A series of new decrees have just taken effect, providing guidelines for the enterprise and investment laws that came into effect a year ago.
They also eliminate thousands of unnecessary business conditions to facilitate business development.
Trần Thị Hồng Minh, director of the Business Registration Management Agency under the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), talks about how the new regulations can be made effective in an interview with government portal chinhphu.vn.
The Enterprise Law and Investment Law 2014 came into effect a year ago on July 1, 2015. How have they impacted the business registration situation? What are obstacles to the implementation of the laws and how are they dealt with?
The laws were built with a spirit of introducing drastic reforms, giving enterprises and investors more self-control, initiative and flexibility in operations. I suppose the number of businesses registering their establishment and their committed capital have grown significantly since the laws took effect.
Between July 1, 2015, and July 1, 2016, nearly 106,000 companies were established in accordance with the new Enterprise Law, an increase of about 28 per cent over the previous year. They registered capital worth some VNĐ768 trillion (US$34.1 billion), up about 42 per cent.
The important thing is that investors’ psychology and the way they look at market potential have improved, with the government sending a strong message about efforts to improve the business environment and assist businesses over the last few months.
However, obstacles have emerged in the implementation of the new laws. Roadblocks for the Enterprise Law are mainly technical issues related to knowledge, behaviour and the working manner of relevant agencies and civil servants. Impediments for the Investment Law are even greater because this law witnessed complicated changes on a large scale, and it also involves many legal documents and state management agencies from the central government to the local authority. Irrelevant and incompatible issues remain in certain investment procedures and in the competence of agencies dealing with these procedures.
The MPI has identified and assessed the aforementioned problems quite fully, with support from a working group for the execution of enterprise and investment laws. The MPI is collaborating with relevant ministries and agencies to deal with the problems. It is also actively organising courses to train local authorities to implement business and investment procedures, and to clear their queries about the difficulties they meet in practice.
How do the new decrees, which took effect on July 1, 2016, providing guidelines for the enterprise and investment laws, facilitate the entry of businesses into the market?
The Government and the Prime Minister have shown great determination to implement the regulations of the Investment Law on business and investment conditions, in order to improve the business environment and enhance national competitiveness.
The Prime Minister has been resolute in asking ministries to draft business and investment conditions on schedule, following surveys of the business community, to build more quality regulations with fewer procedures. Ministries and ministerial-level agencies have made great efforts to implement the Prime Minister’s directive.
The MPI co-operated with the Government Office and the Ministry of Justice to consult and get suggestions from the Việt Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as well as the Central Institute for Economic Management, before presenting the regulations to the Government. Several meetings have taken place with straightforward expert discussions.
A series of recently issued decrees showed the efforts of the Government to publicise business conditions, after it removed thousands of unsuitable and unnecessary conditions for businesses. The Government now mainly supervises enterprises in the post-licensing phases, instead of controlling their establishment with conditions set in advance.
It will take time to assess how the new regulations truly work, but I think the latest review of business conditions is an initial successful step that lays an important premise for greater goals in improving the investment and business environment.
What will the MPI do for effective implementation of the enterprise and investment laws in the coming months?
Legally, the MPI will continue to coordinate withthe Ministry of Justice and other ministries and sectors to draft a new law that regulates future revision of other laws, before the government places it before the National Assembly. Such a law will enable the authorities to settle inconsistent points of the enterprise and investment laws, as well as other professional laws. The MPI will also collaborate with other ministries to revise some related decrees before presenting them to the government in October. Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyễn Chí Dũng has directed officials in this sector to carry out these tasks effectively.
To serve the general goals of improving the business environment and enhancing national competitiveness, I think the working group for the execution of enterprise and investment laws should continue to promote its role and responsibility in advising the Prime Minister to issue proper directives for adequate and consistent implementation of these laws.
The MPI will co-operate with state management agencies at different levels to propagate new points of the enterprise and investment laws in the business community and the public. The ministry is finalising a circular to provide guidelines related to business and investment registration procedures for foreign investors, in accordance with Article 24 of Decree No 118/2015/NĐ-CP. This is aimed at creating advantageous conditions for foreign investors while establishing their businesses in Việt Nam