ANT Lawyers

Vietnam Law Firm with English Speaking Lawyers

ANT Lawyers

Vietnam Law Firm with English Speaking Lawyers

ANT Lawyers

Vietnam Law Firm with English Speaking Lawyers

ANT Lawyers

Vietnam Law Firm with English Speaking Lawyers

ANT Lawyers

Vietnam Law Firm with English Speaking Lawyers


Vietnam to benefit from sweeping trade deal

Vietnam and 10 other countries including Japan and Canada signed a landmark Asia-Pacific trade pact without the United States last week in what the World Bank said would greatly benefit the Vietnamese economy.

The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) will bring huge economic benefits to Vietnam, according to a World Bank (WB) report released last Friday after 11 Pacific Rim countries signed the agreement in Santiago, Chile.

The report on economic and distribution impacts of the CPTPP showed that the pact will further boost Vietnam’s investment and export-driven growth model. Even under conservative assumptions, the CPTPP would increase Vietnam’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 1.1% by 2030. Assuming a modest boost to productivity, the estimated increase of GDP would amount to 3.5%, said Ousmane Dione, the WB country director for Vietnam.

All workers are expected to benefit from the agreement, especially higher-skilled ones in the top 60% of the income distribution. Moreover, the increase in foreign investments will lead to a further expansion of the service sector and boost productivity growth, said the report.

It is also expected to create opportunities for domestic private firms to integrate into global value chains, promoting the development of small and medium enterprises.

Sebastian Eckardt, the WB chief economist in Vietnam, said the new trade agreement would bring direct benefits to Vietnam from trade liberalization and improved market access. Most importantly, it would help stimulate and accelerate domestic reforms in many areas such as competition, services, customs, e-commerce, environment, government procurement, intellectual property, investment, labor standards and legal issues.

He added that delivering commitments under the CPTPP will promote transparency and support the creation of modern institutions in Vietnam.

The CPTPP was earlier known as Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) from which President Donald Trump withdrew the United States shortly after he was sworn in early last year.

Chilean Minister of Foreign Affairs Heraldo Munoz called the deal a powerful signal against protectionism and trade wars. It is aimed at cutting tariffs among the member countries and removing non-tariff barriers.

The new deal consists of mechanisms to deal with disputes between governments and enterprises which allow firms to file lawsuits against governments if law amendments affect their profits.

The CPTPP comprises Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. The Asian member countries are seen reaping more benefits from the deal.

The Peterson Institute for International Economics estimated the CPTPP would increase Malaysia’s, Singapore’s, Brunei’s and Vietnam’s GDP by 2% by 2030 while the rate will be some 1% for New Zealand, Japan, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Australia.

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said 20 provisions initiated by the U.S. had been suspended in the freshly signed deal. Therefore, it would be hard for the U.S. to re-enter the agreement.

The trade pact is set to take effect in early 2019 after it is ratified by at least six member countries.

Vietnamese Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh said on the ministry’s website that Vietnam commits to open up its market, lift tariff barriers, facilitate trade, and streamline State management of market development.

Through the agreement, he noted, the competitiveness of the Vietnamese economy and businesses will be boosted. 

The pact would facilitate capital flow into Vietnam thanks to reforms in all sectors. Sectors like garment/textile, footwear, food processing, beverage, confectionery, tobacco, wine and beer will benefit most from the deal.

However, the country will have to fulfill its integration commitments, and implement reforms towards sustainable development and higher added value, Anh said.

Before the signing of the CPTPP, some other economies such as Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan and the UK. had expressed interest in joining the trade bloc. Despite the U.S. withdrawal, the CPTPP now accounts for 14% of global GDP and one-sixth of global trade, and involves 500 million consumers, even larger than the European Union’s population.

The agreement retains the high standards, economic significance and integrity of the TPP while ensuring the commercial and other interests of all the signatories. Up to 95-98% of taxes will be exempted as soon as the CPTPP takes effect, instead of five to seven years as stipulated in bilateral trade agreements.

Vo Tri Thanh, former deputy director of the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM), said the CPTPP would force Vietnam to make drastic legal reforms to create a more competitive business environment and prop up its competitiveness.

The 11 members reached a broad agreement lVietnam to benefit from sweeping trade dealast November and ag

Source: The Saigon Times


Japanese firm hopes sun will shine on new solar power plant in Vietnam

The 50-megawatt plant will cost nearly $50 million in Vietnam’s Gia Lai Province.

A Vietnamese electricity company has signed a deal with Japanese engineering company JGC to design and build a 50-megawatt solar power plant.

The deal, signed by Gia Lai Electricity, is estimated to be worth over 5 billion yen ($47.4 million), with the facility to be set up in Gia Lai Province by November, according to the Nikkei Asian Review.

It's the second deal to be signed with Vietnam since the government introduced a feed-in tariff program in March 2017.

Vietnam is accelerating the construction of solar power plants to make up for an anticipated power shortfall due to the recent cancellation of several nuclear power projects.

The government is trying to nurture solar energy as the country's main source of electrical output. Solar power currently accounts for 0.01 percent of the country's total power output, but the government plans to increase the ratio to 3.3 percent by 2030 and 20 percent by 2050.

The cost of solar panels is falling, and the government is expected to introduce a system of buying excess solar power.

The Vietnamese government had planned to build two nuclear power plants with Russia and Japan, but the plan was cancelled in November 2016 due to the hefty up-front costs of several billion dollars for each reactor.

Investing in renewable energy is an emerging trend in Vietnam, and projects worth billions of dollars have been registered across the country.

An increasing demand for energy and limited reserves of fossil fuels are the first reasons for this new investment trend in Vietnam, said Nguyen Anh Tuan, a senior energy official at the industry and trade ministry.

With the development of new technologies, the cost of producing clean energy has dropped from VND3,500 to VND2,200-2,500 per kilowatt-hour (kWh), Tuan said.

He added that government incentives for solar power projects are another reason for this trend. The government has raised its buying price from 7.8 to 9.35 U.S. cents/kWh, while offering investors tax breaks and cutting land use fees.

Vietnam currently relies mainly on coal and hydroelectric power generation. The country is aiming to produce 10.7 percent of its total electricity through renewable energy by 2030, mainly through solar and wind energy, up from the 6 percent as previously planned.

Source: evnexpress

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Intellectual Property remains a big challenge for Vietnam under CPTPP

At an informal meeting of representatives from 11 countries (without US) taking place on the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) dated on November 10th, 2017, the parties agreed to change from Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) to the Comprehensive and Progressive Partnership for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Accordingly, the CPTPP contains 8,000 pages of documents, but only 20 articles of the TPP agreement, including 10 articles related to intellectual property (IP) and 4 points are reserved for the parties to negotiate in next time. Each member will list its delimited list of restrictions of their country.

According to the Vietnam Minister of Industry and Trade, CPTPP still guarantees a quality agreement like TPP-12, while ensuring new equilibria for member countries. The content of the CPTPP is not only about trade, investment, but also on intellectual property (albeit temporarily postponed) and other broad areas.

With CPTPP, Vietnam may not be the most beneficiary country like the proposed TPP, but it is still very important, because it brings together many of the criteria associated with reform, particularly institutional reform, improving the investment climate, business.

Vietnam law on Intellectual Properties will need to be amended because the legal system of Vietnam’s IP is not consistent with the legal system of developed countries. The Law on Intellectual Property of Vietnam, after many proposals, has not yet been approved by the National Assembly. Meanwhile, the amended Law on Technology Transfer, though approved in June 2017, still lacks specific guidelines on technology transfer.

Intellectual property rights in the TPP not only contain general provisions and requirements relating to areas of cooperation, patents, test data, designs, trademarks, geographical indications or copyright but also focuses on the legal enforcement of this right by nations.

The CPTPP is based on agreed commitments at the TPP, which are particularly important in paving the way for Vietnamese goods to penetrate into the members’ markets.


Foreign investors register to invest 1.25 billion USD in January

Foreign investors registered to invest nearly 1.25 billion USD in Vietnam in January, which will include funding for new projects, in addition to existing projects and buying stakes in projects, which will equal 75.9 percent, compared to the same period last year.

In January, the disbursement of foreign direct investment (FDI) saw a positive increase of 10.5 percent to 1.05 billion USD year on year, according to statistics from the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s Foreign Investment Agency.

A number of large projects were granted licences during the month, including Kefico Vietnam Company Ltd, which was allowed to add 120 million USD in investment capital; Vina Cell Technology Company Ltd, which added 100 million USD; the Nam Dinh Ramatex Textile and Garment Factory project with total capital of 80 million USD in Nam Dinh province, funded by a Singapore investor; and Jotun Paint Company Ltd in HCM City, invested by a Norwegian investor with funds of 70 million USD.

Out of 125 countries and territories with FDI projects in Vietnam, the Republic of Korea was the most significant investor with 58.1 billion USD, accounting for 18.1 percent of total capital. Japan was in second place with 49.46 billion USD at 15.4 percent, followed by Singapore, Taiwan, Britishvirgin Island and Hong Kong.

In terms of investment in foreign countries, Vietnam granted licences for investments in foreign countries for six projects in January, with a total investment capital of 6.46 million USD.

Three of these projects were in retail and wholesale areas, while the remainders were in the fields of processing and manufacturing, residential services and science and technology.

The projects are being conducted in Canada, Campuchia, New Zealand, Germany, Belize and Myanmar.

- dtinews -

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Penalties on Working Without Work Permit in Vietnam

Vietnam has become an attractive destination for foreigner investors due to the impressive development of socio – economic in recent years. This is such a good opportunity for Vietnamese enterprises to get cooperation in business with foreign partners.

To take advantage of the opportunities to be the pioneer and market share, many of them have demand in employees with good skills and qualifications. To meet these requirements, more and more companies hire foreign workers for specific positions which might lack of human resources within Vietnam territory.

According to Labor Code 2012, the employer wishing to recruit the foreign workers has to explain their labor demand to the People’s Committee of provinces and obtain written approval from this agency. Pursuant to this written approval, the employer shall submit the application for the work permit to the Department of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs of the province where the planned working place of such foreign workers is located.
Work permit in Vietnam
A foreign citizen wishing to work in Vietnam must fully meet the following conditions:
Possessing full civil act capacity;

Possessing technical and professional qualifications and skills and health appropriate to the work requirement;

Not being a criminal or subject to penal liability examination according to Vietnamese and foreign laws;

Possessing a work permit granted by a competent Vietnamese state agency, except the cases specified in Labor Code.

Therefore, based on regulations of the Labor Code of Vietnam, except for the foreign citizens exempted from work permit i.e. investor of company established in Vietnam, all of cases the foreign citizens wishing to work in Vietnam shall be subject to work permit application. A foreign employee shall produce his/her work permit when carrying out immigration procedures or upon request of a competent state agency.

In case foreign citizens who do not belong to work permit exemption being found working in Vietnam without work permit, that person shall be considered violation of the law of Vietnam. In addition, the employer that uses the violated employee without work permit shall be punished accordingly.

According to Decree No. 95/2013/ND-CP amendments to the government’s Decree No. 95/2013/ND-CP dated August 22, 2013 on Penalties for administrative violations against regulations on employment, social insurance, social insurance, and Vietnamese guest workers:

i) Foreign citizen that working without work permits, except for the cases in which the work permit is exempt shall be expelled.

ii) Employers who employ foreign workers in Vietnam without work permits or certificates of exemption from work permits, or employ foreign workers using expired work permits shall be implied:

a. A fine from VND 30,000,000 to VND 45,000,000 if the violation involves 01 – 10 workers;

b. A fine From VND 45,000,000 to VND 60,000,000 if the violation involves 11 – 20 workers;

c. A fine From VND 60,000,000 to VND 75,000,000 if the violation involves more than 20 workers;

Additional penalty: The employer who commits the violation mentioned herein shall have its operation suspended for 1 – 3 months.

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From January 1, 2018, the license for import business is legally required for automobiles vehicle import

This is one of the provisions laid down in the Decree No. 116/2017/ND-CP prescribing statutory conditions for manufacture, assembly, import of automobiles vehicles and trade in automobiles vehicle maintenance and repair services.
Pursuant to this Decree, from January 1, 2018, enterprises will be allowed to import automobiles vehicles only if they satisfy statutory conditions and have already obtained the license for automobiles vehicle import business in accordance with applicable regulations. 

In order to obtain this license, enterprises are required to:
- Legally own, contractually lease or authorize automobiles vehicle servicing premises that conform to prescribed requirements.
- Have a confirmation or document evidencing that they are entrusted to act on behalf of foreign automotive manufacturing and assembling enterprises to recall automobiles vehicles imported in Vietnam.
Application documentation for the license is discussed in detail in the Decree No. 116/2017/ND-CP set to commence on October 1, 2017.
Source: Thuvienphapluat .vn
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Regulations on items not subject to VAT amended

This is one of the highlights of the Decree No. 146/2017/ND-CP amending the Decree No. 100/2016/ND-CP and the Decree No. 12/2015/ND-CP on Value-Added Tax (VAT) and Corporate Income Tax (CIT).

- They are mineral resources which have yet to be processed or transformed into other products;
- They are goods which are made directly from main materials that are mineral resources, and which have the aggregation of value of such mineral resources plus the energy cost that accounts for at least 51% of their production cost, except to the extent that:     
+ Such exported products are finished products produced from other intermediate products which are made from mineral resources.
These mineral resources may be directly extracted and processed into, or purchased for further production of, or processed by hiring other toll manufacturers into, exported products, by business establishments.    
+ Such exported products are final products made from main materials which are other than mineral resources (these mineral resources have been processed into other products).
The Decree No. 146/2017/ND-CP is set to commence on February 1, 2018.
Source: Thuvienphapluat .vn
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