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On 30 September 2022, the State Bank of Vietnam officially issued Circular No. 12/2022/TT-NHNN providing instructions on foreign exchange administration regarding offshore borrowing and offshore debt repayment of enterprises (“Circular 12”). Circular 12 came into effect on 15 November 2022, replacing Circular No. 03/2016/TT-NHNN and its amending circulars.

With the enactment of the new Cinema Law 2022, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MOCST) is developing a draft decree guiding the Cinema Law. After a one-month public consultation period, the MOCST made substantial updates to the Draft Decree and submitted the latest version to the Ministry of Justice for appraisal. The content of the latest version reflects the majority of the comments and recommendations suggested by industry stakeholders, evidencing how effective and influential policy advocacy can be.

The fourth session of Vietnam’s National Assembly XV, which is taking place between 20 October 2022 and 18 November 2022, comprises meaningful discussions and the approval of draft legislation. The meeting agenda covers 14 legislative projects, only seven of which will be passed; the other seven will have to wait until the next session (June 2023).

On 30 August 2022, the Indonesian House of Representatives agreed to pass a law ratifying the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, the largest regional free trade agreement outside the World Trade Organization — involving 10 ASEAN countries and five non-ASEAN countries, i.e., China, New Zealand, Australia, Japan and South Korea. With the passing of this law, which still requires promulgation by the President, RCEP is set to come into force for Indonesia, possibly before the end of the year.

On 1 August 2022, the Ministry of Industry and Trade issued Decision No. 1514/QD-BCT to apply anti-circumvention measures on cane sugar imported from Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia and Myanmar under HS codes 1701.13.00, 1701.14.00, 1701.91.00, 1701.99.10, 1701.99.90, and 1702.90.91. This comes after Vietnam initiated the anti-circumvention investigation on 21 September 2021.

Vietnam is becoming an increasingly important market for talent, and we have witnessed growing demand for the offering of share-based awards to employees in Vietnam in recent years. Due to currency control restrictions imposed by the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), including the requirement that each plan be registered with the SBV, it has traditionally been challenging to implement a share plan in Vietnam. Since the adoption of Circular 10 in 2016, the SBV registration process has been clarified and a growing number of companies have successfully registered their plans with the SBV.

As global and regional integration increases, multinational companies ought to navigate numerous custom-related complexities and challenges imposed by relevant authorities in any jurisdiction. This webinar series provide an in-depth coverage of legal frameworks, practical issues and key trends and developments surrounding customs audits in select Asia Pacific jurisdictions.

The State Bank of Vietnam released a draft circular on conditions for enterprises’ offshore loans without government guarantee, which aims to replace Circular No. 12/2014/TT-NHNN dated 31 March 2014. The Draft Circular tightens the control on offshore loans to tackle the risk of excess national foreign debt quota and to promote the onshore loan market. Borrowers are now expected to meet additional conditions to borrow offshore loans without government guarantee.

After surveying more than 2500 SMEs in Vietnam, the authority found that SMEs generally do not have a high level of awareness of the law. The regulator also published papers on the state of competition in two sectors. The annual report includes consolidated and published statistics by the VCCA and MOIT. This update was published as part of our quarterly newsletter, Asia Pacific Competition Highlights.