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VietNamNews

Regulation to govern land auctions

Update: July, 25/2012 - 10:03

HA NOI — The ministries of Justice and Natural Resources and Environment would work together to compile an inter-sector circular on land-use right auctions to better manage this kind of public asset and reduce violations.

The Justice Minister Ha Hung Cuong made the statement yesterday during an on-line public dialogue through the Government's e-portal at www.chinhphu.vn when asked about ways to improve the auctions.

He said that violation such as decoy bids, suppressing prices and unfair competition were seen both in auctioning and bidding activities for public assets including land use rights, causing huge losses to the nation.

However, the violations had been curbed since 2010 when the Government approved Decision 17 with clearer regulations on property auctions, procedures and establishment of professional property auction organisations.

"Previously, land-use right auctions used to be carried out by district or provincial auction councils without professional auctioneers, legal framework nor authorised supervisory bodies,"

Cuong said, adding that the responsibilities of auctioneers were not stated clearly at that time, leading to violations.

However, he admitted that, so far, the implementation of the Decision 17 faced difficulties including a shortage of auctioneers and legal instruction documents and untimely land-use right auctions at remote districts.

Moreover, vague regulations caused unhealthy competition among auction companies and Government's asset auction centres, he said.

For example, private companies offer commissions for auctioneers while Government centres don't, thus people tend to prefer private companies.

"The ministry directed cities and provinces to improve the skills of auctioneers and expand their ranks, while also facilitating the development of both auction service providers and Government's centres to meet demand," he said.

Too many amendments

Responding to public concern about the short life of laws that undergo frequent amendment, the minister said that Viet Nam had only about 25 years of experience in law building, and this was limiting especially when the country was developing a socialist oriented market economy, an unprecedented challenge.

"Government is aware that changes to laws can cause trouble for people as well as investors and businesses, thus we are making efforts to achieve a steady legal framework,' he said.

The amendment of Constitution 1992, a fundamental legal document for all law in Viet Nam, would be foundation to finalise and stabilise the country's law systems in 2020, he said.

Cuong also said that in many cases, approved laws took effect but circulars and other legal guiding documents to implement the laws were not issued in a timely way, leading to slow implementation of laws in real situations.

Prior to 2006, over 100 legal guiding documents for implementation of Governmental decrees missed their deadlines, accounting for 60 per cent of all documents that should have been issued.

The Government took moves to speed up the issuance process, he said, adding that until last December, just a quarter of all 120 documents were on the table.

Limited human resources and capacity as well as the complicated nature of the issues were blamed for the slowness.

Ministries and agencies assigned to compile the guiding documents took first responsibility for hold-ups in the process, but the Ministry of Justice took part of the responsibility as it was the Government's "gate keeper" in this field, he admitted.

He said that the ministry also tightened inspection and assessment of the legality of documents issued to central and local agencies, urging corrections.

In the last two years, it examined over 3,000 documents, founding mistakes in nearly 600 of them.

Also during the on-line dialogue, minister Cuong addressed problems with residential registration in Viet Nam and the shortage of competent lawyers to join cases that involve foreign parties. — VNS

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