From: lien journo [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Monday, July 20, 2015 10:36 AM
To: Lars Erickson; Spector, Stephen I. EOP; Gleeson, James M. EOP
Subject: The pool for the Second Lady's visit
The press was allowed into consul general Rena Bitter's residence at about 7:36 p.m. Monday 20 July 2015, after second lady Jill Biden had shaken hands with young entrepreneurs invited for the evening. They were on the patio of the 12th floor on a clear night with wine and appetizers. Ambassador Ted Osius gave an introduction:
"Xin chao cac ban, toi rat vui vi cac ban co tai day hom nay." (Hello friends, I'm so happy you're all here today.)
"I wanted to thank Rena for so graciously opening her home to all of us this evening. It's a great pleasure to be up on this beautiful roof on a beautiful evening, and to see this magnificent city."
The ambassador thanked officials who attended
"Dr. Biden's visit is occurring on the heels of a very successful visit by tong bi thu (communist party secretary) Nguyen Phu Trong to the United States. It was an historic visit, an exciting one, and it's a good time in the relationship. So the timing of it is quite wonderful, we think. I wear this button, we're continuing to celebrate the 20th anniversary, we've been celebrating it all year long. It's during this important historic year that visits like those by Dr Biden that I think are really a testimony to the ever strengthening bilateral relationship between our two nations. And I also wanted to thank each of you for attending tonight's celebration. All of you are contributing to a sustainable economic success of Vietnam through your unique ideas, through your entrepreneurial drive, and your ability not only to manage successful commercial enterprises, but also to enhance and strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem that Rena mentioned is integral I think to the continued economic development of Vietnam. The United States is committed to ensuring a strong and prosperous Vietnam. And in order for that to continue, it's very important that innovation and entrepreneurship continue, that they are key elements that will drive Vietnam's sustainable prosperity. So that's why we feel this evening and your presence is so, so important."
"So one more line in Vietnamese, and that is: 'Con hon cha la nha co phuc.' In English, this translates roughly, when a father has been surpassed by his child, a family is blessed. And I think this saying is particularly applicable to this crowd. The young entrepreneurs who are harnessing new technologies, who are creating innovative products, who are driving the Vietnamese economy forward and are benefiting all of society."
He introduced Biden, who had changed into a black evening gown and colorful shawl:
"I'm going to try a little bit myself, I'm just going to say, 'Xin chao.' (applause). So we got here, our delegation got here yesterday, we went into Hanoi and we've done so many events. We, this morning we visited an orphanage with children with HIV/AIDS and looked at the classroom lesson that they were going through. And last night we met with students who have disabilities and listened to some of the training that they're going through to get jobs. And since you're all entrepreneurs, I hope you will be hiring students with disabilities. And the ambassador had us to his residence and we had a reception there. And let's see what else did we do. Oh well today yes, we went to one of your businesses, to Vy's business and toured her amazing workspace where, and watched all the processes of her business. I think we were all amazed at how much she's accomplished. I've heard your stories when you came up to take pictures and really you are such an incredible group of young men and women and I think it's just amazing what really you have done here in Vietnam. And also I spoke to Thuy today on the plane and she told me about the Fulbright University in Vietnam. And as an educator you can imagine that's near and dear to my heart. And it just sounds like a really wonderful partnership that you're bringing here. And I look forward to seeing how that gets off the ground and to all the students who are enrolled."
Comments from the entrepreneurs:
Hoang Linh (male), on the board of directors of Viet Youth Enterprises (VYE), an NGO that supports start-ups, said VYE has bootcamps to teach business people who to do marketing, sales, product development, networking, and business plans:
"Personally I really believe in the young people. I see the young students very eager to learn new things and very diligent and creative and looking for new opportunities. I think it's a gene, what motivates everything."
Mike Tran, CEO of Ticketbox, studied in Canada, said Vietnamese can compete regionally, not just domestically:
"In Vietnam, what I see is there are two generations, one who studied abroad and one local. Those who study abroad are exposed to big companies, big corporations, expanding from regional to global. Those who study here only think about Vietnam. They think expanding to different markets is so hard.