Monetary, banking fines raised
  • | VNS | October 24, 2011 05:43 PM

A new decree issued by the Government last Friday increases punishments for administrative violations in the financial and banking sector.

Customers undertake transactions at the VIB Bank in Hanoi.

Decree No95 imposes the highest penalties on administrative violations of regulations relating to foreign currency and gold trading management. This will be a seven-fold increase from the current VND70 million (USD3,330) to VND500 million (USD23,800).

The listing or advertising of prices for commodities, properties, services in foreign currencies, or gold, will be penalised by between VND300 million - VND500 million (USD14,354-USD23,923).

A VND50 million - VND100 million fine is stipulated for violations in using gold to pay for commodities and services, and for gold trading activities.

In the past, such practices were not penalised.

The new decree also stipulates fines of VND300 million - 500 million for illegal foreign exchange activities as well as illegal import and export of foreign currencies and gold. This marks a seven-fold increase from current fines of VND45 million and VND70 million per case.

Those who illegally transport foreign currencies beyond borders, or use foreign currencies for paying commodities and services breaking current regulations will be fined VND50 million - 100 million, up from VND5 million - 12 million (USD239-574.16).

People who engage in illegal foreign currency and gold trading activities, or use foreign currencies and gold for paying for commodities and services without authorised agencies\' permission can also have their business licences revoked.

Despite the Government\'s ban on listing prices in foreign currencies, especially US dollars, and the threat of stricter enforcement against violations, many businesses still list the prices of their goods and services in dollar or gold.

This is particularly common at travel companies, tourist resorts, beauty parlors and motorbike shops.

Listing the prices of goods and services in foreign currencies not only goes against the law but also hurts the interests of consumers.

According to current State Bank of Vietnam regulations, except for credit institutions, customs agencies and airports, no transactions, price listing and advertisements by local residents and non-residents are to be conducted in foreign currencies.

In other words, businesses and companies are not allowed to quote their prices in a foreign currency or even mention it next to the local currency. People who encounter such practices are asked to inform the State Bank, market control agencies, economic management police or relevant authorities.

Before they are allowed to list prices in foreign currencies, businesses must first seek the approval of the State Bank Governor by proving the listing is reasonable and necessary. To date, no such special permission has been granted.

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