Vietnam scales back proposed restriction on foreign firms

The Vietnamese government has tempered plans to introduce restrictions on foreign law firms operating in the country, following recommendations made by numerous international law firms. The first draft of the protectionist provision would have meant that foreign law firms could not provide legal document services such as drafting of contracts. “That set off alarm bells because Vietnamese commercial trade and investment dealings with the rest of the world depend a lot on Vietnamese lawyers who work in international law firms, who are drafting contracts and business charters all the time,” said Fred Burke, head of Baker & McKenzie’s Ho Chi Minh City office. The final draft of the law now specifies that contracts and business charters do not fall under the definition of legal document services. But the change still leaves room for a different interpretation down the road, says Burke.

Vietnam scales back proposed restriction on foreign firms Wed, Nov 28, 2012