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New decree on payments mooted

Update: February, 02/2012 - 09:51

HCM CITY — A draft decree on non-cash payments mapped out by the central bank will be sent to the central government for approval early this year.

The decree replaces the prevailing Decree 64/2001 on payment service providers.

This is the first time that parties involved in intermediary payment activities have been officially mentioned in a legal document.

Duong Hong Phuong, deputy head of Payment Department at the central bank, said that intermediary payments were a new service that has developed along with information technology and telecommunication advancements.

Without a complete legal frame for this activity, the central bank has had no choice but to grant licenses on a trial basis to nine organisations specialising in e-purse services at home.

"Intermediary payment services associated with high technology need to be strictly supervised to minimise risks," Phuong said. "This is the reason why new regulation will set up a legal corridor to support non-banking institutions in payment activities."

The central bank initially classified intermediary payment services into three categories, including electronic-payment infrastructure provisions, payment – service support and other services.

Another important feature of the draft decree involves regulations on supervising payment systems, such as principal, required criteria and the scope of supervision of the national payment system, or the inter-bank electronic payment system. The 2010 Law on the State Bank of Viet Nam provides for the central bank to manage, operate and supervise the national payment system.

Still, the national payment system has only accepted Vietnamese dong, forcing the settlement of payments in foreign currencies to depend on commercial banks accordingly. — VNS

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