HCM City businesses bemoan exorbitant licensing fees
  • By Trung Kien | | June 28, 2013 09:08 AM

Foreign firms which want to invest in Vietnam often have to spend between USD10-20,000 to get a license, said Do Kim Dung, Vice Chairman of the municipal Advertising Association.


Representatives from local authorities at the dialogue 

The HCM City Investment and Trade Promotion Centre joined with some local departments to hold a dialogue on June 26 between municipal authorities and enterprises in the city.

According to Dung, many foreign companies plan to invest in the Vietnamese advertising sector, however, complicated administrative procedures discourage them. They have requested to submit their application documents to the city’s Department of Planning and Investment which will seek approval from the ministries of planning and investment, industry and trade, culture, sports and tourism and information and communications.  Therefore, businesses have to wait at least two months for this stage.

Then enterprises are suggested to directly come to Hanoi to meet with management agencies to get answers for their procedural questions, taking much time and cost. After receiving the feedback from the ministries, they have to wait for the HCM City People’s Committee’s approval. As a result, it takes them from 6 to 18 months to be granted with an investment license.

“A number of consulting firms charge between USD10,000 and USD20,000 for an investment license, including bribes. Many foreign advertising companies complained to us about the high fees, meanwhile the registered capital for an enterprise in this sector is around USD100,000,” he noted.

Nguyen Hoang Minh, Deputy Director of the HCM City Department of Planning and Investment said the department is seeking measures to support enterprises but due to licensing relating to many agencies at different levels, speeding up the processing of the applications was beyond their control.

Minh added that his department had informed the city People’s Committee of the licensing issues and also raised them at ministries and agencies meetings. However to date no solution has yet been worked out.

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