Land use rights for foreigners set to come under strict scrutiny

VOV.VN - The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) is poised to examine and consider promulgating a new decree relating to foreign investment issues in the country, including foreigners’ land use, according to MPI Minister Nguyen Chi Dung.

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 Planning and Investment Minister Nguyen Chi Dung says his ministry will examine the 2014 Investment Law and consider issuing a decress relating to foreigners' land use in Vietnam
Dung was responding to reporters’ questions on the sidelines of the ongoing National Assembly session following news that many Chinese investors had taken advantage of loopholes within the 2014 Investment Law to acquire land situated close to key structures relating to national defence and security.

“Revising the Investment Law is not easy, because the law is equal for all fields and investors regardless of their nationality,” Dung said. “For an issue in need of State management, the State uses different tools in order to closely manage that issue."

The Minister’s response comes after the Ministry of Defence unveiled a fresh report that states as of November 30, 2019, as many as 149 Chinese-related businesses are in operation in 22 out of 44 border localities.

“Most of the allocated land lots are located along major roads and coastal areas which are ideal for businesses, but are also of paramount importance to national defence,” the report said. “Voters and the public in general are very concerned about the Da Nang administration’s decisions to grant the right to use 21 land lots to Chinese firms.”

Meanwhile, in response to a similar question posed by reporters, Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment Tran Hong Ha affirmed that, “No one grants land use rights to foreign businesses under the Land Law.”

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Several land lots near Nuoc Man airpot in Da Nang city, central Vietnam, are said to be owned by foreigners
According to voters, foreigners are taking advantage of loopholes that exist within the Investment Law and the Housing Law as a means of acquiring land in the country.

National Assembly deputy Duong Trung Quoc stated that local administrations must first be held accountable for this level of lax management which has ultimately led to such a result. 

“The Ministry of Defence’s report even looks at tricks that foreign investors have tried to use to circumvent the law, for example through shared ownerships or by hiring Vietnamese people to own the land lot,” said Quoc. “These loopholes must be closed immediately.”

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