Joint circular



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IIVIETNAM

A - Foreign correspondents:

1. Foreign correspondents defined in the Regulation are professional journalists working as correspondents for a news agency or for a spoken, written, video, pictorial or electronic journal, or free-lance journalists wishing to enter Vietnam to conduct press activities such as filming, photographing, collecting data, interviewing, recording, video-recording, or to go to different localities and places to write news, press articles or reportages... on the situation and events taking place on Vietnamese territory.

2. Foreign correspondents who enter Vietnam for other purposes such as touring, visiting or joining their relatives, doing business, conducting professional exchange or technical cooperation, or working for Vietnamese press agencies in Vietnam..., and foreigners who are not correspondents shall not be allowed to conduct press activities in the capacity of foreign correspondents. In special cases, they must apply for and get permission from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

B - Foreign correspondents conducting short-term press activities in Vietnam:

1. Foreign correspondents who want to enter Vietnam (or are invited by Vietnamese State agencies or organizations) to conduct short-term press activities as defined in Article 6 of the Regulation must write clearly in their CV their full name, the date, month and year of their birth, their nationality and passport number, and the mass medium they work for.

If a correspondent carries a visa-exempt passport of a country which has signed an Agreement on Visa Exemption with the Government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, he/she needs not apply for a visa, but he/she still has to apply for permission to conduct press activities as stipulated above.

If his/her request for conducting press activities is granted, he/she will be issued an entry-exit visa by Vietnam

2. The specialized agency of Vietnam which guides foreign correspondents in entering Vietnam to conduct short-term press activities as mentioned in Article 7 of the Regulation must be an agency approved by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The correspondent concerned must pay all expenses incurred in carrying out his/her program.

C - Permanent foreign press offices and correspondents:

1. A permanent foreign press office is the representative office of a foreign news agency or a written, spoken and video journal which is permitted to be based in Hanoi to conduct press activities in Vietnam.

2. A permanent foreign correspondent in Vietnam is one who officially and regularly works at a permanent foreign press office in Vietnam.

3. Applications for the establishment of permanent press offices in Vietnam stipulated in Article 8 of the Regulation shall be sent to the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or to Vietnam’s diplomatic representations in foreign countries. The head of the news or press agency concerned may empower a responsible person to sign the application. The Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall answer within 60 days after receiving the application.

4. The permanent foreign press offices should ensure their regular and continuous operation. If an office has no permanent correspondent for a continuous period of 180 days, the permit for opening the office shall automatically be invalidated.

5. Concerning the replacement or change of the number of correspondents stipulated in Article 10 of the Regulation: if an office wants to replace a correspondent or needs more correspondents for short-term assignments, it has to send an application to the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall consider and settle case by case.

6. The foreign correspondent card mentioned in Article 12 of the Regulation shall be issued in compliance with the duration of time written in his/her entry and exit permit. The permanent correspondent shall be issued multiple entry-exit Vietnam. Within 15 days at the latest before his/her entry-exit visa expires, he/she must apply for extension if he/she continues to work as permanent correspondent in Vietnam. If he/she loses his/her foreign correspondent card, he/she must notify the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and apply for a new card.

7. While conducting press activities as stipulated in Article 13 of the Regulation, the correspondent must take along his/her foreign correspondent card and the permit for conducting press activities and produce it to the authorities when necessary. When going to places outside Hanoi, he/she must contact the local external relations service before conducting his/her press activities.

The Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall consider case by case the requirements of these correspondents for conducting an urgent press activity.

With regard to press activities prompted by on-spot requirement outside what is granted in the permit, the correspondents must comply with the stipulations and guidance of the local authorities.

8. The Foreign Press Center of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is the sole agency allowed to introduce and sign contracts for the supply of interpreters and assistants working for the permanent foreign press offices in Vietnam as stipulated in Article 14 of the Regulation. These interpreters and assistants do not have the correspondent status, and therefore, shall not be allowed to conduct press activities as correspondents of the office.

9. A permanent foreign press office which wants to have its own seal for its activities should send its application to the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs so that the latter may introduce them to the specialized Vietnamese agencies for the completion of the necessary procedures in accordance with Vietnam’s law.

D - Foreign correspondents accompanying delegations on official visits to Vietnam at the invitation of the leadership of the Party, the State, or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; foreign correspondents accompanying foreign delegations on their working visits to Vietnam at the invitation of other State agencies of Vietnam:

1. Foreign correspondents accompanying delegations on official visits to Vietnam at the invitation of the leadership of the Party, the State, or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to report on the visits shall be regarded as unofficial members of these delegations. The host organization of Vietnam shall conduct the necessary entry-exit visa procedures and notify the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to cooperate in managing them during their stay in Vietnam.

2. With regard to those foreign correspondents accompanying foreign delegations on official visits or working visits with other State agencies of Vietnam to report on the visits, the host organization of Vietnam shall have to fill the procedures with the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the same way as they do for those foreign correspondents entering Vietnam to conduct short-term press activities.

3. They must comply with the guidance of the Foreign Press Center of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the host organization which receives it if they are approved by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

E - Import and export of equipment for the conduct of press activities and of publications by the permanent foreign press offices and foreign correspondents:

1. In addition to the stipulations in Article 18 of the Regulation, a permanent foreign press office which wants to import, install and use audio-video equipment for direct satellite reception must send its request to the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs so that the latter may introduce it to the Ministry of Culture and Information to consider and grant permit.

2. With regard to other products not mentioned in Article 19, the corespondent must go through the import-export procedures at the specialized agencies of Vietnam.

III- PRESS ACTIVITIES OF FOREIGN AGENCIES AND ORGANIZATIONS IN VIETNAM

A- Publication and distribution of news bulletins, documents and other publications:

The publication and distribution of news bulletins and other publications by those agencies mentioned in this Article must comply with the Press Law, the Publication Law and the other current stipulations of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

1. A "foreign representation" which wants to publish and distribute documents, books, newspapers, pictures, news bulletins or bulletin supplements, audio or video tapes, software programs... which carry information and press reports in Vietnamese or other languages must apply for a permit from the Ministry of Culture and Information (the Press Department) and notify the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (the Information and Press Department) thereof. The application must state clearly the aim, contents, name, periodical or not, language, format, printing house, circulation and target readers.

2. A "foreign agency" which wants to publish and distribute documents, books, newspapers, pictures, news bulletins or bulletin supplements, audio or video tapes, software programs... which carry information and press reports in Vietnamese or other languages must apply for a permit from the Ministry of Culture and Information (the Press Department). The application must state clearly the aim, contents, name, periodical or not, format, printing house, circulation and target readers.

The publication and distribution of the above-mentioned documents and publications by the objects mentional in Clauses 1 and 2 of this Article can be conducted only after receiving a permit from the Ministry of Culture and Information.

B - Holding a press conference and inviting Vietnamese citizens:

Holding a press conference means the following:

Foreign agencies, organizations, delegations or individuals invite representatives of Vietnamese press agencies, correspondents or citizens to attend a conference or a get-together to announce, explain or make a statement on a matter within their competence relating to their task and interests.

1. A "foreign representative office" which wants to hold a press conference must notify in writing the Ministry of Culture and Information thereof and informing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the contents, the time, the venue, the attendance, the sponsor and other relevant details such as displaying documents and exhibits, giving a film show or an artistic performance...

A "foreign representation" which has its offices in other localities outside Hanoi must notify in writing the People

2. A "foreign representation" or a foreigner who wants to hold a press conference in a locality must register in writing with the People

Within 24 hours after receiving the written notice, if the Ministry of Culture and Information or the People?s Committee of that province or city directly under the Central Government (the Culture and Information Service) has no objection, the press conference can be regarded as approved.

The Ministry of Culture and Information or the People

3. The press conferences of the foreign delegations officially visiting Vietnam at the invitation of the leadership of the Party, the State, the Government, the National Assembly or the Ministry of Foreign Affairs shall be held according to their plan. The host agency of Vietnam shall have to notify the Ministry of Culture and Information for cooperation in running it.

With regard to the holding of press conferences by those foreign delegations which visit Vietnam at the invitation of other Vietnamese agencies: the host agency of Vietnam shall have to notify in writing the Ministry of Culture and Information or the mandated Culture and Information Service.

C - Making speeches or publishing articles in the mass media:

1. A "foreign representation" which wants to have its speech published or broadcast by the newspapers, the Radio and TV of Vietnam must notify in writing the Ministry of Culture and Information (the Press Department) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (the Information and Press Department) and send them the text of the article or the speech at least 48 hours in advance. The notice must state clearly the aim, the contents, the speaker, the writer and the press agency that will publish or broadcast it, and the time for publication or broadcasting. The "foreign representation" which has its speech published by the press or broadcast by the Radio or TV must notify the concerned People

2. A "foreign agency" which wants to have its speech published or broadcast by the press, the Radio or TV of Vietnam must notify in writing the Ministry of Culture and Information (the Press Department) and sending it the text of the article or the speech at least 48 hours in advance. The notice must state clearly the aim, the contents, the speaker, the writer, the press agency that will publish or broadcast it, and the time for publication or broadcasting. A "foreign agency" which wants to have its speech published or broadcast by the local press, Radio or TV must notify the concerned People

D - Displaying information billboards in front of the office:

1. A "foreign representation" which wants to put up information billboards before its office must apply for a permit from the Ministry of Culture and Information and notifying the Ministry of Foreign Affairs thereof. The application must state clearly the aim, contents, format and the place where the board will be installed.

In case a "foreign representation" has offices in other localities outside Hanoi, it must notify in writing the concerned People?

2. The "foreign agencies" mentioned in Clause 2, Article 23, of the Regulation which want to place their information billboards or put up their office signs in front of their offices must apply for a permit from the concerned People’s Committee of the province or city directly under the Central Government (the Culture and Information Service).

The application must state clearly the aim, contents, dimensions of the board or office sign and the place where it will be installed or put up.

The applicant can install its information billboard or put up its office sign only after receiving a permit from the Ministry of Culture and Information or the People’s Committee of the province or city directly under the Central Government as prescribed.

Any change in the permit must be approved by the agency that has issued the permit.

E - Film shows, exhibitions, seminars and other activities related to information and press activities:

1. A "foreign representation" which wants to organize a film show, exhibition, seminar or other activities related to information and press activities and to invite Vietnamese citizens to such events must apply for a permit from the Ministry of Culture and Information and notify the Ministry of Foreign Affairs thereof. The notice must state clearly the contents, the venue, the time set for the event, and the guests invited.

In case a "foreign representation" has offices in other localities outside Hanoi, it must notify in writing the People

2. Those "foreign agencies" mentioned in Clause 2, Article 24, of the Regulation which want to organize film shows, exhibitions, seminars and other activities relating to information and press activities and to invite Vietnamese citizens to the event must apply for a permit from the People

The application must state clearly the aim, contents, venue, the time, and the guests invited.

Such activities can be organized only after receiving the approval of the Ministry of Culture and Information or the People

The Ministry of Culture and Information and the People’s Committees of the provinces and cities directly under the Central Government can refuse or cancel all or part of the contents if they detect any sign of violation of the Press Law, Decree No.133-HDBT of April 20, 1992, Decree No.67-CP of October 31, 1996 and this Circular.




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