Business starting – new immigration law info

Business starting

Hereby some information for business starting in Vietnam. Rules and regulations for business starting can change at times. Laws can be complex and the process complicated. It is well known for example that you have to hand over an envelope to some officials.

Vietnam became member of the WTO in 2007. That opened doors for foreign investment. It is highly reccommendable to get yourself help of a reputable, experienced Vietnamese law firm.

Business starting – Foreign

Foreigners can own and operate a business in Vietnam. This can be done through direct or indirect foreign investment. Indirect investment means buying shares/stocks by individuals or organizations in Vietnamese firms. A business totally foreign owned or a joint venture with a Vietnamese (biz) is considered direct investment.

Types of business

There are three business structures available.

  1. a 100% foreign owned proprietorship or partnership.
  2. a joint venture.
  3. a business cooperative owned by the people who use the services.

The govt encourages some sectors. To name a few: production of items for export. Investment in remote regions. Processing of raw materials. Research and development and 7 more sectors. The full list can be found in the link at the bottom.

Businesess that are prohibited by foreign participation are security/defence, local customs and traditions, natural environment or cultural and historical preservation.


First thing to have complete when starting a business is your plan and the required documents. A valid passport, financial statements over the past 12 months, a certificate of incorporation and a company charter or articles of association.


Money can be moved into Vietnam. It must be deposited in either a foreign currency or VND account from a Vietnamese bank.

Restrictions are in place for moving money out of the country. You can transfer only for the following payments.

Salaries to Vietnamese working abroad and to foreign employees. Payment for imported goods and services and travel allowances. Executives salaries of foreign enterprises. Foreign investors payment of invested and reinvested capital earnings and profits. Principal and interests on offshore loans and credits. Other legal benefits.

New law for investment

New visa laws VietnamThe government has recently drawn a new immigration law to attract investment. The new law includes a visa for foreigners who come to the country to conduct activities as part of international agreements. With the implementation of such new agreements like the EVFTA (EU-VN Free Trade Agreement and an Investment Protection Agreement new laws were needed to replace the outdated laws. Visas of 6 to 12 months will now be issued for foreigners who enter to promote services and establish commercial presence in accordance with the international agreements.

Foreign investors who contribute at least $4.4 million will be granted up to 5 year visa plus temporary residence cards up to 10 years. Foreigners investing less than $130,400 will get a max 1 year visa without residence card. Citizens from 13 countries don’t need any type of visa. Coutries under the visa waiver are Belarus, Denmark, Korea, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Russia, France, Norway, Japan, Germany and the UK.


As mentioned earlier, it can be a complex and complicated process. Big international firms are located in Vietnam as well as franchise like MCDonalds. You can open a bar, restaurant or IT company as well. The easier way to open a business might be through having a Vietnamese wife/husband. In any case you need professional help.

Find more info here



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