Vietnam issues regulations for motor vehicles brought from abroad

By VNA   March 10, 2024 | 07:50 pm PT
Vietnam issues regulations for motor vehicles brought from abroad
A foreign man rides a motorcycle in HCMC's District 7, Dec. 9, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Minh Nga
The government has issued a decree regarding the management of motorized vehicles registered abroad and brought into Vietnam by foreign travelers.

Stipulating general conditions for both foreign drivers and vehicles entering Vietnam, it said individuals must work with international travel service businesses in Vietnam who are capable of making requests for the authorities' approval of organizing the participation of foreign drivers and motorized vehicles in the local traffic. The approval document must be obtained from the Ministry of Public Security.

Foreign motorized vehicles participating in traffic in Vietnam must meet certain conditions, including being road motorized vehicles as defined in Clause 1, Article 3 of this decree and having valid vehicle registration certificates and license plates as well as valid safety and environmental inspection certificates for motorized vehicles or equivalent documents (for automobiles). These above-said documents must be issued by the competent authority of the country of registration.

Automobiles with right-hand drive must obtain a diplomatic note from diplomatic missions, consular offices, or international intergovernmental organization offices in Vietnam. The note is sent to the Ministry of Public Security, requesting permission and stating the reasons for the vehicle to participate in traffic in Vietnam. The automobiles are only allowed temporary entry or re-export through international border gates via road, sea, inland waterway, rail, or air routes as approved by the ministry.

Another general condition is to undergo customs, temporary entry, or re-export procedures in accordance with customs laws immediately at the border gates.

The maximum duration allowed for traffic participation in Vietnam is no more than 45 days. In exceptional circumstances, a stay of no more than 10 additional days is permitted, subject to regulations.

The drivers, meanwhile, must be foreigners holding valid passports or internationally recognized travel documents and visas, and valid residence documents in Vietnam, except for cases exempted from visas under the immigration, emigration, transit, and residence law for foreigners in Vietnam. If foreigners enter the country under unilateral visa exemption, their passport must be valid for at least six months before expiry; while those using electronic visas must enter through international border gates decided by the government.

Other conditions for the drivers to meet include having a valid driving license issued by a foreign country suitable for the type of vehicle being driven, and undergoing entry, exit, and residence procedures in accordance with Vietnamese law.

These stipulations will come into effect on May 1, 2024.

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