On 11 December 2019, the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (“VCCI”) in collaboration with the State Bank of Vietnam (“SBV”) held a seminar “Collecting opinions from business to the draft Decree on non-cash payment ” in Ha Noi, Vietnam.  This seminar attracted the attention of many state management agencies such as the SBV, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Public Security, Ministry of Planning and Investment, Vietnam E-Commerce Association, Vietnam Association of Financial Investors (“VAFI”), and various policy makers and business community working in the field of non-cash payment.

The draft decree on non-cash payment (“Draft Decree”) is expected to replace the Decree 101/2012/ND-CP on non-cash payments (“Decree 101”) which is considered the legal basis for the activities of payment and intermediary payment to facilitate the development of new business types such as e-payments or mobile payments.  After six year of implementation, the Decree 101 needs to be amended, supplemented and adjusted to match the current needs  of integration, development of economy, society, science and technology.

Some legal experts commented on some regulations that greatly affect the operation of enterprises, namely the regulation “restricting foreign investment in intermediary financial companies”.  According to them, because this is a field with significant risk, and the domestic ventures are not ready to develop non-cash payment services by themselves, it is necessary to have foreign investment, especially in context of international economic integration.

Under the view of an economic lawyer, General Secretary of VAFI, Mr. Phung Anh Tuan expressed his opinions that currently intermediary payment service is estimated to account for approximately 90% of operations and value of intermediary financial companies.   He further said that the restriction of investment will affect the entire financial technology sector.

 The competent authority for the Draft Decree, on the other hand, is in the opinion that Vietnam has not made any international commitment on the intermediary payment service (e.g., WTO).  However, the intermediary payment services constitutes a part of payment services and thus are likely to be governed under Vietnam’s international commitment on payment services.  This means that there are potential risks of international arbitration by foreign investors or governments against Vietnam if such restrictions are not in line with Vietnam’s international commitment.

If you want to know more about, please do not hesitate to contact us through the contacts detail below:

Tuan A. PHUNG,

VCI Legal | Managing Partner

VAFI | Vice Chairman cum General Secretary

Tel: (84) 28 3827 2029 Email: tuanphung@vci-legal.com

Address:

VCI LEGAL – Head Office – Suite 42.05-06, Park 7, Vinhomes Central Park, 720A Dien Bien Phu street, Binh Thanh District, HCMC, Vietnam Tel: +84 28 3827 2029

VCI Legal – Hanoi Office, Floor 9, ACB Building, 10 Phan Chu Trinh street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi, Vietnam Tel: +84 24 39364985/7