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Cablegate: Due Diligence: Microsoft 2007 Award for Corporate

VZCZCXRO8620
RR RUEHHM
DE RUEHHI #1451 2251734
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 131734Z AUG 07
FM AMEMBASSY HANOI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 6089
INFO RUEHHM/AMCONSUL HO CHI MINH 3526

UNCLAS HANOI 001451

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT FOR EAP/MLS AND EEB/EPPD NSMITH-NISSLEY
USDOC FOR 4431/MAC/AP/OPB/VLC/HPPHO

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: AMGT BEXP ECON ELAB ETRD KSEP SENV
SUBJECT: DUE DILIGENCE: MICROSOFT 2007 AWARD FOR CORPORATE
EXCELLENCE

REF: STATE 109403

1. (SBU) Could there possibly be any downside or embarrassment
caused by the selection of your post's nominee?

Embassy Vietnam is not aware of any information that might prove
embarrassing to Post, to the U.S. Department of State, or to the USG
with regard to the nomination of Microsoft for this award.

2. (SBU) Do you have any information concerning job creation in the
United States resulting from the operations of the company you
nominated?

Microsoft had 20,561 employees in 1996. In 2007, the company
employs over 76,000 employees worldwide with 46,700 employees in the
United States. Microsoft is a leading software developer whose
bread and butter is its intellectual property. By expanding its
activities in Vietnam, it is promoting the export of U.S.-origin
product, which creates jobs, directly and indirectly, in the United
States. Just recently, Microsoft concluded an agreement with the
Government of Vietnam (GVN) under which government offices will buy
legitimate software from Microsoft for hundreds of thousands of
computers. While this means a direct increase in sales for the
company, Microsoft's success has wider implications for all U.S. IPR
interests because it shows the GVN can improve the situation for IPR
when there is political will.

3. (SBU) What is your assessment of the company's trade and
investment activities with regard to helping stimulate economic
growth in the U.S. and increasing American exports
(what is the U.S. content of its products)?

In 2006, Microsoft earned $12.6 billion on global revenues of $44.28
billion. Microsoft is the world's leading software developer with
products such as Microsoft Office, Windows XP, and Windows Vista.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft has played a major role in establishing
the global dominance of the U.S. software and information technology
sectors.

4. (SBU) What is the state of labor conditions in the company's
facilities and are workers unionized?

Labor conditions are generally excellent for Microsoft Asia Pacific
employees. Microsoft Vietnam employees are nonunion. The company
has low employee turnover, pays high wages (typically $1000-$1500
per month for a mid-level manager), and has employee benefits that
include health insurance, education reimbursement, and work/life
balance considerations.

5. (SBU) Are you aware of any litigation pending in local courts
involving the company?

Post is not aware of any Microsoft-related litigation pending in
local courts.

6. (SBU) Please confirm that the Chief of Mission and others
involved in the nominating process do not hold shares of stock or
have other financial interests in the company.

Neither the Chief of Mission nor others involved in the nominating
process hold shares of Microsoft stock or have other financial
interests in the company.

MARINE

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