Framework for cross-border e-commerce

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e-commerce

The Ministry of Finance (MOF) has released a draft decree promulgating the management of exported and imported goods in cross-border e-commerce. This is considered a positive government initiative designed to facilitate and expedite the flow of e-commerce goods into Vietnam.

The draft decree acts as an alternative for exporters and importers in conducting customs clearance of goods purchased and sold on e-commerce platforms via an e-commerce activity management system. Entities entitled to utilize this system to facilitate their customs clearance procedure for e-commerce goods include:

  • Traders, organizations providing services on e-commerce marketplaces;
  • Owners of online shopping websites;
  • Transportation enterprises;
  • Customs agents;
  • Enterprises doing business in bonded warehouses/owners of e-commerce goods stored in bonded warehouses; and
  • Individuals and organizations importing and exporting goods through e-commerce platforms.

The management system serves as an information exchange hub, connecting users with the General Department of Customs, credit institutions, national single-window and other related systems in order to exchange and process information for the management of exported and imported goods transacted via e-commerce platforms.

Usage conditions

In order to utilize the management system, users are required to: (1) register an account to connect with the system via http://www.customs.gov.vn; and (2) equip their platform with standardized technical infrastructure for e-commerce trading to secure access and allow for information exchange with the management system.

The management system is a customs data processing e-system that receives, shares and stores information related to the export and import of goods traded via e-commerce platforms. Users are required to provide information, depending on their role in the transaction, as follows:

  • E-commerce marketplaces and online shopping websites shall provide purchase order information, including any changes or updates, to the management system after receiving payment from customers, or before delivering goods to transportation entities; and
  • Transportation entities, after receiving information from e-commerce marketplaces, and online shopping websites, shall provide purchase order Information, delivery methods, vessel identification number, delivery route, transportation duration, estimated arrival time, and destination.

The Customs authority shall then receive and process the information for customs clearance. The customs declaration dossier will only include a customs declaration form, import permit, inspection result (where applicable), and the information as provided in the management system.

All goods, except for those exempted from inspection and those at value of VND1 million (US$45) or less, are subject to specialized inspection. Goods with a value greater than VND1 million may be exempted from inspection not more than three times per year, and the exemption is only applied to one product for each consignment if the goods are listed in annex II of the draft.

Business Law Digest is compiled with the assistance of Baker McKenzie. Readers should not act on this information without seeking professional legal advice. You can contact Baker McKenzie by emailing Danian Zhang at [email protected].