New associational regulations issued in Vietnam

1 July 2010

In 2009 the Ministry of Home Affairs, in response to calls from government regulators for a more detailed regulatory document, and from associations, the World Bank, and other donors for a firmer regulatory footing, completed a draft revision of the 2003 Decree on the Organization, Activities, and Management of Associations under which most Vietnamese associations are registered. The revised Decree 88, now Decree 45 (2010),  was promulgated on April 21, 2010, and takes effect on July 1, 2010. The new  Decree 45 (2010) continues to govern the registration, operations, activities,  and management of a wide range of associational groups at the national, provincial, municipal, and sub-provincial level.

Some procedures have changed from Decree 88 (2003), but firm control remains, as the new Decree 45 (2010) continues to provide that the process of formation and registration of associations will be highly regulated by the Ministry of Home Affairs, local governments, and other government agencies. It continues to strictly limit associational speech and advocacy rights, and restrict the commentary, advocacy, and feedback role of associations to circumstances in which such views have been requested by government agencies.

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