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Licensing for foreign contractors in Vietnam

The new provisions of the Law on Bidding, the Law on Construction, the Law on Investment, and related legal documents, it has created favorable conditions for foreign contractors to bid and execute bidding projects in Vietnam. Foreign contractors can be general contractors, main contractors, joint venture contractors or subcontractors. However, unlike domestic contractors, foreign contractors must be granted a construction operation license according to each contract after winning the bid. Procedures for granting a construction license to a foreign contractor are carried out as follows:

contractors in vietnam

Legal basic

  • Construction Law 2014;
  • The revised Construction Law 2020;
  • Decree 15/2021/ND-CP guiding some contents on construction investment project management;
  • Circular 14/2016/TT-BXD guiding the issuance of construction permits and management of foreign contractors engaged in construction activities in Vietnam;
  • Circular 08/2018/TT-BXD guiding the contents of construction practice certificates, construction capacity certificates, and management of foreign construction contractors in Vietnam issued by the Minister Construction issued;
  • Circular 02/2019/TT-BXD detailing the periodical reporting regime; amending, supplementing, and replacing several articles of the Circular relating to the periodical reporting regime under the state management scope of the Ministry of Construction.

Conditions for foreign contractors to be granted construction operation permits

  • Foreign contractors are granted construction permits when there is a winning decision or a contractor is selected from the main investor/subcontractor.
  • Foreign contractors must form a joint venture with Vietnamese contractors or use Vietnamese subcontractors unless the domestic contractors are not qualified to participate in any work of the bidding package. When entering into a joint venture or using a Vietnamese contractor, the contents, volume, and value of the work performed by the Vietnamese contractor in the joint venture must be clearly defined; Vietnamese subcontractors perform.
  • Foreign contractors must commit to fully comply with the provisions of Vietnamese law related to contracting activities in Vietnam.

Dossier of application for construction license for foreign contractors

Dossier of application for a construction license to a foreign contractor being an organization

  • An application form for a construction permit is specified in the form (Circular 14/2016/TT-BXD).
  • A copy or file containing color photocopies of the original text in an image or other format (*.pdf) of the text of the bidding results or the contract selection decision or the lawful contract of delivery and receipt.
  • A copy or file containing a color photocopy of the original text in a photo or other format (*.pdf) of the establishment license (or the organization’s business registration certificate) and the practice certificate (if applicable) yes) of the country where the foreign contractor holds the granting nationality or where the contractor is implementing the granting project.
  • The file contains color photocopies of the original text in an image or other formats (*.pdf) for the construction experience report related to the contract work according to the form in Appendix 2 of this Circular. Circular 14/2016/TT-BXD and a summary report on audit results in the last 3 years (in case the contractor receives the bidding package which is not required to apply according to the provisions of the law on Vietnamese bidding).
  • A copy or file containing a color photocopy of the original text in a photo or other format (*.pdf) of the joint venture contract with the Vietnamese contractor or the contract with the Vietnamese subcontractor (included in the project dossier) or bidding documents), which identifies the work performed by the Vietnamese contractor.
  • A legal power of attorney for a person who is not the contractor’s legal representative according to the form of Circular 14/2016/TT-BXD.
  • The file contains a color copy of the original text in an image or other format (*.pdf) of the project investment decision or the investment certificate or the written approval of the investment policy.

Dossier of application for a construction permit for foreign contractors being individuals

  • An application form for a construction permit is specified in the form (Circular 14/2016/TT-BXD).
  • A copy or file containing a color copy of the original text in an image or other format (*.pdf) of the document of the bidding results or the decision on selection of a contractor or the lawful contract of delivery and receipt.
  • A copy or file containing color photocopies of the original text in an image or other format (*.pdf) of an operating license or practice certificate issued by the country of which the individual is a national or where the individual conducts it. Project grant and copy of personal passport.
  • The file contains a color copy of the original text in an image or other format (*.pdf) of the project investment decision or the investment certificate or the written approval of the investment policy.

Note:

  • The application form must be made in Vietnamese;
  • Establishment license, business registration certificate of the contractor is a foreign legal entity; The practice certificates of contractors being foreign individuals must be consular legalized;
  • Other foreign language documents must be translated into Vietnamese and notarized and authenticated;
  • For an application file for a construction permit arising in the same year, it is not necessary to include documents on the establishment license; practicing certificate; a report on construction experience related to contractor work.
  • In case the subcontractor cannot be identified when bidding or selecting a contractor when applying for a construction license, a contract with a Vietnamese subcontractor must be signed together with the investor’s written approval and a copy of the registration certificate. business registration of Vietnamese subcontractors.

The agency receiving the application for a construction license for foreign contractors

  • The specialized construction agency under the Ministry of Construction (Construction Operations Department) grants construction activity permits to foreign contractors performing contracts of nationally important projects, group A projects, projects construction investment in two or more provinces;
  • The Department of Construction issues construction permits to foreign contractors to perform contracts of group B and group C projects invested in construction in the administrative division of the province.

Procedures for applying for a construction operation license for foreign contractors

The foreign contractor shall submit 1 set of dossiers to the construction license-issuing agency according to its competence.

Submission form: Bidders may choose to submit their documents through one of the following methods:

  • Directly at state agencies;
  • Via postal service;
  • The portal of the licensing agency (if any);

Within 05 working days, the dossier-receiving agency will consider and request supplementation and correction if the dossier is incomplete or unsuitable; and provide written instructions.

Within 20 working days from the date of receiving the valid dossier, the permit-issuing agency will and shall consider and grant the construction operation permit to the foreign contractor or refuse to grant it and clearly state the reason.

Attention when granting construction license to foreign contractors

  • Foreign contractors must form a joint venture with Vietnamese contractors or use Vietnamese subcontractors unless the domestic contractors are not qualified to participate in any work of the bidding package. When entering into a partnership or using a Vietnamese contractor, the contents, volume, and value of the work performed by the Vietnamese contractor in the joint venture must be clearly defined; implemented by Vietnamese subcontractors;
  • After being granted a construction license, the foreign contractor must register the information of the Executive Office and the representative for the performance of the contract;
  • Foreign contractors must register to use the seal of the project management office at the police station under the authority of the construction licensing agency. Foreign contractors only use this seal in service of contract performance in Vietnam according to the provisions of the contractor’s license. At the end of the contract, the foreign contractor must return the seal to the issuing agency;
  • Foreign contractors must register and pay taxes under Vietnamese law, comply with the accounting regime, open accounts, and make payments under the guidance of the Ministry of Finance and the State Bank of Vietnam to serve their services. contract business.
  • Regulations on reporting: No later than December 16 of each year, the foreign contractor is responsible for reporting to the construction licensing agency and the Department of Construction where the project is located on the contract performance.

Service of applying for a construction license for foreign contractors 

  • Advising on conditions to be granted a license to operate construction of foreign contractors in Vietnam;
  • Consulting procedures for applying for a license to operate construction of foreign contractors in Vietnam;
  • Advising clients to prepare dossiers under Vietnamese law related to granting licenses for construction activities of foreign contractors in Vietnam;
  • Translate, notarize, translate, and consular legalize documents in service of granting permits for construction activities of foreign contractors in Vietnam;
  • Completing documents for customers to be granted a license for construction activities of foreign contractors in Vietnam;
  • Carry out procedures for applying for a license to operate foreign construction contractors in Vietnam at a competent state agency;
  • Register and apply for the seal of the Project Management Office of the foreign contractor;
  • Consulting, drafting contract joint venture between foreign contractors and Vietnamese contractors.

Foreign contractors who want to find opportunities in Vietnam or wish to carry out the procedures for applying for a construction license for foreign contractors, please contact Viet An Law Firm for advice. and support legal services to operate quickly, safely, and legally.

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