3 Things About Vietnam’s Updated Legal Framework for Biomass Power Projects

Despite abundantly available biomass feedstock of agricultural origin, ranging from sugar bagasse, wood chip to rice husks and stalks, biomass as a source of renewable energy does not seem to have received the same amount of attention from the government of Vietnam as solar or wind power. It took the government more than six years to acknowledge the modest results of the current incentives package and adopt measures to give a new push to the development of biomass power plants. This was done on 5 March 2020 when the Prime Minister issued Decision No. 08/2020/QD-TTg (“Decision 08“) amending Decision No. 24/2014/QD-TTg dated 24 March 2014 (“Decision 24“) on support mechanisms for the development of biomass power projects in Vietnam. Decision 08 introduces a number of important changes which will take effect on 25 April 2020.

Increase of the Feed-in-Tariffs (“FiT”)

The FiT for electricity produced by combined heat and power (“CHP”) biomass power plants will increase from USD 5.8 cents per kWh to USD 7.03 cents (VND 1,634) per kWh.

The government has also abandoned the use of avoided cost schedules (calculated based on the cost of electricity produced by coal-fired power plants) published annually for determination of the electricity purchase price from non-CHP biomass electricity producers. The FiT for these projects is set at USD 8.47 cents (VND 1,968).

The FiTs are exclusive of value-added tax and are adjusted according to USD/VND exchange rate. The new FiTs will be also benefit the biomass power projects which have started operating before 5 March 2020 for the remaining terms of their power purchase agreements (“PPAs”).

Technical standards for electricity generation equipment

Decision 08 introduces a new requirement to comply with technical standards applicable to biomass electricity generation equipment and quality norms applicable to electricity produced by biomass power plants. Similar requirements already exist in recent regulations applicable to solar and wind power projects. The technical standards and norms will be elaborated by the Ministry of Industry and Trade (“MOIT”) which is also responsible for the issuance of a new model PPA for biomass projects.

Possibility of alternative off-takers

Under Decision 08 Electricity of Vietnam (“EVN”) (directly or through its authorised group entities) remains the sole off-taker of the electricity generated using biomass. However, the new decision also opens the door to “organisations assuming the rights and obligations” of EVN (or its relevant group entities) to become biomass electricity off-takers. This new development is in line with the government’s road-map for the liberalisation of Vietnam’s electricity markets (wholesale and then retail) by 2025. It is not clear whether this would improve the bankability of biomass PPAs, since EVN, as a State-owned enterprise, still enjoys strong government support while such backing may not be available to other off-takers in the future.

The possibility of selling electricity produced by biomass power plants directly to end users is not contemplated by the government at this stage. A recently published draft regulation on pilot Direct PPAs does not seem to include biomass power projects.

The hope is that above changes will make biomass power projects more attractive for investors. Whether the government’s target to increase the share of electricity produced from biomass to 2.1 percent of the total generated electricity by 2030 set out in the Revised Power Development Master Plan VII is achievable still depends a great deal on the new biomass PPA and technical requirements for biomass power projects to be issued by the MOIT in the coming months.

 

 

 

 

 

 

L’impact de l’initiative “La Nouvelle Route de la Soie” sur le développement de l’infrastructure au Vietnam

Peu abordé au Vietnam, “La Nouvelle Route de la Soie” est le sujet de ma présentation lors d’un colloque sur les PPP organisé par la Chambre de Commerce et d’Industrie France-Vietnam et L’Association des Juristes en Coopération Economique et Affaires Internationales (AJCEAI) le 2 mai 2018 à l’Institut Français de Hanoi. OBOR-Vietnam Infrastructures-AJCEI-2018-05-02-S

Revolve, Rollover and Refinance: New Lending Rules in Vietnam

Revolve, Rollover and Refinance: New Lending Rules in Vietnam

A few years ago the State Bank of Vietnam (“SBV”) started the custom of celebrating the new year by firing a salvo of new regulations during the last working days of the year.  This time it was no different, except that the salvo lasted beyond the Lunar New Year holidays.  On 9 February 2017, the SBV released on its website the last two circulars of 2016 dated 30 December.  The new regulations are of great importance for the country’s banking system and the economy at large as they aim to overhaul the regulatory framework applicable to lending activities of credit institutions[1] and foreign bank branches in Vietnam (hereafter, banks).  Although, it will take some time for banks and their clients to fully assess the impact of the new lending regime, we believe the following three changes introduced by the first of the two circulars – Circular 39/2016/TT-NHNN on credit activities of credit institutions and foreign bank branches (“Circular 39”) – are the most significant.

Revolving loans and rollover of loans.  Despite being quite common in other markets, these two very common international banking practices were not formally permitted in Vietnam.  Circular 39 will allow borrowers having business cycles not exceeding one (1) month to obtain revolving loan facilities from banks for up to three (3) months.  Rollovers will also be possible provided that the borrower does not have non-performing loans and the total tenor of the rolled over loan does not exceed 12 months following the initial disbursement and does not exceed one business cycle of the borrower.

Refinancing.  Similarly to revolving loans or rollover of loans, refinancing was not allowed in Vietnam in the past.  Limited refinancing of cross-border loans was first authorised in 2014[2]. Circular 39 will now allow refinancing of domestic loans as well, provided that all the following conditions are met: (i) the refinanced loans were extended for business purposes (consumer loans remain therefore excluded from refinancing); (ii) the maturity of the refinancing must not exceed the residual tenor of the loans being refinanced; and (iii) the refinanced loans have not been restructured.  Importantly, it is still prohibited for a bank to extend a new loan to refinance another loan granted by the same bank.

Enhanced lenders rights. Circular 39 makes an effort to reinforce the protection of banks as creditors.  For instance, they will now have the right to continue the recovery of unpaid loans even after exhausting all agreed loan recovery methods (e.g. sale of secured assets).  Banks will have the right to claim compensation for damage caused by breaches of loan contracts in addition to penalty interest payments (provided that the principle of compensation for damage caused by breach of contract has been agreed with the client in the loan contract).  They will also have greater freedom in agreeing to reductions or waivers of interest and fees.

Circular 39 will take effect in a month time, on 15 March 2017, and will replace Decision 1627/2001/QD-NHNN dated 31 December 2001 on the lending regime of credit institutions amended on multiple occasions by the SBV over the 15 years of its implementation. With these rather positive changes the SBV hopes to ensure that credit continues to grow despite a challenging global and domestic macro-economic environment while non-performing loans are kept in check.  Whether Circular 39 will help achieve these objectives remains to be seen.  It is still early stages in understanding all the implications of the regulatory step 39.

[1] The term “credit institutions” in Vietnam includes commercial banks, non-bank financial institutions (mainly finance companies), micro-finance institutions and people’s credit funds.

[2] State Bank of Vietnam Circular 12/2014/TT-NHNN dated 31 March 2014 on conditions applicable to foreign borrowings of enterprises not guaranteed by the Government.

 

For more information, please contact partner Giles Cooper at gtcooper@duanemorris.com or special counsel Bach Duong Pham at dbpham@duanemorris.com.

Lawyer in Vietnam Oliver Massmann New Decree guiding the Law on Investment What you must know:

On 12 November 2015, after months of delay, the Government has finally issued Decree No. 118/2015/ND-CP (“New Decree”) on detailing and guiding the implementation of certain provisions of the Law on Investment.
Set out below are major worth-noting points in this New Decree:
Investment conditions for foreign investors
Investment conditions for foreign investors are defined as conditions that foreign investors must satisfy when investing in conditional business sectors applicable for foreign investors pursuant to Vietnam’s laws, ordinances, decrees and international treaties on investment.
These conditions include:
– Conditions on foreign ownership of charter capital in an economic organization;
– Conditions on investment form;
– Conditions on scope of investment activities;
– Conditions on a Vietnamese partner participating in investment activities; and
– Other conditions pursuant to laws, ordinances, decrees and international treaties on investment.
The above conditions must be satisfied when foreign investors:
– Making investment to establish an economic organization;
– Contributing capital, purchasing shares, capital contribution portion in an economic organization;
– Investing in the form of business cooperation contract;
– Receiving investment projects transferred from another investor or other cases of receiving transferred investment projects; or
– Amending or supplementing investment business lines or sectors of foreign invested economic organizations.
Conditional business sectors applicable for foreign investors as well as the corresponding conditions are not included in the New Decree but will be published on the National information gate on foreign investment. For business sectors whose conditions are not specified anywhere in Vietnam’s WTO Commitments and other international treaties on investment or not yet committed (“Uncommitted Sectors”), the investment registration authority must seek approval of the Ministry of Planning and Investment and other specialized ministries on the foreign investment.
It is worth noting that the New Decree recognizes ‘licensing precedent’, meaning where foreign investment in Uncommitted Sectors has been approved and such Uncommitted Sectors have been published on the National information gate on foreign investment, any later foreign investors making investment in the same Uncommitted Sectors will no longer need the approval of the specialized managing ministry.
Licensing procedures on investment registration and enterprise registration by foreign investors
Instead of go through 2 different steps, namely (1) applying for issuance of an Investment Registration Certificate; and (2) applying for issuance of an Enterprise Registration Certificate when establishing an enterprise in Vietnam, foreign investors now can apply for these two certificates at the same time. Specifically:
– Foreign investors submit the applications for issuance of an Investment Registration Certificate and an Enterprise Registration Certificate to the investment registration authority;
– Within 01 working day from the receipt of the applications, the investment registration authority sends the application for enterprise establishment registration to the Business Registration authority for review and notifying the investment registration authority of its decision;
– If there is any request for amendments or supplements to either the application for investment registration or enterprise establishment, the investment registration authority will provide the investors a single response within 5 working days from the receipt of the applications.
The coordination regime between the investment registration authority and the business registration authority will be detailed by the Ministry of Planning and Investment later.
Securing the implementation of an investment project
Investors that are granted, or leased land by the Government, or allowed by the Government to change the land use purpose, with certain exceptions, must make a deposit from 1-3% of the total investment capital recorded in a document approving the investment plan or in the Investment Registration Certificate based on a progressive basis, in particular:
– For capital part of up to VND300 billion, the deposit rate is 3%;
– For capital part from VND300 billion to VND1,000 billion, the deposit rate is 2%;
– For capital part from VND1,000 billion, the deposit rate is 1%.
M&A procedures

There is explicitly no requirement of application for Investment Registration Certificate in acquisitions of target companies by foreign investors.
However, foreign investors must register its acquisition of the target company if:
– They contribute capital to, purchase shares or capital contribution portion of an economic organization doing business in conditional sectors which are applicable for foreign investors;
– The capital contribution, shares and capital contribution portion result in F1, F2 and F2’ mentioned in the graph above holding 51% or more of the target company:
o Increasing foreign ownership rate from below 51% to more than 51%; and
o Increasing the existing foreign ownership rate of 51% to a higher ownership rate.
After completion of the acquisition, the target company must carry out procedures to change its members or shareholders at the business registration authority.
For investment of foreign investors other than F1, F2 and F2’, the target company only needs to carry out procedures to change its members or shareholders at the business registration authority without the foreign investors having to register the acquisition transaction with the investment authority.

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Please do not hesitate to contact Oliver Massmann under omassmann@duanemorris.com if you have any questions or want to know more details on the above. Oliver Massmann is the General Director of Duane Morris Vietnam LLC.

Vietnam Foreign Direct Investment

By Oliver Massmann and Manfred Otto – Duane Morris Vietnam LLC

Foreign Direct Investment

A Brief Overview
Vietnam is undergoing fundamental changes to form the basis for its attractiveness and competitiveness in preparation for the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), the upcoming trade agreements including the EU-Vietnam FTA and the Transpacific Partnership Agreement (TPP).
Since July 2015, a number of new laws and regulations governing foreign investment, enterprises, real estate and foreign ownership limits have come into effect. For example, the new Law on Investment and the new Law on Enterprises:
(i) clarify definitions of foreign-invested enterprises;
(ii) facilitate M&A activities;
(iii) reduce the number of prohibited and conditional business sectors;
(iv) reduce statutory business licensing times;
(v) provide more flexibility with regard to corporate governance (such as multiple legal representatives and lower voting thresholds); and
(vi) create more favourable conditions for shareholder lawsuits.
In addition, new laws and regulations affecting foreign ownership of real estate have come into effect. Foreigners can now own apartments and for the first time buy houses. They are now also permitted to sublease and inherit real estate.
With the coming into effect of several international trade agreements and more particularly, the EVFTA, EuroCham members are looking forward to the positive changes that will be implemented and that will further business incentives as well as contribute to Vietnam’s growth.
Vietnam as an attractive FDI destination
In addition to the numerous legal changes, Vietnam has fundamental elements that participate to its continued growth. For instance, Vietnam is in a demographic golden age, with 25% of its 90 million people population between 10 and 24 years old. GDP per capital is increasing drastically as Vietnam has the fastest-growing middle class in South East Asia – (12.9% per annum over the period 2012-2020). Along with a high literacy rate and education levels, comparatively low wages, connectivity and central location within ASEAN, more and more foreign investors choose Vietnam as their hub to service the Mekong region and beyond.
Vietnam’s attractive profile is reflected in its generally welcoming of foreign direct investment (FDI) in manufacturing activities. The gradual opening of most service sectors under Vietnam’s WTO commitments schedule that began in 2007 has been completed in 2015. Domestic law has expanded market access in some sectors beyond those of Vietnam’s WTO commitments. For example, foreign shareholding in public companies that was previously capped at 49% is now generally open for to up 100% foreign ownership. Vietnam also grants investment incentives including tax breaks in areas, such as high-tech, environmental technology, and agriculture, where European businesses are global leaders.
Furthermore, in 2014, Vietnam recorded $21.92 billion in FDI with a total of 1843 investment licenses for foreign invested projects with a registered capital of $16.5 billion, representing a 14% increase from the previous year. Among the foreign investors, the EU is an increasingly important source of FDI for Vietnam as ‘according to the Foreign Investment Agency of the Vietnamese Ministry of Planning and investment, investors from 23 out of 28 Member States of the EU injected a total committed FDI worth US$19.1 billion into 1566 projects over the course of the past 25 years (by 15 December 2014)’. With this strong activity, in 2014, the EU positioned itself as fifth in the top FDI partners of Vietnam with a combined committed FDI of US$587.1 million.

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Source: ‘Vietnam’s logistics market: Exploring the opportunities, Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC)

In addition to FDI, the EU-Vietnam’s strong trade relationship can be seen through programmes like the Multilateral Trade Assistance Project (MUTRAP) which accounts for over €35.12 billion. MUTRAP has been instrumental in supporting Vietnam’s negotiating efforts during the WTO accession process and now continues to assist Vietnam in the implementation of trade commitments. In terms of trade, both the EU and Vietnamese businesses are expected to benefit under the EVFTA. The FTA will gradually eliminate tariffs for over 99% of goods and services besides other mechanisms to support bilateral trade. On 4 August 2015, the EU and Vietnam reached an agreement in principle for the free trade deal, an agreement that will also attract further FDI into the country.
Vietnam’s top trading partners 2013
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Finally, the EU’s strong commitment to support Vietnam in its modernisation and integration in the world economy is mirrored by the aid programmes. In line with Vietnam’s 2020 socio-economic plan, the EU has increased its aid by 30 % reaching 400 million euros via its multi-annual indicative programme for the period of 2014-2020 focusing on the development of clean energy in Vietnam.

Further improvements necessary
It is clear that Vietnam’s development and its attractiveness to foreign investors are undeniable as Vietnam is constantly improving its business environment.
However, as of this writing, guiding regulations for many new laws have still not been published, and investors are experiencing delays in the processing of applications. We expect processing times to improve once the new implementing regulations come into effect and officials get accustomed to the changes.
Another issue that has been highlighted by our members is that many foreign investors still face significant challenges when dealing with Vietnam’s bureaucracy. Tax filing, customs clearance, business registration and licensing, and other administrative procedures are often delayed, outcomes can be unpredictable, and businesses find themselves spending resources on administration that they would prefer to invest in expanding their core activities.
Despite remaining hurdles, the national government of Vietnam has expressed an understanding of the issues surrounding foreign investment. Providing foreign investors increased access to its market, the stream of FDI is expected to continue. For many foreign investors the positive economic development of the country and its fundamentals substantially outweigh potential risks.
In this light, EuroCham wishes to present the key issues that our members face in their activity in Vietnam along with some key recommendations. EuroCham hopes to engage in a constructive dialogue and increasing cooperation with the relevant authorities on all the issues presented in this edition in order to improve the business environment for all enterprises in Vietnam and contribute to the country’s fast modernisation.

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1‘Vietnam; from golden age to golden oldies’, UK FOC, 07/01/15. Available at
2‘Report revises 2014 FDI figures’ Viet Nam News, 18/03/15. Available at
3‘Investment -EU-Vietnam economic and trade relations’, Delegation to the European Union to Vietnam, 2015. Available at
4‘Vietnam’s logistics market: Exploring the opportunities, Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), 20/01/15. Available at
5‘Trade – EU-Vietnam economic and trade relations’, Delegation to the European Union to Vietnam, 2015. Available at
6‘European Union, Trade in goods with Vietnam’, European Commission DG Trade, 10/04/15, p.9. Available at
7‘Development Cooperation’, Delegation to the European Union to Vietnam, 2015. Available at

Continue reading “Vietnam Foreign Direct Investment”

Lawyer in Vietnam Oliver Massmann New Vietnam investment law won’t help public sector

“As only a minority of the shares is offered for sale, the investors are not quite interested.” Oliver Massmann, General Director, Duane Morris Vietnam LLC
A new investment law that took effect in July is likely to keep investment flowing to Vietnam’s private sector but won’t help Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung achieve this year’s target for selling minority stakes in several hundred public-sector firms.
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s push to sell minority stakes and reduce bloat in nearly 300 Vietnamese state-owned firms by the end of the year is unlikely to be successful despite recent reforms in business laws implemented in July that make it easier for foreign investors to acquire companies.
“This seems to be an ambitious target as the number of privatized enterprises is only 61 in the first six months of 2015,” Oliver Massmann, general director at the Hanoi office of corporate law firm Duane Morris LLP, tells MGO via email. “Moreover, as only a minority of the shares is offered for sale, the investors are not quite interested in the transaction, especially when they would not have any decision-making power or their involvement in the management of the enterprise is very limited.”
Public sector firms account for 30 percent of Vietnam’s GDP, and the country has been seeking to privatize and restructure them in order to reduce their debt, confine spending to core business activities, and help them acquire strategic foreign partnerships. According to a piece Mr. Massmann wrote for industry magazine The Asia Miner last year, state enterprises own 70 percent of property in Vietnam and account for 60 percent of commercial bank credit.
But despite initiating the process of restructuring and reforming public firms several years ago, Vietnam has been unable so far to address a number of factors that are hampering the divestment process.
Vietnam law continues to cap foreign ownership at 49 percent in listed firms, which many public sector enterprises are. And in most cases Vietnam is not selling stakes anywhere near the 49 percent limit — or even large enough to give investors decision-blocking powers.
In addition, it remains difficult for investors to value the shares that are being offered, given the lack of adequate audit reports. As a result, the Vietnamese Ministry of Finance is carrying out valuations of each firm. As recently as last month, Asian Development Bank’s chief economist Aaron Batten noted that only 8 percent of state firms publish financial reports on their websites, according to a report in the English-language daily Viet Nam News.
Due to these unresolved factors, Vietnam also fell short of its disinvestment target in 2014. Now, with stock markets in the region wobbly, public sector firms are likely to have an even harder time than they did last year, when as many as 143 firms were able to privatize some shares, according to Vietnamese media reports.
Mr. Massmann clarified, however, that the lack of investor interest in public enterprises comes against the backdrop of an improved overall investment and business climate in the country.
The 2014 Investment Law, which went into effect July 1, does away with something called an investment certificate, a business registration for foreign investors that was supposed to be approved in 45 days but in practice took four to six months to process, according to Mr. Massmann’s firm.
The law has also reduced the number of “conditional” business activities, areas of the economy in which investors have to seek approval with provincial planning departments. Construction, urban planning and education continue to remain conditional activities, but even in these sectors, acquisitions should become much easier, business analysts say.
Meanwhile, earlier tax law changes have also drastically cut the hours businesses spend on tax preparation and filing,
Vietnam has made “positive changes to improve the business environment and strengthen the economy’s ability to compete in 2015 and 2016,” Mr. Massmann tells MGO.
The apparel and textile manufacturing sector has drawn a large share of investment this year and is likely to continue to do so. Seafood processing, electronics manufacturing and retail and banking are also likely to attract investment into next year.
Mr. Massmann also foresees that the government will try to make investing in state firms more attractive by increasing the share of equity for sale, something that has so far been resisted by the management of many state firms, who perhaps fear that equity shares that allow for closer scrutiny of corporate governance could expose poor management or even corruption.

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Please do not hesitate to contact Mr. Oliver Massmann under omassmann@duanemorris.com if you have any questions on the above. Oliver Massmann is the General Director of Duane Morris Vietnam LLC.

ベトナムが東南アジア諸国で最も投資家に友好的な理由

ベトナムはアセアン諸国で最も投資価値のある国であり、近年の投資計画について質問された多くの外国人投資家が共通して答えています。
これはベトナムの近年の投資環境や可能性について大げさに言っているわけではなく、実際に経済の多様性、国際融合、投資法の改正、経済政策の改良などを含めた正当な理由が考慮されています。
経済回復と継続的な発展
ベトナム統計総局の最近の統計によると、ベトナムのGDP成長率は今年はじめの半年間は非常に高く、6.28%でした。これは過去5年間で最も成長率が高く、2015年に目標としていた成長率をはるかに超えています。
ベトナム政府だけが今年の国内経済発展に関して楽観的になっているわけではなく、他国も2015年のベトナムGDP成長率に関して肯定的な見方を示しています。例えば、ANZは2015年、2016年のGDP成長率を6.5%と予想しました。これは、国内需要や製造業への外国人直接投資の関心が増加、また6月には消費者信頼感指数が最大に達したことなどが考慮されています。
PwCの調査による「2050年の世界」では、ベトナムは世界第2位の年間GDP成長比率になると結論しています。2014年から2050年までの平均成長率は毎年5.3%と見込まれ、つまりベトナムは2050年までにアジアの中で最も経済成長が早い国になるということです。
マクロ経済の安定また調整インフレと同様に、ベトナム政府は事業・投資環境の改善や2016年までに地域の国々でトップの主要経済指標を達成させようとしています。
2013年の統計では年間872時間かかっていたタックスコンプライアンスの総処理時間を2015年1月1日には年間370時間へと大幅に減少させました。
また、国際貿易のシングルウィンドウ体制の導入により、商品の通関手続き時間が輸出では21日から14日へ、輸入では13日へ減少させることができると期待されています。
ベトナムの地域、国際融合
投資家は世界経済へ融合するために自由貿易協定(FTA)交渉するなどベトナムの近年の努力は彼らにより良い投資チャンスをもたらすと期待しています。
特に、ベトナムは環太平洋戦略的連携協定(TPP)交渉をしており、TPPは日本やアメリカのような主要な貿易相手国を含むその他12カ国が加盟し、世界GDPの38%を占め、8億人の市場規模があります。ベトナムはアメリカと強く貿易関係を結ぶことによりこの貿易協定で最も利益が大きく、また中国が徐々に競争上の優位性を失いつつある繊維産業で高い競争力をもつと言われています。TPPの参加により、統計ではベトナムのGDPがさらに基準値より13.6%増加すると示しています。
TPPに加え、EU-ベトナム間のFTAでは関税の引き下げ、貿易促進、投資誘致、27のEU諸国へ市場拡大、継続的な発展と経済再構築などといった大きなチャンスをベトナムにもたらすでしょう。
ベトナムとアセアン9諸国は今年中にアセアン経済委員会(AEC)の設立を予定しています。これは6.2億人の消費者規模で、そのうち35歳未満が60%を占める非常にダイナミックな市場になります。この委員会が設立されると、世界第7位の経済規模になり、成長が続けば2050年には第4位になる予定です。AECは魅力的な単独生産拠点、そして国際貿易の促進につながると期待されています。
ベトナムの第2次投資の波
もはや理論ではありません。ベトナムは賃金が上昇している中国からより多くのメーカーがベトナムへ生産シフトをしている為実際に最も利益を受けています。
ベトナムでハイテク投資計画をしている多くの外国人投資家は投資資本金の増加、またFTAが成立したときにチャンスを得るため製造活動の拡大を決定しています。
近年、ベトナムでフランスチーズの有名な製造業者のベル ベトナムは投資資本金を総額17億ドルでビンズオン省に新たな工場の建設を始めました。
LGグループは別のケースで、初期投資資本金を3億ドルでハイフォンに工場建設を予定していましたが、後に15億ドルに資本金を増加することを決定しました。
サムスンは輸出中心の投資戦略で2014年11月に3億ドルの投資資金の増加を発表しました。
繊維分野の投資家もまた今度のTPPで利益を得るためにベトナム市場介入の準備をしています。繊維産業でベトナムの直接ライバルになる中国、インド、タイなどはTPPのメンバーでは無い為、ベトナムはTPPの加盟国に税の優遇措置をとるなどして、これらのライバル国に対する価格競争関連で優位性を得ようとしています。TPPによりベトナムの繊維輸出売上高が2020年には300億ドル、2030年には550億ドルになると期待されています。
新投資法
同時に、政府はビジネス環境を改善するための制度改革の重要性に気づいています。新しい貿易協定が成立し、制度改革がこの協定の条件の1つになれば、さらに重要になってくるからです。
新企業法、新投資法またPPPの政令が採用されこれらの新法は多くの自由を認め、投資家に友好的であると考えられています。事業や投資に対する障害が取り除かれ、外国人投資家にとって分かり易くまた多くの投資環境のチャンスをもたらすでしょう。
2014年投資法では禁止事業活動、また条件付事業活動の数を減少させる試みをしています。重要なことは、初めて2014年投資法で規制しているM&A活動の条件が含まれていることです。2015年7月1日から施行している新投資法では、外国人投資家はベトナムの対象企業の株式を買収する時に長い投資証明書の手続きを受ける必要がなくなりました。この変化はベトナム市場に介入し、またM&Aを通して拡大しようとしている外国人投資家が直面していた何年にもわたる不明確さや妨げを無くすと期待されています。
M&Aの第2次投資の波は2014年から既に始まっているようで、伝えられるところによれば毎週6件の取引が行われています。2014年の合計M&A取引件数は313件で、25億ドルの価値があり、前年と比べると15%上昇しました。
一方で、2014年企業法ではベトナムで複数の法定代表者で構成される法人企業の運営や、法律で禁止されていない全てのタイプの事業活動の遂行などいくつか柔軟性を投資家に許可しています。
加えて、政府は2015年に289の国営企業の民営化を目指し、実質的かつ効果的な民営化を強調しています。民間金融機関の数を2017年に13-15社に削減すように強制しており、ライバル会社や資本金のプレッシャーを受けている小規模な銀行は事業拡大をするために新しい外国人投資家を探しています。
政府は民営化の手続きは株式の数を増加させ、投資家と政府両者にとって双方両得な解決策だと確信しています。2000年から2013年の期間で国営企業の数をほぼ半分の5800社から3135社にまで減少させました。また、民営化の40%が10%以上の成長を遂げていると成功例も報告されています。この成功は非常に可能性のある地域へ外国人投資家を呼び込んでいます。
ベトナムは変化を続けている国で、近年外国企業に対して多くのチャンスを提供しています。経済の根本的強さは、マクロ経済指標の制御、強力な生産性の向上、そして地域・世界経済への大規模な融合に反映されています。
今が外国人投資家にとって事業計画をスタートさせ、今後のチャンスを得る絶好の時期です。
〈ご注意〉この見解はあくまで個人的なものであり、必ずしもタン・ニエン・ニュースの編集立場を示したものではありません。こちらの記事は皆様に情報をお届けする目的でのみ作成・掲載しておりますので、法的なアドバイスとして提供・構成することを目的としておりません。詳細につきましては、当法律事務所の注意書きをご一読下さい。
オリバー・マスマンはドウェイン・モリス・ベトナム法律事務所のディレクターです。ご質問等はomassmann@duanemorris.comまでご連絡ください。「上場企業や電力部門における外資保有比率」を含むその他のブログもご覧いただけます。

Anwalt in Vietnam Oliver Massmann Häfen und Schifffahrt

Mit der Adaption der Transpazifischen Partnerschaft (TPP) und dem Freihandelsabkommen zwischen Vietnam und der EU (EVFTA) in den nächsten Monaten, erwarten wir eine signifikante Steigerung des Handels zwischen Vietnam und den anderen unterzeichnenden Ländern. Um die vielen Vorzüge nutzen zu können, die durch diese Vereinbarungen erwartet werden, ist es wichtig einen internationalen Containerhafen einzurichten. Der Hafen in Cai Mep würde sich für diese Zwecke eignen, sowohl national als auch international ein Knotenpunkt zu sein und somit ein Gleichgewicht zwischen Nachfrage und Angebot an Containerschiffen in Vietnam herzustellen. Um die Entwicklung von Cai Mep als Knotenpunkt zu stärken, wurde ein Vertrag zwischen CMIT und dem Saigon Newport unterzeichnet.

Es muss jedoch noch mehr von Seiten der Regierung getan werden. Es muss ein wettbewerbsfähiges Umfeld für den Containerhafen hergestellt werden. Damit dies erreicht werden kann, werden die folgenden Maßnahmen vorgeschlagen.

Zuerst, die Gebühren für übergroße Frachtschiffe reduzieren. Die Konsequenz daraus wäre, dass diese Schiffe nicht mehr in Singapur oder Hong Kong Zwischenhalten müssen, dies würde ca. 7 Mio. US$ an Transportkosten einsparen.

Zweitens, die Regularien für die Küstenschifffahrt auflockern. Das momentane örtliche Leistungsangebot geht nicht konform mit den internationalen Standards. Dies sollte behoben werden, damit die Errichtung des Knotenpunktes Cai Mep nicht behindert wird.

Drittens, die Zollbestimmungen reformieren. Das vietnamesische Hauptzollamt, mit beratender Unterstützung vom vietnamesischen Handelserleichterung Alliance und in Zusammenarbeit mit der amerikanischen Handelskammer, versucht die Ein-und Ausfuhrbestimmungen zu verbessern. Das wird als Schritt in die richtige Richtung angesehen um Vietnam wettbewerbsfähig gegenüber den anderen ASEAN Staaten zu machen.

Und letztlich, es sollte mehr Interaktion zwischen den zuständigen Behörden und den Transport/Logistik Interessenvertretern geben. Das letzte „Transport und Logistik Partner“- Meeting, welches vom Verkehrsministerium zusammen mit der Welt Bank veranstaltet wurde, um einen Dialog herzustellen, ist eines der Projekte der vietnamesischen Regierung bei dem Probleme ausgetauscht werden und durchführbare Lösungen für Vietnams Industrie überlegt werden.

Wenn das soeben geschilderte realisiert wird, dann gibt es eine realistische Chance für Cai Mep der neue Knotenpunkt zu werden und Vietnam würde einige Vorteile davon haben, u.a. diese:
• Weniger Luftverschmutzung in Ho Chi Minh Stadt als Resultat der Umleitung der Transporter, die von Ho Chi Minh Stadt nach Cai Mep umgeleitet werden würden,
• Weniger Verkehr und eine kleineres Risiko der Überlastung des Hafens, dank der großen Kapazität der Region Cai Mep, und
• Die Vorteile von TPP und EVFTA gewinnbringend nutzen.

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Bitte zögern Sie nicht und kontaktieren Herrn Massmann unter omassmann@duanemorris.com falls Sie Fragen zu dem oben gelesenen haben sollten.

Horse Race Betting in Vietnam: Don’t Back the Wrong Horse

Investors wishing to invest in horse race betting projects in Vietnam may find themselves in dead end if they do not equip themselves with the appropriate tools to tackle legal challenges in this emerging market

Even though horse race betting was allowed in two pilot projects in Phu Tho (1998) and Vung Tau (2000), there has been no concrete legal framework in place to address the licensing and operation of the horse race betting projects.

In 2010, the Government of Vietnam decided to draft a decree, which is the most superior executive regulation, to formally legalize horse race betting in Vietnam and provide criteria for businesses to invest and operate in this field. This is an effort of the government to maintain the balance between the economic benefits of these hugely profitable businesses and the need to have sufficient governmental control to eliminate the “social evils” which may associate with these projects. The Standing Committee of the National Assembly, which is the legislative body of Vietnam, approved the general policy of this decree; however, the Standing Committee also asked for an empirical study on the pros and cons of horse race betting, together with other forms of betting such as soccer or greyhound race betting. In a recent regular session of the Government in 2015, the Prime Minister instructed the Ministry of Finance to continue working on the draft, based on recommendations from other branches and the National Assembly. There has been no time limit fixed for the issuance of this decree. One of the reasons why there has been significant delay was because of the ambitious target of this decree, which aims to govern not only horse race and greyhound race betting but also soccer betting. Soccer betting has been a sensitive topic in Vietnam and there is a wide prejudice that it associates with crimes, bankruptcy, sports cheats, and money laundering. To speed up the process, the government is considering separating soccer betting from this regulation and focusing on horse and greyhound race betting only.

Even though the latest draft of the decree is not final, investors can find some helpful guidelines for their future investments in horse race betting in Vietnam. In particular, the draft proposes that an entity can only do horse betting once they have received an investment certificate (which, for a foreign invested company also serves as a certificate of incorporation) and a certificate for satisfaction of business conditions. The Prime Minister will decide the issuance of the investment certificate and such certificate will only be granted for horse race betting projects with minimum investment capital of 1 thousand billion Vietnamese Dongs, or equivalent to 459 million United States Dollars. The project must be put into operation within four years from the date of issuance of the investment certificate. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance will grant the certificate for satisfaction of business conditions to entities with adequate financial resources, business plans and an appropriate betting and racing bylaws.

While the decree allows Vietnamese players to participate, it limits the maximum bet to one million VND (or less than fifty USD) a day and provides that the minimum bet is ten thousand VND (or less than fifty cents). There should be no more than three races in a week at each location. The minimum rebate shall be 65% of the revenues from selling wagering tickets. In terms of labor, the jockeys must be employees of the horse race operators.

While it remains unknown whether the decree on horse race betting will be issued, investors should not play the “wait and see” game. Instead, they should be proactive in approaching the government authorities for specific guidelines and having a thorough legal strategy to deal with the known and unknown regulatory obstacles. They may also consider setting up a small entity to carry out a pilot project, which is generally subject to lower regulatory thresholds than a regular project, to test the water and set up the basic infrastructure necessary for future investments. These plans cannot be successful if the investors do not have proper legal and financial advice.

The horse race betting market in Vietnam is a difficult race to thrive in and only the most well prepared investors can reap the huge rewards.

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Please do not hesitate to contact Mr. Oliver Massmann under omassmann@duanemorris.com if you have any questions on the above. Oliver Massmann is the General Director of Duane Morris Vietnam LLC.

Thank you very much!

Vietnam – Latest on Seaports and Shipping – Logistics is Everything

With the adoption of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (“TPP”) and the European Union – Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (“EVFTA”) in the upcoming months, we would expect a significant increase in trade between Vietnam and countries being members of the mentioned agreements. In order to reap the huge benefits that these agreement might bring to Vietnam, it is necessary to create an efficient deep sea container terminal. Cai Mep port would be fit for such purpose, in terms of a potential domestic and international transhipment hub and creating balance for demand and supply container terminal in Southern Vietnam. An operating cooperation contract has been signed between CMIT and Saigon Newport as the first attempt to develop Cai Mep as a hub.
Still, there should be more to do from the Government’s side. A competitive environment for the operation of the container terminal must be created. To achieve this objective, we suggest the following actions:
First, reducing port dues for certain sizes of vessels. As a consequence, a greater number of vessels will no longer have to transit via existing hubs such as Hong Kong or Singapore. An estimate of USD 7 million per year in transport costs would be saved and the overall income of the country will increase.
Second, relaxing regulations on cabotage. The current local services on offer do not comply with the required standards. This should be fixed so it is not blocking the progress of creating a hub in Cai Mep.
Third, reforming customs rules. The Vietnam General Department of Customs with the advisory support of the Vietnam Trade Facilitation Alliance in conjunction with the American Chamber of Commerce is currently making great attempts in improving imports and exports procedures. This is also considered as a step towards a competitive environment compared with other ASEAN countries.
Finally, more interaction between the competent authorities and the transport/ logistics stakeholders. The recent Transport and Logistics Partner Quarterly Meeting held by the Ministry of Transport in conjunction with the World Bank is among the government’s efforts to help create a dialogue to exchange problems and workable solutions in the logistics industry of Vietnam.
If the above suggestions are taken seriously, Cai Mep will become a hub and Vietnam would certainly enjoy lots of benefits, include, among others:
o Less pollution for Ho Chi Minh City as a result of truck flow diversion from Ho Chi Minh City to Cai Mep;
o Less traffic and less risk of port congestion thanks to large capacity in Cai Mep region; and
o Capitalizing on the opportunities from the TPP and the EVFTA.
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Please do not hesitate to contact Oliver Massmann under omassmann@duanemorris.com if you have any questions on the above. Oliver Massmann is the General Director of Duane Morris Vietnam LLC.

INTERESTED IN DOING BUSINESS IN VIETNAM? VISIT: www.vietnamlaws.xyz;

THANK YOU VERY MUCH!