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* The annual Vietnam Human Resources Day, the largest open forum for the HR community, will be held in Ho Chi Minh City's White Palace Convention Center on October 31. This year's event, themed "HR strategies in new landscapes," will focus on the areas of executive search market, HR management practices at the time of WTO entry and the post recession economy. The event will also be held in Hanoi on November 11.

* The value of dollars held in Vietnam's unofficial markets is estimated at between US$9 billion and $10 billion, equivalent to the country's foreign currency reserves, said Cao Sy Kiem, a former central bank governor. Measures are needed to balance supply and demand, reducing the hoarding of greenbacks.

* Local property company Vincom JSC said it will close its stock trading business in Hanoi due to poor performance. "The decision to narrow the finance-securities business and focus on real estate has been considered carefully," news website VnExpress quoted Vincom Chairman Le Khac Hiep as saying. The company will continue operating its securities firm, VincomSC, in HCMC.

* Pledged foreign direct investment in Vietnam dropped by 42 percent in the January-toOctober period from a year earlier, making it hard for the country to meet its target of attracting $22 billion to $25 billion for the whole year. Of the total $12.79 billion committed foreign investment in the first 10 months, $2.23 billion was from the Netherlands, the Vietnam Economic Times reported, citing figures from the Foreign Investment Agency.

* Vietnam aims for total exports to reach $70 billion this year, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade. Exports rose 23.3 percent to $57.78 billion in the 10 months to October, according to figures released by the General Statistics Office on Monday.

* The Japan Bank for International Cooperation has set aside $4 billion to invest in renewable energy and carbon projects in the two years through March 2013 to help Japan offset its emissions. The selected projects will be developed in Laos, Vietnam, Indonesia, Mexico, Malaysia, Thailand, Maldives and China, according to a statement by Japan's trade ministry.

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