Revised work permit regulations expected this summer

10 Jun 15

VIET NAM

IMPACT – MEDIUM

What is the change? The Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA) confirmed yesterday at the Vietnam Business Forum that it expects to send revisions to work permit regulations to the National Assembly for approval in the coming months.

  • Implementation time frame: Third or fourth quarter 2015.
  • Visas/permits affected: Work permits.
  • Who is affected: Companies employing foreign workers.
  • Impact on processing times: The amendments are generally expected to simplify processing of work permits, but specific provisions are still being debated within the government.
  • Business impact: The amendments should provide clearer guidance and possibly greater flexibility and more exemptions for some categories of foreign workers.
  • Next steps: BAL is awaiting release of the proposed amendments and will update clients when information becomes available. Vietnam is still in the process of overhauling its work permit regulations and employers should be aware that the process is taking longer than anticipated.

Background: In 2012, Vietnam introduced a new labor code followed in 2013 by Decree 102, which changed the regulations on employment and assignment of foreign workers. Guidance on the law came four months after implementation, and some areas continue to need refinement. In January of this year, a new immigration law restructured work permit categories. Meanwhile, MOLISA has been working on revisions to Decree 102 that are expected to address some of the business community’s concerns about the scope of work permits, exemptions for short stays, and ways to simplify procedures.

BAL Analysis: A final draft of the amended decree is expected around the third quarter, but is not expected to be implemented before the end of the year. MOLISA has not indicated whether it will accept public comments from the business community before it sends the final draft to the National Assembly for approval.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Vietnam. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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