Legal & Regulatory

Understanding Vietnam’s Import and Export Regulations

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By Hoang Thu Huyen and Edward Barbour-Lacey

Once an investor has set up their trading company within Vietnam, it is important that their workers gain a strong understanding of the country’s import and export regulations and procedures. Below we lay out the key takeaways that companies must be aware of before starting their trading activities in Vietnam.

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How to Establish a Trading Company in Vietnam

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By Hoang Thu Huyen and Edward Barbour-Lacey, HCMC Office

HCMC – If a business wishes to engage in import and export activities as well as domestic distribution (i.e., retail, wholesale, and franchising trade activities) in Vietnam, the most common method chosen is establishing a trading company.

Generally, a trading company is inexpensive to establish and can be of great assistance to foreign investors by combining both sourcing and quality control activities with purchasing and export facilities, thus providing more control and quicker reaction times compared to sourcing purely while based overseas.

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Vietnam Regulatory Brief: Tax, Customs, and Bankruptcy

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LOGO for reg brief 

Of the many laws and regulations which came into effect at the beginning of 2015, Vietnam Briefing has selected three with significant relevance to foreign investors in the country or who are interested in entering. Wide-scale tax reforms have been implemented, along with changes to customs and bankruptcy procedures.

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Hanoi Reduces Application Time for Business Registration Certificates

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HANOI – Vietnam’s capital, Hanoi, has implemented a plan to reduce the time needed to obtain a Business Registration Certificate to within three days of receiving the application, instead of the previous 10 days. Although this change will only initially apply to Vietnamese enterprises, the definition of Vietnamese enterprises was changed recently to allow them to have foreign ownership. Hanoi is the first city in the country to implement this program.

The change in registration time is part of the new regulations laid out in the new Law on Enterprises 2014, which will go into full effect on July 1. Hanoi has taken the bold choice of implementing the changes earlier in hopes of boosting its attractiveness to investors.  In July, the rest of the country will have to follow suit and shorten their registration times. 

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State Bank of Vietnam Issues New Regulations for 2015

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHANOI – The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) has issued a number of regulations for 2015. These new laws, which seek to help the country achieve its economic growth targets in 2015, touch on areas such as foreign currency loans, reducing bad debts, and money laundering.

Through Circular 43/2014/TT-NHNN, the SBV has extended permission for credit institutions to offer short-term foreign currency loans until the end of 2015. Circular 43 replaces Circular 29/2013/TT-NHNN, which expired at the end of 2014.

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Key Changes to Vietnam’s Laws on Enterprises and Investment in 2015

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HANOI – Vietnam’s National Assembly has voted to adopt updated versions of the country’s Law on Investment and Law on Enterprises. The new laws are slated to come into effect on July 1, 2015 and will replace the original laws passed in 2005.

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Transferring Capital and Profit Into and Out of Vietnam

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By Edward Barbour-Lacey

HCMC – Foreign exchange control is a paramount concern of all foreign investors entering into Vietnam, as regulations on capital inflows and outflows have a great influence on operations and profit.

Foreign exchange control includes transferring capital into and out of the country, opening and using bank accounts, borrowing foreign loans and paying foreign debts, dealing with currency exchanges, government reporting, and handling violations.

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A Foreign Investor’s Guide to Understanding Intellectual Property in Vietnam

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By Edward Barbour-Lacey

HCMC – Intellectual property (IP) is a key concern for every business, no matter where they are operating. This is no less true in Vietnam – while the country is signatory to numerous IP conventions, there are still many reasons for foreign companies operating there to keep a close eye out for IP violations.  Therefore, it is crucial that foreign investors have a clear understanding of how IP operates in Vietnam and what possible recourses are available should they find themselves dealing with a violation of their property.

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Vietnam PM Calls for the Replacement of the Red Seal for Businesses

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HANOI – Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has publicly announced that the mandatory use of corporate stamps should be amended and the government should “move towards replacing the seals with handwritten and digital signatures.” The PM made the comments during a meeting with the country’s Minister of Planning and Investment.

PM Dung’s proposal has been added to a draft amendment to the corporate law and will be considered during the upcoming session of Vietnam’s National Assembly, which is scheduled to last from October 19 to November 28.

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Key Steps for Setting Up a Business in Vietnam

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HCMC – Establishing a business in Vietnam is not simple, there are a number of important steps that must be taken in order to ensure proper compliance with the country’s laws.  Key among these processes are the acquiring of an Investment Certificate, charter capital, and establishing the correct management structure of the company.

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