13 August 2021

On 20 July 2021, Vietnam issued Decree 70/2021/ND-CP (“Decree 70”), which takes effect on 15 September 2021 and replaces certain cross-border advertising regulations prescribed under Decree 181/2013/ND-CP (“Decree 181”).

Decree 70 amends and supplements the obligations of offshore entities providing cross-border advertising services in Vietnam (“Provider”) to better align such obligations with the commercial practices actually undertaken in Vietnam and the Cybersecurity Law No. 24/2018/QH14 (which took effect on 1 January 2019).

This Article provides a summary of the salient points in Decree 70.

1. Definition of cross-border adverting activities

Decree 70 provides new definitions relating to the provision of cross-border advertising activities in Vietnam and advertising tools and/or channels (i.e. electronic information sites). In particular:

  • Provision of cross-border advertising activities in Vietnam means “the use of electronic information sites by foreign organisations and individuals to provide advertising services to users in Vietnam from service provision equipment systems located outside Vietnam and earn revenues generated in Vietnam.”
  • “Electronic information sites for providing cross-border advertising activities” is further defined as information systems using one or more electronic information sites in the form of symbols, numbers, letters, images and sounds and other forms of information to provide network users with services of information storage, provision, use, search and exchange, sharing of sounds and images, and creation of online chats and forums for the purpose of providing advertising services. 

The scope of the term “cross-border advertising activities in Vietnam” is very broad, and may potentially cover the provision of cross-border advertising activities via advertising tools and/or channels such as websites and mobile applications.

2. Supplementing Provider obligations

Decree 70 provides that a Provider is required to undertake the following:

  • Notify the Ministry of Information and Communications (“MIC”) of their contact information prior to provision of cross-border advertising services in Vietnam (instead of prior to the publication of advertisements, as required under Decree 181); 
  • Not to place advertisements in content that infringes Vietnamese laws; 
  • Prevent and remove infringing content at the MIC’s request; 
  • Provide competent authorities upon request with information about organisations and individuals involved in possible illegal cross-border advertising activities; and 
  • Provide solutions for advertising publishers and advertisers in Vietnam to control and remove advertising products that violate Vietnamese laws from its service system.