VIETNAM: Upcoming Work Permit Changes

Improvements to the work permit application process for foreign workers in Vietnam are pending due to a draft of Decree 102. These amendments have been proposed in order to increase foreign investment, whilst simultaneously prioritising the hiring of Vietnamese nationals. The new draft is expected to come into effect before the end of the year.

One of the key changes in the work permit process is the definition of a Foreign Expert. The criteria has been revised to consider someone a Foreign Expert only if they:

  • Have a minimum of 5 years” experience

  • Hold an Engineering qualification or Bachelor”s degree

  • Have been recognised as an expert in writing by a foreign country

Work Permit Exemptions have also been amended so that foreigners are only exempt if they are:

  • Entering Vietnam for less than three months

  • Are working in Vietnam for less than 30 days per visit

  • Are studying or at training institution abroad whilst working in Vietnam

As well as the changes to the criteria for the permit, the application process itself has been simplified and the rules relaxed.

The statutory time for issuing a work permit has been decreased to seven days from the original 10, and the acceptance period for renewal applications has been generously extended to 45 days before the expiration of the current permit, as opposed to the original period of 15 days.

There have also been some beneficial changes to the conditions on paperwork involved in the application process, one of which means that it is no longer necessary to legalise application documents, provided that the applicant can provide the original at the time of submission.

Instead of being required from both, the Criminal Background Check will now be accepted from either a foreign country or Vietnam. Similarly, Health certificates from healthcare providers will be acknowledged from both Vietnam and foreign countries and will now be valid for 12 months, extended from the original 6 months.

Should you require any further information about Vietnamese immigration, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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