The Vietnam Ministry of Industry and Trade (“MOIT”) has recently publicized the Draft Circular amending and supplementing several articles of (i) Circular No. 47/2014/TT-BCT regulating the management of e-commerce websites and (ii) Circular No. 59/2015/TT-BCT stipulating the management of e-commerce activities via applications on mobile devices (“Draft Circular”) to gather public opinions.

The deadline for commenting on the Draft Circular is 14 December 2021.

One of the Draft Circular’s objectives is to ensure full compliance with the recently-promulgated Decree No. 85/2021/ND-CP (amending several article of Decree No. 52/2013/ND-CP on e-commerce).

Below is a summary highlighting some proposed amendments under the Draft Circular:

1.         Amending and supplementing Circular No. 47/2014/TT-BCT

  • Remove the requirement for notification from traders and organizations owning e-commerce websites that have both online shopping and e-commerce service providing functions (they are only obliged to register with the MOIT according to Chapter II of Circular No. 47/2014/TT-BCT).
  • Prescribe forms of the Plan on the provision of e-commerce services (for traders and organizations providing e-commerce services as well as foreign traders and organizations providing e-commerce services in Vietnam).
  • Remove regulations prohibiting the business of goods subject to restrictions on e-commerce websites.

2.         Amending and supplementing Circular No. 59/2015/TT-BCT

  • Amend the subject of application from “foreign traders and organizations having a presence in Vietnam through investment activities or the establishment of branches or representative offices” to “foreign traders and organizations conducting e-commerce activities in Vietnam”.
  • Limit the subject legally responsible for notifying the MOIT to traders whose applications have online ordering functions.