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The Era Of Red Company Stamps May Be Coming To An End In Vietnam

If you’ve ever had to do commercial paperwork in Vietnam, you’re probably familiar with red company stamps. If Prime Minister Dung has his way, this era may soon be coming to an end, replaced by one of digital signatures, according to Thanh Nien.

“It’s special as the idea of changing the traditional use of corporate seals came from the Prime Minister, not the business community,” said Nguyen Dinh Cung, Director of the Central Institute for Economic Management at a seminar in Hanoi last week.

“I call these revisions ‘a major change in thinking,” Cung added.

The draft amendment will be voted on by the National Assembly within the next month. If it passes, company seals will become optional as “businesses can use a stamp and/or handwritten and/or digital signature of managers to render contracts and other official documents valid and legal.”

Currently, any contract without a company seal is not considered official and valid.

World Bank senior specialist, Jean Michel Lobet welcomed the proposal:

“As business activities become fluid and technology enters the digital age, corporate seals have become obsolete and are, to some extent, a hindrance,” Lobet said at the seminar.

As do the majority of the country’s businesses:

“Nguyen Minh Duc, a representative of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), said a recent VCCI survey showed that 52 percent of businesses voted for abolishing the corporate seal.

Meanwhile, 30 percent would like to have the freedom to make their own seals with their favorite shapes and colors. Only 28 percent hoped that matter remain unchanged.”

Others have supported the idea as well, saying that it will reduce fraud and speed up the business registration process.

We’re for any plan that cuts through some of the red tape for local businesses.

[Thanh Nien]

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