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Cablegate: Ambassador's Meeting with Finance Minister: Adoption Fees

VZCZCXRO1179
PP RUEHHM
DE RUEHHI #0937 1411046
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 211046Z MAY 07
FM AMEMBASSY HANOI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5420
INFO RUEHHM/AMCONSUL HO CHI MINH 3068

UNCLAS HANOI 000937

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR CA/OCS, CA/OCS/CI, CA/OCS/ACS/EAP, CA/OCS/PRI,
CA/FPP, CA/VO/F/P, EAP/BCLTV, AND L/EAP
HO CHI MINH CITY FOR CONS AND DHS OIC

SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED
SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CASC CIVS KOCI PREL ECON VM
SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR'S MEETING WITH FINANCE MINISTER: ADOPTION FEES


(U) THIS CABLE IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED. NOT FOR INTERNET.

REF: (a) HANOI 932, (b) State 26801, (c) Hanoi 641

1. (U) This message reports the content of the Ambassador's meeting
with Vietnam's Minister of Finance regarding the lack of a published
fee schedule for inter-country adoptions. The discussion was held
May 17 and was part of a lengthier agenda (ref a).

2. (SBU) Background: The adoption fee issue is still pending from
the U.S.-Vietnam 2005 agreement on intercountry adoptions. Vietnam
has not delivered on its commitment to promulgate a public schedule
of adoption fees nor has it issued a comprehensive list of for-fee
services. The adoption fee schedule was contemplated as an interim
measure pending issuance of the comprehensive list. Earlier this
year, A/S Harty requested Post to demarche GVN officials on issues
related to implementation of the 2005 agreement (ref b). The
Ambassador has already raised key points with the Office of
Government (Prime Minister's Office) - ref b. This interaction is
another part of our multi-faceted effort.

3. (SBU) The Ambassador's Presentation: The Ambassador went into
detail on this issue, explaining discussions leading to the 2005
bilateral agreement and his recent efforts to spur the Office of
Government into taking action. Noting that lack of a comprehensive
schedule of fees threatened to undermine the adoption process, the
Ambassador asked Minister Vu Van Ninh to commit to a date by which a
public schedule of fees would be issued.

4. (SBU) Minister Ninh asked for time to study the issue. He
agreed the fees should be published, as promised, but stated that
all public fees charged in Vietnam were under review. He provided
no specifics on when we might see an actual published fee schedule
for adoptions.

5. (SBU) Next Steps: The Ambassador will include this topic in a
planned follow-up letter to the Minister regarding this and other
outstanding issues. We will continue to look for opportunities to
remind the GVN of its commitment to publish a schedule of adoption
fees.

MARINE

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