2014 18 November

We would like to bring to your attention key legal notifications that have been issued in Vietnam recently:

  • Guidance in naming a company correctly
  • Educational operation license required for foreign schools having had an operational license granted before 15 November 2012
  • Mining right: commission fee from USD 100 to USD 600
  • Suspension of temporarily importing wood from the Lao PDR and Cambodia into Vietnam
  • Decrease of ceiling interest rates for short loans and deposits

      1. How to name your company correctly

The Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism has issued Circular No. 10/2014/TT-BVHTTDL dated 01 October 2014 interdicting the naming of a company in such a way as to violate Vietnamese traditions, cultural, moral norms and Vietnamese habits and customs. 

Names that would violate are, for example, names of renowned people, countries, places in the colonial period, historic villains, and words and symbols going against Vietnamese traditions, etc.

Circular 10/2014/TT-BVHTTDL is effective from 25 November 2014.

     2.  Educational operation license (“EOL”) required for foreign schools having had an operational license granted before 15 November 2012

The Ministry of Training and Education has issued Circular No. 34/2014/TT-BGDDT dated 15 October 2014 guiding Decree 73/2012/ND-CP effective from 15 November 2012 on foreign investment and foreign cooperation in the education sector. 

Previously, under Decree 73/2012/ND-CP effective from 15 November 2012, foreign schools had to obtain an EOL in addition to the Investment Certificate. Conditions for an EOL are: minimum invested capital (approx. USD 1,500 per child for kindergarten; USD 2.5M for high school; and USD 15M for university); the facilities, teaching staff and curriculum must meet the required standards.

Under Circular 34/2014/TT-BGDDT, foreign schools already having had an operational license granted before 15 November 2012 must submit additional reports to the Department/Ministry of Education to request an EOL. The required reports include a report on the implementation of its investment project; report on performance of its educational activities within the last three years, etc.

Circular 34 /2014/TT-BGDDTT is effective from 1 December 2014.

      3.   Mining right: commission fee from USD 100 to USD 600 

According to Joint-Circular 54/2014/TTLT-BTNMT-BTC dated 09 September 2014, the commission fee for mining bidding rights is from USD 100 to USD 600.

The winning bidder must pay at least VND 50 billion (USD 2.5 million) upfront before receiving a mining license. If the winning price is higher, the winning bidder must pay the balance within a maximum of five years.

The Joint-Circular is effective from 27 October 2014.

     4.  Suspension of temporary importation of wood from the Lao PDR and Cambodia into Vietnam

From 8 December 2014, the Ministry of Industry and Trade suspends the activity of temporary importation of all woods under HS Code 44.03 and 44.07 from the Lao PDR and Cambodia into Vietnam for re-export to a third country, promulgated by Circular 37/2014/TT-BCT dated 24 October 2014.

For contracts signed before 8 December 2014, the merchant is permitted to conduct such activities until 31 December 2014.

     5.  Decrease of ceiling interest rate for short term loans and deposits

On 28 October 2014, the State Bank of Vietnam has promulgated the ceiling interest rates for:

  • Deposit interest (in USD): 0.25%/year applied for entities and 0.75%/year applied for individuals, provided by Circular 2172/QD-NHNN dated 28 October 2014
  • Deposit interest (in VND): 1%/month applied for all definite terms and indefinite terms, provided by Circular 2173/QD-NHNN dated 28 October 2014
  • Short term loans: 7%/year, except for the People’s Credit Fund or microfinance institutions that can apply 8%/year, provided by Circular 2174/QD-NHNN dated 28 October 2014. 

These interest rates are effective from 29 October 2014.

For further information on these notices, please contact our advisers: Jérôme Buzenet, Hai Nguyen