(Interview With Time Out). According to lawyer Pham Duy Khuong, managing director of ASL LAW, the amendments and supplements to a number of articles of the Law on Im- migration and Residence of Foreigners in Vietnam and the extension for citizens of eight countries till the end 2022 will con- tribute to the development of Vietnam’s tourism and economy.
1. How have the changes to the visa regulations affected the investment and business environment in Vietnam?
Any citizens of a country going to other countries must have a visa and if you would like to stay in that country longer you have to apply for visa extension. Similarly, foreigners who want to stay in Vietnam for a long time to travel or business must apply for an extension of their visa. With the policy of extending the visa exemption period for citizens of some countries by the end of 2020, it will help citizens of the countries in this list to extend their stay in Vietnam until the end of 2022.
The above policy is aimed at citizens of the 8 countries with the highest number of citizens who have come to Vietnam in recent years, with long-term stay, stable growth and high spending. This also demonstrates the Government’s goal of maintaining the annual growth rate and goal of the Vietnamese economy in general, and the investment and business environment in Vietnam in particular.
Visa issuance is always a matter of interest to foreign investors and experts. This problem is actually not only a barrier to the investment process but also a disadvantage to the growth of the economy and the investment sector itself.
The visa exemption for citizens of some countries not only positively impact but also create more favorable conditions for the investment environment in Vietnam’s investors abroad. Difficulties in carrying out the visa procedures will be solved, avoiding time-consuming situations, creating favorable conditions for visa-free citizens to easily invest in the business environment that creates Vietnam.
The policy of extending the visa exemption period for citizens of some countries will attract a large number of foreign investors to Vietnam, the business environment will be more and more developed and expanded.
2. Is the visa exemption for citizens from some countries one of the factors to increase the attractiveness of the investment and business environment in Vietnam?
There are many factors that make Vietnam attractive to foreign investors to do business in Vietnam. In particular, the growth and stability is a great attraction to FDI inflows into Vietnam.
In the context of the economic growth rate of countries in the region showing signs of slowing down, Vietnam has a high growth rate. The exemption of visas for citizens from several countries around the world shows the efforts of the Government and the National Assembly of Vietnam in creating an attractive investment environment, creating a more open business environment for Investors, along with the change of law policies. This is also one of the changes aimed at removing the existing investment obstacles in the period of 2018-2019, expanding the market for foreign investors.
3. Can you tell us whether the visa regulations for foreigners working in Vietnam are now truly beneficial for foreign businesses and financiers when coming to Vietnam?
Our new regulation is really the key to open the door to integration into the world. Creating favorable conditions for the working process of foreign enterprises in Vietnam is also creating abundant capital for the process of building and developing the country’s economy. However, all legal policies have certain limitations. Applying for a new visa is only the first step in the business and working process of foreign businesses and investors. Undeniable is the reform of our policy in recent years in procedural matters, but still exist many barriers and other obstacles need to seriously study and remove.
4. What are your recommendations to the Vietnamese government and lawmakers on solving problems for foreign experts working and staying in Vietnam for a long time ?
The Government should devise appropriate policies to accommodate this adjustment, in particular:
– Creating more favorable conditions for Vietnamese businesses to develop and expand to abroad (reduced export tax, consumption tax), especially medium and small ones- objects easily affected when the business market changes.
– Strictly regulating on the concept of foreign experts and improve the process inspection and control. Review existing gaps to establish a rigorous, scientific regulatory system.
– Having sanctions to deal more severely in cases of circumvention, taking advantage of this provision to illegally settle in Vietnam of foreign citizens.