This is not the first time the Deputy Prime Minister has urged relevant agencies to finalize the legal framework for virtual currency management in Vietnam after the Prime Minister in August 2017 issued Decision No. 1255/QD-TTg approving the Proposal to establish a comprehensive legal framework for management of virtual property, virtual currencies and electronic money. This aims to effectively prevent, control the risks and protect legal rights of investors.
When the Proposal was presented, there were various opinions on the management of these kinds of currencies in Vietnam’s market.
The State Bank confirmed that bitcoin and other similar virtual currencies are not currency and legal means of payment in Vietnam.
Accordingly, infringements will be subject to administrative sanctions of VND150 million to 200 million (US$6,615 to 8,820). At the same time, from January 01, 2018, the acts of issuing, providing, using illegal means of payment, including bitcoin and other similar virtual currency, may be subject to criminal prosecution.
However, notably, from January to mid-December 2017, Vietnam imported 2,470 bitcoin and litecoin mining machines which are made in China. According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, this item is not related to the use of virtual currency as a means of payment and not on the list of goods banned from import as stipulated in Decree No. 187/2013 of the Government.
Meanwhile, numerous data on visits to virtual currency websites in the world show that Vietnam is one of the countries visiting these websites most.
Recently, Bitconnect website, where Vietnam ranks the fourth in visiting, has been suspended by the Texas Securities Commission.
The suspension of this website may be due to fraudulent activity. These frauds include failing to disclose information to the head, the correct address, the business area, property and liability.