. With a population of 70 million, Thailand’s largest trade partner today is the U.S. Respectively, Vietnam has seen its GDP rise faster than any country except China, averaging 6.2% annual growth since 2000. Its population of 100 million includes a growing middle class of consumers with strong demand for U.S. exports. In addition, the nation boasts a young and highly- skilled labor force that serves as an alternative to manufacturing in China. Similar to Thailand, Vietnam is a signatory to 12 free-trade agreements (including the EU) that provides the nation with access to numerous markets around the world.


8:30 a.m. Welcome and Introductions, Noel Nevshehir, Automation Alley
8:40 a.m. Market Overview of Thailand and Vietnam, Jennifer Moll, U.S. Commercial Service in East Michigan
9:15 a.m. Speaker Panel Featuring Case Studies on the Opportunities and Challenges of Doing Business in Thailand and Vietnam, Robert Ruffini, Fluxtrol; Yannick Greiner, Truck Hero
10:05 a.m. Support for Michigan Exports, Weiwei Lu, Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)
10:15 a.m. Q&A
10:30 a.m. Meeting adjourned


Noel Nevsheir

As director of Automation Alley's International Business Services and Global Strategic Partnerships, Noel's responsibilities include assisting SMEs become globally competitive by expanding their markets overseas. He identifies countries with a high demand for Michigan-made products, services and technologies and leads trade missions around the world where U.S. companies have an opportunity to meet with potential buyers, end users and other potential business partners. Noel is also director of Global Strategic Partnerships and helps companies bridge the gap between the digital and physical world's while keeping pace with the rapid transformation in manufacturing today. Under Noel’s leadership, Automation Alley received both the President's "E Star" Award from President Obama in 2013 and the President’s “E” Award from President George W. Bush in 2008---the nation’s highest, most prestigious international trade awards granted to organizations in recognition of their accomplishments in global trade and economic development. A citizen of the UK and US, Noel graduated with distinction from the University of Michigan with bachelor degrees in economics and Russian studies. He also received a master's degree with honors from the London School of Economics in international business and economic development; and a doctorate in Chinese-Russian studies from the University of Michigan. Nevshehir's cross-cultural experiences include having worked, studied, lived, and/or traveled to over 81 countires. Language skills include Russian and Spanish. Married to Kim, they have a daughter, Victoria.

Robert Ruffini, President, Fluxtrol Inc.

Since graduating from Michigan State University (B.Sc. ’90), Robert has been employed at Fluxtrol, Inc. He has more than twenty-five years experience in the field of advanced induction heating technology. Robert is primarily responsible for new business development and specializes in international sales and marketing. He has co-authored several US patents, over 50 technical papers and travelled for business to more than 40 countries. He lectured extensively throughout Asia, Europe, India, and Americas on advanced design of induction heating processes and tooling. He is a member of Automation Alley’s International Business Services Advisory Council, Eastern Michigan District Export Council (EMDEC), and American Society of Metals (ASM).

Jennifer Moll

Jennifer Moll is the Director of the U.S. Commercial Service in East Michigan, which is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration (ITA). She joined the organization in January 2001 and directs offices in Detroit and Pontiac, Michigan. Jennifer began her Commerce career at the agency’s headquarters in Washington, D.C. where she served as the higher education specialist in the Office of Service Industries and represented the Department on Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR)-led services negotiating teams for bilateral free trade agreements. As part of the Commercial Service, she and her team leverage their strong overseas network to help Michigan businesses grow their exports and compete globally while creating jobs at home. She is an active member of the Commercial Service’s Global Automotive and Smart Mobility and Global Education & Training Services Teams. Jennifer also serves as Executive Secretary for the East Michigan District Export Council (DEC). She earned a bachelor’s degree in Comparative Area studies from Duke University, where she was a member of the Varsity Women’s Tennis Team for four years, and a master’s degree in International Law/Conflict Management and International Economics from The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in Washington, D.C.. Jennifer resides in the Detroit area with her husband and two children.

Yannick Greiner

International Sales Director, Truck Hero

Weiwei Lu

International Trade Development Manager, Michigan Economic Development Center (MEDC)


Wednesday, December 14, 2022

08:30 AM - 10:30 AM


Automation Alley

2675 Bellingham, Troy, MI

Virtual Attendee - $0

In person - $0

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