Government further expresses its intention to smooth the way for foreign investment.
The government has introduced Decree No. 118/2015/ND-CP, providing guidance on the implementation of certain articles of the Law on Investment.
Aside from detailing regulations on business registration procedures and the granting of investment registration certificates under the Law, the new Decree also permits foreign investors to conduct both procedures at the one office.
Before applying for a new or adjusted business registration certificate, foreign investors must declare certain information on their investment projects to the national information system on foreign investment. At the same time, or within 15 working days, foreign investors can submit documents seeking the issuance of or adjustment to a business registration certificate, to investment registration authorities.
“Thus, for the first time, foreign investors doing business in Vietnam have two options,” Mr. Quach Ngoc Tuan, Deputy Head of the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s Legislation Department, told local media. “They can choose to register their investment projects before founding their business, or can handle both procedures simultaneously.”
Once investment registration authorities receive documentation, investors will be provided accounts to access the national information system on foreign investment, so they may track processing. Investors must comply with legal regulations on investment, construction, land, environmental protection, and labor as well as other relevant stipulations as they conduct project implementation.
To ensure project implementation, investors have to pay a security deposit if they are allocated land by the State. For projects with investment capital of up to VND300 billion ($13.3 million), the security deposit will be 3 per cent of the project’s value, 2 per cent for projects worth between VND300 billion ($13.3 million) and VND1 trillion ($44.2 million), and 1 per cent for projects worth more than VND1 trillion.
The process, Mr. Tuan said, is clearly regulated in Decree No. 118, to make it easier for foreign investors.
Vietnam is on the path towards deeper integration, with a number of free trade agreements (FTAs) being signed or under negotiation. All are expected to make a huge contribution to the development of and cooperation between Vietnam and its partner countries. Vietnam’s profile on the regional and international investment map has been enhanced following the conclusion to the TPP negotiations.
“Some of the drivers of robust development in East Asia, including ASEAN and Vietnam, are trade expansion, foreign direct investment (FDI), and the formulation of a production network and supply chain,” Mr. Masahiro Kawai, an expert from the Graduate School of Public Policy at the University of Tokyo, told the Vietnam - Japan Emerging Researchers Forum: “Partnership Opportunities for Vietnam’s Successful Inclusion in the ASEAN Economic Community”, held early this month in Hanoi.
Vietnam, he went on, was at an important stage in attracting a new wave of FDI and deepening its engagement in regional and global value chains.
Over the last year the government has made strenuous efforts to improve its business climate, such as the introduction of a list of 267 conditional business fields attached to the Law on Investment.