How Difficult is it to Set up a Foreign Business in Vietnam?

Business, English - November 15, 2023
Image 1. How Difficult is it to Set up a Foreign Business in Vietnam?

This is a question that quite a number of entrepreneurs ask; it might be that they have fallen in love with this unique nation and they wish to relocate, set up a company and spend the rest of their lives in a tropical paradise. The key to a smooth business registration process in Vietnam is to engage the services of an international law firm that has offices in Vietnam and their English-speaking lawyer can advise you accordingly.

Professional Guidance

As with every other country, Vietnam offers several business registration options, which are as follows;

  • Representative Office (RO) – This is perfect for an international company/corporation that wishes to research the Vietnamese market. Of course, this is a ‘non-trading entity’ and is wholly owned by the mother company. There are many benefits and should you wish to progress to a limited company, which is a trading entity, this is possible. Click here to learn more.
  • Joint Stock Company – This is suitable for a foreign company that wishes to build a corporate culture; the trading entity must have a minimum of 3 owners and can be 100% foreign-owned or jointly with a Vietnamese entity. It takes 6-8 weeks for the process to be completed and your lawyer would request documentation and facilitate the opening of bank accounts.
  • Limited Liability Company – A trading entity that can have single or multiple owners (100% foreign or JV owned), this is ideal for an international company that is ready to trade within Vietnam and the entity is subject to local laws. If you are unsure which options is best for you, talk to an English-speaking lawyer and he or she can help you make the right choice.

Long-term working visas

If you are planning on assuming a hands-on role within the company, you will need a visa and work permit, which your lawyer can facilitate. As with any other country, it is not a good idea to let your visa expire, or work without a work permit, as this can lead to serious legal issues. Click here for business communication tips to boost your confidence.

Outsourcing to local providers

Your lawyer is the person to talk to about peripheral services, such as:

  • Secretarial work
  • Bookkeeping & accounting
  • Sales & marketing
  • Sourcing local employees
  • Leasing commercial premises

When you forge a working alliance with a reputable international law firm, you can make use of their extensive associations with local businesses, which is very valuable in more ways than one.Vietnam has a unique culture and with a booming economy, now is the perfect time to seek legal advice regarding the setting up of a business. The lawyer will explain the various forms of company registration, citing the pros and cons of each, which enables you to make an informed decision. Once your organisation has been registered, you can implement your plan and watch your new business grow.