Arbitration could solve disputes fast

DA NANG (VNS) — Businesses and banks in Viet Nam still resolve disputes through the courts, even though arbitration and mediation remain the most popular methods throughout the world in dealing with banking disputes. This preference for using courts was discussed by General secretary of the Viet Nam Banking Association Tran Thi Hanh at a workshop on the Use of Arbitration and Mediation (A&M) in the resolution of banking and financial disputes in Da Nang yesterday. "Viet Nam's economics has been deeply integrated into the world and the regional economic community, so banking and financial disputes have rapidly become more complicated. These needs a quick, easy procedure in solving disputes for businesses and banks," Hanh said. "Resolving banking disputes by arbitration and mediation could help businesses and banks deal with arguments and risks in a smooth way," she said, adding that the solution would be an effective way to reduce bad debt in the banking system. Hanh said … [Read more...]

SOCIETY IN BRIEF 20/7

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Khmer homes linked to grid More than 6,000 households, most of them ethnic Khmer, in the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta province of Tra Vinh have been linked to the power grid under an ongoing project that seeks to achieve universal electrification. At the end of the VND228 billion (US$10.94 million) two-phase project, nearly 19,000 households would have been connected. An additional 418 transformer stations would have been built to supply power to the families living in 83 remote villages in seven districts. In just the first phase, the ratio of households with power will increase from 87 to 94 per cent. Thach Tha My, a Khmer farmer living in My Chanh village, Chau Thanh District, said: "My family has 0.35ha of farm land. I used to buy power from neighbours at high prices for farming. "Because many families share the same electricity line, the voltage is not stable. "Thanks to the project, we now have electricity for household and agricultural purposes and no longer have to pay … [Read more...]

Official held for revealing State secrets

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Police in Ho Chi Minh City have arrested a state official for providing secret State materials to overseas reactionary organizations. The official, Pham Chi Dung, who had been working for a State agency in HCMC, was arrested on July 17 for further investigation, police said. Police also searched his home and office for materials related to the case. A source said that after four reactionaries, Le Cong Dinh, Tran Huynh Duy Thuc, Le Thang Long and Nguyen Tien Trung were tried in January 2011 for "working to overthrow the people's administration", some reactionary organizations that these men had been involved in continued conducting acts of sabotage against Vietnam. After a lengthy investigation, police had collected enough evidence to conclude that Dung was the person who has provided those organizations with secret materials. Dung had received thousands of dollars as reimbursement from these organizations, investigators said. At the above-mentioned trial, the Ho Chi Minh … [Read more...]

Reducing import surplus

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The import surplus in May was valued at US$750 million, accounting for 12.3 percent of the total export turnover, the lowest import surplus so far this year. Speaking at an online conference between Hanoi and HCMCity on June 8, the Minister of Industry and Trade, Vu Huy Hoang, emphasised that although exports show some signs of picking up, more effective measures need to be put in place to deal with the import surplus. Exporters still in a fix According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT), the export sector is experiencing several positive signs, with an export turnover of almost US$6.1 billion in May, up 14.4 percent over the previous month and 37.5 percent higher than the same period last year. In the first five months, Vietnam's total export turnover hit US$25.8 billion, reaching 42.7 percent of the set target for the whole year and representing a year-on-year increase of 12.6 percent. This is attributed to a strong growth in the export of industrial products despite … [Read more...]

Fraudulent forest officials suspended

Part of Dam Doi protective forest destroyed for illegal shrimp farms (Photo: Tien Phong Online)

Two high raking forest management officials, charged with illegally granting land in the Dam Doi Protective Forest in Ca Mau Province to family members to build shrimp farms, have been suspended, the chairman of Dam Doi Ward People's Committee, Doan Quoc Khoi, announced yesterday. Khoi said that Duong Thanh Thanh, head of Dam Doi Ward Forrest Management, Mai Thanh Truc, head of the Dam Doi Protective Forest Management and 60 staff members connected to the case were suspended from the their duties. They will face appropriate disciplinary measures. Earlier, the Dam Doi Ward People's Committee had abolished the decision issued by deputy chairman of Dam Doi Ward People's Committee Tran Xuan Khuya on July 2008. According to the decision, 62.8 hectares of land of Dam Doi Protective Forest would have been to given 14 families of local farmers to turn it into shrimp breeding farms. Despite Dam Doi Protective Forest Management's proposal saying all the local farmers were poor and … [Read more...]

Mind maps help city teacher popularize literature studies

A teacher in a continuing school has used the concept of mind maps pioneered by Tony Buzan to get his students enthusiastic - and proactive - about literature. "Last year, I found various books in related to a new concept, mind maps, by Tony Buzan. The more books I bought to read, the more interested I became. It got me thinking that this concept can probably be applied to my subject", said Hoang Duc Huy, who currently teaches Literature in District 4's Continuing School in HCMC. Extra class hours or recess is the period Huy chose to apply the new method to his students. He also recommended that his students try it after class as well. So, the students were encouraged to surf the internet at home to find materials, including pictures and other content, to draw their own mind maps relating to the just-completed lesson. Usually considered a boring subject by most students, Huy is proud that every student of his has applied the new method of learning. "But not all lessons will have … [Read more...]

Caterpillars devastate pine forest in central Vietnam

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Caterpillars have ravaged 500 hectares of a state-owned pine plantation at the resin collection period in central Vietnam's Thanh Hoa province. Pham Chi Dung, director of the Tinh Gia Forest Park, said the pests were swarming onto the trees at an extremely high rate of 2,000 per tree. Another 500 ha is now in danger of being devoured by the pests. … [Read more...]

Law strengthens tender process

A medical scan is carried out at Phuoc My Hospital in Binh Duong Province. Medical equipment was among a host of areas addressed in the Revised Bidding Law, which has seen improvements in the monitering of bids for public projects. - VNA/VNS Photo Duong Ngoc

HCM CITY (VNS) - The Revised Bidding Law, which took effect in July, has ushered in great improvement in monitoring bids for public projects and tackling violations, a seminar organised by the Viet Nam International Arbitration Centre (VIAC) heard in HCM City yesterday. … [Read more...]

Firms unaware of arbitration

(VNS) Chairman of the Viet Nam International Arbitration Centre Tran Huu Quynh speaks to Dau Tu (Vietnam Investment Review) about the challenges facing commercial arbitration in Viet Nam. What are your comments on the recent trade disputes in Viet Nam? Since the Viet Nam International Arbitration Centre (VIAC) was established in 1993, we have worked on dozens of trade disputes every year. There were 83 cases in 2011 and 64 cases last year. The disputes were mostly in trade, finance and banking, construction, processing, investment co-operation, services and agents. Notably, 71 per cent of the cases were related to foreign partners, mostly from Singapore, South Korea, mainland China and the US. What role have arbitrators played? Viet Nam already has the Law on Commerce. However, enterprises are not well-informed about the law. Since they are used to the old mechanism of being subsidised by the Government, they are still reluctant to use non-governmental organisations for … [Read more...]

Local firms urged to brush up on arbitration law

HA NOI (VNS)— Domestic enterprises seemed to be vague about arbitration despite the benefits this form of settlement could offer, a conference heard yesterday in Ha Noi. During the event, organised by the Viet Nam International Arbitration Centre (VIAC), participants emphasised the importance of raising awareness, particularly among domestic enterprises, on the advantages of arbitration. Arbitration was a suitable form of dispute resolution, especially in the context of Viet Nam's global economic integration, experts said, adding that hiring arbitrators helped businesses save time and money while further easing the burden on the nation's court system. Established in 1993, VIAC is one of the top arbitration centres in Viet Nam. As of last year, it had settled over 630 disputes. — VNS … [Read more...]

Property disputes mar development

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A new residential area in west Ha Noi. The capital city has seen an increase in disputes between real estate investors and home buyers. — VNS Photo Truong Vi HA NOI (VNS)— The country's legal system has not kept pace with rapid real estate development, triggering a number of disputes between investors and customers. There were many disputes between real estate investors - who made large profits in a short time -and home buyers, who felt that investors were not professional in their transactions, an expert said at a conference in Ha Noi yesterday. Former deputy minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Dang Hung Vo singled out Le Van Luong Residential Project and Dai Thanh Apartment Building as areas where disputes had occurred over such issues as service fees and certificates of home ownership. The Law on Apartments and other legal documents lacked regulations on building management boards and other key issues, according to Vo. Moreover, contracts between investors and … [Read more...]

Laws on e-commerce fall behind the times

HCM CITY ' The legal framework for e-commerce needs to be strengthened to cope with the rapid development of the industry, experts have said. Speaking at a conference in HCM City on Thursday to collect ideas for a new draft decree on e-commerce and the internet, Tran Huu Vinh Binh of the E-commerce and Information Technology Agency (VECITA) said: "A decree issued in 2006 was the first law on e-commerce, but it is basic. [E-commerce] has developed strongly and laws should be amended." In 2006 e-commerce had been limited due to poor internet infrastructure, but now it has huge potential for development. … [Read more...]

BUSINESS IN BRIEF 24/8

Businesses sell abroad 4.5 million tonnes of rice Vietnamese businesses have so far this year shipped over 4.52 million tonnes of rice abroad for nearly 2.06 billion USD, said the Vietnam Food Association. The figures, however, reflected a year-on-year decrease of 10.9 percent in volume and 19.44 percent in value. Despite these decreases, local farmers in these days were happy with a sharp rise in paddy rice price. In the Mekong Delta, the price of undried IR 50404 paddy enjoyed an increase of 400'500 VND a kilo to 4.800'5.000 VND from a week ago. … [Read more...]

Regulators eye e-commerce

HA NOI ' Discussions on a new draft decree on e-commerce were held in the capital city today. The new draft aims to replace a shortage of clear regulations in Government decree No 57 issued in 2006. According to Tran Huu Huynh, chairman of the Viet Nam International Arbitration Centre (VIAC), the draft is a good signal for e-commerce because it concentrates on establishing trustworthiness and ways of solving conflicts. "Enterprises have expressed concerns about e-commerce security while consumers are afraid of running into troubles not completely covered in the previous decree," said Huynh. … [Read more...]

Tighter controls on e-commerce

HA NOI - Discussions on a new draft decree on e-commerce were held in the capital city today. The new draft aims to replace a shortage of clear regulations in Government decree No. 57 issued in 2006. According to Tran Huu Quynh, chairman of Viet Nam International Arbitration Centre (VIAC), the draft is a good signal for e-commerce because it concentrates on establishing trustworthiness and ways of solving conflicts. "Enterprises have expressed concerns about e-commerce security while consumers are afraid of running into troubles not completely covered in the previous decree," said Quynh. … [Read more...]

Consumers do not know their rights

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HA NOI — Twelve months after a law on protecting consumer rights was put into operation, few people had a good understanding of what it is - or even knew that it existed, a workshop was told yesterday. Consumers purchase electronic goods at the PICO Mall in Ha Noi. — VNS Photo Truong Vi According to the statistics from the Ministry of Industry and Trade, during 2011, more than 550 complaints were lodged to local departments of industry and trade, nearly 2,000 to consumer-rights' associations and 60 to the Competition Authority. "There has been an increase compared to before the law came into force, but the figures are far from the reality," said vice president of the Viet Nam Standards and Consumer Rights Protection Association Nguyen Manh Hung. Hung said many consumers hesitated to make a complaint because they thought it was time-consuming and the procedure was complicated. Bui Nguyen Khanh from the Viet Nam Institute of State and Law said that enterprises selling … [Read more...]

Experts call for corporate tax cut

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HCM CITY — A lawyer for the Viet Nam International Arbitration Centre has recommended that the government cut corporate income taxes by 5 per cent to 20 per cent in order to help enterprises lower costs on future investmens. Workers at Nha Be Garment Corp make clothes for export. Corporate income taxes are proposed to be reduced to help enterprises lower costs. — VNA/VNS Photo Ha Thai Lawyer Truong Thanh Duc said that high lending interest rates were not the only cause behind many closures of companies this year. Even though loan interest rates have been cut to 13-14 per cent, most companies still are reluctant to take out loans. Speaking to Tuoi Tre newspaper, Duc said other factors, including taxation, inventories, higher expenses for transport and electricity and decreasing purchasing power had affected business growth. According to a report from the Policy and Development Institute, 4,105 enterprises were dissolved in the first six months of the year, up 35.4 per cent … [Read more...]

Firms may breach exporting contracts

HA NOI — Production slowdowns are putting some exporters at risk of breaching contracts and potentially triggering trade-related disputes, said Central Institute for Economic Management deputy director Nguyen Dinh Cung at a conference in Ha Noi yesterday. "Disputes will readily occur when relevant parties, as a result of these disadvantageous economic conditions, can't perform or perform contracts inadequately," Cung said. He also warned that the country needed to be cautious in implementing policies to bailout or assist certain industries as such policies posed a potential conflict with commitments under international agreements. Viet Nam Lawyers Association chairman Pham Quoc Anh agreed, noting that the failure of domestic enterprises to enhance their transparency in doing business was "dangerous in the context of integration." Domestic enterprises were often at a disadvantage when international disputes arose as they lacked caution in signing and performing contracts and … [Read more...]